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Your Stories and Memories about Glen

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Re: Your Stories and Memories about Glen

Post by robduloc » Tue Sep 22, 2015 8:54 pm

What I meant to say is by the Sixth Grade I had purchased and owned ten Glen Campbell albums and since I was spending so much time borrowing and listening to my father's hi-fi in my bedroom, my Dad broke down and bought a smaller cheaper version for me, that way we could spend more time listening to our own selections, that's what Glen Campbell did for me, the only kid on the block with my own turntable, yes, a picnic player but a phonograph all the same, that could be put on repeat play by lifthe record holder arm, I can hear the lush string arrangements now!

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Re: Your Stories and Memories about Glen

Post by robduloc » Sat Sep 12, 2015 10:25 pm

Dee and I have talked about what it was like to be a kid growing up in the Sixties and that we are a little worried that the timeline is blurred, but looking over the list of 45 Singles I am happy to announce all the memories fit into place for Glen Campbell's meteoric rise and how much his music resonated with all age demographics.

I mean, in the day, when you look at the Country Association, it must have been hard for recording artist had children in love with Campbell ardently glued to their television set each week.

Nobody is more beautiful, passionate or worked as hard to get to the top.

I remember Glen Campbell early as 1964, but like many children, Radio, Records and TV took a huge turn when Gentle On My Mind hit the TV and Radio airwaves.

Campbell garnered our rapt attention, competing with other Pop Stars to jockey a top position for weekly and monthly allowances, birthday lists and holiday wishes.

The chart toppers came quickly and sear into our collective conscious.

Gentle On My Mind 45 Single released June/July 1967
By The Time I Get To Phoenix 45 Single October 1967
Hey Little One 45 Single January 1968
Wichita Lineman 45 Single October 1968

Gentle On My Mind has me scurrying to collect myself in the midst of the last warm summer evenings, stepping outdoors, talking with other children on the block, like we have just witnessed a star shooting across the heavens.

By The Time I Get To Phoenix, Fall is setting in, the air dank and wet, massive radio play by this time, the season sets the overall mood, By The Time I Get To Phoenix feels like what it is like too come out of the rain after crying, the steam rising, unsure what is rain or tear drops falling and melting away, a river of tears really, that only the rain can wash away.

Hey Little One and the iconic album cover of Campbell posing with his guitar, has captured our attention and stolen a number of hearts all around the world, the chart numbers are coming in and invitations to play on foreign soil, warming a room with the first notes and electric applause.

For me, the Summer before Third Grade, rolling into the Fall of the new school year and new material not quite Spring of finishing out that grade, a committed fan and listener.

And that leads into the Summer of 1968 and my third Glen Campbell LP at the tender age of 9, A New Place In The Sun, a personal favorite, but wait, it gets the star ascends even higher with the release of the iconic album cover Wichita Lineman.

From the time that I was only 5 and used to stare at the front cover of The Astounding 12 String Guitar of Glen Campbell and Glen Campbell Burning Bridges, I could barely reach the back of teh record bin, but wouldn't you know, someone had always staged his albums to be up in the front, girls on the block, sales clerk, record distributor, young housewife, Grandma, Robby Stoneman?

We all had our paws on the record slicks, but the classy arrangements instilled something deep in me, yearnings and longing to be in love and in a relationship, heavy duty musings for a little tyke.

There was a flip flop there, the poetry, the blending of instruments, shifted my focus inwardly, testimony those albums have left a deep permanent impression.

It really did start with the album cover and album title Burning Bridges. I had just learn to read, and I knew in my heart Burning Bridges meant having it bad for someone and there's no turning back after that.

On the lighter side, I was only a kid.

My initial impression of the front cover for Gentle On My Mind was that that he is a traveling doctor with his corduroy jacket, business brisk, leaning over his instrument to work on your heart.
We lived in a new part of town, and the albums white opaque background reminded me of all the new white wall partitions that smelled of fresh paint, so there you go, Gentle On My Mind really is a breath of fresh air.

And the album cover for By Time I Get To Phoenix, I felt was a clear message, when you have it bad for somebody be sure to get out of the cold.

