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Author Topic: Who are the musicians on Sunflower and Surfs Up?  (Read 5313 times)
chaki
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« on: October 13, 2015, 04:03:48 PM »

There's such great performances on these albums, especially the drumming! Why is there no personnel list anywhere?
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c-man
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« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2015, 06:14:47 PM »

Drummers are:

SLIP ON THROUGH - Dennis Dragon
THIS WHOLE WORLD - Dennis Dragon
ADD SOME MUSIC TO YOUR DAY - Dennis and/or Carl Wilson
GOT TO KNOW THE WOMAN - Dennis Dragon
DEIRDRE - John Guerin
IT'S ABOUT TIME - Earl Palmer (with Dennis Dragon on congas)
TEARS IN THE MORNING - Hal Blaine
ALL I WANNA DO - Hal Blaine
FOREVER - Gene Estes
OUR SWEET LOVE - Hal Blaine
AT MY WINDOW - Stan Levey
COOL COOL WATER - Dennis Wilson on bongos

DON'T GO NEAR THE WATER - Mike Kowalski
LONG PROMISED ROAD - Carl Wilson
TAKE A LOAD OFF YOUR FEET - Brian Wilson on empty 5-gallon Sparkletts glass water jug
DISNEY GIRLS - Dennis Dragon
STUDENT DEMONSTRATION TIME - Dennis Wilson (there's also a second set of drums - possibly someone else, possibly DW double-tracked)
FEEL FLOWS - Woody Thews on unidentified percussion
LOOKIN' AT TOMORROW - one of the Boys (probably Carl or maybe Al)
A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A TREE - no drums
'TIL I DIE - probably Brian or Carl overdubbed on top of the Maestro Rhythm King
SURF'S UP - Frank Capp
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JK
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« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2015, 02:42:41 AM »

FEEL FLOWS - Woody Thews on unidentified percussion

Wow, thanks for that list, c-man. Would Thews be an authorized alternative spelling of Woodrow "Sonship" Theus's surname? Or just a misspelling that's dug itself in? Just wondered.
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c-man
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« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2015, 03:43:53 AM »

FEEL FLOWS - Woody Thews on unidentified percussion

Wow, thanks for that list, c-man. Would Thews be an authorized alternative spelling of Woodrow "Sonship" Theus's surname? Or just a misspelling that's dug itself in? Just wondered.

It's spelled "Thews" everywhere I've seen over the years, including the official AFM & SAG-AFTRA website.
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Ian
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« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2015, 04:01:16 AM »

Craig this information is making me impatient for the made in California sessionography! Is it coming soon?
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« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2015, 05:07:39 AM »

Craig this information is making me impatient for the made in California sessionography! Is it coming soon?

Yes - having just received Jim's book "Becoming The Beach Boys", and seeing that my copy of the Carl bio "Long Promised Road" just shipped, means I have the two valuable resources I've been awaiting with which to spot-check the accuracy of my already-written text. I hate to publish something as "fact" if another historically-sound resource contradicts it!
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« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2015, 07:30:48 AM »

Ummmmmmmm... wouldn't wait for the Carl biog.
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« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2015, 07:58:22 AM »

Info taken from Recording The Beach Boys by Stephen W. Desper (2002)

Sunflower

Slip On Through:
Drums - Dennis Dragon
Guitar - Dennis Wilson

This Whole World:
Tubular bells - Daryl Dragon
Harpsichord - Daryl Dragon
Guitar - Carl Wilson

Add Some Music To Your Day:
Piano - Brian Wilson
Bass - Brian Wilson

Got To Know The Woman:
Tack piano - Dennis Wilson
Piano - Daryl Dragon
Bass - Carl Wilson

Deirdre:
Vibraphone - Daryl Dragon

It's About Time:
Guitar - Alan Jardine & Carl Wilson

Tears In The Morning:
Vibraphone - Daryl Dragon

All I Wanna Do:
Moog - SWD

Our Sweet Love:
Cello - Igor Horoshevsky

Cool, Cool Water:
Piano - Daryl Dragon
Moog - SWD
Moog - Brian Wilson
Bongo - Dennis Wilson

Surf'S Up

Don't Go Near The Water:
Guitar - Alan Jardine
Guitar - Daryl Dragon
Banjo - Alan Jardine
Moog - Daryl Dragon
Snare - Dennis Wilson
Tambourine - Carl Wilson

Long Promised Road:
Snare - Dennis Wilson
Guitar - Carl Wilson
Keys - Carl Wilson

