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Recalling Glen Campbell Concert In Wisconsin Rapids July 9, 1972–First Concert For ‘Boy From Hancock’

August 8, 2017

When I was only a boy–just shy of my 10th birthday–I sat on a blanket with my parents in Wisconsin Rapids on July 9, 1972 to see Glen Campbell perform.  It was to be the first of many musical concerts from a wide array of artists I was to see over the decades.  As they say, you never forget your first one.

The Wisconsin Rapids Daily Tribune ran a front page story where it was reported an anticipated 25,000 were to see the show.

The Tribune noted the following–in part–about the Campbell performance the morning after.

Glen Campbell was introduced and opened with his hit song, “Sweet Dream Baby.” As the crowd relaxed in the grandstand, folding chairs and on blankets, the entertainer eased into the Gold Record winner, “By the Time I Get to Phoenix.” Between selections, Campbell remarked on his background (“I was one of 12 kids and my family lived on a farm. My parents raised corn, cotton and kids”) and introduced other members of the group who had flown into Wausau Sunday morning from an engagement in Richmond, Va.  Aside from Campbell, most of the company- was clad in blue jeans and T- shirts since .their luggage had been lost en route. Featured with the television star were conductor Dennis McCarthy, banjo-strumming Larry McNeely (“He’s so shy he didn’t speak to me for six. months”) and bass-player Billy Graham.

Following the show the Tribune continued their coverage.

Though there is no audio to this video but it does show a glimpse of what we saw that afternoon.

Today,Glen Campbell, the upbeat guitarist from Delight, Arkansas, whose smooth vocals and down-home manner made him a mainstay of music and television for decade died following a battle with Alzheimer’s disease.  He was 81.

His life had its fair share of ups and downs, but there was always the memory most of us carried through the years of the fresh shiny face with an easy going manner who could deliver a song that caught one’s attention.  The type of song most could sing in the shower.  Not a bad way to sum up the life of one who lived in the spot light.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. August 9, 2017 1:18 PM

    Excellent points, Bruce.

    The film was gripping and I strongly concur on hoping others see it. It does speak for many who deal with this health matter.

  2. Bruce permalink
    August 9, 2017 1:06 PM

    I was sad but not surprised to hear of Glen Campbell’s death, he had been suffering from Alzheimer’s for many years. Campbell was one of my all time favorite artists and I have accumulated many of his records over the years. A day before he died I listened to one of my favorite albums, Wichita Lineman.

    In 2014, the critically acclaimed documentary, I’ll Be Me, was released. Much of the film focuses on Campbell’s struggle with Alzheimer’s disease. It’s not easy to watch at times, but it’s a very honest and important work and I strongly recommend it to anyone who is a Glen Campbell fan or whose life has been touched in some way by dementia, which is probably most of us.

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