And to be quite honest, with all these mixed emotions and messages, the overall impression of Campbell holding his guitar on the front cover of Hey Little One, he might as well be holding the key to a popular Men's Club in the day, card holding member... wow!

Wait a minute I'm not finished, or confessing, how much is this saving me in therapy, the orange background for the album cover A New Place In The Sun reminded me of a heat lamp for a grill or buffet rack, that's right, I looked at Campbell as a side of meat, and his blue turtleneck served as a function to not overheat.

That leaves the album cover for Wichita Lineman, I thought the red and white polka dot shirt was a tip off Glen Campbell had joined a Circus sometime in his life and still wearing the polka dots as a proud banner he had graduated from clown school or acrobat school.

Hey, with all my grab mixture of moods. emotions and feelings, I was only a kid!

I Wanna Live is the only song that truly scared me, I used to have to hunker down and stuff my face in the pillow when that came on as I was falling asleep.

And so, it really help to have Bobby Gentry & Glen Campbell lend a woman's touch, after all these years I'm stilled primed, heart pumping, today I manage to purchase online a copy of the 1970 45 Single All I Have To Do Is Dream b/w Walk Right Back.

The term online was floating around the stratosphere in 1970, although nothing could have prepared me for the friends and alliance that I would forge here.

Thank you, for tolerating all my stories, I've come a long way from listening to Glen Campbell in my bedroom on my father's monoural hi-fi.

I do have one last confession to elevate our star, after Glen Campbell, my father bought me a picnic player for my room, all the agreement of the Glen Campbell Fair Trade Act also known as the Swingin' Sixties.

And so that may be the single most lesson here, Glen Campbell got me through the 60's and into the 70's, with some of his best songs riding the air waves in High School and Unconditional Love to play while nursing our first baby, yes there is an arc there, Ghost On The Canvas is my number one favorite of all time, that is a proclamation.

Goodnight, Robby~ Don't leave the phonograph arm on repeat*

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Re: Your Stories and Memories about Glen

Post by BobbieG » Tue Jun 09, 2015 8:44 pm

Thank you kindly for sharing those pearls from Rosanne Cash and for recognizing Ms. Bobbie Gentry's music.
Also for sharing your relative's insight about human nature,,,resilience.

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Re: Your Stories and Memories about Glen

Post by robduloc » Sat May 30, 2015 12:07 am

Dee and I were talking about the Glen Campbell Good Time Hour DVD on the Surf Dog Label box set Glen Campbell An American Treasure.

I had purchased it but was waiting for the right time to see DVD portion, it had been years since I had seen a segment from the show.

We were talking about how there were two different camps, some Variety Shows had a guest sing and play along too a feed, other shows were live.

The time had come to finally watch the incredible selections Surf Dog Label chose for their tribute.

I do believe that all the songs and performances are live with the exception of two.

The first one is a duet featuring Goldie Hawn and Glen Campbell at a carnival, taking into account her busy schedule, I can see why they had to fit it in that way, fireworks all the same! she's quite the Jazzer, I bet she has quite the record collection at home.

I'm not sure because they are such consummate performers but I believe The Osmonds may be playing to a feed, it's hard to say because they are so professional, I love The Osmonds- their host performs a guitar solo, I do believe that part is live, and so the overall effect is multi-layered for that particular segment.

The rest of the songs appear to be live, sometimes you can catch Campbell looking up to the ceiling to see if the mic is catching all this magic!

That is, if I were Glen Campbell I would be pinching myself, alll the friends and guest and magic forged by hand week in and out, a real life fairy tale come true.

And now we have the ultimate tribute.

Thank you, Surf Dog.

Glen Campbell An American Treasure box set, two CD's spanning over 5 decades presented in chronological order, a third disc of Sessions in chronological order and accompanying DVD.

A tremendous service to the music community at large.

Truly, a treasure house of talent.

A wonderful place to return time and again, and be entertained.

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Re: Your Stories and Memories about Glen

Post by robduloc » Sun May 24, 2015 12:38 pm

Thank you Dee,

It means a lot that you opened up and shared your feelings about True Grit, your entry is "True Art"!

