Photography: PCH Films

Those who knew him best share their happy memories of The Rhinestone Cowboy.

Throughout Tuesday, as they heard the sad news of Glen Campbell’s passing, friends and contemporaries of The Rhinestone Cowboy paid tribute to the country music icon, his wife Kimberly and his children. Among those singing their praises:

Dolly Parton

“Well, Glen Campbell was special because he was so gifted. Glen is one of the greatest voices that ever was in the business, and he was one of the greatest musicians. He was a wonderful session musician as well. A lot of people don’t realize that, but he could play anything. And he could play it really well. So he was just extremely talented. I will always love you, Glen!”

Larry Gatlin

“Today around 2 pm, my old and GREAT friend, Vince Gill became the best singer/guitar player alive, because our mutual GREAT friend Glen Travis Campbell went to see JESUS ... I mean that as a compliment to both of my old friends. I’m in NYC eating Italian food down in Little Italy and Glen is in heaven eating angel food cake.  My love and condolences to Kim, Ashley, Cal, Debbie, and the whole family.”

Billy Ray Cyrus

“Glen Campbell was such a huge influence on me. Growing up, I studied his writing, songs and how he was an ‘entertainer’s entertainer.’ Along with Johnny Cash, Dolly Parton and Porter Wagoner, Glen Campbell was one of the first to parlay country music into mainstream television and broaden the entire country music fan base across the globe. Ride on Rhinestone Cowboy. God Bless.”

Doug Gray of The Marshall Tucker Band

“Glen’s music came from an era that will never exist again.  His unique sound and ability to touch his audience was something many musicians can never reach. He was truly a trailblazer in country music and there will never be another.  Ride easy, Rhinestone Cowboy.”

John Berry

“Adios to the great Rhinestone Cowboy Glen Campbell, who left us with an incredibly shining new piece of music that will be enjoyed by generations to come. Prayers for Kimberly and his family during this most difficult time.  He will be missed.”

Brenda Lee

“I had the pleasure of inducting Glen into the Country Music Hall of Fame. He could write it, sing it and play it. He was a triple threat. He never forgot his friends and made room for them on any project he could. He was one of the finest musicians I've ever known and certainly the prowess of his entertainment legacy goes without saying that. He was our golden boy. We loved him and the world loved him.”

Roy Clark

“Sorry to hear about my good friend Glen. The loss is too big to put into words. He was an incredible voice, incredible musician, incredible friend, movie star and recording artist. We had so much fun together, and sort of grew up together in our music and our careers. There were so many memories that only he and I shared. Glen and I were brothers in every sense of the word. When I hear or see his name, I see the Glen I’ve always known. There will never, ever be another Glen Campbell.”

Bill Anderson

“I knew Glen for more than 50 years. We met on the set of a TV show in Toronto in 1964, and like everybody else in our business, I was a huge fan. One of my treasured memories is the day Glen and I sat together, just the two of us and his guitar, and recorded a Bill Anderson Visits with the Legends radio show for XM satellite radio. We laughed, sang and visited like two neighbors across a picket fence. I’ll remember it forever.”

Gene Watson

“What a great loss for country music and the world. Glen Campbell was one of the all-time greats as a singer, musician and entertainer, as well as a TV host and actor. He did it all and remained a down-home, salt of the earth man. He was a true gentleman who was always quick to say hello as if he was your neighbor. He was able to rise above all formats, as he hit the top of the charts in country and pop/rock virtually side by side. A remarkable feat by a most remarkable man.”

Duane Allen of The Oak Ridge Boys

“I think probably, the sweetest time I had with Glen Campbell is when I would be with him, pitching songs to each other. Glen Campbell was one of the great song men I’ve ever met in my life. Glen taught me so much about the importance of finding great songs. When we worked together, which was many times, like in Branson, when we opened up the Palace Theatre. We opened it up together. We would wind up on our bus, playing songs until one night we played so long that he just fell asleep. He just didn’t want to give it up, and he would wake up at the end of the song and say ‘Play another one.’ I’d say, ‘Don’t you think we need to go to sleep?’ He’d say ‘Yeah, but I’d just love to hear these new songs.’ We would just keep playing songs. One time we were out in the Sparks, Nevada working with Mel Tillis and he said ‘Glen called and he wants us to come over to Tahoe and play some songs.’ So we got in Mel’s plane and flew to Tahoe, and we played songs at Glen’s place, just played songs for each other for about two hours until we were hoarse. Then we flew back to Sparks, did our shows and Glen did his at Lake Tahoe. Short time ago I went to visit Glen at the home where he was staying and handed him a guitar. He picked it up and strummed it a little bit, gave me a big smile, and it was hard to see a man who looked really healthy, looked really good, still smiled real big, but not be able to communicate like he once did. But I have so many memories of him. And I pray that someday, we’ll find a cure or treatment for Alzheimer’s and those people who need help and that’s my one prayer.”

Kenny Rogers

“It’s always tragic when you hear of a friend passing, but he had to be miserable that last few years of his life. At least he doesn’t have to deal with that anymore. We worked together a lot through the years. In fact, Glen played on almost all First Edition music. He played a dynamic riff on the guitar that was trendsetting. I also shot a few of his album covers back in the day and, at the time, I never knew people were paid to do that, but a few weeks later I received a check in the mail that was unexpected and highly received. I’ll never forget that. He was a good friend and it breaks my heart that he’s not here to contribute to music anymore.”

 

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