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Author Topic: Paley Sessions Discussion Thread  (Read 28199 times)
HeyJude
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« Reply #150 on: February 28, 2017, 06:51:27 AM »

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zQGb379AntA&feature=youtu.be

Brian and Mike on Entertainment Tonight March 1995. Brian plays a lil bit of Dancing the Night Away on a piano

Thanks for posting that. I think I had that buried somewhere on a VHS tape that would have taken me forever to find and then pinpoint.

This video also reinforces that the "Paley" material had a pretty long gestation period; there was a long period of time between Brian and Andy writing the stuff, cutting their tracks, then moving to work with Mike on "Baywatch Nights", then later in 1995 adding some vocals to YSAM and "Soul Searchin'."

Cribbing from a bunch of old pages/posts, including some great info from c-man, it appears some of the timeline goes something like this:

1994 (or earlier?) - Brian cuts demos with Andy Paley (or, as Paley feels, these are full-on master recordings, not demos)

February/March 1995 - Studio sessions for "Dancing the Night Away/Baywatch Nights", and possibly the mysterious "Grace of My Heart." It was apparently this earlier set of sessions that Carl "walked out" on at some point for non-musical reasons, possibly some sort of tension or politics with Brian. Other even more vague reports from years ago claimed Carl "walked" on the later 1995 sessions, so I don't know if that's simply inaccurate or if they actually did *additional* vocal sessions for "Dancing the Night Away" later in 1995, because Carl walking seems to be tied to the "Dancing..." sessions in every account I can find. While there isn't any apparently further information regarding that, here is some additional info from an old c-man post concerning that set of February sessions:

.....the recording of the proposed "Baywatch Nights" theme song occurred the week of February 28th 1995 at Mark Linett's studio:  "Brian and Andy coproduced the track...the two of them, along with Carl, Jonathon Paley, and Michael Andreas, played on the track...Brian, Carl, Mike, and Andy sang vocals around a single mic".   And get this..."A video crew recorded the vocal session for posterity"...but, the song remained unfinished.  There was extensive coverage in Newsweek and ET!.   Alan Jardine was reportedly unaware of this session, expressing complete surprise when informed of it by a fan some months later.  

March 1995 - Entertainment Tonight airs the piece linked above, which presumably or possibly was videotaped *prior* to the 2/28/95 studio sessions

April 25, 1995 - The Beach Boys film their bit for an episode of Baywatch. Now, in the past I've seen references/assumptions that this meant that the band may have nixed plans to do anything with the "Baywatch Nights" song and instead filmed an appearance with old material (e.g. "Summer of Love"). This may have been easier to believe because the episode surely aired *months and months* later. But if this filmed appearance occurred less than two months after they cut the "Baywatch Nights" song, then I suppose it's *possible* they hadn't completely nixed any plans for that song, but simply chose less than eight weeks later when filming the episode to not use it, and/or the track wasn't yet ready.

April 28 & 29, 1995 - Brian makes his first in-concert appearance with the Beach Boys since 1990 or so.

September 1995 - Group vocal sessions (including Brian, Mike, Carl, Al, Bruce, and Matt presumably) for "Soul Searchin'" and "You're Still a Mystery." This includes the session that was observed by Cindy Lee Berryhill and later recounted. I don't know how many vocal sessions took place, or if they really nailed it all in like one day. Also, presumably at some point prior to this Don Was had already cut *new* backing tracks for these two songs.

October 1995 - The first "Stars and Stripes" sessions occurred; certainly at this stage I don't think the "Paley/Was" stuff was dead. So while we've already established that S&S did not directly lead to any "cancellation" of the Paley/Was stuff, this is further indication that all of these sessions ran together pretty closely, and that it's very unlikely anything much had been decided about the Was/Paley stuff at this stage.

Later in 1996 or 1997(?) - At some point way later, but while Carl was still alive, Mark Linett makes the first attempt at dubbing the Carl/group vocals from the Don Was version of "Soul Searchin'" onto the old Paley backing track. While Carl was still alive when this occurred, he apparently never heard it.

There are surely other items to plug into this timeline as well, including some sort of "Proud Mary" Brian session that Carl contributed to (there's an account somewhere online of a guy that was working with Carl who tagged along to a Carl/Brian session for the song), which I would tend to guess took place *prior* to any of the 1995 group sessions, though I can't be sure of course. Can anyone find that story?

« Last Edit: February 28, 2017, 08:19:16 AM by HeyJude » Logged

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« Reply #151 on: February 28, 2017, 07:22:16 AM »

https://books.google.com/books?id=2wsEAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA12&lpg=PA12&dq=brian+wilson+mike+love+restaurant+malibu+1995&source=bl&ots=nA2L4MVFlm&sig=bz9xJo5B1VXqBzYtMq-1uzcDuyQ&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjH-_3JybLSAhWK6yYKHXlkCjMQ6AEIUjAM#v=onepage&q=brian%20wilson%20mike%20love%20restaurant%20malibu%201995&f=true

This Billboard article also has some relevant info from Brian and Mike, interviewed the same day that the E.T. segment was shot (March 3rd)
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« Reply #152 on: February 28, 2017, 07:46:42 AM »

Interesting stuff to become reacquainted with all of these articles/stories. That article indicates the "Dancing the Night Away" session may have taken place a few days later, in the first week of March.

What's interesting is that this article pretty strongly implies *some sort* of work must have taken place on "Grace of My Heart." Has anyone heard this? Is it a Paley/Wilson song, or someone else's writing? If they all did record the song, at least some sort of demo, why wasn't this put on the MIC set in 2013? Was it too incomplete? Did someone just not like it? Is the tape missing?

Further, do we know whether any additional BB (or, at least Mike/Brian/Carl/Paley) vocals for "Dancing the Night Away" exist beyond what has circulated, which is a swampy 90s low-bitrate MP3 that features an intro lead from Carl, one line of group vocals, and then nothing? I'd assume not, otherwise wouldn't *that* also be a strong candidate for something like the MIC set?