Take A Load Off Your Feet:
Tambourine - Brian Wilson

Student Demonstration Time:
Drums - Dennis Wilson
Bass - Daryl Dragon
Guitars - Carl Wilson
Tambourine - Mike Love

Feel Flows:
Baldwin organ - Brian Wilson
Flute - Charles Lloyd
Fuzz guitar - Carl Wilson
Saxophone - Charles Lloyd
Piano - Brian Wilson
Moog - SWD

Looking At Tomorrow:
Guitars - Alan Jardine

A Day In The Life Of A Tree:
Harmonium - Brian Wilson
Pipe organ - Daryl Dragon

'Til I Die:
Hammond organ - Brian Wilson
Vibraphone - Daryl Dragon
Moog - SWD



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CenturyDeprived
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« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2015, 08:37:12 AM »

Info taken from Recording The Beach Boys by Stephen W. Desper (2002)

Sunflower

Slip On Through:
Drums - Dennis Dragon
Guitar - Dennis Wilson

This Whole World:
Tubular bells - Daryl Dragon
Harpsichord - Daryl Dragon
Guitar - Carl Wilson

Add Some Music To Your Day:
Piano - Brian Wilson
Bass - Brian Wilson

Got To Know The Woman:
Tack piano - Dennis Wilson
Piano - Daryl Dragon
Bass - Carl Wilson

Deirdre:
Vibraphone - Daryl Dragon

It's About Time:
Guitar - Alan Jardine & Carl Wilson

Tears In The Morning:
Vibraphone - Daryl Dragon

All I Wanna Do:
Moog - SWD

Our Sweet Love:
Cello - Igor Horoshevsky

Cool, Cool Water:
Piano - Daryl Dragon
Moog - SWD
Moog - Brian Wilson
Bongo - Dennis Wilson

Surf'S Up

Don't Go Near The Water:
Guitar - Alan Jardine
Guitar - Daryl Dragon
Banjo - Alan Jardine
Moog - Daryl Dragon
Snare - Dennis Wilson
Tambourine - Carl Wilson

Long Promised Road:
Snare - Dennis Wilson
Guitar - Carl Wilson
Keys - Carl Wilson

Take A Load Off Your Feet:
Tambourine - Brian Wilson

Student Demonstration Time:
Drums - Dennis Wilson
Bass - Daryl Dragon
Guitars - Carl Wilson
Tambourine - Mike Love

Feel Flows:
Baldwin organ - Brian Wilson
Flute - Charles Lloyd
Fuzz guitar - Carl Wilson
Saxophone - Charles Lloyd
Piano - Brian Wilson
Moog - SWD

Looking At Tomorrow:
Guitars - Alan Jardine

A Day In The Life Of A Tree:
Harmonium - Brian Wilson
Pipe organ - Daryl Dragon

'Til I Die:
Hammond organ - Brian Wilson
Vibraphone - Daryl Dragon
Moog - SWD



Fascinating info.

I'll surely learn more once the book comes out, but is SDT the only song (outside of the early sax songs) with Mike credited on a musical instrument? I'm guessing more will be added to his credits, but I can't recall seeing his name as an instrumentalist on another song.
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chaki
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« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2015, 08:55:55 AM »

Holy crap thanks, you guys! This is amazing! Dennis Dragon who started the Surf Punks?!?! Mind blown. I was just watching them on New Wave Theater!!! 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F1QYLMkch-E
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« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2015, 09:27:21 AM »

Info taken from Recording The Beach Boys by Stephen W. Desper (2002)

Thanks for sharing! Fascinating stuff.
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« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2015, 09:28:00 AM »



Couple of differences in the Drummers list: 

Drummers are:

DON'T GO NEAR THE WATER - Mike Kowalski
LONG PROMISED ROAD - Carl Wilson

Info taken from Recording The Beach Boys by Stephen W. Desper (2002)

Surf'S Up

Don't Go Near The Water:
Snare - Dennis Wilson

Long Promised Road:
Snare - Dennis Wilson

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Stephen W. Desper
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« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2015, 09:57:50 AM »

