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625363 Posts in 25129 Topics by 3574 Members - Latest Member: Saxapahaw January 22, 2018, 06:24:38 AM
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1  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Mike's band playing covers on: January 13, 2018, 03:14:53 AM
Eemagine that.
2  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Holland was released 45 years ago today. on: January 10, 2018, 02:29:28 AM
Usually I'm one to detach emotion from music and just listen analytically,  but I don't spin Holland often because it puts me in a depressed mood. Something about those songs, the sound, and even the cover bring me right down.

I like the songs, Mike's line at the end of Funky Pretty is one of the best  contrapunctal melodies they did.

But something about it makes me feel despondent. Only Beach Boys album (in my collection) to do that

SiP does that to me. But it's a Love thing.
3  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Holland was released 45 years ago today. on: January 09, 2018, 03:28:15 AM
I think Holland is the Beach Boys most successful foray into 1970s rock.  Unlike Sunflower and Surf's Up, Holland featured longer songs with some very good instrumental solos (Steamboat, Leaving This Town) which is absent on most BB material.  One cant help but wonder what would've become of The Beach Boys had they stayed on this path.

For me, most of the lengthier solos and interludes are unwelcome on a Beach Boys album. I like the Steamboat solo as it really fits the song well, but Leaving This Town is way to long and rambling for me. Otherwise, the Holland album is killer though.
4  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: In The Back of My Mind 1975 on: January 09, 2018, 03:15:34 AM
I am sorry to read about that, but it is inspirational how you came back better.

That may also answer a question I was going to post about Brian's use of a vocal coach. I was always confused as to why the same guy that set the world on fire with tremendously orchestrated multi-part harmonies as well as some soul-wrenching solo vocals would need any guidance whatsoever. He clearly knew how to sing.
5  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Good Vibrations Dennis Vocals on: January 03, 2018, 10:16:41 AM
Some references

From page 139 of Good Vibrations: My Life As A Beach Boy:

Quote from: Mike Love
We were somewhere on the Hollywood Freeway when I recited the next verse.

Close my eyes, she's somehow closer now.
Softly smile, I know she must be kind.
When I look in her eyes.
She goes with me to a blossom world we find.

Then on page 140:
Quote from: Mike Love
My only surprise was that in the last line of the second verse, Brian cut the final words, we find, eliminating the rhyme and ending the sentence with blossom world. I preferred the rhyme, but I cant argue with ending on "blossom world" -- evoking the peace movement that was gaining steam while suggesting the euphoria of being in love.

Johnny Dodd September 13, 2016 04:30 PM
People Celebrity Interview

“‘Softly smile, I know she must be kind,'” he says, reciting another section of lyrics. “‘When I look in her eyes, she goes with me to a blossom world.’ I originally wrote, ‘She goes with me to a blossom world we find,’ but Brian dropped ‘we find’ because he wanted to feature the bass line. Those are the missing two words from ‘Good Vibrations.'”
6  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Good Vibrations Dennis Vocals on: January 02, 2018, 05:15:20 AM
A while back ago, when I first heard that there was a Brian/Carl splice, I thought that people were cracking up and listening a little too hard. But then I heard it, and it stands out to the point where I am wondering how I missed it before. Just like, I always thought it was odd that the 2nd verse did not rhyme - not even close - until I read in Mike's book that Brian cut the words "we'd find" (or "we'll find"?) from the end (to hear the bass better or something). Of course, now it sounds clunky to add those lyrics, even though it does add 'closure' to the verse.

Good Vibrations is such a great song and it is really eye-opening to discover all of the extremely subtle work that went into getting the sound just right. There are so many layers of sound and some of the tiniest enhancements to get the vocals to sound perfect. Nuances that the album buying public was never meant to dissect to the degree that we do. If Brian knew then that he would have so many people picking apart every aspect of his songwriting, lyrics, chord structure and production techniques, his head would have exploded! But it's exactly why we appreciate his music more with every listen. So many layers to peel back and so much to discover.

