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Author Topic: Paley Sessions Discussion Thread  (Read 10384 times)
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« Reply #225 on: March 04, 2017, 01:21:16 PM »

SNJ my have been the intention, but Mike Love missed it in his insane mind of bettering Brian Wilson
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« Reply #226 on: March 04, 2017, 01:51:22 PM »

Kokomo was an incredible blown opportunity for Mike and the Beach Boys to follow up that hit with a good album and possibly another hit single.  The problem:  no decent material, and we all know what Mike was coming up with on his own.  Why didn't they just repeat the Kokomo "formula" - find some good songs by outside writers which Mike and Carl could add some Beach Boy-isms and vocal hooks, work out some co-writing credits?  The reluctance to look outside the BB circle doomed their resurgence.  After a big hit like Kokomo songwriters would jump at giving their songs to the BB if they could repeat that success. 

Why didn't they do it?  Mike "money" love thought he could do it himself and thereby keep all the songwriting/publishing monies.  But he couldn't, and the publishing monies were nonexistent because the records didn't sell.
Even a re-release of California Dreamin' would have done well after Kokomo. It was top ten AC hit in 86 but didn't do much on the pop chart. It had a similar production style to Kokomo, and didn't talk about beaches, girls and cars.
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« Reply #227 on: March 04, 2017, 01:53:15 PM »

Ii am still trying to picture the Beach Boys working with Sean O'Hagen.

(closes eyes, deep in concentration)

Nope, still not happening.
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« Reply #228 on: March 04, 2017, 02:14:34 PM »

Ii am still trying to picture the Beach Boys working with Sean O'Hagen.

(closes eyes, deep in concentration)

Nope, still not happening.

Try listening to Hawaii by the High Llamas. If that doesn't work try Cold and Bouncy. If they don't help you make the connection, you could sample some
Stereolab as a last resort. Good listening!
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« Reply #229 on: March 04, 2017, 02:24:52 PM »

I've always thought that O'Hagan wouldn't have added anything to the Beach Boys other than Wilson worship. Maybe dexterity with then-modern recording methods. Maybe cheerleading. But at his best, he was always just imitating Brian.

Don't get me wrong, Wilson + Co. imitating Wilson Of Olde would beat the f*** out of Nashville or whatever it was. But it wouldn't have broken new ground. It would have just done what Wilson did later with his band anyway, ensuring that there were sufficient sleigh bells, bass harmonicas, and wood blocks to remind everyone that these were Wilson-penned songs.
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« Reply #230 on: March 04, 2017, 03:12:42 PM »

Kokomo was an incredible blown opportunity for Mike and the Beach Boys to follow up that hit with a good album and possibly another hit single.  The problem:  no decent material, and we all know what Mike was coming up with on his own.  Why didn't they just repeat the Kokomo "formula" - find some good songs by outside writers which Mike and Carl could add some Beach Boy-isms and vocal hooks, work out some co-writing credits?  The reluctance to look outside the BB circle doomed their resurgence.  After a big hit like Kokomo songwriters would jump at giving their songs to the BB if they could repeat that success. 

Why didn't they do it?  Mike "money" love thought he could do it himself and thereby keep all the songwriting/publishing monies.  But he couldn't, and the publishing monies were nonexistent because the records didn't sell.
Even a re-release of California Dreamin' would have done well after Kokomo. It was top ten AC hit in 86 but didn't do much on the pop chart. It had a similar production style to Kokomo, and didn't talk about beaches, girls and cars.

That would never have happened because Mike hardly plays a role in that song or the original video - which is actually a really cool video, shot in B&W. Al and Carl are the prominent lead vocalists, and Roger McGuinn adds a great lead guitar on his signature Rickenbacker 12-string. Even the video doesn't feature Mike (for once) pretending to play the sax solo, although he got in a shot on Solid Gold fake-blowing that solo when the band appeared to promote the song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hmE9Oim_hLo

Add it all up...
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« Reply #231 on: March 04, 2017, 05:20:52 PM »

Agreed. It is a direction that I would've liked them to explore further...they attempted the same sound with SIP's "Strange Things Happen".
If they had been able to come up with a full album of that quality, they just might have been able to save face and avoid the "traveling jukebox" shows of the last three or so years that we had still had Carl.

