Tag Archives: Beach Boys

1955 (and then some)

In 1955 Charlie Parker died in the suite of a Rothschild, Baroness Pannonica de Koenigswarter, at a hotel in New York City. He was watching TV. The Dorsey Brothers’ Stage Show was reportedly on.

Although the brothers, Jimmy and Tommy, had their biggest period in the first half of the 1930s, TV needed content in its nascent period, so musical variety was big then. Parker was a fan of Jimmy’s saxophone skills.

Parker was 34 when he died.

Elvis appeared on the Stage Show.

In 1955 James Dean, driving a Porsche 955 Spyder, had a collision with another car east of Paso Robles, California. It was fatal for Dean. The driver of the other car, a Ford Tudor, had minor injuries.

Dean was 24.

Rebel Without a Cause was released after Dean’s death. Another film with cultural resonance like Rebel, Blackboard Jungle, was released in 1955. It was based on a novel of the same name released in 1954 written by Evan Hunter, who was born Salvatore Lombino, but changed his name to Evan Hunter in 1952. The first work that the author sold was in 1951, a short story titled “Welcome, Martians!”

Blackboard Jungle featured “Rock Around the Clock” by Bill Haley & His Comets. Chuck Berry released “Maybellene” in 1955 and “Johnny B. Goode” in 1958. The latter was recorded on 12-inch gold-plated copper disks that were launched into space by NASA on the Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 space craft in 1977.

“Welcome, Martians!”

Continue reading 1955 (and then some)

In Advance of a Broken Band

There was one scene in the massive filmic edifice that is Get Back, the film of the Beatles nearing the end, the likes of which was only exceeded by the magnitude of Napoleon’s 1812 retreat from Moscow, that made me shake myself from my stupor during which time I was wondering how it was possible for Paul McCartney to be chewing on his fingernails so frequently and yet have the ability to play bass, piano, drums and probably a multitude of other instruments had they been in Twickenham Studios or Savile Row or inside his car or randomly on his route to work.

This was after George Harrison decided that he could continue to be a member of the band and Billy Preston, who happened to be in town, was dragooned, willingly, into the band.

During an exchange between McCartney and Lennon it was pointed out that the Beatles were four, then three, then four, then five. That is, John/Paul/George/Ringo, John/Paul/George/Ringo, John/Paul/George/Ringo, John/Paul/George/Ringo/Billy. It was even suggested that they might ask a multitude of others to join the group, equaling, perhaps, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

The issue, of course, is the still somewhat alive horse that I’ve flogged over the years, which is: When does a band stop being a band? Or when is it a band in name only?

As is well known there is a tendency for acts to continue on with the name of a band although there are people missing from the lineup that made the band what it was.

Continue reading In Advance of a Broken Band

“God Only Knows”

One of the more enjoyable TV series of the late ‘00s was “Leverage,” an Americanized version of a better British show, “Hustle.” Both are about grifters. The American cast is led by Timothy Hutton, who plays the “brains” of the operation. During each episode they would find someone who did some innocent wrong in some mean, devious financial way, and then the crew would go after that person in an unexpectedly imaginative way.

Depending on the circumstance of the con, Hutton’s character, after devising the plan, would say, “Let’s go steal a _________.” The object would always be something outrageous in scope, such as a museum or a mountain or a carnival or a town.

That phrase came to mind, albeit in a somewhat different form, when I read that Irving Azoff, long-time manager of The Eagles, started a company, Iconic Artists Group. . .and bought the Beach Boys.

“Let’s go buy a band.”

The purchase from Brian Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine and the estate of Carl Wilson, includes masters, part of the publishing (Universal owns the music from the 1960s), the brand, and Beach Boys memorabilia.

While we’ve seen musicians from Dylan to Young selling publishing rights of late, this is different.

The Beach Boys become a “thing” that will be brought to market via brand development and the ever-important brand monetization.

Continue reading “God Only Knows”

The Midnight Caller, Episode 4

The air is thick and the static’s crackling. Coded messages and tapped lines, there is danger in the jungle. The choir voice of The Peoples weaves in between the trees, through the hanging vines and into the radio waves. They like baseball and they have lots of friends, but they wish you could be there. You’ll be thankful you weren’t.

How do you save your Soul Stripper?

There was a positive message, so how has it gone all so wrong? Are they sleeping? No. They won’t wake up. Unfolding enveloping missiles of soul recall senses sadly. Sound the alarms but it’s too late. They won’t wake up.

Episode 4 of The Midnight Caller has come through. Turn the knobs just right and you can get the whole broadcast.

The Resolectrics – Open Seas

Any bluesman will tell you it’s a game of sleight of hand. They all employ little tricks that confound and surprise you, which is essential for keeping music that is based on simple structures and patterns exciting.

