Glen Campbell has rock, religion on his mind

Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:02pm EDT
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By Dean Goodman

MALIBU, California (Reuters) - Glen Campbell's new home in Malibu probably resembles the residences of many other successful musicians in the wealthy beach resort.

Grammys in a cabinet? Check.

Movie theater? Check.

Jewish artifacts? Check.

Back up. The Baptist-raised country star, who says he once confused "menorah" with "manure," displays a Jewish candelabrum on the mantel, and a Hebrew book sits on the coffee table.

Adding to the cross-cultural confusion, the Rhinestone Cowboy soon breaks into a plaintive cry, "Jeee-esus ... Help me find my special place." His German Shepherd joins in on the last bit.

It's not a hymn or a prayer. It's a line from an old song by the 1960s rock band the Velvet Underground. "Jesus" appears on the semi-retired singer's first album in 15 years for Capitol Records, the wryly titled "Meet Glen Campbell" (August 19), in which the 72-year-old singer covers tunes by the likes of U2, Green Day, John Lennon and the Foo Fighters.

Amid the jarring juxtapositions, Campbell reveals that he and his wife, Kim, attend the local synagogue every Saturday and celebrate Jewish holidays such as Passover, Rosh Hashanah and Hanukkah, as well as Christmas. Kim cooks a mean brisket but is still working on her matzo balls. And grape juice subs for Manischewitz in the alcohol-free household.   Continued...

<p>Recording artist Glen Campbell is photographed at his home in Malibu, California on August 4, 2008. REUTERS/Phil McCarten</p>