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643642 Posts in 25718 Topics by 3658 Members - Latest Member: chimp February 16, 2019, 05:52:36 PM
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1  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Dean Torrence joining Mike's band? on: Yesterday at 09:16:07 PM
<<Tand then later when they had guys like Cowsill, Farmer, Griffin, etc., those were solid musicians. Many of the same guys who to this day play with Mike, or Al, or the various “Surf City All Star” lineups with varying combos of Al, Dean, and David Marks. But those were not bands that could have pulled off “Pet Sounds” or “Smile” in full.>>

Gary Griffin has been pulling off Pet Sounds in full for the last few years in Brian's band.  And John Cowsill's drumming was a highlight of the 2012 C50 reunion tour.

Yes, I'm well aware that Griffin is in Brian's band and that Cowsill was on C50. What I'm saying is that band in that 1986 clip, while professional, could not have adequately pulled off the entirety of PS or Smile. It just wasn't that type of band. I've never felt a need to compare 80s J&D backing bands to Brian's 1999-present band. I drew the comparison in response to the assertion that J&D shows were of a similar quality as Brian's show.
2  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Dean Torrence joining Mike's band? on: Yesterday at 10:52:00 AM
I’m someone who has been very honest and blunt about Brian Wilson shows; I don’t tend to be overly-forgiving of his shortcomings on stage. Yes, Brian’s show over the last 20 years has indeed at various moments started to veer into “Weekend at Bernie’s” territory.

But I wouldn’t put Brian’s shows in the same category as a post-accident J&D show. First, I’d say Brian on a good night, especially in the early 2000s, was both better vocally and more animated and a better emcee than Jan (or Dean) was at their shows. I’m not out to criticize Jan and what he could or couldn’t do at shows; I think some folks back then and maybe even now weren’t fully aware of how dire his condition was due to that accident. That he resurfaced at all was absolutely commendable. But if we’re going to be honest, Jan’s vocals were almost always challenged in a far different and more distracting way than Brian has usually sounded.

I saw Brian on the 2000 PS tour, and he was not only in good voice, but carried the show and was full of energy, having back-and-forths with the audience. I’ve never seen a J&D show where anything like that happened.

And then yes, on top of that, everything else about Brian’s show is in a different stratosphere than even the best J&D gig. Setlists with full album performances and deep cuts. Full-time guests in later years that added true substance to the show (Al, Blondie, Dave). And a backing band that easily outstrips even the best of J&D’s backing band. The Papa guys were fine, and then later when they had guys like Cowsill, Farmer, Griffin, etc., those were solid musicians. Many of the same guys who to this day play with Mike, or Al, or the various “Surf City All Star” lineups with varying combos of Al, Dean, and David Marks. But those were not bands that could have pulled off “Pet Sounds” or “Smile” in full.

Regarding the J&D setlist and the idea of playing mostly or all J&D cuts, I absolutely agree they *could* have done that. They could have padded the known J&D songs with other tracks of their own rather than like 10 Beach Boys songs they had nothing to do with. They could have even used backing guys as surrogate singers for songs that neither Jan nor Dean could or wanted to sing. But they (or Dean) chose not to, obviously. It’s why some J&D gigs in later years could be pretty sad; one couldn’t say “well, Jan is trying but really struggling, but at least the band and setlist are mind-blowing!”
3  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Dean Torrence joining Mike's band? on: Yesterday at 08:54:29 AM
I'd be curious to know if J&D ever did a double booking with the Beach Boys outside of the 1978 tour, meaning playing at least a full "opening act"-length setlist, and actually went up on stage and did like 10 songs that the Beach Boys were about to come on stage and also perform within the hour.  

That would be supremely odd. I would guess/hope any shows where J&D opened or were otherwise featured on a BB show, they did a shortened set of their own stuff and then maybe a combined bit on "Barbara Ann", etc.

Regarding Dean's ethos for putting together his shows and setlists, I don't think there's any disagreement. What he did made total sense. It just isn't artistically particularly interesting. The BB shows and setlists of the 80s and 90s could often be rather stale and uninteresting, but they did largely their own songs (and songs they covered on record), only occasionally delving into actual covers they had never released on record. "Surf City" was perhaps the longest-standing exception in the setlist, and I know a lot of BB fans (not casual fans obviously) were supremely annoyed at getting "Surf City" while the band ignored most post-1968-ish material during those years.

