Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Glen Campbell Exceeds Pat Boone

Glen Campbell has had a varied career. Member of the Champs, road member of the Beach Boys, hero of west coast pop country (here's the story of Jimmy Webb and "Wichita Lineman"), some ragged years, and now re-interpreter of his younger brethren:

[Julian Raymond] approached Campbell after one of his shows in Colorado with a rare offer: How would he like to record not just his usual slick country material, but smart songs by contemporary rockers, from Green Day to Foo Fighters to Travis?

It's a formula that clicked big for Johnny Cash, with his punishingly deep versions of songs by the likes of Nine Inch Nails and Soundgarden for producer Rick Rubin....

Campbell found himself unexpectedly intrigued, especially since Raymond had already secured interest in the project from a label well known to Campbell. Namely, Capitol Records, home to his most monumental hits, from "Wichita Lineman" to "Rhinestone Cowboy."

Now when Pat Boone did his remake album, he stuck to metal. Campbell has ranged farther afield:

Two songs from Tom Petty show up, though they're among his more recent: "Walls" and "Angel Dream." There's also a take on Jackson Browne's wan "These Days" from 1971, the Replacements' old ballad "Sadly Beautiful," John Lennon's 1980 soaper "Grow Old With Me" and even a 1969 obscurity by the Velvet Underground ("Jesus").

According to Campbell's MySpace blog, other songs include "All I Want is You" by U2 and "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)" by Green Day.
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