The second album from Portland, Oregon’s The Resolectrics is a study in sleight of hand. One of my favorite live bands in a city filthy with great live bands, this three-piece has an uncanny ability to get sometimes stodgy Pacific Northwest audiences shaking their moneymakers. They do it with an infectious blend of blue-eyed soul and swampy blues they’ve developed over a few years of bouncing up and down the coast, which is what you’d expect to find in their sophomore release. And you do…but also so much more.

Photo © Tim LaBarge 2018

An equilateral triangle has three equal sides, which can be leveraged in architecture distribute weight and provide strength and stability. The foundation of The Resolectrics is certainly centered in rhythm & blues, but a foundation is something you build upon and what this band has built goes well beyond what you’d expect from the recent crop of bands hoping to be the next White Stripes, Black Keys or any other variation of black and white. The Resolectrics’ power is in the gray areas; the musical corners that aren’t as easily defined. It’s in these shadows where The Resolectrics confound and surprise you. They just as easily weave in Pet Sounds and Revolver as they do Electric Mud.

It’ll be interesting to see what other tricks they bring to bear and if this album is any indication, the skies will be wonderfully gray as they continue to sail their open seas.

The Resolectrics: Web, Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, Spotify

When was Blonde on Blonde released? Nobody knows.

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 is there confusion around the release date of Blonde on Blonde? Aren’t these things documented? Especially for an artist with the stature and scrutiny of Bob Dylan! Of course they are, but sometimes we don’t have immediate access to everything.

But we do have enough information to definitively rule out the idea that Blonde on Blonde came out on the same day as Pet Sounds.

On Monday morning when I checked my twitter and started seeing people celebrating this milestone, I wondered how many people were fans of both albums at the time. Can you imagine going into the record store and seeing those two albums side by side on the new release shelf? But in 1966, were the Beach Boys loved by the same people who loved Bob Dylan? It’s a fascinating question but there weren’t many publications at the time that took rock and roll very seriously, so it’s hard to find any contemporary comparisons. Rolling Stone wouldn’t publish its first issue for another year and a half (November 1967).

I busted out my trusty edition of Joel Whitburn’s Top Pop Albums to see how the two albums sold and was surprised that while Pet Sounds debuted on Billboard’s Top LPs chart on May 28, Blonde on Blonde didn’t bow on the chart until July 23. That seemed odd since Dylan was coming off a hit single with “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35.” His new album couldn’t have been that much of a sleeper, could it?

Continue reading When was Blonde on Blonde released? Nobody knows.

Surf’s Flat

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, the story Leaf and those talking, especially Sir George Martin acknowledging the brilliance of Wilson, more than eclipsed that.

One of the most-striking aspects of Beautiful Dreamer—and let’s note that the song “Beautiful Dreamer” was written by Stephen Foster, who lived only until age 38—is how young Wilson appears in the studio when he is crafting extraordinary works like Pet Sounds.  And what is even more startling is how fragile he seems when preparing to finish and perform Smile live in London in 2004.

Yet this year, the Beach Boys are “reuniting,” and Brian is back in the band.  It is the 50th anniversary.

While it is encouraging that Wilson was able to pull himself out of the psychological miasma that he was long working through, it gives me pause to think that it seems like a good idea to someone that the Beach Boys, a version that has the person who was most instrumental in creating what we think of when that title is used, not the version that has been playing at state fairs and corporate gigs, get together to perform live and to record.

There’s magic.  Then there’s merchandise.  And the Beach Boys circa 2012 is probably going to be more about the latter.

Video: The Beach Boys Announce 50th Anniversary Reunion, New Album and Tour

Brian Wilson’s annotated Surf’s Up lyrics

“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 the song: “There is a new song, too complex to get all of first time around. It could come only out of the ferment that characterizes today’s pop music scene. Brian Wilson, leader of the famous Beach Boys, and one of today’s most important pop musicians, sings his own ‘Surf’s Up.’ Poetic, beautiful even in its obscurity, ‘Surf’s Up’ is one aspect of new things happening in pop music today. As such, it is a symbol of the change many of these young musicians see in our future…”

Of course, the Smile album was shelved and “Surf’s Up” wasn’t released until five years later as the album closing title track to the Beach Boys’ twenty-second official LP with a newly recorded lead vocal by Carl. Brian’s original 1966 demo version was released on the 1993 boxed set Good Vibrations: Thirty Years of The Beach Boys. And the upcoming Smile Sessions set features another solo piano version, recorded a year later during the Wild Honey sessions.

Several years ago, when I was digging into the mythology of the unreleased Smile album, I found an excerpt from Jules Siegel’s 1967 article, “Goodbye Surfing, Hello God!” where Brian Wilson plays Siegel an acetate dub of the song on his bedroom hi-fi set and tries to explain the words.

