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Author Topic: Paley Sessions Discussion Thread  (Read 18764 times)
Matt H
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« Reply #25 on: February 16, 2017, 04:34:56 AM »

I believe this is the full list of Paley Session tracks that have made it out on bootleg:

1.   Gettin' In Over My Head
2.   You're Still a Mystery feat. The Beach Boys
3.   Chain Reaction of Love
4.   Soul Searchin' feat. The Beach Boys
5.   It's Not Easy Being Me
6.   Desert Drive
7.   Saturday Morning in the City
8.   This Song Wants to Sleep With You Tonight
9.   Market Place
10.   I'm Broke
11.   Must Be a Miracle
12.   In My Moondreams
13.   Mary Anne
14.   Slightly American Music
15.   Proud Mary
16.   Frankie Avalon    
17.   Elbow 63'    
18.   Dancing The Night Away (Vocal)    
19.   Dancing The Night Away (Instrumental)    
20.   God Did It    
21.   Going Home    
22.   Some Sweet Day    
23.   What Rock 'n' Roll Can Do

I remember in an article from ESQ there were other songs mentioned as well, but I can't remember any of those titles now.
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« Reply #26 on: February 16, 2017, 07:13:29 AM »

What effect did Flaming Pine Tree have on McPauly? He's been a spent force for years. Oh, he does great business on his tours, because people come to hear him sing his Beatles classics, but when was the last time anyone really cared about a new album from the guy?

Not that the Grammys are the best measure of anything (though when a band or artist someone likes wins or gets nominated, then all of a sudden the Grammys are legit that *one* time), but "Flaming Pie" was nominated for Album of the Year, as was McCartney's 2005 album "Chaos and Creation in the Backyard."

In terms of live vs. studio, I'd argue the opposite. His live shows, while certainly money printing machines, are rather rote and uninteresting, and McCartney's voice is largely shot. Meanwhile, his studio material is often still interesting. It's not all great, but it's more progressive and varied and varied texturally than, say, Brian's last album. "New" from 2013 has some snoozers, some interesting things, and a few items where you realize McCartney still "has it" sometimes.

At least McCartney keeps creating and doesn't *only* rely on doing live gigs.
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« Reply #27 on: February 16, 2017, 07:21:07 AM »

Back to the Paley sessions, I was recently re-reading several old threads on the topic. I think the general takeaway after a lot discussion was that, while one could still argue they should have done the Paley stuff *instead* of "Stars and Stripes", they didn't *cancel* the Paley stuff *for* S&S. They simply set it aside with no clear idea of what the plan was, and moved to another project.

It makes sense from a logistical point of view; an album of remakes involves much less creative decision making and politics about songwriting credits, etc.

I think the Paley stuff could have been revisited; Carl's illness in late 1996 going into 1997 seemed to stall any further studio work. Not that the Paley stuff *for sure* would have happened had Carl lived, but I think the Paley stuff is more a case of "never revisited" rather than definitively canceled.
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« Reply #28 on: February 16, 2017, 07:23:51 AM »

I believe this is the full list of Paley Session tracks that have made it out on bootleg:

1.   Gettin' In Over My Head
2.   You're Still a Mystery feat. The Beach Boys
3.   Chain Reaction of Love
4.   Soul Searchin' feat. The Beach Boys
5.   It's Not Easy Being Me
6.   Desert Drive
7.   Saturday Morning in the City
8.   This Song Wants to Sleep With You Tonight
9.   Market Place
10.   I'm Broke
11.   Must Be a Miracle
12.   In My Moondreams
13.   Mary Anne
14.   Slightly American Music
15.   Proud Mary
16.   Frankie Avalon    
17.   Elbow 63'    
18.   Dancing The Night Away (Vocal)    
19.   Dancing The Night Away (Instrumental)    
20.   God Did It    
21.   Going Home    
22.   Some Sweet Day    
23.   What Rock 'n' Roll Can Do

I remember in an article from ESQ there were other songs mentioned as well, but I can't remember any of those titles now.

If we're talking all the variation, we could also add the Andy Paley "guide vocal" version of "Soul Searchin'."