But if they spent at least an entire day or two in the studio, and only did those little bits of "Dancing..." vocals, then did they spend more time on "Grace of My Heart?"

Or, perhaps Carl walked very early on those sessions and little work got done?
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« Reply #153 on: February 28, 2017, 08:01:13 AM »

I'd keep that timeline open for revisions - Some of the dates on the surface don't line up. Some of those excerpts I posted shots of earlier, from Brian - That was from Mix magazine's "Bonzai" who spent time at the sessions. Bonzai was invited by Was to come to Ocean Way for the Beach Boys sessions. The article was published in the March 1996 issue. Brian is asked about the sessions and this is what he said:

Bonzai: How would you compare the studio situation now?

Brian: What we're doing now in the studio is more back toward the 60's. We're just starting to get back into that kind of thing. The Beach Boys did two songs a couple of weeks ago, and we got our feet wet together. It's the first time that we've really gotten together and recorded in a long time. And it's coming out good.


Brian was also asked about Soul Searchin and writing with Andy Paley. Brian said this: "...Carl liked it (Soul Searchin) a lot. Carl keeps looking for material, and when he finally finds it, he goes 'Wow, you got a song for me!' Andy was a hero to Carl."

I bring those up because from Brian's perspective, Carl was positive about Soul Searchin and was happy about getting it to sing.

And if Mix published in March 1996, was Brian referring to full group sessions as in those with Al and Bruce versus whether something was done in Feb 1995 as a group that was perhaps only Mike, Brian, and Carl? Mix wouldn't publish an article about sessions over a year old, and Brian wouldn't say the first group sessions to "get their feet wet" happened a few weeks ago unless the interview was from Feb or March 1995 - again, putting the news a year old by the time the interview got published.


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« Reply #154 on: February 28, 2017, 08:12:40 AM »

I'd keep that timeline open for revisions - Some of the dates on the surface don't line up. Some of those excerpts I posted shots of earlier, from Brian - That was from Mix magazine's "Bonzai" who spent time at the sessions. Bonzai was invited by Was to come to Ocean Way for the Beach Boys sessions. The article was published in the March 1996 issue. Brian is asked about the sessions and this is what he said:

Bonzai: How would you compare the studio situation now?

Brian: What we're doing now in the studio is more back toward the 60's. We're just starting to get back into that kind of thing. The Beach Boys did two songs a couple of weeks ago, and we got our feet wet together. It's the first time that we've really gotten together and recorded in a long time. And it's coming out good.


Brian was also asked about Soul Searchin and writing with Andy Paley. Brian said this: "...Carl liked it (Soul Searchin) a lot. Carl keeps looking for material, and when he finally finds it, he goes 'Wow, you got a song for me!' Andy was a hero to Carl."

I bring those up because from Brian's perspective, Carl was positive about Soul Searchin and was happy about getting it to sing.

And if Mix published in March 1996, was Brian referring to full group sessions as in those with Al and Bruce versus whether something was done in Feb 1995 as a group that was perhaps only Mike, Brian, and Carl? Mix wouldn't publish an article about sessions over a year old, and Brian wouldn't say the first group sessions to "get their feet wet" happened a few weeks ago unless the interview was from Feb or March 1995 - again, putting the news a year old by the time the interview got published.


I think everything seems to line up and make sense. Brian in that interview (published 3/96) seems to be referring to the September 1995 sessions for "Soul Searchin'" and YSAM (and Cindy Lee Berryhill's story firmly places the date as September of 1995). Those *were* the first full group sessions apparently on the material.

It's sounding more like the Feb/Mar 1995 activity was more "demo" status, with just Brian and Mike meeting up to hash stuff out (presumably writing lyrics/finishing up "Dancing..."), and then it looks as if Brian, Mike, Carl, and Paley convened to demo "Dancing..." and apparently "Grace of My Heart." I don't think they would have considered this to be a full "Beach Boys" session if both Bruce and Al (as well as Matt) were not at the session. Not that they were opposed to doing BB sessions with only some BBs in attendance, but I figure this had to be a bit more on the "demo" side considering three of the six active vocal members of the group were not there.

I'm not sure why Al, Matt, and Bruce weren't in attendance (the comment from c-man in that old post refers to a report from someone that Al wasn't told about the session). The Beach Boys appear to have had no live concert dates in February or March of 1995, not reconvening until April to go back on tour.

As for Carl being positive about "Soul Searchin'", that certainly *does* give one pause when it comes to the stories of Carl not liking the material. Does anyone have the circa 2000/2001 "Record Collector" interview with Al? That was an alternate edit of his "Goldmine" interview, and one of the bits unique to "Record Collector" was Al being asked about those sessions. He had some sort of comment that it was Carl that had an issue with the material, but I don't know what words he used. Keep in mind Al actually gave the interview in question in 1999, so presumably things were relatively fresh in his mind.

I tend to think Carl didn't necessarily *dislike* the material, but may have expressed some sort of more broad issue/misgiving about the commercial prospects for a whole album of such material, and/or those songs they worked on in particular.
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« Reply #155 on: February 28, 2017, 08:21:46 AM »

I'd keep that timeline open for revisions - Some of the dates on the surface don't line up. Some of those excerpts I posted shots of earlier, from Brian - That was from Mix magazine's "Bonzai" who spent time at the sessions. Bonzai was invited by Was to come to Ocean Way for the Beach Boys sessions. The article was published in the March 1996 issue. Brian is asked about the sessions and this is what he said:

Bonzai: How would you compare the studio situation now?

Brian: What we're doing now in the studio is more back toward the 60's. We're just starting to get back into that kind of thing. The Beach Boys did two songs a couple of weeks ago, and we got our feet wet together. It's the first time that we've really gotten together and recorded in a long time. And it's coming out good.