But the ability of the BBs to do their own songs for 90-120 minutes, and to occasionally dig into a huge back catalog, and actually intermittently perform *new* songs, all relate to how much more substantive the Beach Boys were than a band like J&D. I don't want to get back into the same rut where some folks are bluntly honest about J&D and then some other folks feel the need to defend, but J&D and the BBs were something more akin to Gerry & The Pacemakers and the Beatles. No, it's far from a perfect analogy.

But Jan's obviously tragic accident and subsequent struggles were not the *only* reason J&D didn't have a lot of substance to offer on stage. They just weren't as successful and talented as other bands like the Beach Boys, even back in the heyday of J&D. J&D were already in a rut artistically and commercially before Jan's accident, right? I'm not saying they never wrote or recorded anything of interest after Jan's accident or after the hits stopped happening. But the catalog on the whole wasn't full of albums and albums full of unknown gems.

As for the quality of the J&D show setting aside setlist considerations, I'd say something like this from 1980: ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eXm3cL-mjdE ) is pretty on-par with 1981 Beach Boys (give or take, depending on which 1981 BB show we're talking about), and far less substantive than 1980 or 1982 Beach Boys shows. I'll take Knebworth or DC 1980 over this any day. I'll frankly even take the awful 1981 Queen Mary show, where Brian sounds okay on the mid-range vocals, Dennis actually does a pretty solid job on drums, Al is solid if unremarkable, and some of the backing band (Carter, Figueroa, Meros) do a fine job.

Also take a look at something like this short 1986 J&D show:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSOXHPrwo98

It's literally a farm league BB show, including featuring *multiple* at-the-time former and future Beach Boys touring band members. And it's less interesting and more generic-sounding than even a 1986 Beach Boys show (which wasn't exactly their peak either).
4  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Dean Torrence joining Mike's band? on: Yesterday at 07:18:03 AM
The J&D story is absolutely fascinating, including that later era of touring as retold by Bob Greene.

In the 80s and 90s, did Jan & Dean ever book stadiums on their own? Meaning, as the sole act and/or as the headliner? I recall the 80s and 90s being a lot of fairs, amusement parks, clubs, event openings in parking lots, and, on the higher end, indoor theaters, etc. They undoubtedly appeared at some larger venues as openers for other bands and/or as part of a multi-act "oldies" show and the like.

But did 50,000 people ever fill a stadium in the 80s or 90s for a solely-Jan & Dean show? Did they ever even fill a 15,000-ish seat indoor arena during that time on their own?

Any time they did a gig with the Beach Boys, I'm pretty sure the vast majority of folks were there to see the BBs.

Even the days of the BBs filling stadiums was largely over by the end of the 70s, notwithstanding cases where they piggybacked onto baseball games in the 80s and 90s, where they main draw was the game with a free BB show thrown in after the game. Even the days of filling indoor arenas in the US was waning by the 80s (with some exceptions of course).

Now, what *would* be interesting to know is what kind of setlist J&D did when they toured  for the BBs in the 70s/80s/90s. I would imagine they had to drop most BB songs that overlapped with the actual BB setlist, separate from songs they performed together of course.  

5  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Dean Torrence joining Mike's band? on: Yesterday at 07:06:58 AM
I'll respond in more detail soon, but folks, the characterization of the later era J&D shows as de facto Beach Boys shows is obviously a bit hyperbolic.

BRI obviously would have had a very difficult time actually successfully suing J&D (the promotion of the shows would have been the target in such cases rather than solely the setlist itself; I'm well aware that J&D could have done a set full of Elvis songs if they had wanted), and as I mentioned, they had an ongoing relationship (in some cases a business relationship) with at least Dean in that same time period. I don't think a lawsuit was ever likely to happen. My point was more that, considering other legal action BRI took or considered over the years, a closely-associated band performing a setlist that *was* in some cases more Beach Boys than the actual band itself would lead to a not-unwarranted moment of pause for BRI.

