Glen Campbell

Written By: Stomp

Glen Campbell1950s–early 1960s: session musician and the Beach BoysCampbell, one of twelve children born to a sharecropper father with Scottish ancestors right outside the tiny community of Delight in Pike County, Arkansas, in a town called Billstown, then a community of fewer than one hundred residents, started playing guitar as a youth without learning to read music. He credits his Uncle Boo for teaching him the guitar. Though it is widely reported that Glen is a seventh son of a seventh son, that information is not true. Campbell said that at the age of one and a half he almost drowned but was revived.By the time he was eighteen, he was touring the South as part of the Western Wranglers. In 1958, he moved to Los Angeles to become a session musician. He was part of the 1959 line-up of the group the Champs, famous for their instrumental “Tequila”.Campbell was in great demand as a session musician in the 1960s. He was part of the famous studio musicians clique known as “the Wrecking Crew”, many of whom went from session to session together as the same group. In addition to Campbell, Hal Blaine on drums, Tommy Tedesco on guitar, Leon Russell on piano, Carol Kaye on bass guitar, Al Casey on guitar were part of this elite group of session musicians that defined many pop and rock recordings of the era. They were also heard on Phil Spector’s “Wall of Sound” recordings in the early 1960s.He was a touring member of the Beach Boys, filling in for Brian Wilson in 1964 and 1965. He played guitar on the group’s Pet Sounds album, among other recordings. On tour, he played bass guitar and sang falsetto harmonies.He can be seen briefly in the 1965 film Baby the Rain Must Fall, playing guitar in support of Steve McQueen.Campbell was also the uncredited lead vocalist on “My World Fell Down” by the psychedelic rock act Sagittarius, which became a minor hit in 1967.