Brian was also asked about Soul Searchin and writing with Andy Paley. Brian said this: "...Carl liked it (Soul Searchin) a lot. Carl keeps looking for material, and when he finally finds it, he goes 'Wow, you got a song for me!' Andy was a hero to Carl."

I bring those up because from Brian's perspective, Carl was positive about Soul Searchin and was happy about getting it to sing.

And if Mix published in March 1996, was Brian referring to full group sessions as in those with Al and Bruce versus whether something was done in Feb 1995 as a group that was perhaps only Mike, Brian, and Carl? Mix wouldn't publish an article about sessions over a year old, and Brian wouldn't say the first group sessions to "get their feet wet" happened a few weeks ago unless the interview was from Feb or March 1995 - again, putting the news a year old by the time the interview got published.


I think everything seems to line up and make sense. Brian in that interview (published 3/96) seems to be referring to the September 1995 sessions for "Soul Searchin'" and YSAM (and Cindy Lee Berryhill's story firmly places the date as September of 1995). Those *were* the first full group sessions apparently on the material.

It's sounding more like the Feb/Mar 1995 activity was more "demo" status, with just Brian and Mike meeting up to hash stuff out (presumably writing lyrics/finishing up "Dancing..."), and then it looks as if Brian, Mike, Carl, and Paley convened to demo "Dancing..." and apparently "Grace of My Heart." I don't think they would have considered this to be a full "Beach Boys" session if both Bruce and Al (as well as Matt) were not at the session. Not that they were opposed to doing BB sessions with only some BBs in attendance, but I figure this had to be a bit more on the "demo" side considering three of the six active vocal members of the group were not there.

I'm not sure why Al, Matt, and Bruce weren't in attendance (the comment from c-man in that old post refers to a report from someone that Al wasn't told about the session). The Beach Boys appear to have had no live concert dates in February or March of 1995, not reconvening until April to go back on tour.

As for Carl being positive about "Soul Searchin'", that certainly *does* give one pause when it comes to the stories of Carl not liking the material. Does anyone have the circa 2001 "Record Collector" interview with Al? That was an alternate edit of his "Goldmine" interview, and one of the bits unique to "Record Collector" was Al being asked about those sessions. He had some sort of comment that it was Carl that had an issue with the material, but I don't know what words he used. Keep in mind Al actually gave the interview in question in 1999, so presumably things were relatively fresh in his mind.

I tend to think Carl didn't necessarily *dislike* the material, but may have expressed some sort of more broad issue/misgiving about the commercial prospects for a whole album of such material, and/or those songs they worked on in particular.

That quote about Carl would seem to contradict all the popular notions about his reaction to Soul Searchin, which most would assume he didn't like or wasn't confident enough with. But maybe, just maybe, Carl liked the song as it was presented to him and as Brian relayed to the interviewer, but it was something in his own performance he didn't like? Just throwing out ideas, on the surface it seems there is an obvious contradiction.

Factor in as well: An August 1995 interview at Brian's house where he said he had invited the Beach Boys to come to a listening session, check out material - And they all ended up canceling. At this specific time, as related by Was, and numerous interviews including Brian himself, he was writing and demo'ing songs which he envisioned as "Beach Boys" songs. At that August '95 interview he played a tape of "Gettin In Over My Head", "Slightly American Music", etc...the songs he had been writing and working up with Paley. And the band I guess canceled out on getting together to listen and have a bull session with Brian. August 1995.

So it was ostensibly just after that incident where they canceled on Brian that Don Was took a more active role in actually making something happen with Brian and the band? By September they were working on sessions with Was, and Don himself mentioned how he basically got them all back in the studio after Brian said he wanted to work with them.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2017, 08:22:14 AM by guitarfool2002 » Logged

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« Reply #156 on: February 28, 2017, 08:25:20 AM »

Revised the timeline a bit (it matters so very little of course), showing that the two gigs Brian played with the band were April 28 and 29, 1995, just days after the "Baywatch" filming.

Also worth noting is that after those two live gigs, it appears Brian may have not done nothing on stage or in-studio with the band until the September sessions, as the band continued touring and Brian did various recording sessions for the IJWMFTT and "Orange Crate Art" albums.

The band filmed *another* appearance on "Baywatch" on July 19, 1995. They once again (obviously) did not work the "Baywatch Nights" song into this at all, presumably having not done any additional work on the song (and, of course, presumably "Baywatch Nights" would have been used most likely on the spinoff show of the same name anyway). Brian nor Carl participated in the episode, and this was the first fans had seen in eons of David Marks, who inexplicably appeared with Mike, Al, and Bruce. Was Mike already angling to bring Dave back as early as the summer of 1995? That's obviously a whole other ball of wax.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2017, 08:27:28 AM by HeyJude » Logged

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« Reply #157 on: February 28, 2017, 08:32:16 AM »

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zQGb379AntA&feature=youtu.be

Brian and Mike on Entertainment Tonight March 1995. Brian plays a lil bit of Dancing the Night Away on a piano

Thanks for posting that. I think I had that buried somewhere on a VHS tape that would have taken me forever to find and then pinpoint.

This video also reinforces that the "Paley" material had a pretty long gestation period; there was a long period of time between Brian and Andy writing the stuff, cutting their tracks, then moving to work with Mike on "Baywatch Nights", then later in 1995 adding some vocals to YSAM and "Soul Searchin'."