Not entirely. The 60's hits are so ingrained into the culture that they probably would not have been able to shed the "travelling jukebox" thing had they been able to successfully follow up Kokomo.
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« Reply #232 on: March 04, 2017, 06:53:43 PM »

Agreed. It is a direction that I would've liked them to explore further...they attempted the same sound with SIP's "Strange Things Happen".
If they had been able to come up with a full album of that quality, they just might have been able to save face and avoid the "traveling jukebox" shows of the last three or so years that we had still had Carl.

Not entirely. The 60's hits are so ingrained into the culture that they probably would not have been able to shed the "travelling jukebox" thing had they been able to successfully follow up Kokomo.

That's probably true. But one wonders what might have been if another Jack Rieley type came along to set them on a more artistically solid course. Yet Mike's post-Kokomo ego wouldn't have allowed it, and that's a shame.  

Maybe SNJ was the closest we got to something like that.  It's interesting how every single band member sings some lead part on that song… Was that some sort of attempt at diplomacy?   That same sort of thing also happened on Make it Big  right around the same time . I wonder how/why that came about.  Something tells me that wasn't by accident/chance.  It almost feels like that would've been a compromise that came out of group therapy or something, which they might have actually been in therapy together at the time?

Come to think of it, it's quite shocking and miraculous that the original artistic Jack era even happened in the first place.   Of course, it only happened out of desperation. They got lucky by trying something new and listening to the right outside person's advice for once. I wonder if Jack might have casually followed the career of the band from afar during this time of the late 1980s/early 1990s and had a chuckle at watching his famous quote come true again and again.  What a weird experience it must've been for him to see himself be proven right continually.
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« Reply #233 on: March 04, 2017, 07:26:16 PM »

I've always thought that O'Hagan wouldn't have added anything to the Beach Boys other than Wilson worship. Maybe dexterity with then-modern recording methods. Maybe cheerleading. But at his best, he was always just imitating Brian.

Don't get me wrong, Wilson + Co. imitating Wilson Of Olde would beat the f*** out of Nashville or whatever it was. But it wouldn't have broken new ground. It would have just done what Wilson did later with his band anyway, ensuring that there were sufficient sleigh bells, bass harmonicas, and wood blocks to remind everyone that these were Wilson-penned songs.

For starters, as you seem non plussed by O'Hagan and his efforts and label him just an imitator, which is the highest  form of flattery, I found that when he came along, I wondered if Brian had heard any of it. Great little melodies with hooks galore, like "Captains( Wink) in Control", "The Sun Beats Down", "Painter Paint", "Showstop Hip Hot", and "Tilting Windmills" just to name a very few and always a good helping of harmonies. If there was anyone to sit in a room with Brian, for me it would have been Sean bouncing his ideas off Brian instead of the ungrateful one with worn out boring crap like "Daybreak". No, it's our loss that that myKe luHv scared him away with his witchery.  Roll Eyes By the way, have you seen The High Llamas live?
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« Reply #234 on: March 04, 2017, 08:38:21 PM »

Kokomo was an incredible blown opportunity for Mike and the Beach Boys to follow up that hit with a good album and possibly another hit single.  The problem:  no decent material, and we all know what Mike was coming up with on his own.  Why didn't they just repeat the Kokomo "formula" - find some good songs by outside writers which Mike and Carl could add some Beach Boy-isms and vocal hooks, work out some co-writing credits?  The reluctance to look outside the BB circle doomed their resurgence.  After a big hit like Kokomo songwriters would jump at giving their songs to the BB if they could repeat that success. 

Why didn't they do it?  Mike "money" love thought he could do it himself and thereby keep all the songwriting/publishing monies.  But he couldn't, and the publishing monies were nonexistent because the records didn't sell.
Even a re-release of California Dreamin' would have done well after Kokomo. It was top ten AC hit in 86 but didn't do much on the pop chart. It had a similar production style to Kokomo, and didn't talk about beaches, girls and cars.

