Fifty years is not ancient history. And yet mysteries are still possible. Earlier this week everybody celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of the release of two groundbreaking albums: the Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds and Bob Dylan’s Blonde on Blonde. Both of them are masterpieces but only one of them was released on May 16, 1966. Why … Continue reading When was Blonde on Blonde released? Nobody knows.
A few evenings ago I watched the documentary Beautiful Dreamer: Brian Wilson and the Story of Smile by filmmaker David Leaf on Showtime. Although the backdrops for the talking heads—ranging from Elvis Costello to Roger Daltry, from Jeff Bridges to a bunch of people who were with Wilson in the early days—were distracting and annoying, … Continue reading Surf’s Flat
“Surf’s Up” is one of my favorite Beach Boys songs. Back when I first heard it I was struck by the beauty of the music, but I thought the lyrics — written by Van Dyke Parks — were just a bunch of mumbo jumbo. On the “Inside Pop” television special in 1967, Leonard Bernstein described … Continue reading Brian Wilson’s annotated Surf’s Up lyrics
I can’t believe this is really happening. Finally. I’ve been a Smile enthusiast for a little less than 10 years, but there are people who have been waiting for this album since 1966. The short version of the story is that the album was never finished. Following up Pet Sounds and the “Good Vibrations” single … Continue reading Beach Boys Smile Sessions Really Coming: November 1
A work of fiction inspired by a mix of Southern California classics.
The Beach Boys freak out in 1971 and justify Nixon’s paranoia that the country’s going to hell.
Another photo feature from GLONO’s UK headquarters. This time, we catch legendary Brian Wilson at the Gateshead Sage.
Video: Rivers Cuomo – “Don’t Worry Baby” Hadn’t seen this before. The Weezer frontman performs the classic Beach Boys song for Stereogum’s video series of stripped down, acoustic sessions. You can also find his solo cover of this song on Alone II: The Home Recordings of Rivers Cuomo. Rivers Cuomo: iTunes, Amazon, Insound, wiki.
To find out if this is the “lost classic” it’s cracked up to be, we located ourselves at opposite wings of GLONO headquarters, pressed “play” at the same time, and instant messaged our reactions to each other.
Dennis Wilson’s solo album, Pacific Ocean Blue, out of print since a crappy 1991 CD version, is being reissued on June 17 as a two-disc legacy edition with 24 unreleased bonus tracks.