So, I had him bring me some rhinestones—all sizes and shapes—and had him leave them with me. When I got those teeth back from the lab, I got a burrow about three millimeters across and made a contoured cavity in the front of each one of the teeth, and I got some regular superglue and put them flush with the tooth surface and glued them in! Well, I showed Rhinestone how to do that; I said, “Some of these things are gonna come out. When it comes out, clean it out with your pocket knife, put a little superglue in there, and stick your rhinestone back in there.” He would come back to have me adjust his dentures—like most all people have to do—but Rhinestone would hang in there, pretty good, and he learned how to re-glue them all the time. I wouldn’t have done it with real teeth, because to drill into real teeth, you’d hit the pulp. So, dentures would be the only way I’d do that.
[The rhinestones] were kind of V-shaped on the bottom, so you had to make a contour deep enough so you could seat that rhinestone in there flush, so it wouldn’t stick out and bother his lips. So, I got that done, and he did real good. Every time I’d see him he’d give me the big smile with all those rhinestones. I enjoyed doing that, and I didn’t know that his fame had gotten out of McComb, hardly, much less all over the country, and when they told me that somebody dismantled his house and took it to Wisconsin, I thought, “Well, my gosh! Unbelievable.”
I didn’t realize anybody outside McComb even knew him. And lo and behold, people [would] come from all over! Glen Campbell had that  song, “Rhinestone Cowboy,” and I didn’t know if Glen Campbell got it from him, or if he took over Glen Campbell’s song—but I think he took over Glen Campbell’s song. But I thought that was great. It’s amazing how people can do things like that in your own backyard—and you don’t even recognize it—and people all over the country think he’s something.
[Real] People Magazine [an NBCnewsmagazine] called me from Baton Rouge, and said, “Dr. McDonald, would you let us come up and film you and the Rhinestone Cowboy?” And I had been catching the devil from some of my friends for putting rhinestones in Rhinestone’s teeth, and so I thought, “I don’t need that kind of advertisement right now.” But looking back, I think it would’ve been a good idea to have [the] magazine come in and make that picture. I never put any jewels in any people’s teeth! I usually did gold, amalgam, white filling, and so forth. That was the first time I ever did that—and the last time, too!
He could open his mouth when he was doing his ditties, and playing his harmonica, and smile at people, and, boy, they’d just crack up with joy when they’d see those stones in his teeth. And that’s one of my claims to fame! [laughter] Everybody loved him to death. I guess he didn’t have a desire to get a big education, or anything, but he was just happy to be who he was. And he was the Rhinestone Cowboy, and everybody knew it. He took it, and made his own way.