Glen Campbell

Wichita Lineman

Composed by Jimmy Webb

Song Review by

Songwriter Jimmy Webb was driving along the Kansas-Oklahoma border when he saw a lonesome telephone lineman working solemnly atop a telephone pole when he got the idea for "Wichita Lineman." Glen Campbell had previously had a number 26 pop hit with the Webb song "By the Time I Get to Phoenix" and the songwriter thought "Wichita Lineman" would be perfect for him. While recording the song in the studio, Campbell felt something was out of place. He couldn't capture the same feel of the song he'd felt when Webb sang the song as he accompanied himself on his Hammond organ. Campbell decided that the only way to get the right vibe was to add Webb's organ to the recording studio.

Produced by Al DeLory, the million-selling "Wichita Lineman" went to number three pop, number one country for two weeks, and number one adult contemporary for six weeks in late 1968. The song earned several Grammy nominations -- Best Male Contemporary Pop Vocal Performance, Record of the Year, Best Arrangement Accompanying Vocalists -- while winning for Best Engineering Recording (Other Than Classical). The Wichita Lineman album sold over two million copies, staying at number one pop for five weeks.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Billboard Top Country Hits: 1968 1968
Various Artists
Rhino 3:09
Wichita Lineman 1968 Capitol Nashville / Capitol 3:06
Glen Campbell's Greatest Hits 1971 Liberty
Reunion: The Songs of Jimmy Webb 1974 Capitol
20 Golden Greats 1976 EMI / Liberty 3:05
No Image 1976 Capitol Nashville / Capitol
Country Music Classics, Vol. 3 (1965-70) 1984
Various Artists
K-Tel Distribution 2:58
The Very Best of Glen Campbell [Capitol/Liberty] 1987 Capitol Nashville / Liberty 3:08
The Best of the Early Years 1987 Curb 3:08
Country U.S.A.: 1968 1989
Various Artists
Time / Life Music
Classics Collection 1990 Liberty 3:07
AM Gold: 1968 1990
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 3:02
All-Time Favorite Hits [Capitol Special Markets] 1991 CEMA Special Markets / EMI Music Distribution / EMI-Capitol Special Markets 3:06
No Image 1991 Excelsior Recordings
All-Time Favorites [Capitol] 1991 Pair
Working Man's Country [K-Tel] 1993
Various Artists
K-Tel Distribution 3:06
Ultimate 1995 Bransounds 3:03
Back to Back Hits 1995 CEMA Special Markets 3:04
Essential, Vol. 3 1995 Capitol 3:05
Best Sixties Album in the World Ever 1995
Various Artists
Alex 3:04
Billboard Top Pop Hits: 1969 1995
Various Artists
Rhino
I Love Country: Hits of the '60s 1997
Various Artists
Priority Records 3:05
The Glen Campbell Collection (1962-1989): Gentle on My Mind 1997 Razor & Tie 3:06
1969: 20 Original Chart Hits 1997
Various Artists
A Time To Remember 3:08
Country Legends [EMI #1] 1997
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution
The Best Country Ballads in the World Ever 1998
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 3:03
Original Gold 1998 Disky 3:05
Original Gold, Disk 2 1998 Disky 3:04
Rock -N- Roll's Greatest Hits of All Time, Vol. 3: The 60s 1999
Various Artists
Platinum Disc 2:49
Rock -N- Roll's Greatest Hits of All Time, Vol. 6 1999
Various Artists
Platinum Disc 3:06
Made in America: Essential Folk 1999
Various Artists
Delta Distribution 2:59
Made in America: Folk Favorites 1999
Various Artists
Delta Distribution 2:59
My Hits and Love Songs 1999 Capitol 3:05
The Capitol Years 65/77 1999 EMI Music Distribution 3:06
Classic Country: 1965-1969 [1 CD] 1999
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 3:04
Classic Country: 1965-1974 1999
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 3:04
Classic Country: 1965-1969 [2 CD 1999] 1999
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 3:04
20 Greatest Hits [Capitol] 2000 Capitol 3:08
Committed 2000
Original Soundtrack