Cribbing from a bunch of old pages/posts, including some great info from c-man, it appears some of the timeline goes something like this:

1994 (or earlier?) - Brian cuts demos with Andy Paley (or, as Paley feels, these are full-on master recordings, not demos)

February/March 1995 - Studio sessions for "Dancing the Night Away/Baywatch Nights", and possibly the mysterious "Grace of My Heart." It was apparently this earlier set of sessions that Carl "walked out" on at some point for non-musical reasons, possibly some sort of tension or politics with Brian. Other even more vague reports from years ago claimed Carl "walked" on the later 1995 sessions, so I don't know if that's simply inaccurate or if they actually did *additional* vocal sessions for "Dancing the Night Away" later in 1995, because Carl walking seems to be tied to the "Dancing..." sessions in every account I can find. While there isn't any apparently further information regarding that, here is some additional info from an old c-man post concerning that set of February sessions:

.....the recording of the proposed "Baywatch Nights" theme song occurred the week of February 28th 1995 at Mark Linett's studio:  "Brian and Andy coproduced the track...the two of them, along with Carl, Jonathon Paley, and Michael Andreas, played on the track...Brian, Carl, Mike, and Andy sang vocals around a single mic".   And get this..."A video crew recorded the vocal session for posterity"...but, the song remained unfinished.  There was extensive coverage in Newsweek and ET!.   Alan Jardine was reportedly unaware of this session, expressing complete surprise when informed of it by a fan some months later.  

March 1995 - Entertainment Tonight airs the piece linked above, which presumably or possibly was videotaped *prior* to the 2/28/95 studio sessions

April 25, 1995 - The Beach Boys film their bit for an episode of Baywatch. Now, in the past I've seen references/assumptions that this meant that the band may have nixed plans to do anything with the "Baywatch Nights" song and instead filmed an appearance with old material (e.g. "Summer of Love"). This may have been easier to believe because the episode surely aired *months and months* later. But if this filmed appearance occurred less than two months after they cut the "Baywatch Nights" song, then I suppose it's *possible* they hadn't completely nixed any plans for that song, but simply chose less than eight weeks later when filming the episode to not use it, and/or the track wasn't yet ready.

April 28 & 29, 1995 - Brian makes his first in-concert appearance with the Beach Boys since 1990 or so.

September 1995 - Group vocal sessions (including Brian, Mike, Carl, Al, Bruce, and Matt presumably) for "Soul Searchin'" and "You're Still a Mystery." This includes the session that was observed by Cindy Lee Berryhill and later recounted. I don't know how many vocal sessions took place, or if they really nailed it all in like one day. Also, presumably at some point prior to this Don Was had already cut *new* backing tracks for these two songs.

October 1995 - The first "Stars and Stripes" sessions occurred; certainly at this stage I don't think the "Paley/Was" stuff was dead. So while we've already established that S&S did not directly lead to any "cancellation" of the Paley/Was stuff, this is further indication that all of these sessions ran together pretty closely, and that it's very unlikely anything much had been decided about the Was/Paley stuff at this stage.

Later in 1996 or 1997(?) - At some point way later, but while Carl was still alive, Mark Linett makes the first attempt at dubbing the Carl/group vocals from the Don Was version of "Soul Searchin'" onto the old Paley backing track. While Carl was still alive when this occurred, he apparently never heard it.

There are surely other items to plug into this timeline as well, including some sort of "Proud Mary" Brian session that Carl contributed to (there's an account somewhere online of a guy that was working with Carl who tagged along to a Carl/Brian session for the song), which I would tend to guess took place *prior* to any of the 1995 group sessions, though I can't be sure of course. Can anyone find that story?



I am the "fan" in question who talked with Jardine about the sessions.  It took place before a BB show in Paso Robles CA in August, 1995.  I had the chance to talk with Al (nobody else around, very low key) for about 30 minutes.  At that time the ONE THING I was most interested in were the reported Was/Paley sessions and the hope of a new album. As stated in this thread, it was indeed all over the press at that time.  I asked Al directly about that Baywatch Nights session that had been reported both on Entertainment Tonight and in Entertainment Weekly magazine. He stated he had no knowledge of them, and it was clear to me he was indeed telling the truth.  He did not seem shocked at all, not bothered by it. He went to say that "oh, Carl may have been involved in some of that."   Later that same night, I had a BRIEF (30 seconds?), talk with Mike Love and asked the same question.  Asked him straight out if the group was working on a new album with Brian. His answer was something to the effect of "not yet, but we sure hope so."
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« Reply #158 on: February 28, 2017, 08:32:44 AM »

I'm also curious how far the idea ever got to actually put "Baywatch Nights" into the show of the same name. (And that's not even getting into the fact that we have *none* of the lyrics that they wrote that would have referenced the title/show). Were they just hoping/assuming the show would want to use a BB song if they were offered one, or was any even informal "commission" to do the song at play?

They clearly had some sort of ongoing relationship with the show, filming two appearances for the main "Baywatch" show in 1995, including the later one where several of the guys (awkwardly) were shoehorned rather heavily into the show's actual plot.

They re-wrote and recorded some form of the song in March 1995.

Is it safe to assume they would have been pitching the song as an actual "theme song" for the show?

"Baywatch Nights" premiered on September 30, 1995 apparently. We have to assume filming had begun several months prior, though of course that wouldn't have precluded adding a BB song at the eleventh hour in post production.

I'm curious if "Dancing.../Baywatch Nights" may have been abandoned because they knew (either due to their own decision or due to input from the show's producers) that it wasn't going to be used on the show.

Here's something else to chew on: How involved was *Don Was* in those Feb/Mar 1995 sessions, if at all? I recall the interview where Don Was describes Mike and Brian going away to write a song together and coming back with "Baywatch Nights"; the interview as I recall seemed to have a tone suggesting Was thought this was funny/ironic, and that that *wasn't* the sort of thing he was trying to motivate them to write.

But this would imply Was was involved with the *group* (or at least more than just Brian) at the very beginning of the year. Was he at the March studio session?

Further, considering Was seemed to find the idea of a "Baywatch Night" song as rather vapid (my words, not his), is it possible that Don Was may have counseled the band to drop such a schlocky, gimmicky type of song (a song for a s**tty spinoff of a s**tty TV show) and move on to something more substantive?
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« Reply #159 on: February 28, 2017, 08:55:24 AM »

HeyJude: It sounds like you're on the right track piecing it together, but look more closely at August 1995 and how many events happened relative to the overall timeline. I'll also mention what either seem to be or could be the workings behind Baywatch Nights.

