Country music legend Glen Campbell has Alzheimer's

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by Tyler Baldwin

azfamily.com

Posted on June 23, 2011 at 7:06 AM

Updated Thursday, Jun 23 at 7:06 AM

PHOENIX - Country music legend and longtime Valley resident Glen Campbell revealed he has Alzheimer's.

Campbell's friends and former band mates say the signs were there.

At 75, Campbell has had an immeasurable impact on the music industry and the Phoenix-area.

He put out 50 albums, he is in the Country Music Hall of Fame and he spent many years living in Arizona.

The music legend made friends wherever he went including The Handlebar J, the Scottsdale bar and historical landmark.

Ray Herndon, one of the bar’s owner, remembers back in the early 70s when Campbell would frequent the place with his (very young) girlfriend, Tanya Tucker.

Herndon has not only played on stage with Campbell, but he's also hit the links with the avid golfer.

“You would muff a shot,” remembers Herndon, “And you would stomp around upset. He would say, ‘You’re not good enough to be that mad.’”

Gary Bruzzese played drums with Campbell for more than two decades.

“I’m very blessed to have spent the time I did with him,” says Bruzzese.

Bruzzese has been there for the good and the dark times, including Campbell's now infamous mug shot, the one that followed his arrest in 2003 for a DUI and a hit and run.

Bruzzese said Campbell was just goofing off in that picture.

Over the years, Bruzzese said there have been growing signs of Alzheimer’s.

Gary said sometimes Campbell would play the same song twice in a row, but was so gracious and charismatic, his fans never cared.

Campbell does have a new album coming out in August. It will have new music thanks to Paul Westerburg of the Replacements and Robert Pollard of Guided By Voices.

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