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Author Topic: Which BB songs could have been released incognito as being from another band?  (Read 1137 times)
CenturyDeprived
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« on: April 18, 2017, 12:04:29 PM »

Especially during the band’s Wilderness Era, when their popularity was floundering, it seems that The BBs were trying out all sorts of different styles. Almost throwing anything and everything against the wall to see what would stick. This led to lots of BB songs being recorded – which, while we know they are BB songs because we are huge fans who have collected all their material – I think could have been released under a completely different band name possibly without *anyone* really noticing/finding out. 

For example, a song like All I Want to Do, which features Mike sounding decidedly VERY much unlike his usual self, I think could have been released as a single under a completely different band name, and not one person would listen to it on the radio and say “hey… that’s Mike Love of The BBs! That’s clearly a BBs song!” Not one.

I’d almost say the same about Bluebirds Over the Mountain, even though it’s somewhat more identifiable as a BBs song compared to All I Want to Do.

How about Chasing The Sky? It’s about as un-Beach Boys sounding a track as they could have released (despite the harmonies in a few spots). The band hadn’t released any new, original songs for several years at that time, so I feel like if that song had been released on the same Up The Creek soundtrack under a different band name, maybe only a handful of people would recognize Carl’s voice and say “wait a minute here…”

Anyone feel the same, or have any other examples?
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« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2017, 12:16:27 PM »

I rather feel "Leaving This Town" fits the bill. I love that track, not least because of its extended Moog solo and Beatlish coda, but it and indeed "Sail On, Sailor" could have been released under another band name and very likely not have been uncovered.
 
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CenturyDeprived
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« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2017, 12:28:15 PM »

I rather feel "Leaving This Town" fits the bill. I love that track, not least because of its extended Moog solo and Beatlish coda, but it and indeed "Sail On, Sailor" could have been released under another band name and very likely not have been uncovered.
 

Totally agree about those. Good examples.

Even though Blondie is an obvious choice for a vocalist being very unrecognizable, I tend to think that in general, many of Carl's vocals might not have gone noticed. Yes, Carl sang the then-famous songs God Only Knows and Good Vibrations, but I kinda think that only Brian (in his classic falsetto mode) and Mike singing in his typical nasal voice would really have really tipped people off.

I think that perhaps quite a few Carl leads, like maybe even Feel Flows and Long Promised Road, could have been passed off as totally different bands, with nobody being the wiser.
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« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2017, 12:49:40 PM »

I think that perhaps quite a few Carl leads, like maybe even Feel Flows and Long Promised Road, could have been passed off as totally different bands, with nobody being the wiser.

Yes indeed (although those "pah pah, pah pah"s in the swirling middle eight of "LPR" just might make some listeners do a double-take).

And, I dare say, "The Trader" as well, with its uncharacteristic block vocal harmonies (but again, that Brianesque rising bass run might give it away)...

Great topic! All grist to the mill.
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« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2017, 01:06:22 PM »

In their heyday the most un-Beach Boys sounding song to me was Girl Don't Tell Me. Carl's vocal, no harmonies, acoustic instruments, celesta, no fade out.

Of the later songs, Leaving This Town definitely fits the "say what? The Beach Boys? No way!" mold.
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CenturyDeprived
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« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2017, 01:28:54 PM »

Another question I have, is if any of these songs (that were perhaps capable of having been released incognito) could have been a hit, or helped in the charts as a result of not having the "baggage" of The BBs' brand.

For example, I can't think that songs like Bluebirds Over the Mountain or All I Want to Do were actually helped by having The BBs' name attached to them. I think that sound didn't mesh with what people expected of the brand, but that those songs could have had more a chance at success if they were rebranded as being from another band. Maybe not the two best examples, as they aren't the most commercial songs in the world, but just making a point.
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« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2017, 02:07:54 PM »

I think Slip on Through could have been a hit under a different name - it's cool, progressive sounding and not very "Beach Boy-ish" even with the background vocals.

Gettin' Hungry feels like it could have been a hit - it feels like a weird summer of 67-68 type hit, same Wild Honey.

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« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2017, 02:09:13 PM »

Another question I have, is if any of these songs (that were perhaps capable of having been released incognito) could have been a hit, or helped in the charts as a result of not having the "baggage" of The BBs' brand.

Possibly the one Elizabeth mentions, "Girl Don't Tell Me", even if only because it would have been regarded as another great imitation Beatles song like "Lies" by The Knickerbockers.

"Girl Don't Tell Me" by The Jolly Hockey Sticks.  Cool Guy 
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« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2017, 06:25:09 PM »

The whole "Love You" album,,,It KIND of sounds like them but if it were released under another name, it would sound enough like them for people to wonder if it is really them or not...lol...Kind of like Klaatu ,who were allegedly the Beatles, although not really , although some of their songs, on their early albums, sound like they COULD be them...lol...
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« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2017, 06:35:07 PM »

Quote
I tend to think that in general, many of Carl's vocals might not have gone noticed. Yes, Carl sang the then-famous songs God Only Knows and Good Vibrations, but I kinda think that only Brian (in his classic falsetto mode) and Mike singing in his typical nasal voice would really have really tipped people off.
Disagree. Carl's voice is very recognizable.
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CenturyDeprived
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« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2017, 07:36:48 PM »

Quote
I tend to think that in general, many of Carl's vocals might not have gone noticed. Yes, Carl sang the then-famous songs God Only Knows and Good Vibrations, but I kinda think that only Brian (in his classic falsetto mode) and Mike singing in his typical nasal voice would really have really tipped people off.
Disagree. Carl's voice is very recognizable.

