Glen Hardin

Glen Hardin

Glen D. Hardin is an American musician/piano player who was born on April 18, 1939 in Wellington, Texas. After getting out of the Navy in 1959, Hardin began his musical career in Long Beach, California and soon joined the house band at the Palamino Club in North Hollywood, called "Country Music's most important West Coast club" by the Los Angeles Times. It featured such performers as Buck Owens, Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline, Linda Ronstadt, Hoyt Axton and Willie Nelson and was also a popular hangout for other country entertainers such as Merle Haggard and Jerry Lee Lewis. Shortly afterward, he became a member of the Shindogs, the featured band on Shindig!, an American music variety show which aired on the ABC network from 1964 to 1966. The series house band, the Shin-diggers (later renamed the Shindogs), also featured a young Glen Campbell, James Burton, Billy Preston, Delaney Bramlett and Leon Russell. The premiere episode was taped in Britain with the Beatles as the guests. The series featured other "British Invasion" bands including The Who and The Rolling Stones. Shindig would continue to broadcast episodes from London throughout its run. Many popular performers of the day played on Shindig! including Ray Charles, Sam Cooke, Lesley Gore, Bo Diddley and Sonny and Cher and was noted to feature both black and white acts during a time of racial segregation in the United States. A native of West Texas, Glen had grown up with drummer Jerry Allison and bassist Joe B. Mauldin, both members of Buddy Holly's band The Crickets. After Holly's death in 1959, they continued to perform and record with guitarist/songwriter Sonny Curtis. During this period Hardin was made an honorary member of The Crickets and has played with them off and on for many years. Hardin found his first success as a songwriter in 1965 with "Count Me In" as recorded by Gary Lewis and the Playboys. "Where Will The Words Come From" and "My Heart's Symphony" were also Hardin penned hits for Lewis. He soon became an in-demand session pianist and over the years has played on many hit records with numerous artists in a variety of music genres including Dean Martin, Ricky Nelson, Buck Owens, Linda Ronstadt, Kenny Rogers, Johnny Rivers, Merle Haggard, Michael Nesmith, Waylon Jennings and Dwight Yoakam just to name a few. In 1970 Glen got the call from Elvis Presley and became a member of the acclaimed TCB Band, featuring James Burton, Jerry Scheff and Ronnie Tutt, where he stayed until 1976. Glen toured and recorded a lot with Elvis, appearing in the “Aloha From Hawaii” TV special. Hardin studied arranging and arranged many of Elvis' hits such as "The Wonder Of You", "Let It Be Me" and "I Just Can't Help Believin". This high profile position soon led to many other opportunities. In 1972 Gram Parsons, widely regarded as the father of country rock, hired the TCB band to record his first album, GP. Glen played piano and was musical director on the sessions for this and Gram's second album, Grevious Angel. Through Gram, Hardin was introduced to Emmylou Harris, with whom he would work after Parsons' death in the highly praised and influential Hot Band, which in various incarnations included James Burton, John Ware, Rodney Crowell, Hank de Vito, Emory Gordy, Albert Lee and Ricky Skaggs. He also played piano on the Roy Orbison television special, "A Black and White Night".

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