Apart from any unlikely legal action, I absolutely think it was lame and embarrassing and opportunistic to tour as "Jan & Dean" and rely HEAVILY on the song catalog of a SINGLE other band. J&D weren't just augmenting their small collection of well-known hits with an all-purpose oldies show. They leaned HEAVILY specifically on Beach Boys songs. Even some of the original J&D-associated songs from the 60s were BB-related, including "Sidewalk Surfin'."

The Beach Boys NEVER did a show made up for more J&D songs than BB songs.

Also, comparing specifically the 1981 BB tour, roundly noted by many fans and scholars as the pre-1998 nadir of the band's touring career, with a J&D show is rather selective. Having said that, of the MANY BB and J&D shows from that era I've seen and/or viewed/listened to recordings from in that era, I'd say J&D shows were not markedly better. And certainly, the J&D setlist was pretty uninteresting from examples I've seen, relying on a small selection of the well-known J&D songs, and then rounding it out predominantly with well-known Beach Boys hits.

It's far from a perfect analogy, but imagine the Stones kind of tanking after the late 60s and then going back out in 1980 on tour and doing 20-song setlists where 12 of the songs were Beatles songs. LAME.

I *absolutely* understand why J&D did the shows that way. They wanted to tour (and I'll even acknowledge the theoretical and sometimes practical use of touring to keep Jan active, etc.), and didn't have enough recognizable songs to even fill out a *short* setlist. They were/are most associated (and sometimes conflated with) the Beach Boys among  the most casual of music consumers, so that's what they performed. I don't even have a problem with J&D having done such tours and setlists so much as I'm simply saying it should also be correctly characterized as artistically pretty lame.
6  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: The Beatles Vs. the Beach Boys on: February 13, 2019, 12:16:03 PM
I don't think HT&E/YSBIM is anywhere near the case of "My Sweet Lord"/"He's So Fine". In the case of the latter, you have the same exact three-note melody being sung over essentially the same two-chord motif (and there are further similarities as well).

Yes. In fact, if I may be so bold, I agree with Lennon that Harrison's use of He's So Fine was not subconscious at all but quite intentional.

Yeah, I think it was a court that invoked the odd term "subconscious plagiarism" in that case.

I don't think Harrison set out to write a remake of "He's So Fine", so I suppose one could argue it was partially unintended. I think he had the influence in the back of his head, and there's a point at which if you riff exactly on the same melody line on top of the same chord sequence, it doesn't matter whether it was intentional or not.

I suppose the "Stay With Me/I Won't Back Down" situation from a few years ago was somewhat similar. The "Stay With Me" writers all claimed they had never heard "I Won't Back Down" (which seems far-fetched to me; or indicative of a pretty narrow breadth of knowledge of not-ancient pop music), but I have no problem believing that they didn't sit down intending to write a remake of "I Won't Back Down", or to sample that song. But again, same melody over the same chord sequence, so it doesn't matter.

The closest I can think of that the Beach Boys and Beatles ever came to "ripping" each others' song off would probably be "Girl Don't Tell Me", and even then it's not similar enough to warrant any songwriting credit changes. It's like a really good Rutles song.
7  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Dean Torrence joining Mike's band? on: February 13, 2019, 12:08:19 PM
There are a number of angles to look at when stewing on the idea of Dean Torrence in 2019 joining Mike’s licensed Beach Boys.

First, in modern-day industry terms, adding Dean wouldn’t bring in any additional revenue or better bookings. Dean has far fewer bookings than Mike presently, and the gigs he plays are also lower-tier. Up until Al rejoined Brian’s band, Al, David Marks, and Dean were all doing gigs in various permutations. They still do, though Al obviously has done few in the last few years. If Mike added Dean as essentially an *additional* act on the bill, perhaps that would get a bit more money out of some promoters working on multi-act oldies shows. But if like Dean Torrence replaces a guy in Mike’s backing band, I don’t think it brings any more money.

Performance-wise, while I appreciate Dean and I would assume he’s a competent guitar player and might still have an okay mid-range singing voice, I don’t think he’d bring anything to a “Beach Boys” show in any permutation, in terms of the nuts and bolts of the music and vocals.

