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Glen Campbell

February 13, 2012 by staff 

Glen Campbell, Last June, Glen Campbell stunned fans when he revealed in a press release that he was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. It was not an easy decision to go public with his private struggle, but his family felt it was a decision that needed to be made.

“The main thing we were concerned about was during shows he would forget a line or get a little confused,” says Campbell’s daughter, Ashley. “People would think, ‘Is he drunk?’ Is he doing drugs again?’ So we didn’t want people to get the wrong impression.”

But an interesting thing happened after the Alzheimer’s announcement. Instead of fading off into the sunset like a forgotten icon, the 75-year-old entertainer has been catapulted back into the spotlight — and the music industry can’t seem to shower him with enough accolades.

In November, he was the subject of a star-studded tribute at the CMA Awards show, and on Sunday night, he’ll pick up a Lifetime Achievement trophy at the 54th annual Grammy Awards.

Behind the scenes, it’s been somewhat of a standoff between the CMAs and the Grammys, with each telecast vying for bragging rights to have Campbell perform. But there’s nothing like the pull of the Grammys — especially when you’re a five-time Grammy winner.

At the CMAs, Campbell beamed from the audience while Keith Urban, Brad Paisley and Vince Gill serenaded him with his biggest hits, but the Grammys will be a different story. Campbell himself will take center stage for “Rhinestone Cowboy,” flanked by Blake Shelton, The Band Perry and his own band — which features three of his grown children.

It’ll be his first live television performance since the Alzheimer’s diagnosis, and thus, it will also be a bit of a cliffhanger.

Last fall, Campbell released his final album, “Ghost on the Canvas,” then hit the road on what he’s calling his farewell tour.

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