This song from
1969 was widely thought to be one of the many Vietnam protest songs that were coming to the
fore at that time. This is understandable
considering it tells the sad story of a soldier dreaming of his girlfriend back
at home in his much loved Galveston while he prepares himself to enter into
However, the Vietnam protest idea was put to rest when Jimmy
Webb was interviewed and he said that he had been basing the song on a
soldier in the Spanish-American War that went on some 70 years previous in 1898.
The song was
recorded and released in 1969 by Glen Campbell who wore military clothing
when singing it for the promotional video, spiking the anti-Vietnam War
idea. It became so popular that
it was certified gold and reached No. 1 on the US Easy Listening and Country
charts, No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No.14 on the UK Singles chart. It was the title track of Campbell’s album release that same year.
mid-1990s the song was performed by Jimmy Webb with the solo piano
providing the main body of the music.
It was described in Stylus Magazine as “nearly Schubert-esque”.
44 years after
being released in 2003 the song appeared in CMT’s
100 Greatest Songs in Country Music
in the No. 8 position.