That would never have happened because Mike hardly plays a role in that song or the original video - which is actually a really cool video, shot in B&W. Al and Carl are the prominent lead vocalists, and Roger McGuinn adds a great lead guitar on his signature Rickenbacker 12-string. Even the video doesn't feature Mike (for once) pretending to play the sax solo, although he got in a shot on Solid Gold fake-blowing that solo when the band appeared to promote the song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hmE9Oim_hLo

Add it all up...
It does seem that Kokomo had the effect of inflating ML's already healthy ego, but a hit is a hit. If they could have kept the momentum of Kokomo going with another top 40 hit, they might have gotten Capitol excited enough to demand a full album of new songs instead of another compilation masquerading as their "new album".
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« Reply #235 on: March 04, 2017, 11:47:45 PM »

It does seem that Kokomo had the effect of inflating ML's already healthy ego, but a hit is a hit. If they could have kept the momentum of Kokomo going with another top 40 hit, they might have gotten Capitol excited enough to demand a full album of new songs instead of another compilation masquerading as their "new album".

Am I only one who thinks "Still Cruisin' the single was a pretty reasonable follow-up? More light escapism, but with a car theme and a jangly guitar sound rather then then the Caribbean style. It retains the briefly winning recipe of Mike/Carl trading vocals. It was obviously the same band, but not an obvious rehash of Kokomo like the ill-fated "Island girl" a few long years later. But despite the Kokomo surprise, the label still wasn't over-keen to heavily promote the next releases (whilst still anticipating 3 more big singles).

While Mike perhaps couldn't deliver the goods to follow up Kokomo, I didn't see Carl trying to hard to even try and Al came up with "Island girl." Bruce does something minimal with the SNJ single but then he was never a singles man. 
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« Reply #236 on: March 05, 2017, 08:12:38 AM »

By the way, have you seen The High Llamas live?

No, 'fraid they don't seem to come through Minneapolis all that often--or at least didn't when I was more interested in them, roughly late 90s to mid-00s. I think the last two albums I bothered with were Beet, Maize & Corn and Can Cladders. Maybe they've been through since and I just didn't notice.
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« Reply #237 on: March 05, 2017, 08:46:16 AM »

Kokomo was an incredible blown opportunity for Mike and the Beach Boys to follow up that hit with a good album and possibly another hit single.  The problem:  no decent material, and we all know what Mike was coming up with on his own.  Why didn't they just repeat the Kokomo "formula" - find some good songs by outside writers which Mike and Carl could add some Beach Boy-isms and vocal hooks, work out some co-writing credits?  The reluctance to look outside the BB circle doomed their resurgence.  After a big hit like Kokomo songwriters would jump at giving their songs to the BB if they could repeat that success. 

Why didn't they do it?  Mike "money" love thought he could do it himself and thereby keep all the songwriting/publishing monies.  But he couldn't, and the publishing monies were nonexistent because the records didn't sell.
Even a re-release of California Dreamin' would have done well after Kokomo. It was top ten AC hit in 86 but didn't do much on the pop chart. It had a similar production style to Kokomo, and didn't talk about beaches, girls and cars.

That would never have happened because Mike hardly plays a role in that song or the original video - which is actually a really cool video, shot in B&W. Al and Carl are the prominent lead vocalists, and Roger McGuinn adds a great lead guitar on his signature Rickenbacker 12-string. Even the video doesn't feature Mike (for once) pretending to play the sax solo, although he got in a shot on Solid Gold fake-blowing that solo when the band appeared to promote the song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hmE9Oim_hLo

Add it all up...
It does seem that Kokomo had the effect of inflating ML's already healthy ego, but a hit is a hit. If they could have kept the momentum of Kokomo going with another top 40 hit, they might have gotten Capitol excited enough to demand a full album of new songs instead of another compilation masquerading as their "new album".