Below, I’ve combined the lyrics of the song with Brian’s explication.

A diamond necklace played the pawn
Hand in hand some drummed along, oh
To a handsome man and baton
A blind class aristocracy

“It’s a man at a concert. All around him there’s the audience, playing their roles, dressed up in fancy clothes, looking through opera glasses, but so far away from the drama, from life.”

Back through the opera glass you see
The pit and the pendulum drawn

“The music begins to take over.”

Columnated ruins domino

“Empires, ideas, lives, institutions; everything has to fall, tumbling like dominoes.”

Hung velvet overtaken me
Dim chandelier awaken me
To a song dissolved in the dawn

“He begins to awaken to the music; sees the pretentiousness of everything.”

The music hall a costly bow
The music all is lost for now
To a muted trumpeter swan

“Then even the music is gone, turned into a trumpeter swan, into what the music really is.”

Columnated ruins domino

Canvass the town and brush the backdrop
Are you sleeping, Brother John?

“He’s off in his vision, on a trip. Reality is gone; he’s creating it like a dream.”

Dove nested towers the hour was
Strike the street quicksilver moon
Carriage across the fog

“Europe, a long time ago.”

Two-Step to lamp lights cellar tune
The laughs come hard in Auld Lang Syne

“The poor people in the cellar taverns, trying to make themselves happy by singing. Then there’s the parties, the drinking, trying to forget the wars, the battles at sea.”

The glass was raised, the fired rose
The fullness of the wine, the dim last toasting
While at port adieu or die

“Ships in the harbor, battling it out. A kind of Roman empire thing.”

A choke of grief
Heart hardened I
Beyond belief a broken man too tough to cry

“At his own sorrow and the emptiness of his life. Because he can’t even cry for the suffering in the world, for his own suffering. And then, hope.”

Surf’s Up
Aboard a tidal wave
Come about hard and join
The young and often spring you gave

“Go back to the kids, to the beach, to childhood.”

I heard the word
Wonderful thing
A children’s song

“The joy of enlightenment, of seeing God. And what is it? A children’s song! And then there’s the song itself; the song of children; the song of the universe rising and falling in wave after wave, the song of God, hiding the love from us, but always letting us find it again, like a mother singing to her children.”


Beach Boys Smile Sessions Really Coming: November 1

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 proved to be too much for Brian Wilson who wanted to create a “teenage symphony to God.” Too many ideas, too many drugs, and the lack of support from the people around him eventually derailed the project entirely.

Bootleggers and fans have been going nuts with the recording sessions ever since, creating their own versions of what the finished album might have sounded like. But nobody knows for sure what Brian Wilson had envisioned because that vision never solidified in Wilson’s head. He was constantly re-recording and re-assembling sections of music until he abandoned the recordings altogether.

Since then a lot of this material has shown up on official releases. Stripped down versions of several songs were re-recorded at Wilson’s home studio and released on Smiley Smile in 1967; “Our Prayer” and “Cabinessence” were completed for 1969’s 20/20 and the epic “Surf’s Up” was completed and released in 1971. In 1993, 30 minutes of previously unreleased Smile sessions were included on the Good Vibrations: Thirty Years of The Beach Boys box set.

And then, in 2003-2004, Brian Wilson and his band member Darian Sahanaja came up with a running order of the Smile material for a series of live concerts. Original lyricist Van Dyke Parks even contributed new lyrics for some instrumental sections. This configuration was recorded as Brian Wilson Presents Smile, and it’s an enjoyable listen.

But it’s nothing like the 1966-67 Beach Boys vocals over original Wrecking Crew instrumentation. Which is what is finally being released on November 1.

It’ll be interesting to see how the material is presented. There are sure to be heated discussions over what should and should not have been done with these recordings. But it’s finally coming out. And it’s going to be awesome.



Never-Before-Released Original 1966-’67 Album Sessions Compiled for 2CD and Digital Packages and Deluxe, Expanded Box Set; Special Packages to be Available Exclusively from TheBeachBoys.com

Official Beach Boys Music Videos to be Crowdsourced via Tongal’s First-Ever Music Video Initiative

“The most famous unfinished album in rock & roll history…”
Rolling Stone

Hollywood, California – August 30, 2011 – With the full participation of original Beach Boys Al Jardine, Mike Love, and Brian Wilson, Capitol/EMI has, for the first time, collected and compiled the band’s legendary 1966-’67 sessions for the never-completed SMiLE album.  Capitol/EMI and The Beach Boys are pleased to announce November 1 (October 31 internationally) as the release date for the long-awaited arrival of The SMiLE Sessions in multiple physical and digital configurations. Artwork and complete tracklists are also unveiled for what Rolling Stone magazine recently called “the most famous unfinished album in rock & roll history.”