On a (sort of) related comment, did you even notice that during a concert, some of the Beach Boys are mouthing parts that they clearly are not singing? Usually well out of microphone range. You may see Al mouthing the lyrics to a song Brian is singing or Dennis singing along to certain parts that he is obviously not singing at that moment. Is that the band just getting into the music - or is that a subtle sign that there may have been parts where their voices were overdubbed or blended at one time in the studio and it almost an automatic response? In other words, I am wondering if it is an indication that maybe what was thought to be a double-tracked Brian vocal, is really a Brian/Al double-tracked vocal.

Sorry for the tangent.
7  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: “Do It Again” remake named one of the worst songs of the year by Stereogum on: December 31, 2017, 06:08:30 AM
It's not awful, to be honest the original is way overrated anyway.

I can see how folks nowadays may say that, but back in the day when your only opportunity to hear hits was on the radio as the songs came out, it deserved the high ratings it received. Our local radios stations let us call in to request songs, so what we heard was usually what was demanded by the audience of those stations.

And as members of the radio audience were concerned, The Beach Boys were just coming off of the head-scratching Pet Sounds album after a string of career-defining feel-good songs; most recently Barbara Ann. Wouldn't it be Nice was played quite a bit, but the rest of Pet Sounds didn't really make the radio waves in my area. Probably Sloop John B,  but I do not remember.

Of course, Smiley Smile had Good Vibrations and Heroes and Villains (to a lesser degree); Wild Honey had Darlin'; and Friends had - maybe Friends? - but I do not recall hearing Friends on the radio much growing up. That is not exactly a string of hits from a band that was putting out 2-3 albums per year and producing hits on every album.

Then you put 20/20 on the turntable and cue up Do It Again. The unique drum sounds kick off the track and the background chatter made the song feel more intimate and loose. Do It Again did exactly what the title said. It immediately brought you back to the mystique of the California sound and was a welcome return to form for a lot of fans who grew up with the fun-in-the-sun songs.

As beautiful as the other songs from those albums were - and they were (and still are, of course) - it is usually as one grows older and lives through more of life's scenarios that you really appreciate them. A song like Do It Again comes along and grabs you immediately, draws you in and gets you singing along. It was at a time in our history where a nostalgic song was needed.

So I will have to respectfully say I disagree with the statement that Do It Again is overrated. I think that in this case they Beach Boys chose wisely.

I do however agree that Mike's rendition and the ANNOYING 'Do It's" from McGrath are cringeworthy. Mike chose... poorly.
8  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Methods that the band used to get into the zone for vocals? on: December 28, 2017, 05:33:06 AM
I have always been amazed at how the boys could go from 0-60 so quickly. Silence, a collective deep breath and then... perfect harmony. You can hear it a lot in the session recordings. One minute they are laughing and goofing around, then in the next breath 100% perfection. Unless it was just edited to sound that way, but you can hear it live too. I would love to know what they did (if anything) to hit the marks like that too. But it may be that they are just that good.

I know what you mean with Al - I have seen that too. As a guitar player, it bothers me when he stops playing and starts making hand gestures. I assume it is similar to guitar players who make faces when they hit certain notes?
9  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Mike Love Interview: Dan Rather Big Interview on: December 28, 2017, 05:25:33 AM
Please delete this if it was already discussed.  I spent a good amount of time searching for it using "Dan Rather" as a keyword and did not see anything other than a passing reference to "a recent Dan Rather interview" mentioned.

Mike Love was featured on the Season 4 episode 16 of Dan Rather's Big Interview series. The brief description was, "The original Beach Boys frontman discusses the group and his relationship with Brian Wilson."