Excerpts from this, the most relevant or ironic in bold: http://articles.latimes.com/1989-05-26/entertainment/ca-869_1_fat-boys-brian-wilson-endless-summer

>>>>

Explained Johnston, who joined the Beach Boys in 1965 after Brian Wilson gave up full-time touring: "I don't want the Beach Boys to be the futile endless road show of 'The King and I' or 'I Love Lucy' reruns. I live, eat and breathe getting on the radio. I just think, 'How can we get back on the radio?' "

Johnston didn't pause before answering himself: "With great songs, that's how!"

The new Capitol release will be the band's first album in four years. Titled "Still Cruisin' " and due this summer, the record will be a combination of movie-related tracks including "Kokomo" and "Wipe Out" (a pairing with the rapping Fat Boys) and several new songs. After that, the contract contains an option for an album of all new material. Johnston calls it "the album of doom."

"Just because you've had a No. 1 doesn't mean you're automatic," Johnston said during a rehearsal break, acknowledging that the Beach Boys could go on forever recreating the endless summer with its stockpile of old hits. But that isn't good enough for him.

"It's records that matter," he said. "There's no point in touring without new records. It's just huge payments to me. We've got to be better than that."

<<<<

Several points to note just in those excerpts, first how it's dripping with irony that this is Bruce saying those things considering the past 20 years. It's almost a total 180 degree flip-flop from that to where things are and have been for 20 years. Also, note that there was an option for a new album on Capitol in the band's contract with them...obviously Capitol declined to accept that option because the band under-performed. At the moment Brian was interviewed for Mix magazine while working with Don Was in the studio, he backed this up and confirmed the band was sailing adrift with no label interest. For all of Mike's leadership, nothing worked in those intervening 5-6 years since the buzz was there for new material.

They in fact reverted even more to becoming what Bruce specifically said he didn't want them (or him) to become.



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« Reply #238 on: March 05, 2017, 08:54:33 AM »



Money talks, BS walks. Questions? Ask myKe n br00th.  Smokin
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« Reply #239 on: March 05, 2017, 09:18:25 AM »

Around C50, wasn't Bruce talking about working with (I forget the details, but maybe meaning in a production role?) modern artists--country bands and Bruno Mars, I believe, were specifically mentioned--and getting back on the radio? It seems as if he's got an intellectual concept of what he wants, and he's got the reality in which he lives, and never the twain shall meet.
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« Reply #240 on: March 05, 2017, 11:55:23 AM »

Kokomo was an incredible blown opportunity for Mike and the Beach Boys to follow up that hit with a good album and possibly another hit single.  The problem:  no decent material, and we all know what Mike was coming up with on his own.  Why didn't they just repeat the Kokomo "formula" - find some good songs by outside writers which Mike and Carl could add some Beach Boy-isms and vocal hooks, work out some co-writing credits?  The reluctance to look outside the BB circle doomed their resurgence.  After a big hit like Kokomo songwriters would jump at giving their songs to the BB if they could repeat that success. 

Why didn't they do it?  Mike "money" love thought he could do it himself and thereby keep all the songwriting/publishing monies.  But he couldn't, and the publishing monies were nonexistent because the records didn't sell.
Even a re-release of California Dreamin' would have done well after Kokomo. It was top ten AC hit in 86 but didn't do much on the pop chart. It had a similar production style to Kokomo, and didn't talk about beaches, girls and cars.

That would never have happened because Mike hardly plays a role in that song or the original video - which is actually a really cool video, shot in B&W. Al and Carl are the prominent lead vocalists, and Roger McGuinn adds a great lead guitar on his signature Rickenbacker 12-string. Even the video doesn't feature Mike (for once) pretending to play the sax solo, although he got in a shot on Solid Gold fake-blowing that solo when the band appeared to promote the song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hmE9Oim_hLo

Add it all up...
It does seem that Kokomo had the effect of inflating ML's already healthy ego, but a hit is a hit. If they could have kept the momentum of Kokomo going with another top 40 hit, they might have gotten Capitol excited enough to demand a full album of new songs instead of another compilation masquerading as their "new album".