It did my heart well to see you touch on all the things that mean so much to me.

I know that I will come back to read your beautiful post time and again... to remember... what it was like to grow up tall and proud.

A nice way to spend my Sunday morning.

As a child I heard that a chicken has an organ for the bird to lap up bits of dirt and use the tiny rocks to break down and clean their insides like an abrasive pad, I was told those rocks were grit, and so naturally, that's where I thought the term True Grit stemmed from, to break down some formidable obstacle to its' smallest component and pass it without resistance.

I don't know, maybe it was the nickname "Rooster" which set if off!

People that don't allow their rough environment to get the best of them, respect every last bit or particle of earth has a function or role to fulfill.

You have to take into account, the more recent film version debunks Mattie's story or claims.

First of all, Mattie is no sprout, standing next to her horse, the fourteen year old towers over the beast, quite plain Arkansas grow their children to stand or sit tall in the saddle and perform giant chores.

Next, the way Mattie maintains her ledger, and always balances to the penny, what were the filmmakers thinking in the new version as a result of poor planning Mattie has to spend her first night sleeping in a coffin, is this what really happened, when Mattie is older and writing her tale is she brushing over facts to dress things up and make herself look better?

No, Mattie is more than just a kid, she is strong, well read and no stranger to hard work and sacrifice, and gets upset when her men don't hold true to their word.

And when you watch the new version, Mattie, Cogburn and the Texas Ranger split up when hurt feelings and differences arise and get in the way, this is not so in the original story, they got their backs covered all the time, that is why they are like The Three Musketeers, just when you think that they may have split up, they're on the sidelines using an element of surprise when to jump in with military type tactics.

True Grit is the first time that I saw a horse can die if you run it too fast in a short length not much more than a mile, an astute observation on the part of Portis to debunk the invincible knight in shining armor, we are flesh and blood and have boundaries, but are born to do do great things and perform super human feats in times of danger.

I do believe, at the end of the book, Matties says another time and place, she may have wed Cogburn and been his bride, even as a child, I took that as meaning she would've died without the speed Cogburn took to rescue her and it is only human nature to want to give yourself to your one and only true liberator.

It's one of the best parts in the book, the older Mattie going over in her mind, Cogburn would have made a good husband.

Thank you, Dee, for helping relive all the beautiful passages.

I am indebted to you, my hero~

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Re: Your Stories and Memories about Glen

Post by Dee » Sat May 23, 2015 3:01 pm

I have been thinking about "True Grit", Rob, and your comments about the book/movie's threesome as The Musketeers.
All for one, one for all. Right on.

I keep thinking, too, about which character has "true grit"? Who was Charles Portis referring to when he named his novel, True Grit?

For myself, I like to think that Mattie Ross is the character with true grit. Although she is only 14 years old, she determines to find justice by avenging her father's death:
"People do not give it credence that a fourteen-year-old girl could leave home and go off in the wintertime to avenge her father's blood but it did not seem so strange then, although I will say it did not happen every day." (from True Grit, the novel)

Mattie searches for a man with true grit to assist in her quest. Her search leads her to Rooster Cogburn, perhaps a man who once had true grit but either lost it to drink or found it in his (whiskey) bottle. Over the course of the novel/film, he finds his strength or true grit again as he helps Mattie fulfill her quest.

Then there is LaBoeuf, the Texas Ranger with a single monetary focus. Maybe he has had grit all along in his life, but we don't know much about him, do we? He really shows what he is made of (grit) when he comes to Mattie's rescue after she has fallen in the snake pit.

Perhaps Portis intended to say that "grit" comes in different forms. Grit in facing one's enemies. Grit in overcoming differences with others. Grit in facing one's fears. Grit in finding one's moral compass. Grit in facing death. Grit in living life despite a terrible loss (the loss of Mattie's father).