He came off pretty good to me. Mostly everything we have heard before - Mike touches on TM, drug use and how everything would be great if he and Brian could be in a room together, blah, blah, blah.  The exception was when Rather asked Mike about his infamous HoF speech. Mike started to explain what he meant to accomplish, then pretty much admitted he handled it poorly and that he has since apologized to those he called out. I had it on in the background waiting to watch Brian Wilson and Friends so I wasn't paying a lot of attention.

Mike's eyes looked terrible. They were red at the beginning of the interview and it looked like he had a scratch under his left eye later in the program. For some reason, I was completely grossed out by his fingernails. I expect they are manicured and have some sort of coating on them, but they look like creepy cadaver hands to me. The length and color just looked wrong.

I will have to see when it airs again.
10  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Podcast with Jeffrey Foskett, Philip Bardowell, Chuck Girard, Dan Addington on: December 24, 2017, 04:06:24 AM
Click here for link
11  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Al’s New Christmas Song – “Sunshine to Snowflakes” on: December 16, 2017, 04:43:26 AM
Al's voice is amazing without the qualifier "for a 75 year old guy" but when you add that, his voice is impossibly good. Not sure about the lyrics yet, but I do like the coast-to-coast aspect of the song. The beginning guitar riff reminds me of a less powerful version of the intro for It's A Beautiful Day.

The background vocals sound generic overall. I would love to hear some prominent bass background vocals and maybe some high-end harmonies in the mix as well, but Al never asked my opinion.
12  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: What did the beach boys do better than the beatles? on: December 12, 2017, 02:10:21 PM

Conversely with harmony, unless you are familiar with  different styles of harmony, for example, close part jazz harmony and doo wop, and unless you can judge which of those is better in a way that everyone accepts, then how can you possibly say which band is better at harmonizing.

You can use as many technical terms as you want, ultimately it's subjective. 

Well, subjectively, the Beach Boys were much better at harmonies than the Beatles. I am not knocking the Beatles, because they are an amazing band with a tremendous amount of talent, but the subject of the thread is what do the Beach Boys do Better than the Beatles. I can say that the Beach Boys harmonies have made me happy and they have made me sad. They have made me laugh and they have made me cry. They are stunningly beautiful. I am not familiar with all the different styles of harmonies, but I know the Beach Boys harmonies touch me on such a personal level that I should sue them for harassment. 

Other bands have harmonies that are very good at times, but they are good to the ear. The original Beach Boys harmonies (Brian, Carl, Dennis, Al, Mike and Bruce) reach beyond the ear, and poke into the soul sometimes getting tangled up there and absorbed. Their harmonies were so great that they cannot even be reproduced by any of the iterations of the band that have popped up throughout the years. They can sing the notes, but their harmonies always sound like a cover band doing a very good job at reproducing a sound rather than a group singing as if each note meant something special.

I have seen the term technically proficient thrown about in this subject - usually with respect to George Harrison's playing vs. Carl. But Carl had a very personal feel in his solos that I have never heard reproduced. I have heard Beatles cover bands that sound strikingly like the original Beatles, but I have never heard anyone play Carl's leads and sound exactly like Carl. Maybe it's just me.