Dean presumably would indeed have far less if any political baggage compared to any actual Beach Boys joining the band. Dean has played gigs with both Mike and Al (and Dave) separately. But this is true for literally almost anybody on the planet other than, mainly, Al an Brian.

Going back to Jan & Dean doing predominantly Beach Boys material when going back out on the road in the late 70s/early 80s and on, I’d have to agree with what Howie Edelson mentioned in a J&D thread a while back. Jan & Dean were essentially a farm league version of the “Beach Boys”, and were doing very low-end gigs, and were touring essentially a near-Beach Boys show, but without a license. Dean noting how the catalogs are conflated is not an incorrect assertion, but it is a lame and lazy one. As Howie mentioned in passing, it’s actually surprising BRI didn’t send J&D cease and desist letters for touring the Beach Boys’ show without a license. I’m sure the goodwill between the bands (and J&D not exactly burning up the touring circuit) dictated that never happened, but the only reason “name” bands would typically add in new members culled from “tribute band” variants would be to bring in a strong performer to carry a show (e.g. bands like Journey and Boston getting tribute band singers as lead singers).

I just don’t see any upside for anyone for Dean joining Mike’s band, other than Dean maybe having more steady work and everybody feeling “oh wow, look, Dean’s in the Beach Boys now!” This isn’t like Joe Walsh joining the Eagles. Heck, this isn’t even like Mike Campbell joining Fleetwood Mac.

Again, no disrespect to Dean. All the BBs seem to like him, and I have no problem with him popping up at shows and guesting. I have no vested interest in what he does with Mike’s Beach Boys, but objectively, I see very little upside to it on any level.

And frankly, while it was acknowledged that Dean joining wouldn’t be the same as an actual Beach Boy, I do think when Mike starts adding people to his band or otherwise featuring people in his show, it’s not invalid to point out the irony of bringing in, say, John Stamos while Brian and Al aren’t there, or of singing along to tapes of Dennis or Carl, resulting in the paradox of a 2010s “Beach Boys” concert featuring the deceased Carl and Dennis, but not the still-living and active Al and Brian. 

As for the actual shows taking place, as far as I can tell it’s indeed an extended “guest” run sort of thing.
8  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: 1968 Copyright Extension Release Thread on: February 13, 2019, 08:00:29 AM
I don't think the copyright extension issue is that simple. It involves mainly copyrighting of physical recordings, and then the rules pertaining to those also involve those recordings as essentially "work product" towards a copyrighted end product. Technically, only previously unreleased compositions need to be protected. Note that "Big Beat '63" is full of mostly unreleased tracks (e.g. "Thank Him"), and avoids alternate takes of a bunch of 1963 BB songs already found on albums.

When subsequent "copyright extension" releases have gone beyond that prompt and have included alternate takes of familiar, previously-releases songs (this began with the 2014 "Keep and Eye on Summer" collection), they're basically just doing so to make the release more interesting and fleshed-out for fans.

Regarding timing, the easiest solution to avoid any possible hiccups is to beat the 50-year deadline on the song's first sessions.
9  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: The Beatles Vs. the Beach Boys on: February 13, 2019, 07:50:13 AM
I always appreciate a detailed breakdown of what someone hears (as opposed to just an offhand assertion without any explanation), and it's undoubtedly interesting to compare/contrast a song of Brian's and Paul's from a similar era.

But I just don't hear much specific similarity between "HT&E" and "YSBIM." To me,"HT&E" is one of a hand full of very clearly partially Brian/BB-influenced tracks, again similar to something like "Dear Boy" where you don't hear one particular song being clearly referenced, but rather an obvious general influence/nod, whatever one wants to call it.

I don't think HT&E/YSBIM is anywhere near the case of "My Sweet Lord"/"He's So Fine". In the case of the latter, you have the same exact three-note melody being sung over essentially the same two-chord motif (and there are further similarities as well).

HT&E and YSBIM don't have similar lead line melodies, nor do they have similar chord progressions.