There's such great performances on these albums, especially the drumming! Why is there no personnel list anywhere?
COMMENT:  When you have your own private studio it is hard to determine who played what on which with full accuracy. You can compile a list of musicians from AFM Union sheets and get one list, or you can look at the studio journal and collect another list. What happens after the original tracking date, in the sanctuary of a private studio may be contrary to the official records. Sometimes a spur-of-the-moment decision will replace the entire tracking instrument or more often then not, parts of the original will be replaced with an update, or added to, or ducked under in a mix. Basic drums or the tracking date drums may be added to, that is, the tracking date establishes the general beat, but later in a sweeting session, a snare is added or a drum-runaround lick is added by someone else. The original drummer may get drumming credit while the new drum parts are listed as percussion. Who played guitar is greatly confused because you have five guitar players who can all play any parts and do replace parts of another guitarists part with a new idea influenced by some other part that was added after the original guitar lick, which now doesn't work with what was added. It has to be updated. The update may be a different player who may only play a few notes. Some parts of the original tracking date may be used in some sections, but other sections use a new tracking part, so there are really two in the song. Sunflower and Surf's Up both have songs that were tracked by Brian years before and those musicians were recorded at union studios where record keeping is a must. But then the other five Beach Boys take Brian's work into their private studio and (with Brian asleep upstairs) impress their own signatures on his original idea, taking it somewhere else. Look at Do It Again for example. The end has one of the "fire tape" sessions tacked onto it, all the construction sounds -- those are the ones from that Brian session where he had the musicians wearing firefighter hats -- OK, so it is part of the song. Should all those cats get credit? Hal Blaine was one of the musicians yielding a hammer or saw . . .  nothing musical, but he was part of the song and is a union musician. Therefore he may be listed as the drummer, when it may have been Gene Estes who did the music (only used as an example). I have replaced the kick drum (played by someone else) from a drum tracking date where there are three or four tracks of drums. The kick may have retarded the beat so it was replaced, but not by the original drummer. How do you count the credit on that?  I could cite many instances where the original tracking date is punched (in) full of partial re-takes and sweetening, so how you figure that out takes a gaggle of bookkeepers taking multiple notes about every note.

In other words, multi-track recording is not a ridged discipline. As I have tried to outline in my book, it is a fluid exercise in creativity that may be created and re-created over a long period of time, buy many players, in short sections or for the entire song. As far as the accuracy of my book, I labored to make who I said played what with the best accuracy I could. Sometimes my notes were left open or pending and I had to listen to the part and see if I could recognize who's part was eventually used. Most of the time the final musician is listed, but in the book I never split apart the sweetening overdubs or inserts -- as that would NOT make for an easily read script crawling along with the music. It's too complicated. AND, you think the instrumentation is difficult to credit, the vocal tracks are worse.

Overall the answer to your question is a combination of AFM union statements and my final notations. For the most part, the tracks on SF and SU are greatly represented by the group members themselves. What you hear is mostly by their hand, with horn and string dates by others.  One way or another, most of what you hear is, or was, by way of the talents the six Beach Boys developed as they matured.

The fact of you asking this question leads me to conclude that you have not read my book. I would encourage you to read (at least) the first part on Sunflower and when it's out, the second part on Surf's Up.  You can find it at http://swdstudyvideos.com  Thanks for the question! 
~swd 
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chaki
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« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2015, 11:01:05 AM »

Thanks for the answer, SWD! I'm totally going to read your book and your answer totally makes sense! But, you know for us obsessives, it's nice to know who plays on what and if I never asked I never would have known the BB/Surf Punks connection!
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« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2015, 11:59:50 AM »

Thanks for the answer, SWD! I'm totally going to read your book and your answer totally makes sense! But, you know for us obsessives, it's nice to know who plays on what and if I never asked I never would have known the BB/Surf Punks connection!
COMMENT: Here's some history. The Dragon Family seems to be quite musical. The father Carmon Dragon was the leader of the Glendale Symphony Orchestra for years and made hundreds of recordings and also a weekly radio show. He did all the music on "Baby Snooks," a radio show of the 40's. Daryl is the oldest son whose first connection to the group is via Bruce. He later built a recording studio at which the Beach Boys recorded an album. From there Daryl has supplied the music on many commercials you have heard. Brother Dennis was an excellent drummer that Daryl brought into the mix. He played drums and percussion on numerous tracks, especially when Dennis broke his wrist. He also toured at times as a substitute drummer. He later formed his Surf Punks group and became his own star. He is also quite a good engineer and producer. One sister played the harp and was in the musicians union, also played on one BB song. The younger sister played the flute and did so on some BB songs. She and her husband (who worked with Murry Wilson) were involved in local music festivals and the sheet music business. The Dragon family has been involved with the Beach Boys for some time. ~swd
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« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2015, 02:36:12 PM »

This probably isn't all that helpful but I seem to recall reading somewhere that Jerry Cole was one of the guitarists on "This Whole World."
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Ian
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« Reply #16 on: October 14, 2015, 03:46:56 PM »

Stephen don't forget eldest brother Doug who toured with the bbs in 1968.  He was on the April 1968 tour with buffalo Springfield.  I managed to interview all three dragon brothers for my book the beach boys in concert, as well as the very gracious mr. Desper
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« Reply #17 on: October 14, 2015, 07:56:34 PM »

This probably isn't all that helpful but I seem to recall reading somewhere that Jerry Cole was one of the guitarists on "This Whole World."

