Glen Campbell, The ‘Rhinestone Cowboy,’ Dead At 81
Glen Campbell, the beloved “Rhinestone Cowboy,” international TV star and country music singer-songwriter, died on Tuesday after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease, his rep confirmed to HuffPost. He was 81. A statement posted to his website read:
“It is with the heaviest of hearts that we announce the passing of our beloved husband, father, grandfather, and legendary singer and guitarist, Glen Travis Campbell, at the age of 81, following his long and courageous battle with Alzheimer’s disease.” “Glen is survived by his wife, Kim Campbell of Nashville, TN; their three children, Cal, Shannon and Ashley; his children from previous marriages, Debby, Kelli, Travis, Kane, and Dillon; ten grandchildren, great- and great-great-grandchildren. A personal statement from Kim Campbell will follow.
The family appreciates your prayers and respect for their privacy at this time.”
Campbell’s life of triumphs and tragedies began when the Arkansas native left the country for the city of Los Angeles at the age of 22 after forming his own band, Glenn Campbell and the Wranglers. In 1961 at 24 years old, he wrote “Turn Around, Look at Me,” which garnered some acclaim and led to his first big shot with Capitol Records. Eight years later, Campbell was collaborating with some of the greats and his connections in the music industry got him his own variety show, “The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour,” in 1969. It was an immediate international hit with Campbell being nominated for three Emmy awards before it was canceled in 1972. After the show’s run, he toured with The Beatles, Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and numerous other bands, according to The Boot.
He’s sold about 50 million records and had 27 Top 10 hits, including “Rhinestone Cowboy” released in 1975. He was nominated for 21 Grammy awards and won 10, including for “Gentle On My Mind,” “By the Time I Get to Phoenix” and “Wichita Lineman.” He also won 10 Academy of Country Music awards, including the ACM Honors lifetime achievement prize in 2016. Despite his success, the 1970s weren’t easy on Campbell. He would spiral for almost 10 years battling cocaine addiction and alcoholism and saw his second and third marriages fail. In the early 1980s, Campbell overcame his cocaine addiction and became a born-again Christian. His career soared until he revealed that he’d been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2011. He acknowledged that his memory was failing him and announced his final tour in 2013 before he retreated to seclusion with his family. By 2015, he was barely able to speak, could no longer play music and was living in a memory-care facility in Nashville. “He still has the same essence. He still has the same twinkle in his eye. He has the same chuckle, and he’s still an entertainer,” Kim, whom he married in 1982, told People in 2015.
Country Music Has Lost Yet Another Iconic Legend! RIP “Rhinestone Cowboy”
Susan Z’s Conclusion:
Campbell’s claim to fame is a familiar one in the music business. A struggling newbie, rising star, too much fame and partying, down the rabbit hole with alcohol and drugs and then new-found redemption and fame reclaimed. I am sure if he had not been overcome with Alzheimer’s in his last days, he would have been on stage until his last breath, as all entertainers hope.
Three of Swords: Inverted (Upside Down)
A card of melancholy sadness and mourning. I believe this was the energy of Campbell’s last days. Not only for the loss of his ability to make music but for those around him but being pulled inverted, they made the best of it.
Harmony and balance. Since inverted, it shows his whole world being turned upside down with his diagnosis and also for his family.
Five of Pentacles: Inverted
This is low self-esteem, poverty mentality and sometimes health issues. Inverted, it supports my above statement of Campbell and his family making the best of his last days and staying out of the pity party.
Susan Z Rich is an emotional addiction counselor, spiritual intuitive and holistic therapist. She counsels others to see life in a more positive way and teaches personal accountability for life choices. She is also the author of several children’s books and Soul Windows…Secrets From The Divine.