I've never bothered to check whether the mix of "This Song Wants to Sleep...." on the actual circulated "Paley sessions" tape is any different from the officially-released mix of the song from the European "Do It Again" CD single. So there may be two variations of that. I tend to think they're the same mix, even if running at varying speeds. Either way, the mixes sounds pretty similar if they're not identical.
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« Reply #29 on: February 16, 2017, 07:31:35 AM »

At least McCartney keeps creating and doesn't *only* rely on doing live gigs.

I agree with this 100%, and it's the same point I have made with Brian Wilson too. If you're a fan of these musicians as songwriters and guys who made some of the finest music in recording studios from the past 50+ years as producers and artists...you welcome and celebrate that they're still creating music in the studio and writing new songs on a semi-regular basis. If someone is labeled a legendary songwriter, it is great when you have a chance to hear them writing and releasing new songs. The judgement on whether they are good or bad or successful or not, that's normal reaction depending on each song. You like it or not, but they're still creating - exactly right.

Compare that to...oh, never mind.  Smiley
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« Reply #30 on: February 16, 2017, 08:22:38 AM »

Back to the Paley sessions, I was recently re-reading several old threads on the topic. I think the general takeaway after a lot discussion was that, while one could still argue they should have done the Paley stuff *instead* of "Stars and Stripes", they didn't *cancel* the Paley stuff *for* S&S. They simply set it aside with no clear idea of what the plan was, and moved to another project.

It makes sense from a logistical point of view; an album of remakes involves much less creative decision making and politics about songwriting credits, etc.

I think the Paley stuff could have been revisited; Carl's illness in late 1996 going into 1997 seemed to stall any further studio work. Not that the Paley stuff *for sure* would have happened had Carl lived, but I think the Paley stuff is more a case of "never revisited" rather than definitively canceled.

I have said this many times on this board, but...in 1996, I was told by Elliott Lott during the making of S&S that the Don Was/Brian Wilson produced Beach Boys album of Wilson/Paley (and whatever else) material was absolutely NOT dead.  Rather, it was temporarily on hold during S&S; that the band felt MUCH more positive and hopeful about the "Was" album than S&S; that the band saw S&S as a quick and easy opportunity to get back in the studio with Brian in a  less pressurized environment on familiar material to get their feet wet first.

How did that come up? I saw him backstage at a BB show and flat out asked him--why are they doing this instead of that? What's up?
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« Reply #31 on: February 16, 2017, 08:33:37 AM »

Back to the Paley sessions, I was recently re-reading several old threads on the topic. I think the general takeaway after a lot discussion was that, while one could still argue they should have done the Paley stuff *instead* of "Stars and Stripes", they didn't *cancel* the Paley stuff *for* S&S. They simply set it aside with no clear idea of what the plan was, and moved to another project.

It makes sense from a logistical point of view; an album of remakes involves much less creative decision making and politics about songwriting credits, etc.

I think the Paley stuff could have been revisited; Carl's illness in late 1996 going into 1997 seemed to stall any further studio work. Not that the Paley stuff *for sure* would have happened had Carl lived, but I think the Paley stuff is more a case of "never revisited" rather than definitively canceled.

I have said this many times on this board, but...in 1996, I was told by Elliott Lott during the making of S&S that the Don Was/Brian Wilson produced Beach Boys album of Wilson/Paley (and whatever else) material was absolutely NOT dead.  Rather, it was temporarily on hold during S&S; that the band felt MUCH more positive and hopeful about the "Was" album than S&S; that the band saw S&S as a quick and easy opportunity to get back in the studio with Brian in a  less pressurized environment on familiar material to get their feet wet first.

How did that come up? I saw him backstage at a BB show and flat out asked him--why are they doing this instead of that? What's up?

So Stars and Stripes was acting like a 15 Big Ones? Makes sense. Gives the Paley stuff yet more parralels with Love You.
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« Reply #32 on: February 16, 2017, 08:39:40 AM »

Back to the Paley sessions, I was recently re-reading several old threads on the topic. I think the general takeaway after a lot discussion was that, while one could still argue they should have done the Paley stuff *instead* of "Stars and Stripes", they didn't *cancel* the Paley stuff *for* S&S. They simply set it aside with no clear idea of what the plan was, and moved to another project.

It makes sense from a logistical point of view; an album of remakes involves much less creative decision making and politics about songwriting credits, etc.