In numerous sessions between the spring of 1966 and the summer of 1967, The Beach Boys recorded a bounty of songs and drafts for an album, SMiLE, that was intended to follow the band’s 1966 masterpiece, Pet Sounds.  The master tapes were ultimately shelved, and The Beach Boys’ SMiLE has never been released.  Drawn from the original masters, The SMiLE Sessions presents an in-depth overview of The Beach Boys’ recording sessions for the enigmatic album, which has achieved legendary, mythical status for music fans around the world.

The SMiLE Sessions’ 2CD lift-top box, double vinyl LP, digital album, and iTunes LP formats feature an approximation of what was intended to be the completed SMiLE album, compiled from The Beach Boys’ original session masters. Additional session highlights and bonus tracks are also included, including demos and stereo mixes.

An expanded, boxed edition of The SMiLE Sessions will also be released physically and digitally, featuring the main SMiLE album tracks, plus four CDs of additional audio from the legendary sessions, a double vinyl LP set, and two 7” vinyl singles.  The deluxe box will also contain a 60-page hardbound book with rare and previously unseen photos and memorabilia from The Beach Boys’ archive and newly-written essays by Beach Boys Al Jardine, Mike Love, Brian Wilson, and Bruce Johnston, as well as by Beach Boys historian and author Domenic Priore and many other inner-circle participants.

Produced by Brian Wilson, Mark Linett, Alan Boyd and Dennis Wolfe in Los Angeles, all of The SMiLE Sessions’ physical and digital configurations include an assembled collection of core session tracks, while the box set delves much deeper into the sessions, adding early song drafts, alternate takes, instrumental and vocals-only mixes, and studio chatter. The SMiLE Sessions invites the listener into the studio to experience the album’s creation, with producer, singer and bassist Brian Wilson’s vision leading the way as he guides his fellow Beach Boys, singer Mike Love, drummer Dennis Wilson, lead guitarist Carl Wilson, rhythm guitarist Al Jardine, and newest member Bruce Johnston (who’d replaced Brian Wilson in the touring group during 1965), through the legendary sessions.

Artwork for all of The SMiLE Sessions’ physical and digital configurations has been created with and inspired by Beat-Pop artist Frank Holmes’ original 1967 LP sleeve art and booklet designs intended for the SMiLE album.  With its three-dimensional shadowbox lid, The SMiLE Sessions box set offers a whimsical peek inside the storied ‘SMiLE Shop.’

Several special SMiLE Sessions packages will be available for purchase exclusively on thebeachboys.com, including:

The SMiLE Sessions 2CD edition paired with a limited edition SMiLE t-shirt
The SMiLE Sessions 2CD edition paired with a limited edition autographed lithograph
The SMiLE Sessions limited edition box set with light-up SMiLE Shop window on lid, autographed
The SMiLE Sessions limited edition box set with light-up SMiLE Shop window on lid, autographed, paired with a custom-made SMiLE surfboard by Hobie

The Beach Boys are embracing technology and crowdsourcing to produce the first official music videos for “Good Vibrations” and “Heroes And Villains” by partnering with Tongal, the leading creative social platform.  In Tongal’s first-ever music video initiative, fans can now collaborate to create the official music videos, as the project begins today (August 30) on Tongal.com, and consists of two phases – a concept phase and a video phase.  The concept phase calls for fans to conceptualize the music video for “Heroes and Villains” or “Good Vibrations” in 250 characters or less. In the video phase, Tongal users can select one of the five winning concepts from phase one and produce a music video based on it.  The video can be animated or live-action, trippy or classic – it can be whatever the fans want, as long as it’s their own.  Cash prizes and special items, including an autographed custom Hobie longboard, will be awarded to Tongal users for the top submissions.

The SMiLE Sessions box set will include details about Operation Smile, an international medical charity organization with a presence in more than 60 countries dedicated to healing children’s smiles. Since 1982, Operation Smile – through the help of generous supporters and medical volunteers – has provided free surgeries worldwide for children born with facial deformities such as cleft lips and cleft palates. Every three minutes, a child somewhere in the world is born with a cleft. For more information on how to be involved or donate to Operation Smile, please visit www.operationsmile.org or call 1-888-OPSMILE (888-677-6453).

When Capitol/EMI and The Beach Boys first announced plans for The SMiLE Sessions’ 2011 release, the news spread rapidly.  Pitchfork reported, “The Beach Boys’ SMiLE is quite possibly the most storied album in rock history,” Billboard proclaimed the upcoming release “an event that pop music fans have been waiting for since the Summer of Love,” and The Washington Post called SMiLE “the most legendary unreleased album of all time.”

