Greatest Hits

Glen Campbell

Capitol, 2009

REVIEW BY: Kenny S. McGuane


The year 2008 was an exciting one for Glen Campbell. It was about as exciting as it gets for a 77 year old pop-country icon. His totally unexpected comeback and surprisingly excellent album Meet Glen Campbell (click here to see my review) was a pleasant surprise for fans who might have otherwise thought they’d lost the legendary singer and guitar player to alcohol, bad record concepts and…uh…just plain old age. Given that Campbell is back at home on Capitol Records, it should come as no surprise to anyone that the ever money-hungry and highly criticized label is cashing in on last year’s success with the new and mostly unnecessary Glen Campbell: Greatest Hits compilation. Capitol is scrambling, indeed: see Daily Vault writer my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Vish Iyer’s take on their similarly superfluous Radiohead compilation.

In any event, Glen Campbell: Greatest Hits is thorough enough for the casual listener, featuring sixteen of the singer’s most successful songs. Included here are the genius Jimmy Webb-penned songs “Wichita Lineman,” “By The Time I Get To Phoenix,” “Galveston” and “Honey, Come Back.” Other phenomenally successful tunes like Campbell’s classic version of John Hartford’s “Gentle On My Mind” and the mega-smash country yacht-rock hits “Rhinestone Cowboy” and “Southern Nights” are all preserved in this collection, making for a damn fine Sunday barbecue album. Also, Capitol has included two tracks from Meet Glen Campbell, his cover of the Foo Fighters’ “Times Like These” and his wonderful version of Jackson Browne’s classic “These Days.”

What’s most important about Glen Campbell: Greatest Hits is that all of the tracks have been remastered for this collection and even though all of the most important Glen Campbell studio albums have already been remastered, this disc makes it easier to cut through the fat and get to the real meat of his catalog. As it stands, though, Glen Campbell: Greatest Hits hardly compares to EMI’s 1998 stupendously thorough and comprehensive two-disc collection Glen Campbell: The Capitol Years 65/77. Although the latter mentioned collection -- by nature of its title -- omits tunes like “Rhinestone Cowboy” and “Southern Nights,” it hardly matters because those over-commercialized tunes aren’t representative of Glen Campbell’s talent or importance as an American music icon.

So in the end, Glen Campbell: Greatest Hits would be a really nice and safe Christmas gift for your folks, but not for anyone who cares about Glen Campbell, the artist, the legend, the brilliant guitar player and the universally adored singer.

Rating: C

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


For those of you who haven't bought the album yet it's well worth checking out the downloadable widget first... featuring a few cool songs and pics etc...

© 2009 Kenny S. McGuane and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Capitol, and is used for informational purposes only.