I also don't even hear an obvious nod to YSBIM in HT&E in the way something like "Girl Don't Tell Me" is very obviously a nod to "Ticket to Ride" even though it doesn't literally re-use the same melody and chord progressions.

I have no reason to doubt a Brian/BB influence on HT&E. That influence could certainly have included YSBIM. But I don't think Paul wrote the song with one specific BB song on his mind, nor did he set about to ape one of their songs. If anything, I'd say the Brian/BB influence regarding the song was more on the arrangement/performance/recording side of things than the composing itself.
10  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: The Beatles Vs. the Beach Boys on: February 12, 2019, 07:20:23 AM
Also important to note regarding Paul (and the other members) and their interest in the Beach Boys/Brian was that it was not anywhere near "hardcore fan" status.

I think the other members had even less specific interest in the BBs than Paul. Sure, George knew a few of the tunes and John had some words of praise in an interview or two, and I think it's very interesting to see/hear/read those comments. But George and John weren't thinking much about Brian or the BBs back then, and for that matter, even McCartney's interest in Brian and the BBs was pretty focused on PS and then later "Sunflower" more indirectly. I've never heard McCartney talk about the "Today" or "Summer Days" album. McCartney apparently wasn't even a big fan of "Good Vibrations" for whatever reason.

In short, whether good or bad, I would guess folks like Carl or Brian or Dennis probably listened to *every* Beatles album more or less at one time or another. Whereas, I highly doubt any of the Beatles listened to more than a few BB albums. I don't even think McCartney likely ever regularly tracked the entirety of "All Summer Long" or "Surfin' USA", etc.

As Howie Edelson once pointed out, the deal with the Beatles (and specifically McCartney) was that they recognized Brian as one of their very few true peers. But they weren't obsessively listening to every scrap of music the Beach Boys were releasing in the mid 60s.
11  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Bruce Johnston's 1968 Solo Project - Polydor - \ on: February 12, 2019, 07:13:06 AM
It seems to me that the majority of BBs were pretty passive aggressive and seldom expressed their resentment out loud-when they did all finally express their opinions in 1977 the whole band came very close to breaking up

Not only were they often passive in terms of their *public* comments concerning any potential acrimony back then, they could also be pretty passive aggressive to each other behind the scenes. The bit in the David Marks/Stebbins book regarding Dave's 1971 time with the band was pretty intriguing, with both Bruce and Carl being kind of weird about Dave potentially rejoining.
12  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: The Beatles Vs. the Beach Boys on: February 12, 2019, 06:51:22 AM
If "Here, There, and Everywhere" was influenced by the PS listening session, then I'd say that even more strongly indicates the song was informed by a more general BB vocal influence than specifically trying to sort of rip off one specific track.

I'm sure McCartney and Lennon had great musical memories, but I'm not sure McCartney would retain *so* much from specifically YSBIM from only that listening session to the point of, I guess the accusation above is something akin to "subconscious plagiarism" (not sure whether "stole" is meant to be more or less serious than plagiarism).

Much like "Ram" in 1971 was informed by "Sunflower" and to some extent "Pet Sounds" and BW vocal arrangements in general, I think a hand full of McCartney tracks from 1966 and 67 in particular have a clear BW/BB influence. But there isn't anything in the Beatles catalog that even approaches the level of having "stolen" a BB song. Further, very few McCartney tracks, either in the 60s or in later solo years, have obvious, stand-out direct melodic/compositional influences from BW/BB material. That is, while there are a few cases where the influence is quite obvious and strong ("Dear Boy", "Vintage Clothes"), the influence was usually more subtle in the instances where it was a factor at all. "Penny Lane" would be a good example of that. That's a song that doesn't immediately scream "Oh, that's totally such-and-such specific Beach Boys song", but has arrangement and recording touches that come from that BW/BB influence.
13  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: “A Postcard from California” 2019 Reissues on: February 12, 2019, 06:30:35 AM
Thanks for the info!

This album needs more recognition...it's really well-made, fun album...and I wonder if "deluxe edition" would have unreleased tracks. I'm pretty sure it will include Japan-only bonus tracks, namely Eternal Ballad and alt. ver. of Waves of Love.