The best efforts have been taken by The Beach Boys, the producers, and Capitol/EMI to present the SMiLE album sessions’ most vital and fascinating elements.  However, there will no doubt be some debate amongst Beach Boys fans around the world who, during the past four decades, have become familiar with a variety of widely-traded bootlegged bits and pieces from the sessions.  As recently explained by the Detroit Metro Times, “No album, released or not, has generated a more personal relationship with its audience, since no two people can ever agree on its content and purpose.”

Beginning with “Good Vibrations,” The Beach Boys’ best-selling record in a long string of hits, Brian Wilson had begun to construct songs in a modular form, crafting individual sections that would later be edited together to form a coherent whole.  In several intense bursts of creative energy, Wilson, drawing on the talents of the finest studio musicians in Los Angeles and utilizing the best studio facilities available on any given day, laid down dozens of musical fragments, all designed to fit together in any number of possible combinations.  No one had done this before in pop music, and his next endeavor would be an album-length version of this unique and luxurious songwriting parlance: SMiLE.

In 1965, Brian Wilson met an up-and-coming session keyboard player and songwriter, Van Dyke Parks. Noticing Parks’ conversational eloquence, Wilson felt that he could help to volley The Beach Boys’ songwriting into the wave of broader-messaged and socially-conscious rock ‘n’ roll that would come to define the ’60s.  They were soon collaborating on keynote songs for SMiLE, including “Heroes And Villains,” the band’s follow-up single to “Good Vibrations.”  Wilson and Parks would also co-write “Surf’s Up,” “Vega-Tables,” “Cabin Essence,” “Do You Like Worms,” “Wonderful,” “Wind Chimes,” and other pieces of the SMiLE tapestry.  Parks also introduced Frank Holmes to create album sleeve art and a booklet interpreting the album’s James Joyce-mode lyrics.

The reason SMiLE did not see a release in 1967 had more to do with back room business that obscured the creative side of the program than anything else.  In late 1966, The Beach Boys formed Brother Records, initially to produce outside artists.  Soon, however, The Beach Boys would become embroiled in a court action with Capitol Records with the goal to become the top-selling artists on their self-owned, independent label.  The group withheld “Heroes And Villains” and announced they would instead release “Vega-Tables” – recorded with the band’s own money in April of ’67 – on Brother Records.  By July of 1967, Capitol Records and The Beach Boys had come to terms, with Capitol agreeing to distribute the band’s Brother Records, and it was agreed that SMiLE was no longer to be the band’s next album.

The Beach Boys and Capitol/EMI will celebrate the band’s 50th Anniversary in 2012.  Plans for commemorative releases and other anniversary activities will be announced.

“Surf’s up, aboard a tidal wave, come about hard and join the young and often spring you gave. I heard the word, wonderful thing… a children’s song…”
– from “Surf’s Up” (Brian Wilson/Van Dyke Parks)


* * *

The SMiLE Sessions (2CD; Digital; iTunes LP)



1.         Our Prayer (1:06)
2.         Gee (0:51)
3.         Heroes And Villains (4:53)
4.         Do You Like Worms (Roll Plymouth Rock) (3:36)
5.         I’m In Great Shape (0:29)
6.         Barnyard (0:48)
7.         My Only Sunshine (The Old Master Painter / You Are My Sunshine) (1:57)
8.         Cabin Essence (3:32)
9.         Wonderful (2:04)
10.        Look (Song For Children) (2:31)
11.        Child Is Father Of The Man (2:14)
12.        Surf’s Up (4:12)
13.        I Wanna Be Around / Workshop (1:23)
14.        Vega-Tables (3:49)
15.        Holidays (2:33)
16.        Wind Chimes (3:06)
17.        The Elements: Fire (Mrs. O’Leary’s Cow) (2:35)
18.        Love To Say Dada (2:32)
19.        Good Vibrations (4:13)

Bonus Tracks

20.        You’re Welcome (1:08)
21.        Heroes And Villains (Stereo Mix) (4:53)
22.        Heroes And Villains Sections (Stereo Mix) (7:16)
23.        Vega-Tables Demo (1:46)
24.        He Gives Speeches (1:14)
25.        Smile Backing Vocals Montage (8:30)
26.        Surf’s Up 1967 (Solo Version) (4:09)
27.        Psycodelic Sounds: Brian Falls Into A Piano (1:30)


1.    Our Prayer “Dialog” (9/19/66)   (3:02)
2.    Heroes And Villains: Part 1   (3:08)
3.    Heroes And Villains: Part 2   (4:18)
4.    Heroes And Villains: Children Were Raised (1/27/67)   (2:07)
5.    Heroes And Villains: Prelude To Fade (2/15/67)   (3:42)
6.    My Only Sunshine (11/14/66)   (6:52)
7.    Cabin Essence (10/3/66)   (5:19)
8.    Surf’s Up: 1st Movement (11/4/66)   (4:55)
9.    Surf’s Up: Piano Demo (12/15/66)   (3:53)
10.   Vega-Tables: Fade (4/12/67)   (5:25)
11.   The Elements: Fire session (11/28/66)   (8:27)
12.   Cool, Cool Water (Version 2) (10/26-10/29/67)   (3:32)
13.   Good Vibrations Session Highlights   (8:20)