But because Yngwie Malmsteen is more technically proficient than Eddie Van Halen, does that make him better? I don't think so. Music has feeling. Clapton has it. Page has it. Dave Davies has it. Berton Averre has it. The list is endless. Some are more technically proficient, but some just feel better and they feel better on a consistent basis. That is why I really like The Beach Boys. They consistently make me relate to the music on some level for some reason. No other band - no matter how much I like their music - has done that.
13  Smiley Smile Stuff / Ask The Honored Guests / Breaking Away on: December 08, 2017, 10:05:57 AM
I just listened to the Break Away Study Video. I always loved that song, but as in other cases (such as Our Sweet Love and Slip on Through), the background vocals are such a revelation! As great as the music is - and please do not take offense because your work is outstanding -  I am such a sucker for the a cappella versions of these songs. It really allows me to hear so much more of the unbelievable vocal chops that these guys had that is sometimes too deep in the mix to discern. Their harmonies are stunningly gorgeous. I just wanted to say "Thank you so much" for offering these videos and the a cappella material.
14  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Mike Love - Unleash the Love - Due November 17 - w/ 2nd Disc of BB Remakes on: November 11, 2017, 03:56:29 AM
Just thinking that it is unfortunate that all the bad feelings from the last few pages are in a topic with 'Unleash the Love' in the subject line.
15  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: The Beach Boys are the only ones who can sing like the Beach Boys on: October 21, 2017, 06:17:42 AM
Just because you can hit the same notes does not make the vocal stack sound the same. You have to feel what you are singing. When Bruce was added his vocals stuck out like a sore thumb. Not in a bad way as he blended well, but enough where you say, "hey, there is a different voice there..." Considering that in certain songs, I cannot always tell the difference between Al and Brian, Mike and Dennis or Carl and Brian - Bruce sounded unique. Nobody can recreate that blend.

The band is in an interesting position because although the vocal model Brian used was the Four Freshmen, the Beach Boys sounded better than the singers they emulated. So perfect when you listen to their a cappella arrangements that they cannot be improved upon. Therefore, anyone who tries using this type of harmony in music will be compared to the Beach Boys.

Brian's often unorthodox arrangements contributed to their later sounds, adding jazz chords where you would not normally expect them. The intricacies of the music are often lost because the vocals either smooth the music - making the odd chord voicings sound "normal" - or they almost cover them completely.

And lastly, they make melancholy songs sound paradoxically upbeat. Other songs you find yourself singing along to without realizing the context of the song. "Wait, 'Don't Worry Baby' is about what?"

So when you say the Beach Boys are the only ones who can sing like the Beach Boys, these are a few things that come to my mind. If another band utilizes all of the elements, they still will not sing like the Beach Boys. Weird.
16  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Hal Blaine, Larry King - 1990 \ on: October 21, 2017, 05:54:16 AM
Try not to be too distracted by Al mangling the lyrics and the bad quality of the clip, and just focus on Dennis' playing.

Well, Al got a few of the lyrics right.  Grin

Dennis always approached his music like he truly felt it within him, no matter what he did. Drums, piano and especially singing, are SO heartfelt, honest and beautiful.

Brian had that gift as well, of course. Carl also had that ability to sing like he really meant it - because he did mean it. Even if he was singing Shortenin' Bread.
17  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: \ on: September 26, 2017, 02:18:37 AM
This is one of the catchiest songs from Brian in a long time. A fun, upbeat song that I find myself singing a lot during the day. Hard to believe he is 75 years old and putting out songs like this.

For some reason, the background vocals during the pre-chorus seemed really crowded and distracting on the first 2-3 listens, but during (many) subsequent listens they seemed to get less muddled.

The shimmery "run, James, run" at the 26-27 mark is a neat touch. Brian is not overly "barky" and the chorus is contagious and nearly perfect although I am not a fan of the "be the man" line. I do like how the background changes from "run, run, run" to "run, James, run". Cool guitar solo.

If this is any indication... I need Brian's rock and roll album. Now.
18  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: smile 2018 on: September 24, 2017, 03:06:22 AM
One exception I recall is when Ray Davies was touring to support his first proper solo album, Other People's Lives, in 2006. Roughly half the show was from the new album. Personally, I loved it, he had a great band backing him up, and it was good to hear them play some new stuff instead of just being a glorified Kinks tribute. By the next tour, though, it was back to a Kinks greatest hits show, with maybe 3 songs off the new record Working Man's Café.

You gotta Give The People What They Want  Wink

Ray is great and I often thought how cool it would be for Brian to be able to do a Beach Boys album using Ray's Story Teller album as a template. Wishful thinking....
19  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: \ on: September 19, 2017, 02:21:38 AM
Any help with the lyrics and writing credits is appreciated!