Excerpts from this, the most relevant or ironic in bold: http://articles.latimes.com/1989-05-26/entertainment/ca-869_1_fat-boys-brian-wilson-endless-summer

>>>>

Explained Johnston, who joined the Beach Boys in 1965 after Brian Wilson gave up full-time touring: "I don't want the Beach Boys to be the futile endless road show of 'The King and I' or 'I Love Lucy' reruns. I live, eat and breathe getting on the radio. I just think, 'How can we get back on the radio?' "

Johnston didn't pause before answering himself: "With great songs, that's how!"

The new Capitol release will be the band's first album in four years. Titled "Still Cruisin' " and due this summer, the record will be a combination of movie-related tracks including "Kokomo" and "Wipe Out" (a pairing with the rapping Fat Boys) and several new songs. After that, the contract contains an option for an album of all new material. Johnston calls it "the album of doom."

"Just because you've had a No. 1 doesn't mean you're automatic," Johnston said during a rehearsal break, acknowledging that the Beach Boys could go on forever recreating the endless summer with its stockpile of old hits. But that isn't good enough for him.

"It's records that matter," he said. "There's no point in touring without new records. It's just huge payments to me. We've got to be better than that."

<<<<

Several points to note just in those excerpts, first how it's dripping with irony that this is Bruce saying those things considering the past 20 years. It's almost a total 180 degree flip-flop from that to where things are and have been for 20 years. Also, note that there was an option for a new album on Capitol in the band's contract with them...obviously Capitol declined to accept that option because the band under-performed. At the moment Brian was interviewed for Mix magazine while working with Don Was in the studio, he backed this up and confirmed the band was sailing adrift with no label interest. For all of Mike's leadership, nothing worked in those intervening 5-6 years since the buzz was there for new material.

They in fact reverted even more to becoming what Bruce specifically said he didn't want them (or him) to become.




Quite funny to see Bruce saying that stuff. Obviously he was not the songwriter who was going to bring them the song to get them back at the tops of the pops. "Happy Endings" from a couple years before was one of the most boring BB's tracks ever. And with Little Richard singing on it! How could Richard ever be boring?  I thought Al's "Island Girl" was a likeable track, Carl didn't offer anything at the time. They really needed Brian. Imagine the songs on BW88 with the Beach Boys voices on them.
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« Reply #241 on: March 06, 2017, 09:22:14 AM »

In 1988/89, the band (including Brian) were all so detached from what would get them a hit (album *or* single); they really needed and outside producer, and one that would not only do the technical producer functions in the control room, but also one that would do more on the A&R side of things and tell them which songs were good and which were bad, would guide them to better songs, would find the *right* songs from outside writers (if the band wanted to go that route), and so on.

Terry Melcher wasn't much of any of those things. Maybe he was capable of any or all of that, but he didn't do any of it with the BBs.

I'm more apt to criticize Melcher for SIP than the work he did on "Still Cruisin'", because "Still Cruisin" also clearly got bogged down in a lot of non-musical politics with band members and the label, and of course Landy.

The "Still Cruisin'" album was a mess because it was a hodge podge with three oldies, several old singles, and the remaining "new" songs were all over the place, with Brian's track in particular sticking out like a sore thumb production-wise.

The "new" songs were okay for late era BBs; but none of those tracks screamed "career defining" or "career changing." The title track was a decent late 80s remake of "Do It Again" with a bit of "Kokomo" vibe thrown in. Al's "Island Girl" is catchy and inoffensive, but also screams "novelty." Brian's "In My Car" is weirdly too aggressive production-wise, and is fine as "mid-album" filler material. (For fans it mostly serves as a template for what it *could* have sounded like for Al and Carl to sing on the BW '88 album). "Make It Big" I won't criticize for having already been out, as it wasn't released on record but only heard in a movie, but that one is another inoffensive, catchy album filler track. "Somewhere Near Japan" is the strongest, and even it isn't like A+ material (the production touches in the beginning are rather cliché, and the song goes on too long).