"Waves of Love" wouldn't be surprising, but I'm not sure they'd put "Eternal Ballad" on a wide release CD reissue. It's not really A-list material. Matt Jardine commented on the song on this board in response to some criticisms of the song, defending the song but also acknowledging its limitations:

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,10591.msg196142.html#msg196142
14  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: “A Postcard from California” 2019 Reissues on: February 12, 2019, 06:23:10 AM
Hopefully, if he does a "deluxe" CD reissue almost ten years after it first came out, he'll go all-out and add plenty of bonus tracks. He mentioned several other songs around the time the album came out, and while it's unlikely, I'd love to see him add some of the "early" versions of the songs sampled on his website back several years prior to 2010. There was a less cluttered version of "Don't Fight the Sea", a version of "A Postcard from California" with Al singing the lines later given to Glen Campbell, and also with better stacked Jardine backing vocals (as opposed to the larger group who added backing vocals to the eventual released version).

We also know that Brian added vocals to one if not several additional songs not included previously on the album. There's a behind the scenes video of Brian singing lead lines for "A Postcard from California" for instance.
15  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: The Beatles Vs. the Beach Boys on: February 12, 2019, 06:19:47 AM
Related, I've become convinced McCartney stole - consciously or subconsciously - Here There and Everywhere from You Still Believe in Me. The songs are way too similar, and the BB song came out just as the Beatles were recording Revolver.

I don't think the songs are particularly similar. As someone else pointed out, there are a few intervals where one could say there is a bit of overlap, which I'm guessing has more to do with both songs being ballads of not-too-dissimilar tempos.

"Stole" is a pretty strong word. There's *obviously* a BB influence on the vocals/vocal arrangements, and even there it's a pretty limited influence in that the harmonies on the song are pretty basic compared to something like YSBIM.

But the two songs are far from "way too similar" in my opinion. This is far from a "Girl Don't Tell Me/Ticket to Ride" situation.

There is also some debatable information that McCartney may have *written* "Here, There, and Everywhere" before he heard "Pet Sounds." McCartney tells one anecdote about having written the song while filming "Help" in early 1965. But even if we discount that story and assume McCartney is conflating things from his memory, it's entirely possible McCartney wrote the songs before "Pet Sounds" came out, and before Johnston played the album for McCartney/Lennon.
16  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Bruce Johnston's 1968 Solo Project - Polydor - \ on: February 08, 2019, 12:15:37 PM
I wonder what Bruce's primary motivation for wanting a solo career (or being in music at all) was back in the 60s.

Certainly today, there's no evidence he particularly likes to sing, play music, or write music. He does little of that now nor has he in eons. I mean, I have little doubt that he has some demos from over the years lurking around, maybe even a ton. But he seems to have zero interest in writing, performing/recording, and *releasing* music simply for the sake of doing it.

You can even read his comments back in the mid-late 80s and early 90s, he's fixated even then not on the band *creating*, but having a "hit."

Bruce is a fine piano player, a good vocalist, and did great work within the framework of the BBs. But I don't think his songwriting or solo performing in general was ever going to launch on ongoing, robust solo career. I can't say "I Write the Songs" is his only true commercial success, but it's by leaps and bounds one of very few. Even during the height of his powers when the song was out, his eventual "Going Public" solo album sank. I sense a 1968/69 Bruce album may have done even worse if it was full of things like "Bluebirds Over the Mountain" and "The Nearest Faraway Place."

It's ironic, he easily seems to work better within a larger group framework, yet he ended up contributing very little to the band on stage or in the studio upon his 1978 return, especially after LA and KTSA.
17  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Al Jardine - 2018/2019 Tour Thread - Postcards Storytellers Tour on: February 08, 2019, 12:08:26 PM
I recall a report of the first "Pet Sounds" tour all the way back 19 years ago in 2000, someone caught some of a soundcheck and noted that randomly, between songs, Brian just started blurting out singing "Lady Lynda", I recall he sang the "Lynda, won't you say that I am your man?".

