All the Best

by: Glen Campbell

With 25 tracks and a running time of over 70 minutes, this Glen Campbell compilation lives up to its name, as long as you believe that Campbell's best consists of his pop singles hits. Nineteen of the 21 recordings he placed in the Billboard Hot 100 for Capitol Records are included. (The missing are "Can You Fool" [number 38] and "Oh Happy Day" [number 40].) Of course, Campbell was an even bigger country star than he was a pop star, but this collection focuses on the tracks that became pop crossover hits. Twenty-four of his 39 singles to reach the Top 40 on Billboard's country chart are included. Among the 15 not included are such Top Ten entries as "Bonaparte's Retreat" and "Manhattan Kansas," which failed to cross over pop. The one track on the album that made neither chart is Campbell's version of Jimmy Webb's "Highwayman," cut before it became a number one country hit for the quartet of Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, and Kris Kristofferson, later dubbed "the Highwaymen" after the record. The album's sequencing pushes Campbell's biggest hits and best-remembered recordings -- "Rhinestone Cowboy," "Galveston," "Wichita Lineman," "By the Time I Get to Phoenix," "Gentle on My Mind," and "Southern Nights" -- up to the front, thus satisfying the desires of more casual fans. Country fans and those who have a deeper interest in the singer may find the result inadequate, but if you only want to have one Glen Campbell album in your collection, this is it. ~ William Ruhlmann

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