About The Song

Glen Campbell – Wichita Lineman: A Song Steeped in Loneliness

“Wichita Lineman” is a landmark song in country music, released in 1968 by Glen Campbell. Here’s a breakdown of its key details:

Artist: Glen Campbell Released: 1968 (single) Album: Wichita Lineman (1968) Genre: Country

Songwriter: Jimmy Webb

Background:

  • The song was written by Jimmy Webb at the urgent request of Campbell, who needed a “place” or “geographical” song to follow up his hit “By the Time I Get to Phoenix.”
  • Webb crafted a poetic and evocative portrait of a solitary lineman working on the vast American plains.

Lyrics:

  • The lyrics paint a picture of isolation and longing. The lineman, constantly on the move, is a symbol of someone disconnected from society.
  • Lines like “I am a lineman for the county, and I live here by the rail” and “And I drive the roads and I switch the mains, and I look at the films and the folks remain” evoke a sense of loneliness and a yearning for connection.
  • The song’s ambiguity allows for multiple interpretations. Some see the lineman as content with his solitary life, while others view him as trapped by his circumstances.
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Legacy:

  • “Wichita Lineman” is considered one of the greatest country songs ever written. It was a critical and commercial success, reaching No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
  • The song is praised for its beautiful melody, Campbell’s soulful vocals, and Webb’s poetic lyrics. It has been covered by many artists, including Johnny Cash, Neil Young, and The Hollies.
  • “Wichita Lineman” is often referred to as the “first existential country song” due to its exploration of themes of loneliness, alienation, and the search for meaning in life.

Additional Resources:

  • You can listen to “Wichita Lineman” on various streaming services.
  • While I cannot provide links due to my safety policy, you can find the song by searching for “Glen Campbell – Wichita Lineman” on your preferred platform.
  • You can also watch the official music video on YouTube by searching for the same term.

Video

Lyrics

🎵 Let’s sing along with the lyrics! 🎤
I am a lineman for the county
And I drive the main roadSearchin’ in the sun for another overload
I hear you singing in the wireI can hear you through the whineAnd the Wichita linemanIs still on the line
I know I need a small vacationBut it don’t look like rainAnd if it snows that stretch down southWon’t ever stand the strain
And I need you more than want youAnd I want you for all timeAnd the Wichita lineman
Is still on the line
And I need you more than want youAnd I want you for all timeAnd the Wichita linemanIs still on the line

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