That was in the midst of the era where Brian, Al, and Mike were all pretty estranged from each other. So Brian does seem to have an affinity for the song. Definitely a bummer that Brian doesn't seem interested in adding it to the setlist. I mean, no offense to Brian (or Al for that matter), but those backing guys do most of the heavy lifting rehearsing new songs. And in that case, it would be Al singing it anyway.

I'd actually be a bit surprised if Al did it with the original lyrics, considering he weirdly amended the song to "Little Lady" on the 1993 UK tour.
18  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Can anyone help id this performance? on: January 29, 2019, 01:48:04 PM
Regarding the 2002-ish DVD/CD release of the Knebworth 1980 show and Bruce’s opinion of it at that time, I remember talking to someone who worked on it, and they had a pretty logical explanation for why Bruce seemed not so hot on releasing Knebworth ’80. In Bruce’s mind, it remained an *unfinished* project. They had undertaken, if I’m recalling correctly, *more than one* attempt at releasing it in some form back in the early 80s. They did some overdubs, and I think there was a second semi-attempt towards (or consideration given to) a release around 1982 or so.

Curiously, they *did* allow ample footage from the show in the 1981 or 82 “20th Anniversary” TV special. But apart from that, the whole thing remained on the shelf, and even when they pulled a track from the show for the “Endless Harmony Soundtrack” in 1998/2000, they waffled back and forth on whether to use the overdubs on “Darlin’”, resulting in two different mixes.

From what I recall, while Bruce isn’t a part of BRI and therefore had/has no ownership stake in the Knebworth recordings, they were considerate enough to honor Bruce’s request for his performance of “I Write the Songs” to be left out (perhaps he had some say as the original “Producer” of the recordings; but I’m guessing it was a more a case of just honoring his request to avoid any additional snags in getting the stuff released).

I also recall hearing from that same person who worked on the release that Bruce suggested to *instead* release the Washington DC 1980 show. This helps to explain why Bruce was not as hot on releasing Knebworth. While he viewed Knebworth as an unfinished project, he remembered well that the Washington DC 1980 show had been successfully overdubbed and “released” (meaning in this case airing on TV).
19  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Can anyone help id this performance? on: January 25, 2019, 06:50:43 AM
The "Going Platinum" special on the KTSA album is quite good; it's relatively (for the era and in context) honest in its portrayal of the band's struggle to stay relevent/on the charts, etc. Nobody (either the band or the host/narrator) seem to be delusional as if they just *know* KTSA is going to be a huge hit.

This special definitely deserves an official release. Some nice studio tidbits (I recall a nice brief a capella bit of them recording vocals for "Goin' On") and some interesting interviews.

Also note that those "in studio" bits miming to the studio KTSA tracks feature some slightly alternate mixes of those songs unheard elsewhere. In particular I recall "Oh Darlin'" being a different mix with less vocal overdubs (most noticeable near the end of the song).
20  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Craft services + BBs tour riders on: January 25, 2019, 06:46:51 AM
I haven't looked at it lately, but my recollection is that that series of Tour Riders posted on the old "Smoking Gun" website were indeed a random hodge podge of riders including Mike's "Beach Boys" (and/or the pre-'98 Beach Boys) and some stuff from Al's "Family & Friends" riders from 1999-ish.

These riders have been around for eons, and are of course common. My recollection is that the BB riders were pretty typical. Nothing goofy (e.g. Van Halen or whomever it was asking for M&Ms with one color removed, done not to be eccentric but to help determine if small details of the riders were being followed), although most riders usually give a bit of insight into a tour operation. The most interesting stuff you'll usually see is whether they ask for "Vegetarian" food, or whether they ask for no alcohol (or lots of alcohol!), etc. I remember years and years ago a "huge scandal" regarding Britney Spears asking for Coke in her dressing room even though she was doing commercials for Pepsi. Whoa man! Scandal!

You can actually often read riders direct from band's websites for more modest operations like tribute bands and BB-related side bands. They are usually pretty modest and simple (e.g. just make sure we have proper equipment, a place to sleep, and some food to eat).

In particular, "lean" operations like BB tours often rely on venues/promoters to provide their daily meals and lodging and all of that. Mike's tour operation for instance often rents most of their equipment in each city/venue.