I think the Paley stuff could have been revisited; Carl's illness in late 1996 going into 1997 seemed to stall any further studio work. Not that the Paley stuff *for sure* would have happened had Carl lived, but I think the Paley stuff is more a case of "never revisited" rather than definitively canceled.

I have said this many times on this board, but...in 1996, I was told by Elliott Lott during the making of S&S that the Don Was/Brian Wilson produced Beach Boys album of Wilson/Paley (and whatever else) material was absolutely NOT dead.  Rather, it was temporarily on hold during S&S; that the band felt MUCH more positive and hopeful about the "Was" album than S&S; that the band saw S&S as a quick and easy opportunity to get back in the studio with Brian in a  less pressurized environment on familiar material to get their feet wet first.

How did that come up? I saw him backstage at a BB show and flat out asked him--why are they doing this instead of that? What's up?

That's what was said, and whether the material was dead or not, it kind of bypasses some of the events like trying to bring in the High Llamas' Sean O'Hagan to work on making new music with Brian for the BB's, and reports that Carl put the kibosh on "Soul Searchin" for one specific example because he didn't think it was commercial enough.

And there is the contradiction, one of several during this time. Were The High Llamas 'commercial' enough at that time to try bringing in O'Hagan to make commercial music with Brian for the band, if that were the concern beyond Carl's concerns? How does a decision to bring in an outside musician/producer/writer who didn't have near the track record in terms of making hit records that Don Was and those around Was had at that time line up with wanting to get commercial songs to release? They had a collection of songs to work with already, which Brian along with people who made hit records had been working up, so why bring in someone else, and to do what in that process?

Maybe the question too is at what point in time, or in the process, was O'Hagan considered for that role? Was it before, during, or after there was a collection of songs in the can from the Was-Paley projects? That could be one aspect to consider.
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« Reply #33 on: February 16, 2017, 09:06:49 AM »

So Stars and Stripes was acting like a 15 Big Ones? Makes sense. Gives the Paley stuff yet more parralels with Love You.

While not entirely non-analogous, I think "Stars and Stripes" was even more commercially-motivated (however much it ended up bombing) compared to "15 Big Ones." 15BO was in part an exercise in getting Brian working again, and ultimate ended up kind of being a case of giving up and releasing what they had.

Whereas, with S&S, it seems like it was more a case of latching onto something another band had done successfully, and trying it with the BBs, all the while knowing that such a project would have less of the creative/political roadblocks that most any "proper" BB album had had over the years and would always have.
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« Reply #34 on: February 16, 2017, 09:11:05 AM »

I fear GIOMH ruined any chance, for me, to be enthusiastic about the Paley sessions. Sad
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« Reply #35 on: February 16, 2017, 09:15:53 AM »

While I pointed out above that the Was/Paley project was not dead at the point they did S&S, I don't think it was imminent or a sure thing either after S&S.

Bruce has spoken rather dismissively about the material. Carl reportedly had misgivings. Mike in his comments to Carlin seems rather "meh" about the material. I think Al is the only one who has mentioned some level of being into it (via a Record Collector variation of his "Goldmine" interview with Ken Sharp).

We also have the on-site report of one of those group vocal sessions, and it doesn't exactly sound like the best atmosphere or circumstances for going on to complete a whole album. Weird passive aggressive stuff with Brian and Mike, etc.

We additionally have the sketchy reports of Carl walking out of a session, though for non-musical reasons.

What is clear is that they needed a *group manager* and *group producer* to mold the whole thing and actually make it happen. Basically, they needed what Joe Thomas ended up doing in 2012. The "TWGMTR" album is a relatively similar scenario to the Paley sessions, or I suppose what the Paley sessions could have been. An album of songs mostly written by Brian with a writer outside the group, with many of the backing tracks recorded without the band and prior to their involvement. The Paley/Was sessions even had the shoehorned attempt to have Brian and Mike write a song together based presumably off of something Brian and Andy had already started, not totally unlike handing off some lyric chores to Mike for TWGMTR.

It appears the group political dynamic did not allow for this sort of thing to really get going in 1995. The era of the BBs and PS and Smile having "indie cred" was in its nascence at the time, Carl was evidently moving *away* from that aesthetic, and Don Was for whatever reason didn't have the ability to corral and organize the band the way Joe Thomas did in 2012.