Jerry Cole, yes.  AFM sheet and you can hear his voice on the session.  David Cohen is the other guitarist.
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« Reply #18 on: October 14, 2015, 08:06:15 PM »

This probably isn't all that helpful but I seem to recall reading somewhere that Jerry Cole was one of the guitarists on "This Whole World."

Jerry Cole, yes.  AFM sheet and you can hear his voice on the session.  David Cohen is the other guitarist.

David Cohen did the country-flavored lead work, right?
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« Reply #19 on: October 14, 2015, 08:52:17 PM »

This probably isn't all that helpful but I seem to recall reading somewhere that Jerry Cole was one of the guitarists on "This Whole World."

Jerry Cole, yes.  AFM sheet and you can hear his voice on the session.  David Cohen is the other guitarist.

Haha, oh I bet you can!
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« Reply #20 on: October 15, 2015, 02:22:11 AM »

Stephen don't forget eldest brother Doug who toured with the bbs in 1968.  He was on the April 1968 tour with buffalo Springfield.  I managed to interview all three dragon brothers for my book the beach boys in concert, as well as the very gracious mr. Desper
COMMENT:  Oh Wow!  How could I have forgotten Doug. We palled around on that tour as time permitted. The Springfield Tour was with the first sound system I designed for them. ~swd
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c-man
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« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2015, 04:34:42 AM »

This probably isn't all that helpful but I seem to recall reading somewhere that Jerry Cole was one of the guitarists on "This Whole World."

Jerry Cole, yes.  AFM sheet and you can hear his voice on the session.  David Cohen is the other guitarist.

David Cohen did the country-flavored lead work, right?

When I had the opportunity to hear the session tapes in full, while researching the sessionography for the "Made in California" box set, I came to the conclusion that the "lead" guitar on the basic track was Jerry Cole (I noted that this is the guitarist whose voice is heard between takes), while the "rhythm" guitar was David Cohen. I put quotation marks around "lead" and "rhythm" just now, because on the basic track, the "rhythm" guitar combines with the official "lead" guitar at certain points, for a two-lead approach. Here is an excerpt from the commentary I prepared on that part:

"On the basic track, the guitars of David Cohen and Jerry Cole were originally quite dominant, Cohen initially playing chunky rhythm chords while Cole played big, bodacious country-rock licks, after which the two of them came together for a dual lead riff in the B-section."

The next section I wrote speaks to Mr. Desper's commentary on how parts from original tracking dates are sometimes later replaced, in whole or in part, or simply mixed down or out of the final production:

"However, it appears Cole's guitar was completely muted in the final mix in favor of Carl's more subtle overdubbed 12-string, while Cohen's guitar was left intact during the A-section but silenced in the B-section. A drum break toward the end of the final take was edited out, and the entire track was then pared down from 2:25 to just under two minutes."

In other words, the original track was a pretty wild country-rock excursion that was later shaped into something more "Beach Boy"-like!
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« Reply #22 on: October 15, 2015, 06:17:01 AM »

A "wild country-rock excursion", that sounds very intriguing! Thanks for sharing. Do you happen to know who produced the original session(s) and who decided to change things with regards to mixing and making overdubs?
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« Reply #23 on: October 15, 2015, 07:05:28 AM »

Would LOVE to hear some of the Sunflower session tapes....
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Stephen W. Desper
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« Reply #24 on: October 15, 2015, 07:53:54 AM »

A "wild country-rock excursion", that sounds very intriguing! Thanks for sharing. Do you happen to know who produced the original session(s) and who decided to change things with regards to mixing and making overdubs?
COMMENT:  No one is a "session producer," as such, handing that position over to someone else after the musicians have gone home. The decision to change the direction of the song would be made by the song's producer. In the case of This Whole World, Carl ultimately, because during the time this song evolved from Brian's basic session to what it became, Brian's illness prevented him from continuing. In the interest of survival Carl continued with the song. In some cases not being able to know from Brian or figure out his plans, a track or set of tracks (I guess that is what is meant by "session tapes") may be modified to accommodate the new direction the song is/has taken.  ~swd

At http://swdstudyvideos.com you will find more details.
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