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Saturday video break: Wichita Lineman

Song #75 on the Popdose Top 100 Covers list is “Wichita Lineman”, originally by Jimmy Webb and covered by Glen Campbell. Here’s the original:

Obviously a more recent recording than his original, but it’s the best I can do. Here’s Campbell’s cover:

As was the case last week and as will be the case for the next three weeks we have a cover version (not necessarily the featured one) that is way better known than the original, to the point where you may be saying to yourself “Huh, I didn’t know s/he didn’t write that”. Sometimes that’s because of a change in genre or arrangement, but that’s not the case here. Sometimes it’s just a matter of being in the right place at the right time. I suppose as long as the royalty checks come in, the song’s writer isn’t complaining. By the way, am I the only one who can’t help but hear “Like a rhinestone cowboy” whenever I hear Glen Campbell’s name? Damn those K-Tel commercials.

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One Comment

  1. Jimmy Webb wrote the song, but did not release it on an album of his own until his “Ten Easy Pieces” in 1996. There may have been a demo track that Jimmy recorded in 1968, but at that time it was still “Washita Lineman” (after the county in Oklahoma that Jimmy was driving through when he came up with it). Campbell suggested using the name Wichita instead, and thus it became the song we know today.

    Glenn recorded it short after Jimmy wrote it in 1968, and put it on the appropriately titled album “Wichita Lineman”.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wichita_Lineman
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jimmy_Webb

    As a result, I don’t consider it a cover in either case.