Perhaps what they would have needed circa 1995 is something they had in 2012. That is, had Brian and Andy (and/or Don Was) taken all of the Paley sessions material to a label and scored a record deal and funding for the Beach Boys to get the album done, maybe then they would have all reconvened and actually done it. But the piecemeal fashion with which they were working on the Was/Paley sessions certainly didn't help considering many of the band were also "meh" about the material.
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« Reply #36 on: February 16, 2017, 09:41:15 AM »

I'd argue that the indie cred was already there in 1995, as someone who was witnessing it firsthand and following all of it. The music, especially from 1966-67, was already getting name-checked and even referenced in the music of artists in their 20's - and their fans were some of the ones seeking it out which *may* have led to the demand which helped deliver certain releases to follow. That buzz was absolutely not surrounding anything the band was officially doing, but may have been driving demand for something like the PS or Smile sessions proposed boxes being hinted at even around '94 in various music press outlets. There was even Todd Rundgren in the mix with references to proposing a Smile CD-Rom for fans to craft their own mixes.

The frustrating thing too is that the template which worked in 2012 with TWGMTR was there in 1994-5, I have a studio photo of Brian and Was with an all-star lineup of rock session players who had a resume a mile long of big hit records.

With Carl's misgivings and moving away from the indie aesthetic, I have to ask again why the decision to try bringing a relatively unknown indie musician like O'Hagan into the producer's/writer's position when they already had Brian and an all-star lineup of musicians who could get it done? It still doesn't fit the narrative at all. And the results were predictable - it didn't pan out.

One other element of this: Ok, so Stars & Stripes got done and released with associated press coverage and Nashville appearances, TV spots, etc. But it is at the core an album of covers with the Beach Boys playing a backup role to a lineup of country performers, half of which were not even A-list performers in the country genre. Willie Nelson was the ace in the deck, and it's perhaps no surprise that was the track which Brian was most involved in directly producing, followed perhaps second by Lorrie Morgan which is why her track still gets some airplay here and there. Even for fans wanting to buy an album to hear the Beach Boys, or to hear new versions where Carl or Mike or Brian were singing duets or new lead vocals, it featured instead the original Boys as supporting players. It's hard to consider it a BB's album for that reason, any more than the Eagles tribute album which inspired it was an Eagles album. It was outside artists covering the BB's with the real BB's in supporting roles.

And if the idea was even in part to ease Brian back into the process, he kind of shined on the project after Willie's track anyway, right?

I think that's where there isn't as much of a relation to 15 BO/Love You. In those cases, it was the real Beach Boys featured on the albums. And in the case of Love You, it was Brian sometimes being literally forced to write songs as part of Landy's bizarre regimen, that according to Carlin's interviews included a Landy goon holding a baseball bat standing behind Brian at the piano. That wasn't the case in 1994-5.
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« Reply #37 on: February 16, 2017, 10:12:25 AM »

I fear GIOMH ruined any chance, for me, to be enthusiastic about the Paley sessions. Sad

I think I'm the only person who likes this album. I much prefer it to anything done with Joe Thomas's involvement. Anyway, I transgress.......
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« Reply #38 on: February 16, 2017, 12:03:37 PM »

I fear GIOMH ruined any chance, for me, to be enthusiastic about the Paley sessions. Sad

I think I'm the only person who likes this album. I much prefer it to anything done with Joe Thomas's involvement. Anyway, I transgress.......
I agree.  I just think the Paley production and vocals were much better than in GiOMH.
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« Reply #39 on: February 16, 2017, 12:19:34 PM »

I think Hickory was saying the opposite of that.
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« Reply #40 on: February 16, 2017, 12:42:46 PM »

I'd argue that the indie cred was already there in 1995, as someone who was witnessing it firsthand and following all of it. The music, especially from 1966-67, was already getting name-checked and even referenced in the music of artists in their 20's - and their fans were some of the ones seeking it out which *may* have led to the demand which helped deliver certain releases to follow. That buzz was absolutely not surrounding anything the band was officially doing, but may have been driving demand for something like the PS or Smile sessions proposed boxes being hinted at even around '94 in various music press outlets. There was even Todd Rundgren in the mix with references to proposing a Smile CD-Rom for fans to craft their own mixes.

That mid 90s period with Was and the documentary and "Orange Crate Art", and following on the heels of the "Smile" stuff on the GV boxed set, that all was definitely a point where the "indie cred" factor was gaining momentum.