I'm occasionally surprised when people are surprised by long-time veteran tour operations having very detailed, specific riders. I'm sure that comes from having spent years in the business and knowing how and what to ask for from each promoter/venue. They probably know the stuff that is more often messed up and make sure to ask for everything with as much specific detail as possible. They'd probably run into problems if they just wrote into a rider "provide some food, whatever sounds good to you."
21  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian Wilson - 2019 Tour Thread on: January 24, 2019, 07:58:16 AM
Added 6/11 and 6/16 dates to the top post schedule, and also indicated that the May "Beachlife" show is likely not a PS date but a "regular" setlist show.
22  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: 1968 Copyright Extension Release Thread on: January 16, 2019, 06:38:28 AM
Interesting that there aren't any 1969 shows in the vaults, especially after the flurry of '68 shows caught on tape. But I guess the '68 shows surviving might be considered more the anomaly than the other way around.

So I guess that Paris show at the Olympia released on the French website is the only full-length pro-shot/soundboard item around from the '69 tour. I recall some other bits and pieces and a few audience recordings might be around.
23  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: THE WILSON PROJECT - THE ILLUMINATED EDITION on: January 15, 2019, 06:32:58 AM
While the material *Brian* contributed to BB '85 was very generally on par with the Usher sessions material (which wouldn't be surprising as the two groups of sessions occurred pretty close to each other), I'd say a good hunk of the other members' material, particularly Carl, on BB '85 was in both writing and production/execution much, much better than the Usher stuff. All of Carl's songs are much better compositionally, and better executed by the group as opposed to the admittedly demo-ish ad-hoc group working on those Usher-Brian songs. Bill Champlin and Jason Scheff are not Carl, Mike, Al, Brian, and Bruce.

The Usher sessions (and the book in question) are intensely interesting, but more on the story side than the music side. "Jusy Say No" isn't terribly interesting musically, but the whole deal of Usher getting Mike in there is very interesting.

The best thing that came out of those sessions is the slightly (or maybe very?) cheesy "The Spirit of Rock and Roll", and sadly neither the initial Brian version nor the eventual version with some overdubbed BBs (as heard on the '86 anniversary special) have been officially released. Instead, we got the rather limp version Brian put on the Hallmark CD about 20 years later.

One of the more interesting bits in the book is also Usher's attempt to re-write the lyrics to "Still I Dream Of It." I may not be the best analyst when it comes to lyrics, but Usher's re-written lyrics were pretty cringe-worthy as I recall.
24  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian Wilson - 2019 Tour Thread on: January 14, 2019, 04:57:26 PM
Looks like that festival gig is May 4.
25  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Rocky Pamplin's THE BEACH BOYS' ENDLESS WAVE completed and published on: January 14, 2019, 02:04:16 PM
Regarding reviews, while professional reviews publishers by reviewers/journalists should absolutely be held to a certain standard, I don't think customer reviews on websites like Amazon should have such requirements (and whether they do or not, people reading them should and hopefully usually do understand the reliability of such reviews; e.g. you can only give so much weight to random customer reviews).

But a review of a book that is basically the equivalent of a movie review that states "I watched it for 25 minutes and couldn't take it anymore and walked out", while weighed accordingly (I certainly don't make my buying decisions based on Amazon reviews, or even Yelp reviews particularly, or YouTube comments, etc.), shouldn't be disallowed on these sites. The Pamplin review in question even, arguably, admits only one chapter was read. How would we ever know who has seen or heard any product, or actually even owned the product in question? That's why Amazon has "Verified Purchase" designations, to at least prove a user owns or owned the product in question (and even then we don't know they watched/listened/tried it).

All attacking a review is going to accomplish is to make sure the next bad review goes out of its way to claim (whether true or not) that the reviewer has read the entire book.

To be clear, *I'm* not into reviewing stuff I can't appropriately judge. But I've seen even professional reviews where the reviewer admits they coudln't take anymore and gave up. As long as they disclose that, I'm fine with it and weight it as such (meaning usually not too much).

I'm guessing a fair amount of movie reviewers may not have reached the end of viewing "The Human Centipede."
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