Chapter III Records 3:06
And Someone Left the Cake Out in the Rain... 2000 Polygram / PolyGram 3:06
The Ember Records Story 2000
Various Artists
Ember 1:52
Southern Nights: Greatest Hits 2000 Woodford 3:04
History of Country Music: Country Hits from the '60s 2000
Various Artists
Madacy Distribution / Madacy 3:02
No Image 2000
Various Artists
Heartland Productions, Inc. 2:59
Music to Watch Girls By 2000
Various Artists
Columbia Records 0:00
Favourite Sixties 2001
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 3:04
No Image 2001
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 3:01
Capitol Records 1942-2002 [Deluxe Box Set] 2002
Various Artists
Capitol 3:07
Rhinestone Cowboy: The Best of Glen Campbell 2003 EMI Music Distribution 3:06
All the Best 2003 Capitol 3:07
Top Hits of the Sixties: Absolute Hits 2003
Various Artists
Collectables 3:02
The Kings of Classic Country 2003
Various Artists
Fuel 2000 3:06
All-Time Favorite Hits [Collectables] 2003 Collectables 3:06
Artist's Choice: Johnny Cash 2003 Legacy / Sony Music Distribution 3:08
The Legacy 1961-2002 2003 Capitol 3:05
Rock on 1969 2004
Various Artists
Madacy 3:01
Sunday Best, Vol. 3 2004
Various Artists
Sunday Best 3:07
Country Number Ones [EMI] 2004
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution / Mixed Repertoire / Parlophone / Warner Music 3:05
Rhinestone Cowboy [Mastersong] 2004 Mastersong
Straight from the Heart [Box Set] 2004
Various Artists
Universal Special Products 3:07
#1 Country Hits [Fuel 2000] 2004
Various Artists
Fuel 2000 3:06
Music of Your Life: It Must Be Love 2004
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 3:06
Lifetime of Romance [Time Life] 2005
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 3:04
The Ultimate Country Collection [Universal International] 2005
Various Artists
Universal International 3:04
Great Men of Rock & Roll: The 60s 2005
Various Artists
Collectables 3:03
Rock Breakout Years: 1970 2005 Madacy 3:06
The Kings and Queens of Country [Sony] 2005
Various Artists
Sony BMG 3:07
Sings the Best of Jimmy Webb 1967-1992 2006 Raven 3:06
Classic Campbell 2006 EMI Music Distribution 3:06
Icon 2007 Capitol 3:07
Top Of The Pops 1969 2007
Various Artists
EMI 3:04
This Is 1969 2008
Various Artists
EMD Int'l 3:04
Greatest Hits 2009 Capitol
The Best Sixties Album in the World...Ever! [2009] 2009
Various Artists
EMI 3:03
The Only Classic Country Collection You'll Ever Need 2010
Various Artists
Shout! Factory 2:48
Music of Your Life 2012
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 3:06
Massive Hits!: Country 2013
Various Artists
EMI Gold 3:05
See You There 2013 The Record Company / Surfdog Records 3:36
Romancing the '60s [Time] 2013
Various Artists
StarVista / Time / Life Music 3:06
Dim Lights, Thick Smoke and Hillbilly Music: 1968 2013
Various Artists
Bear Family Records 3:12
10 Great Songs: 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection 2014 Capitol / Universal Music 3:10
I'll Be Me Soundtrack EP 2014 Big Machine Records 4:11
I'll Be Me [Original Soundtrack] 2015 Big Machine Records 4:10
Country Hits [USM Media]
Various Artists
USM Media 3:05
Country Music of Your Life
Various Artists
Rhino / StarVista / Time Life 3:04
Easy Listening Classics/Time Life's Movie Classics
Various Artists
Time / Life Music 3:04
No Image
Various Artists
Time / Life Music / WEA
Old School Oldies, Vol. 5
Various Artists
Thump Records 3:04
Romancing the '60s: This Magic Moment
Various Artists
StarVista 3:06
The  Essential Glen Campbell Capitol / EMI Music Distribution 3:03
The Capitol Albums Collection CMCapNash / Universal 3:07
The Capitol Albums Collection, Vol. 1 CMCapNash / Universal 3:06
The Greatest Country [Mixed Repertoire]
Various Artists
Mixed Repertoire / Parlophone / Warner Music 3:05
No Image EMI Music Distribution 2:58