I think a full album of BB vocals on the Paley stuff would have received good critical notices.

But it seems as though Carl may have not shared that same view or optimism concerning doing that type of material, or Brian's ability/condition, etc. The brief stint of doing "deep cuts" in late 1993 on the BB shows largely ended with those dates. A few remnants of that deep cut setlist remained in 1994 (e.g. "All This is That"), but by 1995 it was back to meat-and-potatoes setlists.

The question, and this is something that even *slightly* more insight to Carl's feelings around this time would help immensely, is how to digest Carl's apprehensiveness about and high standards being applied to the Paley material, versus what he *was* okaying and contributing to around that same time with the band (stale setlist, "Stars and Stripes", the awful "Status Quo" collaboration, and if we want to go back a few years prior, the wonky "Summer in Paradise" project, bland tracks like "Crocodile Rock" and "Problem Child", etc.). Did he really like S&S or SIP more than the Paley material? Or did he apply a very different artistic/critical standard to each? Or was he just looking at commercial viability? Or maybe it was political/interpersonal stuff with Brian at that time. Or did he just have arbitrary opinions that only he could have explained?
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« Reply #41 on: February 16, 2017, 01:53:51 PM »

I'd argue that the indie cred was already there in 1995, as someone who was witnessing it firsthand and following all of it. The music, especially from 1966-67, was already getting name-checked and even referenced in the music of artists in their 20's - and their fans were some of the ones seeking it out which *may* have led to the demand which helped deliver certain releases to follow. That buzz was absolutely not surrounding anything the band was officially doing, but may have been driving demand for something like the PS or Smile sessions proposed boxes being hinted at even around '94 in various music press outlets. There was even Todd Rundgren in the mix with references to proposing a Smile CD-Rom for fans to craft their own mixes.

That mid 90s period with Was and the documentary and "Orange Crate Art", and following on the heels of the "Smile" stuff on the GV boxed set, that all was definitely a point where the "indie cred" factor was gaining momentum.

I think a full album of BB vocals on the Paley stuff would have received good critical notices.

But it seems as though Carl may have not shared that same view or optimism concerning doing that type of material, or Brian's ability/condition, etc. The brief stint of doing "deep cuts" in late 1993 on the BB shows largely ended with those dates. A few remnants of that deep cut setlist remained in 1994 (e.g. "All This is That"), but by 1995 it was back to meat-and-potatoes setlists.

The question, and this is something that even *slightly* more insight to Carl's feelings around this time would help immensely, is how to digest Carl's apprehensiveness about and high standards being applied to the Paley material, versus what he *was* okaying and contributing to around that same time with the band (stale setlist, "Stars and Stripes", the awful "Status Quo" collaboration, and if we want to go back a few years prior, the wonky "Summer in Paradise" project, bland tracks like "Crocodile Rock" and "Problem Child", etc.). Did he really like S&S or SIP more than the Paley material? Or did he apply a very different artistic/critical standard to each? Or was he just looking at commercial viability? Or maybe it was political/interpersonal stuff with Brian at that time. Or did he just have arbitrary opinions that only he could have explained?

Yep, the great and now always, unanswerable questions.
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« Reply #42 on: February 16, 2017, 01:56:09 PM »

Probably unanswerable, but while I respect how tight-lipped everyone around Carl has been for all these years, I'd love to hear some insight from those around him about that era and those sessions. It's not like I'm looking for gossipy stuff; I'm just curious what his musical reasoning was back then.

I know that by 1997 the answer to any musical questions may well be that Carl had bigger things on his plate.

But what was his deal in September 1995 for instance when he was working on those two Paley songs?
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« Reply #43 on: February 16, 2017, 02:09:58 PM »

What effect did Flaming Pine Tree have on McPauly? He's been a spent force for years. Oh, he does great business on his tours, because people come to hear him sing his Beatles classics, but when was the last time anyone really cared about a new album from the guy?

Not that the Grammys are the best measure of anything (though when a band or artist someone likes wins or gets nominated, then all of a sudden the Grammys are legit that *one* time), but "Flaming Pie" was nominated for Album of the Year, as was McCartney's 2005 album "Chaos and Creation in the Backyard."