The SMiLE Sessions Box Set (5CD+Double LP+Two 7” Singles; digital)



1.         Our Prayer (1:06)
2.         Gee (0:51)
3.         Heroes And Villains (4:53)
4.         Do You Like Worms (Roll Plymouth Rock) (3:36)
5.         I’m In Great Shape (0:29)
6.         Barnyard (0:48)
7.         My Only Sunshine (The Old Master Painter / You Are My Sunshine) (1:57)
8.         Cabin Essence (3:32)
9.         Wonderful (2:04)
10.        Look (Song For Children) (2:31)
11.        Child Is Father Of The Man (2:14)
12.        Surf’s Up (4:12)
13.        I Wanna Be Around / Workshop (1:23)
14.        Vega-Tables (3:49)
15.        Holidays (2:33)
16.        Wind Chimes (3:06)
17.        The Elements: Fire (Mrs. O’Leary’s Cow) (2:35)
18.        Love To Say Dada (2:32)
19.        Good Vibrations (4:13)

Bonus Tracks

20.        You’re Welcome (1:08)
21.        Heroes And Villains (Stereo Mix) (4:53)
22.        Heroes And Villains Sections (Stereo Mix) (7:16)
23.        Vega-Tables Demo (1:46)
24.        He Gives Speeches (1:14)
25.        Smile Backing Vocals Montage (8:30)
26.        Surf’s Up 1967 (Solo version) (4:09)
27.        Psycodelic Sounds: Brian Falls Into A Piano (1:30)




1.         Our Prayer “Dialog” (9/19/66)  (3:01)
2.         Our Prayer (10/4/66)  (6:37)


Heroes And Villains Session (10/20/66)

3.         Heroes And Villains: Verse (Master Take) (0:57)
4.         Heroes And Villains: Barnyard (Master Take) (1:12)
5.         Heroes And Villains: I’m In Great Shape (10/27/66) (4:59)
6.         Heroes And Villains: Intro (Early Version) circa 12/66 (0:35)

Heroes And Villains Session (1/3/67)

7.         Heroes And Villains: Do A Lot (0:53)
8.         Heroes And Villains: Bag Of Tricks (2:58)
9.         Heroes And Villains: Mission Pak (0:55)
10.        Heroes And Villains: Bridge To Indians (1:47)
11.        Heroes And Villains: Part 1 Tag (1:19)
12.        Heroes And Villains: Pickup To 3rd Verse (0:55)

Heroes And Villains Session (1/27/67)

13.        Heroes And Villains: Children Were Raised (2:07)
14.        Heroes And Villains: Part 2 (Cantina track) (1:21)
15.        Heroes And Villains: Whistling Bridge (1:14)
16.        Heroes And Villains: Cantina (1:36)
17.        Heroes And Villains: All Day (2:19)
18.        Heroes And Villains: Verse Edit Experiment (0:48)

Heroes And Villains Session (2/15/67)

19.        Heroes And Villains: Prelude to Fade (3:43)
20.        Heroes And Villains: Piano Theme (2:43)

Heroes And Villains Session (2/20/67)

21.        Heroes And Villains: Part 2 (2:31)
22.        Heroes And Villains: Part 2 (Gee) (Master Take) (2:36)
23.        Heroes And Villains: Part 2 Revised (1:54)
24.        Heroes And Villains: Part 2 Revised (Master Take) (0:48)
25.        Heroes And Villains: Part 3 (Animals) (Master Take) (1:18)
26.        Heroes And Villains: Part 4 (2:36)
27.        Heroes And Villains: Part Two (Master Take) (2/27/67) (1:44)
28.        Heroes And Villains: Fade (2/28/67) (6:35)

Heroes And Villains Session (3/1/67)

29.        Heroes And Villains: Verse Remake (4:16)
30.        Heroes And Villains: Organ Waltz / Intro (2:04)

Heroes And Villains Session (6/14/67)

31.        Heroes And Villains: Chorus Vocals (0:48)
32.        Heroes And Villains: Barbershop (1:50)
33.        Heroes And Villains: Children Were Raised (Remake) (1:06)
34.        Heroes And Villains: Children Were Raised (Master Take Overdubs Mix 1) (0:26)
35.        Heroes And Villains: Children Were Raised (Master Take A Capella) (0:27)

Bonus Tracks

36.        Heroes And Villains Piano Demo (incorporating “I’m In Great Shape” and “Barnyard”) Brian with Van Dyke Parks and “Humble Harve” Miller, KHJ Radio (11/4/66) (4:17)
37.        Psycodelic Sounds:  Brian Falls Into A Microphone (11/4/66) (1:10)
38.        Psycodelic Sounds:  Moaning Laughing (11/4/66) (1:09)