The "soundtrack" theme was lame, and wasn't even properly promoted that way. (Does anything on the front cover indicate the soundtrack theme?). Not that the soundtrack theme was a good idea anyway; it kind of gave the indication to the uninformed that the entire thing was a compilation of old songs.

The band probably shouldn't have been trying to make an album in 1989 what with all of the weird Landy stuff going on, and especially when nobody was showing up with A-game material. But even if they felt that *had* to cobble something together to basically sell an album on the back of "Kokomo", more organization from a producer or manager would have helped.
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« Reply #242 on: March 06, 2017, 12:30:03 PM »

The natural follow-up to Kokomo would have been Lahaina Aloha.  Similar feel to Kokomo.
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« Reply #243 on: March 06, 2017, 01:31:37 PM »

The natural follow-up to Kokomo would have been Lahaina Aloha.  Similar feel to Kokomo.

It would have sunk into obscurity the same way it did in 1992. That track is one of the few solid moments (compositionally) on SIP. But again, like "SNJ", a solid album track that could have been part of a solid but not critically-acclaimed/grammy-winning album had a better album been cultivated.

While we can put our objective hat on and try to figure out how the BBs could have essentially ripped themselves off to make a desperate attempt at clawing their way to a follow-up hit single after "Kokomo", the truth is that had by some fluke something like "Lahaina Aloha" (or most anything off of "Still Cruisin" or "SIP") been a hit, it would have just validated Mike further and the band probably wouldn't have even gone near "Paley" material in 1995 and would have tried to wring out more tropical songs with Terry Melcher at the helm.

For better or worse, I don't think much of anything was going to score the BBs another hit in 1989 or 1992, especially if we're working from a list of the stuff they actually made in that time frame. It was a weird time for "legacy" acts. SIP sounded kind of tinny and cheap and synthetic even in 1992, with harsh digital sound and fake programmed drums, etc. It sounds much worse today than it did in 1992, but it was not going with any "Best Engineering" Grammys even in 1992.

The BBs would have had a strong (though probably not #1) showing on the charts in 1995/96 with an album of the Paley material, would have received relatively strong critical notices, and would have built their buzz and brand and all of that.

More of "Kokomo" would not have done the same. Does anybody have any actual reviews from professional music critics of "Kokomo" from back in 1988? I never got the sense it was a critical smash. And let's also remind ourselves that "Kokomo" was at #1 for, what, one week? I don't think it was derided in 1988 the way it was in later years (where it was found in some "worst songs ever" sorts of lists), but how much did critics *love* that song back in '88?
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« Reply #244 on: March 06, 2017, 02:12:12 PM »

What a crazy world, while the boys were singing Kokomo, Brian was singing Rio Grande... and Melt Away .....

If there's any alternative reality that has had to happen, it would be in the 90s, where the Paley sessions ended up somewhere, as much as the O'Hagan meetup..

There was such a rebirth of the Beach Boys legacy during that decade, so many covers coming out from the younger hype generation of Pet Sounds and other great material that was forgotten until then in the bigger audience, they could have jumped on that opportunity to do a real comeback, it's devastating.
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CenturyDeprived
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« Reply #245 on: March 06, 2017, 02:43:29 PM »


The BBs would have had a strong (though probably not #1) showing on the charts in 1995/96 with an album of the Paley material, would have received relatively strong critical notices, and would have built their buzz and brand and all of that.
 

I think that's true, but again - I really don't think that' what Mike wanted, EVEN IF it meant the band got really high in the charts again. Mike only wants The BBs to chart highly when he has cowritten the song. I truly believe that - does anyone not? And I honestly don't think he ever, ever rooted for Brian to have any solo success whatsoever, because that would mean that Brian could have success + critical adulation on material without the slightest hint of Mike involvement. It sounds harsh, but I cannot imagine Mike being happy about it. Even if Brian had released a solo album with every song on par with Midnight's Another Day, that sold well and got rave reviews/awards, I think Mike would have told an interviewer that he himself should still have cowritten it.