I like to think there is a fourth "gritty character" in the novel/film: the setting in which this story unfolds. America the beautiful with its untamed land and rushing rivers, Winding Stair Mountains, deep valleys, beautiful landscape with changing seasons and unexpected "pitfalls". In the novel, Mattie describes this landscape: "We loped across open prairies and climbed wooded limestone hills and made our way through brushy bottoms and icy streams. Much of the snow melted under the sun but as the long shadows of dusk descended in all their purple loveliness, the temperature did likewise. We were very warm from our exertions and the chill night air felt good at first, but then it became uncomfortable as we slowed our pace." The film does justice to the beauty of the landscape as well as the dangers of an unsettled, untamed territory.

I had mentioned in a previous post that I believe the story of True Grit is similar to a fairy tale. Perhaps Portis purposely infused his novel with these common elements of a fairy tale:

The number three (represented by the three main characters).

Quests (all three characters start out with their own agendas, in search of something/someone).

An innocent character (Mattie) who is helped by others.

Evil monsters or characters who lose in the end (Tom Chaney and "Lucky" Ned Pepper).

The beloved animal that gives its life for its owner (Little Blackie for Mattie).

Poverty (Mattie, a young girl from a poor farming family in Arkansas, perhaps sharecroppers just like the family in which Glen Campbell was born; Rooster Cogburn, down on his luck).

Universal themes such as the coming of age (Mattie), the seeking of justice, having unfulfilled hopes and desires (all three characters), good versus evil, the loss of innocence, death.

Themes of human weaknesses (pride, stubbornness, the need for revenge, single-mindedness, laziness, arrogance).

Themes of human strengths (belief in oneself, grit, fearlessness, kindness, self-sacrifice, love). Regarding love, I believe that for Cogburn, Mattie becomes the daughter he never had; for Mattie, Cogburn becomes a substitute father figure; for LaBoeuf, maybe love for Mattie--which I can only base on the song, "Go Home Girl", that LaBoeuf sings to Mattie: "Don't get me thinking things I shouldn't think"; "Go home girl, and find somebody else you can depend on"; "(your) stubborn little head that drives me crazy"; and "the uncommon side of a girl like you is enough to make my flesh cry out for help". This song was cut from the original commercial soundtrack's release.

Guardians, guides, mentors or helpers (Cogburn for Mattie, later LaBoeuf for Mattie, and Mattie who helps both men to find redemption).

Youngest versus oldest. Perhaps the innocence or naivety of youth versus the world-weariness of older, wiser adults.

Impossible tasks that somehow our heroes manage to complete.

A happy ever after ending--sometimes. (The book and the movie have different endings.)

* * * * *
True Grit: what a great story! Simple on the surface, but as deep as those valleys we see in the film.


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Re: Your Stories and Memories about Glen

Post by robduloc » Mon May 11, 2015 10:52 pm

Thank you, BobbyG,

As a child of the sixties, I do remember thinking that it may be a ring which is thrown off the bridge.

I think that I may have learned that eavesdropping on my sister and her friends.

Our local stores stocked that iconic record and album cover on the front shelves well into the 70's.

Rosanne talked about the song for around 8 minutes before playing it, she told the audience the main theme takes place at the dinner table, I am thankful for that, it was a pretty sweltering version, I do believe there is a steamy side built into the song, Rosanne counted off the beginning of the song by snapping her fingers and continued through a majority of the song, she was driving home the internal beat like a throbbing pulse.

Yes, I appreciate that there is an element of mystery, in my late teens there were a number of times I read in the local paper about young women that hid their pregnancy and deposited their baby in trash bins, shakes you when the headlines say some babies survive the ordeal and others don't, thoughts turn to a river of tears, how can you hide that sort of loss.

It's so easy to become sensitized and turn the news page or channel switch. Miss Gentry is solid testimony there is pressure from all sides.

Yesterday my son who is going to college met a distant relative from Georgia who is 85 and worked as a counselor in a prison for 20 years.

My son asked what he learned about human nature, he replied, "Our resilience"

No doubt that is what a good song is for, a glimpse into our indestructible side, and Miss Bobby Gentry is an American Treasure, jewel and gem of a singer songwriter and entertainer, magic!