Do You Like Worms Session (10/18/66)

1.         Do You Like Worms: Part 1 (5:21)
2.         Do You Like Worms: Part 2 (Bicycle Rider) (1:55)
3.         Do You Like Worms: Part 3 (2:43)
4.         Do You Like Worms: Part 4 (Bicycle Rider) (1:10)
5.         Do You Like Worms: Bicycle Rider Overdubs (Heroes And Villains Part 2) (1/5/67) (0:22)



6.         My Only Sunshine: Parts 1 & 2 (11/14/66) (6:51)
7.         My Only Sunshine: Part 2 (Master Take With Vocal Overdubs) (2/10/67) (0:45)


Cabin Essence Session (10/3/66)

8.         Cabin Essence: Verse (2:14)
9.         Cabin Essence: Chorus (2:28)
10.        Cabin Essence: Tag (2:31)


11.        Wonderful (Version 1) (8/25/66) (2:59)

Wonderful (Version 2 “Rock With Me, Henry”) Session (1/9/67)

12.        Wonderful (Version 2) (3:25)
13.        Wonderful (Version 2 Tag) (2:54)
14.        Wonderful (Version 3) (4/10/67?) (2:41)


15.        Look (8/12/66) (4:52)


16.        Child Is Father Of The Man (Version 1) (10/7/66) (4:57)
17.        Child Is Father Of The Man (Version 2) (10/11/66) (5:38)


18.        Surf’s Up: 1st Movement (11/4/66) (4:54)
19.        Surf’s Up: Talking Horns (11/7/66) (3:42)
20.        Surf’s Up: Piano Demo (Master Take) (12/15/66) (3:52)


21.        I Wanna Be Around (11/29/66) (3:08)


Vegetables Sessions (4/4/67 – 4/11/67)

22.        Vegetables: Verse (Master Take Track) (4/4 – 4/11/67) (2:02)
23.        Vegetables: Sleep A Lot (Chorus) (2:34)
24.        Vegetables: Chorus 1 (Master Take) (1:05)
25.        Vegetables: 2nd Chorus (Master Take Track And Backing Vocals) (1:03)
26.        Vegetables: Insert (Part 4) (Master Take) (0:37)




1.         Vegetables: Fade (4/12/67) (5:25)
2.         Vegetables: Ballad Insert (4/14/67) (1:03)


3.         Holidays (9/8/66) (7:32)


4.         Wind Chimes (Version 1) (8/3/66) (6:46)

Wind Chimes (Version 2) Session (10/5/66)

5.         Wind Chimes (Version 2) (5:00)
6.         Wind Chimes (Version 2 Tag) (2:51)


7.         The Elements (Fire) (11/28/66) (8:27)


Da Da Session (12/22/66)

8.         Da Da  (Taped Piano Strings) (1:00)
9.         Da Da  (Fender Rhodes) (1:21)

Love To Say Dada Sessions (5/16/67 – 5/18/67)

10.        Love To Say Dada: Part 1 (5/16/67) (1:22)
11.        Love To Say Dada: Part 2 (5/17/67) (1:57)
12.        Love To Say Dada: Part 2 (Master Take) (5/17/67) (1:21)
13.        Love To Say Dada: Part 2 (Second Day) (5/18/67) (2:00)


14.        Cool, Cool Water (Version 1) (6/7/67) (2:21)
15.        Cool, Cool Water (Version 2) (10/26/67 & 10/29/67) (3:31)


16.        You’re Welcome (12/15/66) (6:41)
17.        You’re With Me Tonight (6/6–6/7/67) (2:46)
18.        Tune X (3/3/67–3/31/67) (2:18)
19.        I Don’t Know (1/12/67) (3:03)
20.        Three Blind Mice (10/15/65) (2:11)
21.        Teeter Totter Love (Jasper Dailey) (1/25/67 & 2/9/67) (1:49)

Bonus Tracks

22.        Psycodelic Sounds – Underwater Chant (11/4/66) (1:45)
23.        Hal Blaine Vega-Tables Promo Session (11/16/66) (1:28)
24.        Heroes And Villains: Early Version Outtake Sections (1/67 – 2/67) (5:04)




