Glen Campbell was a legendary singer and songwriter. He scored number-one hits in both country and pop music during his fifty-plus year career. He was also a TV host and actor. Basically, Campbell was an all-around star. For a while, everything he touched turned to gold. This is especially true for his chart-topping country song “Galveston.”
Scoring a number-one single isn’t easy to do. Many great artists try for years to do it and fail. Look at Reba McEntire. She released thirteen singles before she went to number one. Having a number-one hit that goes on to become an iconic song is incredibly rare. Glen Campbell did just that with “Galveston.” It not only became iconic but also was adopted as the unofficial anthem of both the city of Galveston and Galveston Island.
In a live performance music video, you can see why the song and Glen Campbell remain so popular. He has a great voice. At the same time, the guy just oozes charm. His chiseled jaw and bright smile probably didn’t hurt. Listen to how the crowd goes wild after the first word of the song in this video.
The love for “Galveston” and Glen Campbell haven’t diminished over time.
More on Glen Campbell’s Iconic Hit Song
Glen Campbell didn’t write “Galveston.” Jimmy Webb wrote the song and Campbell took it to the top of the charts. Because the song is a love letter to the Texas town, they adopted it as their unofficial anthem.
Jimmy Webb wrote some of the greatest songs in country music. Among those songs is “Highwayman,” which was made popular by the country supergroup The Highwaymen. Glen Campbell also recorded a version of the tune but it didn’t chart for him. Webb also wrote “Wichita Lineman” which Campbell also took to number one. Jimmy Webb is an incredible songwriter who doesn’t get nearly enough recognition.
“Galveston” is an interesting song. It is from the perspective of a soldier preparing to go into battle. As war rages on around him, and he prepares to go into the fray, he is thinking of his hometown and the girl who is waiting for him there. It’s easy to see why the city adopted Glen Campbell’s hit song as their anthem.
With lyrics like, “Galveston, oh Galveston, I still hear your sea winds blowin’/I still see her dark eyes glowin’/ And I still watch your seabirds flyin’ in the sun/ at Galveston,” they would be crazy not to adopt it. Not only is it a love letter to the city but also it is easy to sing along with. Those two things make it a perfect rallying cry.
The video above features a shortened version of the song. Check out this live performance from Sioux Falls in 2001. It features the whole song. At the same time, you can see that it is still a crowd favorite.