Let's be honest: if the Paley material was released as an album in that time period, and sold well/was reviewed highly, the critics would be talking up the legend of Brian Wilson again; how the BB band was "back" due to Brian's touch with an outside cowriter, and how this material was more substantive/less synthetic than Kokomo. It would have been shades of Pet Sounds (not saying the material would have remotely matched PS, but the general vibe of reception and how it would probably have been spun/marketed would have been something like: "the Pet Sounds songwriter, the guy who wrote the best material the band ever recorded during '65-'66 is back, with material that has non-cheesy production touches of that classic time!"

And I think there must have been an internal fear of this within the band; maybe mostly with Mike, but maybe with the other guys too a little bit. The guys (most heavily from Mike, IMO) were probably still sensitive to the idea of being relegated to being thought of as simply Brian's puppets yet again. And I can understand that feeling, even though I think there's a time when they should have simply been happy to simply go back into that very role if it would have made for better art, and if it would have made for less aggravation for Brian. But yeah... Brian (due to Landy) had given them a ton of aggravation and deep resentment in the early '90s due to the bio, so I suppose it was just not a time when they were gonna be selfless.

Also, one thing I don't think anyone has mentioned yet is how this was just leading up to the time of the Pet Sounds 30th anniversary. When did the band's archivists start prepping the Pet Sounds Sessions box set? We know how that box became a political mess within the band, and was held up to the point of almost not being released during Carl's lifetime (and also awkwardly missing the actual 30th anniversary of the album, being released when PS was 31 years old). I wonder how that factored into this whole Paley thing.

There was obviously sensitivity within the band that was reignited at this time for fear that their contributions would be cemented for all time as being Brian's vocalists and nothing more. I think this was before a more nuanced reevaluation of the entire band's contributions regarding the entirety of the catalog (and in particular, the wilderness years). I have to think the Paley material, and perhaps the way the songs came about, and the general vibe within the music world regarding how the band's catalog was being perceived at that exact moment in time, must have been a factor in the material being quashed.

And the Kokomo backlash had probably started to take effect too, no? Even though Mike was trying to push Kokomo's bastard cousin Summer of Love as late as 1995 (!), I feel like somewhere around then, he must have gotten a clue that this was really widely thought of as an embarrassment - which I could imagine would have been an ego blow that would have made him even MORE sensitive to being eclipsed yet again by a solid BB album, where his involvement was not integral throughout.
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Lonely Summer
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« Reply #246 on: March 06, 2017, 03:48:26 PM »

The natural follow-up to Kokomo would have been Lahaina Aloha.  Similar feel to Kokomo.

It would have sunk into obscurity the same way it did in 1992. That track is one of the few solid moments (compositionally) on SIP. But again, like "SNJ", a solid album track that could have been part of a solid but not critically-acclaimed/grammy-winning album had a better album been cultivated.

While we can put our objective hat on and try to figure out how the BBs could have essentially ripped themselves off to make a desperate attempt at clawing their way to a follow-up hit single after "Kokomo", the truth is that had by some fluke something like "Lahaina Aloha" (or most anything off of "Still Cruisin" or "SIP") been a hit, it would have just validated Mike further and the band probably wouldn't have even gone near "Paley" material in 1995 and would have tried to wring out more tropical songs with Terry Melcher at the helm.

For better or worse, I don't think much of anything was going to score the BBs another hit in 1989 or 1992, especially if we're working from a list of the stuff they actually made in that time frame. It was a weird time for "legacy" acts. SIP sounded kind of tinny and cheap and synthetic even in 1992, with harsh digital sound and fake programmed drums, etc. It sounds much worse today than it did in 1992, but it was not going with any "Best Engineering" Grammys even in 1992.

The BBs would have had a strong (though probably not #1) showing on the charts in 1995/96 with an album of the Paley material, would have received relatively strong critical notices, and would have built their buzz and brand and all of that.

