The Pyrenees---Southern France

The Pyrenees---Southern France

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Before Cat Stevens...

       Before there was Cat Stevens and John Sebastian and Richie Havens and John Lennon, there was Glen Campbell.

Glen Campbell--photo by m_g_ gray

       It still flummoxes me, but I had a crazy crush on Glen. I loved his music, I loved his voice, and I found him physically quite attractive (as hunky as a 10-year old could hunker together, that is).

       When the movie True Grit came out, I ran, screeching, to the movie theater to see it. (Okay, that's a slight exaggeration, but I did have to strap on my drool bucket.) I drank in every moment of every scene he was in.

       During the last quarter of the movie, I was devastated. (spoiler alert) The Glen Campbell character died! The nerve of them! In my young mind, it was as if Campbell was now dead.

       Now Glen has Alzheimer's. He still plays concerts, but is supported by three of his children. They keep him from faltering too far afield. When he finishes a song, then goes into the intro of that same song, they gently remind him. He has a teleprompter, to help ensure he doesn't forget the lyrics. Unfortunately, I know that soon, he will not be able to continue. I know, because my dad had Alzheimer's. It's a horrible disease, but it takes the worst toll on the family of the afflicted one.

        As writers, we have to continue no matter how tough it gets. When we get a rejection, we have to brush ourselves off and send off another submission. When we stumble, we have to get up and keep moving ahead.

         Who do you admire who--like Glen Campbell--is the epitome of perseverance?  Tell their story. Now.


  1. Joan Jett! Everybody thought the Runaways were just a gimmick, and she was turned down by fifty gazillion record labels. But she formed the Blackhearts and recorded "I Love Rock n Roll" and became a star anyway. She's still making great rock music today.

    And of course, while we're on music artists, you know I adore Miss Emmylou.

    1. AND, Joan was swimming against the current. A GIRL in rock and roll? Ludicrous, people thought.

  2. When we lived in Alaska in 1969, we had one Glen Campbell album whihc we wore out. I never want to hear Wichita Lineman ever again. He and Tonya sure had some squabbles. Did you know his sister owned a bar/grill on Telegraph Road years ago? To think, Sioux, you were so close and yet so far away.

  3. Linda--

    Yes, when he fell for Tanya Tucker, I was definitely disappointed. (In 1969 I was only 10, Linda. However, I was taught to always respect my elders. Ha!)

  4. Roger Ebert is amazing. In 2006 he lost his lower jaw to cancer. He can no longer speak. He can no longer eat or drink; everything comes to him through a tube. And yet through it all he never stopped writing. He talks volumes through his keyboard. The man's passion for words could not be stolen from him, nor the joy he finds in his work. He's phenomenal. If you're interested in reading about what happened to him and how he has coped (amazingly well) read this article in Esquire from 2010. It is long, but well worth your time.

  5. Lisa--

    I've seen him at various points since his bout with cancer and you're right--his insistence on living life to the fullest is amazing.

    Thanks for the link to the article. I will have to check it out.

  6. Replies
    1. You must have a marvelous mom, because you are so creative and talented, Mama Zen.


Thanks for your comments. I appreciate you taking the time to stop by...