Aug 95 - Brian invites the band over for a listening session, they snub him. Brian's Don Was film has a premiere event in Hollywood, none of the Beach Boys show up. Then there was a "concert" scheduled for the Baywatch appearance that was to be filmed, and eventually it was added to the episode where the band appeared. Brian didn't show up, and instead David Marks was substituted for Brian. Reports said the crowd there for that beach concert wasn't happy about that substitution.

So weigh all those together from and surrounding Aug 1995 and it didn't seem that feelings were all that positive. It also adds some context, maybe not enough of an excuse for some circles but context nonetheless, as to Brian shining on the concert filming for Baywatch. He was snubbed only weeks prior twice by his family and bandmates, one formal event and one for a gathering and who knows what else in between. Maybe he was justified in his own mind because they bailed out on him, publicly and privately at least twice. Yet his mindset was still wanting to make music for and with his bandmates.

Enter Don Was, again he seemed to be the mediator who got it back together for those Fall 95 sessions as listed.

The same reports of the non-appearance for the August concert filming say Brian was slated to appear at a run of BB's concerts at the Cerritos Center, late August 95 after the Baywatch non-appearance. Without having the data available, did Brian appear at any of those Cerritos shows?



Baywatch Nights: It seems to have been a case where the producers of that show changed gears at some point in actually developing the feel of the show. It was supposed to be a more adult, "late night" feel that would incorporate music and musical acts into the plots. In early reports, the Beach Boys were to have played a more prominent role, up to possibly penning the theme song. But it seems like the producers went with a more "blues" style and influence, and eventually instead of Beach Boys they cast Lou Rawls as a blues club owner where the action would center around at various points in the episodes. Reminded me of the jazz club "Mother's" from the old Peter Gunn series. It seemed to be a case where they went with Lou Rawls and a blues-themed soundtrack and plot points versus the Beach Boys and their image and vibe, so the Beach Boys and Brian and Mike's theme song went unused when the decision was made to go with Lou Rawls and blues instead.
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« Reply #160 on: February 28, 2017, 08:57:03 AM »

HeyJude: You may have missed it, but I posted a screen shot of the Don Was "interview" segment about Baywatch Nights on page 6 of this discussion.
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« Reply #161 on: February 28, 2017, 09:36:26 AM »

Regarding the second "Baywatch" filming (the "concert" setting with David Marks in attendance), both Brian *and* Carl missed that filming (I always presumed Dave was there as  "fill in" for Carl). As an aside, had both Carl and Dave been there, that would have been the only visual document of Carl and Dave together post-1963. The only date I can find for that filming is July 19th, which would pre-date the August aborted meeting/listening session.

No question though, group relations were "mixed" at best around this time. Mike and Brian seem to be best buds in February/March of 1995, with Mike being *more* magnanimous about the songwriting lawsuit then he went on to be over *twenty years later* for some odd reason.

We have the possible reports of Carl walking out of the March '95 session for "non-musical" reasons. Did Carl have some sort of beef with Brian? If so, they got over it to the point where both Brian and Carl were together for the April "Baywatch" filming and two live shows a few days later.

Brian then continued work on his solo stuff. Were the band (or some of the band members) possibly off-put that Brian was doing more solo stuff instead of group stuff?

It's hard to say, because it seems as though overall Brian was projecting more enthusiasm for doing his songs with the Beach Boys than the other Beach Boys were, barring Mike's early '95 enthusiasm.

You can see even in that March '95 Billboard article, Mike's idea of what an album would or could be might have *already* been different from Brian's idea. Mike's comments are eerily somewhat similar to what happened with TWGMTR in 2012. In that '95 interview, Mike describes a potential album entailing working on songs Brian would be bringing (the Paley stuff presumably mainly), stuff he (Mike) had already been working on, and then also doing stuff from scratch. (It may or may not be important to note that Mike doesn't bring up the idea of Al or Carl or Bruce being able to bring songs in).

If the other BBs blew Brian off, and it wasn't just a scheduling thing, did they have misgivings about just listening to Brian material without being able to bring their own stuff in? But I guess we don't know if the meeting would have precluded Mike or anyone else bringing their own demos in to listen to. And, it sounds like Brian was offering his stuff up as essentially a bit of an audition. As in, "let me know if this sounds like stuff you want to work on."

If relations were strained as they entered the Fall, then that might make sense in light of the info we have and the Berryhill account of the September session. It sounds like Don Was more proactively tried to reign everybody in to work on stuff, and Berryhill describes, at least on the part of Mike, a slightly antagonistic attitude on the part of Mike (e.g. asking who wrote the songs; did Mike really not know who had written those songs by that time?).

Having said all of that, if group relations were strained, and *especially* if they were strained even in part due to the material Brian was bringing for them to work (and/or due to the concept of it being a largely Brian/Paley project), then doing "Stars and Stripes" wouldn't have been, in theory, a totally bad idea. Essentially bit of a "15 Big Ones" or "Do It Again 2011" scenario just to get the guys working together again without having much of any possible creative differences concerning *new* material.
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« Reply #162 on: February 28, 2017, 10:06:08 AM »

1994 (or earlier?) - Brian cuts demos with Andy Paley (or, as Paley feels, these are full-on master recordings, not demos)

I believe these are masters. The "demo" quality is strictly in the rough/unfinished mixes as far as I can hear.

... thanks for that timeline too!
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« Reply #163 on: February 28, 2017, 10:16:22 AM »

1994 (or earlier?) - Brian cuts demos with Andy Paley (or, as Paley feels, these are full-on master recordings, not demos)

I believe these are masters. The "demo" quality is strictly in the rough/unfinished mixes as far as I can hear.