More of "Kokomo" would not have done the same. Does anybody have any actual reviews from professional music critics of "Kokomo" from back in 1988? I never got the sense it was a critical smash. And let's also remind ourselves that "Kokomo" was at #1 for, what, one week? I don't think it was derided in 1988 the way it was in later years (where it was found in some "worst songs ever" sorts of lists), but how much did critics *love* that song back in '88?
Personally, I don't give a damn what some critics have to say. I enjoyed BW88, enjoyed "Kokomo", enjoyed the new songs on Still Cruisin'. I enjoyed seeing the band in the spotlight. By 1995, though, everything had changed. There weren't any 60's acts having hit singles in 1995/96, except maybe Eric Clapton. Even the Beatles reunion singles struggled to get airplay. I'm not even sure a new BB's album with Wilson/Paley material would have been a hit. Look at the sales for the 2 albums Brian had out that year - IJWMFTT and OCA. Sure, the reviews were mostly positive, but good reviews don't buy sales. No question it would have done better than SIP, but musically, anything they did in the 90's was going to be out of step with the then current trends in rock music. I would have bought it and loved it, I have no doubt about that.
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« Reply #247 on: March 06, 2017, 03:52:39 PM »

Personally, I don't give a damn what some critics have to say. I enjoyed BW88, enjoyed "Kokomo", enjoyed the new songs on Still Cruisin'. I enjoyed seeing the band in the spotlight. By 1995, though, everything had changed. There weren't any 60's acts having hit singles in 1995/96, except maybe Eric Clapton. Even the Beatles reunion singles struggled to get airplay. I'm not even sure a new BB's album with Wilson/Paley material would have been a hit. Look at the sales for the 2 albums Brian had out that year - IJWMFTT and OCA. Sure, the reviews were mostly positive, but good reviews don't buy sales. No question it would have done better than SIP, but musically, anything they did in the 90's was going to be out of step with the then current trends in rock music. I would have bought it and loved it, I have no doubt about that.

I don't care what critics have to say either; I love Make it Big, even though that's a minority opinion - even among superfans of the band who can appreciate the lesser material of the catalog. But we shouldn't for a moment think that the band members themselves don't give a damn what some critics have to say. For better or worse, I feel certain that critical reception and public opinion shaped their career decisions around this time, and probably were a factor in the Paley material's non-release in some fashion.
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Sound of Free
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« Reply #248 on: March 06, 2017, 04:20:44 PM »

While I have a lot of respect for Mike's contributions to the group, I'm not a big fan of his, particularly for his decisions from the late '70s on. If I had to pick a "team," I'm certainly on Team Wilson and not Team Love.

But having said that, I think people are actively looking to put the blame on Mike for the album not happening in 1995 or 1996.

For me, I think that if Carl had been on board and supportive, there definitely would have been made. I think Al would have been a "yes" to a album -- even after Mike had kept him out of most of the Summer In Paradise sessions because of a "bad attitude," Al still came in when asked and sang on Mike's songs.

If Brian, Carl and Al were in, I can't figure Mike would have passed on being on the album, even if he didn't get to sit in a room and write songs from scratch with "Cousin Brian."
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Lonely Summer
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« Reply #249 on: March 06, 2017, 09:32:16 PM »

While I have a lot of respect for Mike's contributions to the group, I'm not a big fan of his, particularly for his decisions from the late '70s on. If I had to pick a "team," I'm certainly on Team Wilson and not Team Love.

But having said that, I think people are actively looking to put the blame on Mike for the album not happening in 1995 or 1996.

For me, I think that if Carl had been on board and supportive, there definitely would have been made. I think Al would have been a "yes" to a album -- even after Mike had kept him out of most of the Summer In Paradise sessions because of a "bad attitude," Al still came in when asked and sang on Mike's songs.

If Brian, Carl and Al were in, I can't figure Mike would have passed on being on the album, even if he didn't get to sit in a room and write songs from scratch with "Cousin Brian."
I think it's unfair to pin the loss of the album solely on Mike's shoulders. I think there were just too many issues - including non-musical - that got in the way. I have to wonder if Carl was already aware of his health issues in 95/early 96. It just seems so out of character for him to walk out of a session.
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