Run James Run

I got a pretty good job and a fascination
For the souped up ‘32
There’s a line outside
And they wait for a ride
Just to see what she can do

She’s an easy rider
When you sit beside her
She’s a real heartbreaker
You try to pass her but you never can shake her

You’d better run James run
A little faster
Fast as you can go
Find a ride (run, run, run a little faster)
Get inside

You’d better run James run
A little faster
Take her by the hand
Find a ride (run, James, run a little faster)
Be the man

You can stop and stare but she really doesn’t care
If she’s running really loud
She’s a top and a closer
And a real good short
When she’s hanging with the crowd

Her wheels keep turning
As the wood keeps burning
Goin’ faster, faster
You can catch her but you’ll never outlast her

You’d better run James run
A little faster
Fast as you can go
Find a ride (run, run, run a little faster)
Get inside

You’d better run James run
A little faster
Take her by the hand
Find a ride (run, James, run a little faster)
Be the man

(Guitar Solo)

You’d better run James run
A little faster
Fast as you can go
Find a ride (run, run, run a little faster)
Get inside

You’d better run James run
A little faster
Take her by the hand
Find a ride (run, run, run a little faster)
Be the man

You’d better run James run
A little faster
Fast as you can go
Find a ride (run, James, run a little faster)
Get inside


B. Wilson; Joe Thomas
20  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Dean Torrance on working with the Beach Boys, Filet of Soul, and more on: September 10, 2017, 07:19:42 AM
Wow. Some interesting stuff, but definitely needs proofreading, as GM stated.
21  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Blondie Facebook Q&A on: September 04, 2017, 06:28:42 AM
I was wondering that too, but I'm not sure that the response was aimed specifically at Carl after re-reading it. The fact that he referred to the band as "any of those guys" and spoke about Carl during his favorite memory may indicate that he had a falling out with the band, or some members of the band, but not necessarily Carl.
22  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Heroes and Villains Live Iteration on: September 04, 2017, 05:28:41 AM
Mike does not have a lot of vocals during songs like this, so rather than just stand there like a tool, he injects snippets of BV to stay busy vocally, I guess. I don't mind it at all as many of the song parts like this (and bicycle rider) were not even known by the public back in the 70's.

Interesting how one might think, "WTF is Mike singing that for?" or "why is Carl singing about bicycle riders!?" - only to find out years later when SMiLE material was released, that it was indeed part of the original concept. Or one of the original concepts. For me, it was the "you're under arrest!" part that grated on me and sounded goofy and out of place when I first heard it, as I had only heard the single version up until that point.

In fact, I used to have a quarter taped on the stylus because I thought the record skipped at about 1:25 just before the "la la la la la ... stand or fall" part. It wasn't until I replaced the 'defective' album with another one and it still sounded like that, did I realize it was intentional. Embarrassed
23  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: New Al interview on: September 03, 2017, 02:42:54 AM
I love Al. He seems like a great and humble man and his voice is still amazing. But a close-up, black and white set of images in that lighting is not doing him any favors. His forehead looks like the cracked desert image from the Surf's Up album sleeve.

It is a good interview though and he sounds like a guy who really appreciates working with Brian and still sounds like he is leaving the door open if a reunion opportunity presented itself.
24  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Rolling Stone: The Salvation of Brian Wilson on: August 31, 2017, 01:49:36 AM
Interesting to hear Brian is thinking about doing a Rock and Rolll album Grin

That's the first we've heard about that. Grin
25  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: a CONVERSATION with DAVID BEARD: Jan & Dean's FIiet of Soul on: August 19, 2017, 05:45:57 AM
I have the 1971 Anthology Album and side 4 sounds a lot like what is described in the article from what I remember. It was humorous, but pretty odd compared with the other three sides of that album. Is that what the Filet Of Soul recording was supposed to sound like? Although it is compared to Party! I found it disjointed and forced, unlike Party! which flowed smoothly.
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