... thanks for that timeline too!

There are of course a bunch of different ways to define "Demo"; my reference to Paley's feelings were based on, as I recall, an old interview from the short-lived "petsounds.com" website where Paley seemed offended when the tracks were called "demos."

The recordings are kind of somewhere in between. Many if not most of them would seem to have required additional work. Something like "Frankie Avalon" doesn't sound like anything close to a finished master recording; so some tracks like that sound more like a demo that was produced with real instrumentation in a studio. But they were made in the studio, so it's not like it was Andy and Brian singing into a cassette recorder or something. Some of the tracks were at or near a state that, with the proper mix, could have come across as finished masters I suppose. A pristine, master-quality source for all of the songs would help to judge this of course.

If pressed to characterize the recordings based on my own opinion, I'd call them something like "Fully-Produced Studio Demos that Could Serve as the Basis for a Master Recording in Most Cases."  LOL
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« Reply #164 on: February 28, 2017, 11:56:12 AM »

I'm also confused about the filming date of that beach concert with Marks. The article which described it came out in mid-to-late August 1995, and made it seem more recent of a happening than a month earlier, with how it tied it into other events. Notable too that if I recall the Marks book correctly, David said Mike really put a hard-sell on him to be there for that show.

I don't think there was as much of a consideration from Brian at that time that the work he was doing on those songs was for a solo album - I could be wrong and any relevant quotes would be very helpful. I got the impression from multiple interviews and quotes that Brian wanted to write songs for the Beach Boys to cut a new album at some point, and that was what he was doing with Paley and Was in demo'ing them. He played that working tape for the interviewer in August 95 of what he had been writing, and it's logical short of new info that this tape was what he invited the Beach Boys to listen to but they canceled on the invite. Brian is on the record in interviews, and also backed up by Don Was that he was writing this material for The Beach Boys.

In that regard, it does really sound like an earlier version of how a similar scene played out in 2012, which Mike later would criticize and blame for various things too. But consider Brian also said Carl was looking for new material, and unless there are some mystery songs that Mike, Carl, Bruce, or Al had ready to go or were actively writing at that time, the band really didn't have anything else original or new to start recording without Brian. And the Brian/Was/Paley team had at least 30 new songs to choose from. It may be a case of who was bringing the goods to the table and who was not.
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« Reply #165 on: February 28, 2017, 12:43:45 PM »

I think they all surely had a variety of stuff "in the vaults" so to speak (well, I don't know what Bruce had, but the rest did). Al had tracks (e.g. "Don't Fight the Sea", "Waves of Love"), Mike claims in the Billboard article to have some things he had been working on, and Carl had some "Beckley-Lamm-Wilson" stuff. But the question is how much they would have wanted to offer this stuff, and whether it would have gelled with the Paley stuff, and whether any of it was good enough. I also think the other guys were so *not* in the frame of mind of creating and releasing new music (Al having been behind precisely *one* song in the previous decade, Carl only three or so, same with Bruce), that nobody outside of Mike was probably pushing much to get their own stuff on any BB project. Again, this also foreshadows how things went in 2012 to some degree.

I don't think Was was particularly interested in a some sort of patchwork deal with weird 70s Al tracks mixed with 90s Paley tracks. Indeed, it appears initially that Was didn't even want to use the Paley backing tracks and wanted to record everything from scratch. Paley gave an interview (I can't remember if it's one of the interviews linked in this thread) that described Was telling Paley that he wanted to re-integrate stuff from Paley's backing tracks back into his newer recordings to the point where he was replacing all of the "new" stuff with Paley's "old" stuff because he (Was) liked the feel/sound Paley had achieved on his recordings.

Had the project come to fruition, I would guess it would have been something like how TWGMTR ended up. No Al or Carl or Bruce songs, a song or two of Mike's flown in from something else, and Mike adding some lyrics to pre-existing Brian/Paley tracks.

It's interesting that in all of the extant interviews with all of the participants of those 1995 BB sessions, nobody seems to mention how poorly "Summer in Paradise" had done just 2-3 years earlier. It certainly would have been perhaps the widest 180 a band had ever done in such a short period of time had they released a BB album with mostly or all Paley tracks. It would have been jarring (but in a good way) to go from an near Mike solo album with partial Carl, Bruce, and Al participation and no Brian participation, to a near Brian solo album with vocals from the other guys, and to go from Mike's album full of "Kokomo/Still Cruisin'" ripoffs to Brian's eccentric group of songs he had done with Paley, many recorded completely differently from SIP.
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« Reply #166 on: February 28, 2017, 01:17:22 PM »

Does anyone know the circumstances of exactly how the Paley tracks leaked out onto boots?

- I'm assuming that someone in the band's circle of friends had a tape, and that tape might have been dubbed for someone else, or perhaps stolen?

- When did these tracks begin circulating amongst collectors? And did they circulate in collectors' hands before they were ever "booted" on pressed bootleg discs that would have been sold in shady used CD shops?

- Also - I believe I recall reading that the pitch/speed is funky on these recordings specifically on purpose as a watermark of sorts. I wonder who behind the scenes in BB Land was responsible for that being the case; was it in response to the proliferation of the then-popular SMiLE boots making the rounds?
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« Reply #167 on: February 28, 2017, 01:27:10 PM »

Quote
I don't think Was was particularly interested in a some sort of patchwork deal with weird 70s Al tracks mixed with 90s Paley tracks.

I completely misread that as "70 Weird Al tracks"
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« Reply #168 on: February 28, 2017, 02:07:54 PM »

Does anyone know the circumstances of exactly how the Paley tracks leaked out onto boots?

- I'm assuming that someone in the band's circle of friends had a tape, and that tape might have been dubbed for someone else, or perhaps stolen?

- When did these tracks begin circulating amongst collectors? And did they circulate in collectors' hands before they were ever "booted" on pressed bootleg discs that would have been sold in shady used CD shops?

