Recorded during the same sessions that resulted in See You There and deliberately held back to be released as a final album in his lifeftime, Adiós is about as lovely (bittersweet, of course) as a late-stage Glen Campbell record could be. Weepy guitars and strings that cling to the arrangements and sentimental re-trots through familiar gems from the pens of Jimmy Webb and Bob Dylan, well it’s all designed to tear at the heart-strings, to tunnel in through the tear-ducts. And it succeeds.
Lovely performances, subtle and spellbinding (It Won’t Bring Her Back) and some old chums swing by too – Vince Gill on Am I All Alone, Willie Nelson, as he always does, on Funny How Time Slips Away.
And if the opening version of Everybody’s Talkin’ has you wondering if this is really worth it – stick around, at least for Just Like Always. It should win you over. It’s also the mantra, of sorts. Something magical in Campbell’s chiselled-but-slick countrypolitan arrangements and versions.
The rendition of Don’t Thing Twice, It’s All Right stands among the finest versions of an oft-covered classic, ditto the run through of She Thinks I Still Care.
It’s still his touch on this version of Jerry Reed’s A Thing Called Love, even though the dexterity and memory is fading. He’s mostly in fantastic voice.
And that’s how he wants us to remember him. And he deserves that.
This collection reminds us too.
We’ll get the announcement of some sad news in the days, weeks, months – no doubt. It’s coming. It’s in the post. The release of this album tells us that. And the tributes will flow. For he is one of the great musicians of the last 60 years. A reliable, relatable voice, exquisite phrasing, and timing. An underrated guitarist, quite the phenomenon in fact. That’s all been robbed from him. But he gave us enough while he had it.
And as swansongs go – this is a wee gem. Kind-hearted, sure-footed and lovely. And we’re receiving it in his lifetime. There’s something warm about that too.