When I think of what Miss Gentry's music has meant to me over the years, yeah, most mystical and a joy to return to, like a first love, truly so.

Thank you, for your very important input and please, keep on writing and reminding me, the rich gold vein that is our musical history and legacy.

Yes, we have handsome ancestors.

Pray, that all our pain is washed away and the promise of a new day brings to light a fresh start and new hope for us and our loved ones.

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Re: Your Stories and Memories about Glen

Post by Dee » Mon May 11, 2015 9:48 pm

Very interesting post, BobbieG!
I now have an entirely new perspective on "Ode to Billie Joe". Thank you!
The video shows one of the most moving performances I have ever seen by Bobbie Gentry. It's very eerie, too, with those close-up camera shots of the manikins.
It appears as if Bobbie is telling her own story, that maybe this song is autobiographical.
Thanks again!

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Re: Your Stories and Memories about Glen

Post by BobbieG » Sat May 09, 2015 8:52 pm

Sorry, I wanted to mention this point about the Ode to Billie Joe,,,
My thinking could be a stretch, but as a peace loving flower child from the 60s, I believe a case could be made that Ode to Billie Joe was a kind of protest song about the American government's disregard for our soldiers lives during the Vietnam war. Indifference = inhumanity

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Re: Your Stories and Memories about Glen

Post by BobbieG » Sat May 09, 2015 8:32 pm

Robduloc, you wrote below about Rosanne Cash and her husband checking out the Tallahatchie Bridge (the bridge of tragic memories written into the song lyrics of Ode to Billie Joe).

Not to take the focus away from Mr. Glen Campbell here, but did you all know that the original song “Ode to Billie Joe” was written by Ms. Bobbie Gentry to be about 7 minutes long? In order to shorten up this Southern Gothic ballad for radio airplay, the song was cut down to 4 minutes. Some of Ms. Gentry's followers believe that the song’s mystery of what was thrown off the bridge was lost in the edits. So, we have discussed this topic on and off for years (crazy, I know…almost 50 years). Some Gentry followers think it was an engagement ring that was thrown into the muddy river. Other guesses are,,,,a gun, an aborted baby, a draft card, this was a sixties song afterall.

Then, in 2006, the University of Mississippi posted to the Internet the original handwritten rough draft of Ode to Billie Joe (Ms. Gentry had donated all her story & song rough drafts to the U. sometime in the 1970s). Based on the draft without the missing verses, it seems that Ms. Gentry had intentionally written her song to be mysterious about what was thrown off the bridge.

What thrills a songwriter like me is that what was thrown off the bridge is not the point of the song and this is why it is never revealed to us.

The real message of Ode to Billie Joe seems to be about people’s indifference, maybe an indifferent generation,,,a family sitting around the dinner table, eating, passing the black-eyed peas and biscuits and apple pie, and in between bites, they are talking about Billy Joe MacAllister’s suicide as if they were talking about a change in the weather. A young man in their town has died but this family is heartless about his death. Typical but genius Southern Goth, gets me down to the bones, it is also typical of anti-establishment feelings in the 60s.

Why do some of us songwriters think this way about the song’s real meaning? When this song first came out, Ms. Gentry performed an emotional (I still cannot watch it to this day without crying my heart out) Ode to Billie Joe on the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour. For Ms. Gentry’s performance on stage, a table with three people sittin around it were on the set behind Bobbie Gentry. We have to assume that the three people represent the family members in “Ode to Billie Joe”, right? And guess what? These family members are nothing but lifeless manikins with barely no expressions, incapable of emotions. Heartless, inhuman, just like in the song. By using manikins or “dummies”, Ms. Gentry is showing us the point of her song,,,the inhumanity of people.

Here is the video from the Smothers Brothers Show: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CZt5Q-u4crc" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Scary, isn’t it?

Bobbie Gentry was a genius songwriter. I could go on and on about this song’s other themes, but I won’t.

Anyway, back to Mr. Glen Campbell. Ms. Gentry was married at one time to Jim Stafford who entertained us in Branson along with Mr. Campbell!

Sorry for talking your ears off.

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