- Also - I believe I recall reading that the pitch/speed is funky on these recordings specifically on purpose as a watermark of sorts. I wonder who behind the scenes in BB Land was responsible for that being the case; was it in response to the proliferation of the then-popular SMiLE boots making the rounds?

I don't know the specific answers. I do recall they were circulating pretty quickly after the sessions had been completed/aborted. Perhaps 1997 or 98?

I recall they were already circulating when "Endless Harmony Soundtrack" came out in 1998, because fans were asking why SS and YSAM weren't on it.

There were seemingly at least three different batches of recordings that seemed to circulate. The first were rather poor-sounding recordings, seemingly from low bitrate MP3s. This batch included both the Carl "dub job" on "Soul Searchin'" as well as the Paley guide vocal version. I think this appeared on an early compilation that also included rough versions of "Everything I Need" with some Brian guide vocals (obviously recorded at a different group of sessions).

Then a better-sounding source of a group of songs appeared; I think "Landylocked" was one of the famous versions of this. The recordings sounded better, though still running fast. The Paley guide vocal was missing. I can't remember otherwise how similar the two tracklistings were.

Then a bit later a third group of low bitrate MP3-sounding recordings surfaced (really bad, like gurgly underwater status) that featured a whole group of songs that hadn't appeared before, incuding a backing track of "Dancing the Night Away", the "Beach Boys" version of "Dancing..." with vocals on the intro, and other tracks like "Frankie Avalon" (with Paley's guide vocal), "God Did It", "Elbow '63", etc.

I remember the first time I heard a compilation of Paley tracks that someone had made on a cassette, and I didn't much know the context of the recordings beyond it being some recent unreleased Brian stuff, and I don't think I had even been told the BBs were involved on the recordings I was hearing, so I was stunned when "You're Still a Mystery" had a very "Beach Boys-sounding" set of backing vocals and then sure enough it was a WTF? moment when Mike pops up on that one solo line near the end.
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« Reply #169 on: February 28, 2017, 02:13:53 PM »

1994 (or earlier?) - Brian cuts demos with Andy Paley (or, as Paley feels, these are full-on master recordings, not demos)

I believe these are masters. The "demo" quality is strictly in the rough/unfinished mixes as far as I can hear.

... thanks for that timeline too!

There are of course a bunch of different ways to define "Demo"; my reference to Paley's feelings were based on, as I recall, an old interview from the short-lived "petsounds.com" website where Paley seemed offended when the tracks were called "demos."

The recordings are kind of somewhere in between. Many if not most of them would seem to have required additional work. Something like "Frankie Avalon" doesn't sound like anything close to a finished master recording; so some tracks like that sound more like a demo that was produced with real instrumentation in a studio. But they were made in the studio, so it's not like it was Andy and Brian singing into a cassette recorder or something. Some of the tracks were at or near a state that, with the proper mix, could have come across as finished masters I suppose. A pristine, master-quality source for all of the songs would help to judge this of course.

If pressed to characterize the recordings based on my own opinion, I'd call them something like "Fully-Produced Studio Demos that Could Serve as the Basis for a Master Recording in Most Cases."  LOL

Not to split hairs, but a "demo" session is generally a recording that is specifically not intended to become a master ... just to give listeners an idea of what the song might sound like. This is different from an "unfinished" studio master. A ragged master (like Love You, for instance) might be described by some listeners as "demo-like", but they're distinctly not demos.

By all accounts, it seems that Brian and Andy were in the studio recording tracks. Some are more finished than others, but none that I've heard sound like "demos". But I haven't ever heard "Frankie Avalon", for instance.
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« Reply #170 on: February 28, 2017, 02:24:16 PM »

1994 (or earlier?) - Brian cuts demos with Andy Paley (or, as Paley feels, these are full-on master recordings, not demos)

I believe these are masters. The "demo" quality is strictly in the rough/unfinished mixes as far as I can hear.

... thanks for that timeline too!

There are of course a bunch of different ways to define "Demo"; my reference to Paley's feelings were based on, as I recall, an old interview from the short-lived "petsounds.com" website where Paley seemed offended when the tracks were called "demos."

The recordings are kind of somewhere in between. Many if not most of them would seem to have required additional work. Something like "Frankie Avalon" doesn't sound like anything close to a finished master recording; so some tracks like that sound more like a demo that was produced with real instrumentation in a studio. But they were made in the studio, so it's not like it was Andy and Brian singing into a cassette recorder or something. Some of the tracks were at or near a state that, with the proper mix, could have come across as finished masters I suppose. A pristine, master-quality source for all of the songs would help to judge this of course.

If pressed to characterize the recordings based on my own opinion, I'd call them something like "Fully-Produced Studio Demos that Could Serve as the Basis for a Master Recording in Most Cases."  LOL

Not to split hairs, but a "demo" session is generally a recording that is specifically not intended to become a master ... just to give listeners an idea of what the song might sound like. This is different from an "unfinished" studio master. A ragged master (like Love You, for instance) might be described by some listeners as "demo-like", but they're distinctly not demos.

By all accounts, it seems that Brian and Andy were in the studio recording tracks. Some are more finished than others, but none that I've heard sound like "demos". But I haven't ever heard "Frankie Avalon", for instance.

I think the idea is that I think one could justifiably be incredulous if Andy Paley played you all of those recordings and claimed every single one of them was already or was very close to being a "finished master." How much of that would be due to the arrangements versus the production versus the mixing; that would probably vary from song to song.

I don't think they had a clear aim with the sessions other than to work out a bunch of songs. I don't think they were thinking "there's no way we'll actually use these recordings on an eventual album", but I also don't think, especially because they didn't even have a contract with a record label, that they were "officially" and firmly recording an album.