In terms of live vs. studio, I'd argue the opposite. His live shows, while certainly money printing machines, are rather rote and uninteresting, and McCartney's voice is largely shot. Meanwhile, his studio material is often still interesting. It's not all great, but it's more progressive and varied and varied texturally than, say, Brian's last album. "New" from 2013 has some snoozers, some interesting things, and a few items where you realize McCartney still "has it" sometimes.

At least McCartney keeps creating and doesn't *only* rely on doing live gigs.
There's a real disconnect between studio and live work these days for older artists like Paul and Brian. In the studio, they seem to be free to do whatever; on the road, it's gotta be greatest hits night after night.
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« Reply #44 on: February 16, 2017, 02:17:33 PM »

I'd argue that the indie cred was already there in 1995, as someone who was witnessing it firsthand and following all of it. The music, especially from 1966-67, was already getting name-checked and even referenced in the music of artists in their 20's - and their fans were some of the ones seeking it out which *may* have led to the demand which helped deliver certain releases to follow. That buzz was absolutely not surrounding anything the band was officially doing, but may have been driving demand for something like the PS or Smile sessions proposed boxes being hinted at even around '94 in various music press outlets. There was even Todd Rundgren in the mix with references to proposing a Smile CD-Rom for fans to craft their own mixes.

The frustrating thing too is that the template which worked in 2012 with TWGMTR was there in 1994-5, I have a studio photo of Brian and Was with an all-star lineup of rock session players who had a resume a mile long of big hit records.

With Carl's misgivings and moving away from the indie aesthetic, I have to ask again why the decision to try bringing a relatively unknown indie musician like O'Hagan into the producer's/writer's position when they already had Brian and an all-star lineup of musicians who could get it done? It still doesn't fit the narrative at all. And the results were predictable - it didn't pan out.

One other element of this: Ok, so Stars & Stripes got done and released with associated press coverage and Nashville appearances, TV spots, etc. But it is at the core an album of covers with the Beach Boys playing a backup role to a lineup of country performers, half of which were not even A-list performers in the country genre. Willie Nelson was the ace in the deck, and it's perhaps no surprise that was the track which Brian was most involved in directly producing, followed perhaps second by Lorrie Morgan which is why her track still gets some airplay here and there. Even for fans wanting to buy an album to hear the Beach Boys, or to hear new versions where Carl or Mike or Brian were singing duets or new lead vocals, it featured instead the original Boys as supporting players. It's hard to consider it a BB's album for that reason, any more than the Eagles tribute album which inspired it was an Eagles album. It was outside artists covering the BB's with the real BB's in supporting roles.

And if the idea was even in part to ease Brian back into the process, he kind of shined on the project after Willie's track anyway, right?

I think that's where there isn't as much of a relation to 15 BO/Love You. In those cases, it was the real Beach Boys featured on the albums. And in the case of Love You, it was Brian sometimes being literally forced to write songs as part of Landy's bizarre regimen, that according to Carlin's interviews included a Landy goon holding a baseball bat standing behind Brian at the piano. That wasn't the case in 1994-5.
I've only listened to S&S a couple times, mainly for Willie, and Timothy B, but that project could have been a lot better. Imagine more A-list country singers being involved - Merle Haggard, Glen Campbell (that would seem to be a natural); whatever happened to the Tammy Wynette track? Of course the problem in 1996 was those artists were no longer popular on country radio. And that's what messes up so many of these projects - TRYING to be commercial, instead of just trying to make good music.
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« Reply #45 on: February 16, 2017, 02:24:45 PM »

What effect did Flaming Pine Tree have on McPauly? He's been a spent force for years. Oh, he does great business on his tours, because people come to hear him sing his Beatles classics, but when was the last time anyone really cared about a new album from the guy?

Not that the Grammys are the best measure of anything (though when a band or artist someone likes wins or gets nominated, then all of a sudden the Grammys are legit that *one* time), but "Flaming Pie" was nominated for Album of the Year, as was McCartney's 2005 album "Chaos and Creation in the Backyard."

In terms of live vs. studio, I'd argue the opposite. His live shows, while certainly money printing machines, are rather rote and uninteresting, and McCartney's voice is largely shot. Meanwhile, his studio material is often still interesting. It's not all great, but it's more progressive and varied and varied texturally than, say, Brian's last album. "New" from 2013 has some snoozers, some interesting things, and a few items where you realize McCartney still "has it" sometimes.

