Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Review: ‘Jimmy Webb – The Glen Campbell Years’ at Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline

Jimmy Webb and Glen Campbell performing together several years ago
Jimmy Webb and Glen Campbell performing together several years ago

“There’s an old saying in my country that if you ‘practice, practice, practice you’ll get to the Carnegie Hall. Well, I’ve just found another way to get to the Carnegie Hall!” laughed American song writing legend Jimmy Webb as he took to the stage in Fife for the first time at the Dunfermline version of Carnegie’s New York name sake.

The Grammy Award winning master song writer made the comment on Wednesday night as he launched into a mesmerising two-hour multi-media musical journey which intertwined his versions of tracks he wrote such as MacArthur Park and Wichita Lineman with nostalgic, often humorous, tales of life with the legendary performer Glen Campbell.

Glen Campbell and Jimmy Webb, pictured in New York in 2005
Glen Campbell and Jimmy Webb, pictured in New York in 2005

After an introduction featuring Webb’s own version of Galveston, the 70-year-old went right back to his musical roots, taking the audience on a journey through his life from growing up as a country boy in rural Oklahoma to the day when, aged 14, he heard Glen Campbell’s Turn Around, Look at Me on the radio and begged his father for a dollar to buy the record.

When he started writing songs, the teenage Jimmy prayed “to write a song as good as that and meet someone like Glen Campbell who can sing it”.

He believes it was a “miracle” that within four years Campbell won a Grammy for his performance of Webb’s own By the Time I Get to Phoenix, before he had even met the man himself.


Webb performed his classics at a grand piano, and couldn’t quite reach the highest notes.

But that didn’t matter as he meandered through the evening with classic performances interspersed with fascinating tales.

He told how a radio station in his home county threatened to stop playing the Fifth Dimension hit  he wrote called Up, Up and Away thinking it was about drugs not balloons.

Only when Webb’s father – a former US Marine turned Baptist Minister – marched on the building clutching “a .45 and a Bible” did they have a change of heart.

Another moving moment came when Webb talked about Campbell’s struggle with Alzheimer’s.

He revealed that during Campbell’s farewell world tour in 2012 – knowing that he had Alzheimer’s and dependent on an auto-cue – the legendary country star accidentally sang Wichita Lineman twice whilst performing in Sydney.

He was forgiven by the opera house audience, however, who shouted ‘again’!

As The Courier reported in an interview with Jimmy Webb last week, the Glen Campbell tribute was only organised by Webb because Glen – now in the final stages of Alzheimer’s – is no longer able to perform. In conjunction with the Campbell family, Jimmy put the seven date UK and Ireland  show together to highlight his belief that Glen is one of the greatest entertainers of all time.

It was spine tingling stuff when Jimmy performed his versions of Wichita Lineman and MacArthur Park – only for archive footage of Glen Campbell performing the tracks with Jimmy  to be synchronised on the big screen.

Perhaps an even more poignant moment will come on May 3 next year, however, when Jimmy Webb puts on a special Glen Campbell tribute at the other Carnegie Hall in New York.

“I want to raise at least $100,000 for research into Alzheimer’s,” he said.

Crowds departing Dunfermline's Carnegie Hall
Crowds departing Dunfermline’s Carnegie Hall

One thing is for sure. Few who were at Dunfermline on Wednesday night will forget this poignant gig in a hurry.

Already a subscriber? Sign in