It was basically really elaborate, expensive demos that, in most cases, could have been used as a bed for a finished master take. "Gettin' in Over My Head" probably didn't need much, whereas "Frankie Avalon" would have retained little from the extant recording. And a bunch of the songs are somewhere in between.
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« Reply #171 on: February 28, 2017, 02:45:11 PM »

1994 (or earlier?) - Brian cuts demos with Andy Paley (or, as Paley feels, these are full-on master recordings, not demos)

I believe these are masters. The "demo" quality is strictly in the rough/unfinished mixes as far as I can hear.

... thanks for that timeline too!

There are of course a bunch of different ways to define "Demo"; my reference to Paley's feelings were based on, as I recall, an old interview from the short-lived "petsounds.com" website where Paley seemed offended when the tracks were called "demos."

The recordings are kind of somewhere in between. Many if not most of them would seem to have required additional work. Something like "Frankie Avalon" doesn't sound like anything close to a finished master recording; so some tracks like that sound more like a demo that was produced with real instrumentation in a studio. But they were made in the studio, so it's not like it was Andy and Brian singing into a cassette recorder or something. Some of the tracks were at or near a state that, with the proper mix, could have come across as finished masters I suppose. A pristine, master-quality source for all of the songs would help to judge this of course.

If pressed to characterize the recordings based on my own opinion, I'd call them something like "Fully-Produced Studio Demos that Could Serve as the Basis for a Master Recording in Most Cases."  LOL

Not to split hairs, but a "demo" session is generally a recording that is specifically not intended to become a master ... just to give listeners an idea of what the song might sound like. This is different from an "unfinished" studio master. A ragged master (like Love You, for instance) might be described by some listeners as "demo-like", but they're distinctly not demos.

By all accounts, it seems that Brian and Andy were in the studio recording tracks. Some are more finished than others, but none that I've heard sound like "demos". But I haven't ever heard "Frankie Avalon", for instance.

I think the idea is that I think one could justifiably be incredulous if Andy Paley played you all of those recordings and claimed every single one of them was already or was very close to being a "finished master." How much of that would be due to the arrangements versus the production versus the mixing; that would probably vary from song to song.

I don't think they had a clear aim with the sessions other than to work out a bunch of songs. I don't think they were thinking "there's no way we'll actually use these recordings on an eventual album", but I also don't think, especially because they didn't even have a contract with a record label, that they were "officially" and firmly recording an album.

It was basically really elaborate, expensive demos that, in most cases, could have been used as a bed for a finished master take. "Gettin' in Over My Head" probably didn't need much, whereas "Frankie Avalon" would have retained little from the extant recording. And a bunch of the songs are somewhere in between.

I suppose I’m not talking about a “Finished Master” vs. “Demo”. I’m taking about the intention of the sessions. These were not demo sessions, they were standard studio sessions. They are obviously unfinished because no final mixes were made, and in many cases they need more overdubs.

Andy Paley, one of the creators, has stated they were not demos … I’ll go with that. I don’t think Brian would say they were demos either.

It’s like if I make a recording with a drum machine and a piano with the intention of completing an elaborate track. Then I add a vocal. Then I add a bass, then an organ. Then I bring in a trumpet player. Then I add guitars and backing vocals. Then I replace my main lead, etc etc etc …

If a dub were made at the point where it was just a drum machine, piano, and vocal … is that a demo? I say no, it’s an unfinished recording-in-progress at that point.

If I record myself with a drum machine, piano, and scratch vocal and give it to my bandmates or label to get an idea of what the song sounds like, that’s what I would call a demo.

Sorry, this is just a pet peeve of mine with regard to various terms (“demo” vs. “alternate take” vs. “early mix”, etc.) that all mean something different and are often misused.

Granted sometimes unfinished studio sessions serve as “demos”, and sometimes demos are sweetened and released as masters, but I’m primarily referring to the intention of the artists when recording.
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« Reply #172 on: February 28, 2017, 02:53:28 PM »


Granted sometimes unfinished studio sessions serve as “demos”, and sometimes demos are sweetened and released as masters, but I’m primarily referring to the intention of the artists when recording.

As I was reading your post, I kept this thought in my back pocket--the first part of it, I mean--as a response to you. Then you beat me to it. I think especially increasingly the lines blur as technology allows it. And I do think that the intentions of the artist also aren't necessarily clear. If Brian and Andy were cutting tracks without a record deal or particular plan, they may well have not necessarily really thought through those details. Is it a (well done) demo? A rough version? A basic track to be finished later? Not only might we not know, they might not have known.

There have been several examples of major artists releasing what were initially intended as demos (including Wondermints' first two album, if you want to consider them "major").

But I think everyone would agree they weren't the kind of click-track-and-block-chord-with-lead-vocal demo that we probably would most associate with the term, though. No doubt about that.
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« Reply #173 on: February 28, 2017, 10:58:50 PM »

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zQGb379AntA&feature=youtu.be

Brian and Mike on Entertainment Tonight March 1995. Brian plays a lil bit of Dancing the Night Away on a piano
I remember seeing that, and even then, being a bit skeptical whether anything would come of their reunion or not.
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« Reply #174 on: March 01, 2017, 06:21:18 AM »

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zQGb379AntA&feature=youtu.be

Brian and Mike on Entertainment Tonight March 1995. Brian plays a lil bit of Dancing the Night Away on a piano
I remember seeing that, and even then, being a bit skeptical whether anything would come of their reunion or not.

One of the weird aspects of the "ET" video clip is that they're not really promoting anything specific. So why are they going to the media and making people think/hope a new BB album is in the offing? Who made that decision?

Don't get me wrong; a bit of good PR to let everyone know that the songwriting lawsuit is behind them would not be a bad thing (aahhh, remember 22 years ago when we thought a victorious Mike had finally gotten over the songwriting lawsuit?), so I guess that's what this mini-media blitz was about. That, and also possibly drumming up interest from the industry in getting a record deal?
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