At least McCartney keeps creating and doesn't *only* rely on doing live gigs.
There's a real disconnect between studio and live work these days for older artists like Paul and Brian. In the studio, they seem to be free to do whatever; on the road, it's gotta be greatest hits night after night.
I believe Paul is still pretty flexible with his set list, though.
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« Reply #46 on: February 16, 2017, 02:25:19 PM »

I never understood why the other beach boys didn't like these songs
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Matt H
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« Reply #47 on: February 16, 2017, 02:34:06 PM »

I'd argue that the indie cred was already there in 1995, as someone who was witnessing it firsthand and following all of it. The music, especially from 1966-67, was already getting name-checked and even referenced in the music of artists in their 20's - and their fans were some of the ones seeking it out which *may* have led to the demand which helped deliver certain releases to follow. That buzz was absolutely not surrounding anything the band was officially doing, but may have been driving demand for something like the PS or Smile sessions proposed boxes being hinted at even around '94 in various music press outlets. There was even Todd Rundgren in the mix with references to proposing a Smile CD-Rom for fans to craft their own mixes.

The frustrating thing too is that the template which worked in 2012 with TWGMTR was there in 1994-5, I have a studio photo of Brian and Was with an all-star lineup of rock session players who had a resume a mile long of big hit records.

With Carl's misgivings and moving away from the indie aesthetic, I have to ask again why the decision to try bringing a relatively unknown indie musician like O'Hagan into the producer's/writer's position when they already had Brian and an all-star lineup of musicians who could get it done? It still doesn't fit the narrative at all. And the results were predictable - it didn't pan out.

One other element of this: Ok, so Stars & Stripes got done and released with associated press coverage and Nashville appearances, TV spots, etc. But it is at the core an album of covers with the Beach Boys playing a backup role to a lineup of country performers, half of which were not even A-list performers in the country genre. Willie Nelson was the ace in the deck, and it's perhaps no surprise that was the track which Brian was most involved in directly producing, followed perhaps second by Lorrie Morgan which is why her track still gets some airplay here and there. Even for fans wanting to buy an album to hear the Beach Boys, or to hear new versions where Carl or Mike or Brian were singing duets or new lead vocals, it featured instead the original Boys as supporting players. It's hard to consider it a BB's album for that reason, any more than the Eagles tribute album which inspired it was an Eagles album. It was outside artists covering the BB's with the real BB's in supporting roles.

And if the idea was even in part to ease Brian back into the process, he kind of shined on the project after Willie's track anyway, right?

I think that's where there isn't as much of a relation to 15 BO/Love You. In those cases, it was the real Beach Boys featured on the albums. And in the case of Love You, it was Brian sometimes being literally forced to write songs as part of Landy's bizarre regimen, that according to Carlin's interviews included a Landy goon holding a baseball bat standing behind Brian at the piano. That wasn't the case in 1994-5.
I've only listened to S&S a couple times, mainly for Willie, and Timothy B, but that project could have been a lot better. Imagine more A-list country singers being involved - Merle Haggard, Glen Campbell (that would seem to be a natural); whatever happened to the Tammy Wynette track? Of course the problem in 1996 was those artists were no longer popular on country radio. And that's what messes up so many of these projects - TRYING to be commercial, instead of just trying to make good music.

The Tammy Wynette track was released on this album:

https://www.amazon.com/Tammy-Wynette-Remembered-Various-Artists/dp/B00000ADGE
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Matt H
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« Reply #48 on: February 16, 2017, 02:35:45 PM »

I seem to remember reading that at one point Carl was going to guest on an Imagination song that was co-written by Van Dyke Parks, but that his health deteriorated too quickly.  I think I read that in an old ESQ that was dedicated to the Imagination record.
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CenturyDeprived
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« Reply #49 on: February 16, 2017, 02:55:34 PM »

I seem to remember reading that at one point Carl was going to guest on an Imagination song that was co-written by Van Dyke Parks, but that his health deteriorated too quickly.  I think I read that in an old ESQ that was dedicated to the Imagination record.

I wonder what Carl would have thought of the production style of Imagination. Maybe he would have sorta kinda dug it, since it's not all that far off from the AC sound of the Beckley-Lamm-Wilson stuff.
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