1. Good Vibrations: Gold Star 2/18/66 (The “Pet Sounds” Session) (7:27)
2. Good Vibrations: Gold Star 4/9/66 (6:57)
3. Good Vibrations: Western 5/4/66 (First Chorus) (2:24)
4. Good Vibrations: Western 5/4/66 (Second Chorus & Fade) (3:28)
5. Good Vibrations: Sunset Sound 5/24/66 (Part 1) (1:20)
6. Good Vibrations: Sunset Sound 5/24/66 (Parts 2 & 3) (1:45)
7. Good Vibrations: Sunset Sound 5/24/66 (Part 4) (0:47)
8. Good Vibrations: Western 5/27/66 (Part C) (3:32)
9. Good Vibrations: Western 5/27/66 (Chorus) (3:04)
10. Good Vibrations: Western 5/27/66 (Fade Sequence) (1:56)
11. Good Vibrations (Inspiration): Western 6/2/66 (Part 1) (2:44)
12. Good Vibrations (Inspiration): Western 6/2/66 (Part 3) (0:57)
13. Good Vibrations (Inspiration): Western 6/2/66 (Part 4) (0:49)
14. Good Vibrations: Western 6/16/66 (Part 1) (6:24)
15. Good Vibrations: Western 6/16/66 (Part 2 & Verse) (1:06)
16. Good Vibrations: Western 6/16/66 (Part 2 Continued) (5:55)
17. Good Vibrations: Western 6/18/66 (Part 1) (1:10)
18. Good Vibrations: Western 6/18/66 (Part 2) (5:03)
19. Good Vibrations (Persuasion): Western 9/1/66 (1:49)
20. Good Vibrations: Western 9/1/66 (New Bridge) (3:39)
21. Good Vibrations: Session Masters (6:13)
22. Good Vibrations: Single Version Stereo Track (3:49)
23. Good Good Good Vibrations (First Version With Overdubs) 3/66 (3:41)
24. Good Vibrations: Alternate Edit 8/24/66 (3:32)


Double LP

Side One

1.   Our Prayer
2.   Gee
3.   Heroes And Villains
4.   Do You Like Worms (Roll Plymouth Rock)
5.   I’m In Great Shape
6.   Barnyard
7.   My Only Sunshine (The Old Master Painter / You Are My Sunshine)
8.   Cabin Essence

Side Two

1.   Wonderful
2.   Look (Song for Children)
3.   Child Is Father Of The Man
4.   Surf’s Up

Side Three

1.   I Wanna Be Around / Workshop
2.   Vega-Tables
3.   Holidays
4.   Wind Chimes
5.   The Elements: Fire (Mrs. O’Leary’s Cow)
6.   Love To Say Dada
7.   Good Vibrations

Side Four

1.   You’re Welcome – Stereo Mix
2.   Vega-Tables – Stereo Mix
3.   Wind Chimes – Stereo Mix
4.   Cabin Essence – Session Highlights and Stereo Backing Track
5.   Surf’s Up – Session Excerpt and Stereo Mix

Two 7” singles

Heroes And Villains “Smile” single Vega-Tables single

A side:  Heroes And Villains Part One           A side: Vega-Tables
B side:  Heroes And Villains Part Two           B side: Surf’s Up

The SMiLE Sessions (2LP vinyl)

Side One

1.  Our Prayer
2.  Gee
3.  Heroes And Villains
4.  Do You Like Worms (Roll Plymouth Rock)
5.  I’m In Great Shape
6.  Barnyard
7.  My Only Sunshine (The Old Master Painter / You Are My Sunshine)
8.  Cabin Essence

Side Two

1.  Wonderful
2.  Look (Song for Children)
3.  Child Is Father Of The Man
4.  Surf’s Up

Side Three

1.  I Wanna Be Around / Workshop
2.  Vega-Tables
3.  Holidays
4.  Wind Chimes
5.  The Elements: Fire (Mrs. O’Leary’s Cow)
6.  Love To Say Dada
7.  Good Vibrations

Side Four

1.  You’re Welcome – Stereo Mix
2.  Vega-Tables – Stereo Mix
3.  Wind Chimes – Stereo Mix
4.  Cabin Essence – Session Highlights and Stereo Backing Track
5.  Surf’s Up – Session Excerpt and Stereo Mix

Topanga Canyon

Topanga CanyonWe were somewhere on Henry Ridge Mountainway when the car finally broke down. It wheezed to a stop right in the middle of an already narrow part of the road. Stuart slammed his fists on the steering wheel and screamed.

“Don’t hit the car,” Hal said. It was his car. He bought it sophomore year of high school with 1300 one dollar bills he’d saved up for months. To say it was his pride and joy would be a bit much since he barely knew how to check the oil, never mind change it. But it was his car and he didn’t like Stuart pounding on it.

“What?” Stuart finally asked after staring at Hal for a bit. “What did you just say?”

“Don’t hit the car. It’s not going to fix anything.”

“Shut up, Hal. You’re an idiot.”

That was how we generally talked to Hal back then and he generally took it. I doubt any of us are proud of that fact now but it’s what you do when you’re 20 years old and there’s someone who will take that kind of abuse. You abuse them.

Continue reading Topanga Canyon