 
To us, maybe. But I'm not sure how many fans there were several decades ago who would instantly have picked out his voice on a random track on the radio without prompting -  especially if the track itself didn't particularly sound like what people would've expected from this band.  

Plus, I think the recognizability factor to his voice is only there in certain eras. Wild Honey era, Girl Don't Tell Me, and All Dressed Up For School (barring that one song's more recognizable BB backing vocals and musicianship) all may have never stood a chance at recognizability.

Separate question… I wonder if the band ever thought about releasing a song completely incognito.  Just for the hell of it.  To test the waters and see what would happen. I know it's happened with other bands before.  For this band, I'm guessing not, because they really valued the name, and were often afraid to venture out without it.
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« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2017, 07:43:11 PM »

A Day in the Life of a Tree - With the prominent organ and Rieley lead vocal, it reminds me of a Richard Wright sung Pink Floyd song.

Here She Comes - Much like Leaving This Town, sounds like a completely different band.

Steamboat - The David Gilmour esque guitar solo sets it apart from other BB songs.
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« Reply #12 on: April 18, 2017, 08:05:45 PM »

Leaving This Town
Here She Comes
Hold On Dear Brother
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« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2017, 08:08:27 PM »

Quote
Plus, I think the recognizability factor to his voice is only there in certain eras. Wild Honey era, Girl Don't Tell Me, and All Dressed Up For School (barring that one song's more recognizable BB backing vocals and musicianship) all may have never stood a chance at recognizability.
You mean to tell me that Carl weirdly sounds different there? Listen to GOK & "All Dressed Up" back to back - it's the same voice, for god's sake. The song & vocal style aside, what changed? It's clearly Carl in either track.
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« Reply #14 on: April 18, 2017, 08:28:25 PM »

Quote
Plus, I think the recognizability factor to his voice is only there in certain eras. Wild Honey era, Girl Don't Tell Me, and All Dressed Up For School (barring that one song's more recognizable BB backing vocals and musicianship) all may have never stood a chance at recognizability.
You mean to tell me that Carl weirdly sounds different there? Listen to GOK & "All Dressed Up" back to back - it's the same voice, for god's sake. The song & vocal style aside, what changed? It's clearly Carl in either track.

On those two tracks in particular, it took quite a bit of time as a fan to be able to discern the differences in terms of who is who, vocally speaking. It's easier for me to tell nowadays, about as effortlessly as you mentioned.  

But I definitely do not think that the average fan in that era would necessarily have been able to tell. And certainly when it comes to picking somebody out as a vocalist when the listener isn't being prompted beforehand, had a song was released under a different band name. Especially since music was not easily accessible in an iTunes playlist, I tend to think that people's ears were trained differently then compared to now.
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« Reply #15 on: April 18, 2017, 08:52:30 PM »

As new fan, I recognized it's Carl in both tracks right from the start. Again, it's the same voice, timbre & other characteristics that give away the "ID". I'd recognize him should he leave the band & join San Francisco Bay Area band - there were many during 60s - & be apponted lead singer performing completely different music. Whereas Mike-Al-Brian, maybe Dennis here & there could be very alike. See, listening experience differs from fan to fan. I say Carl is easy to pick, you say took time. Therefore, I stand by everything I said.
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« Reply #16 on: April 18, 2017, 11:27:20 PM »

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« Reply #17 on: April 19, 2017, 03:47:50 AM »

And, of course, there's "Student Demonstration Time"...
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« Reply #18 on: April 19, 2017, 07:25:41 AM »

I think most of the Holland album could pass as some semi-prog slick pop act of the Steely Dan/Floyd variety.
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« Reply #19 on: April 19, 2017, 10:30:08 AM »

I think most of the Holland album could pass as some semi-prog slick pop act of the Steely Dan/Floyd variety.

I was thinking that.  Only Caifornia Saga: California really harkens back to their classic sound
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« Reply #20 on: April 19, 2017, 11:06:00 AM »

As new fan, I recognized it's Carl in both tracks right from the start. Again, it's the same voice, timbre & other characteristics that give away the "ID". I'd recognize him should he leave the band & join San Francisco Bay Area band - there were many during 60s - & be apponted lead singer performing completely different music. Whereas Mike-Al-Brian, maybe Dennis here & there could be very alike. See, listening experience differs from fan to fan. I say Carl is easy to pick, you say took time. Therefore, I stand by everything I said.

That's cool, but I tend to think you're probably in the minority there (I could be wrong, of course) in terms of what listeners would have noticed, especially in the 1960s. And especially if it were Carl doing vocals in a more unusual manner, such as Darlin'.
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« Reply #21 on: April 19, 2017, 12:19:10 PM »

Maybe Feel Flows, which is a very different sounding Beach Boys song.
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« Reply #22 on: April 19, 2017, 05:26:25 PM »

As new fan, I recognized it's Carl in both tracks right from the start. Again, it's the same voice, timbre & other characteristics that give away the "ID". I'd recognize him should he leave the band & join San Francisco Bay Area band - there were many during 60s - & be apponted lead singer performing completely different music. Whereas Mike-Al-Brian, maybe Dennis here & there could be very alike. See, listening experience differs from fan to fan. I say Carl is easy to pick, you say took time. Therefore, I stand by everything I said.

That's cool, but I tend to think you're probably in the minority there (I could be wrong, of course) in terms of what listeners would have noticed, especially in the 1960s. And especially if it were Carl doing vocals in a more unusual manner, such as Darlin'.
That reference is well taken, as to this day I'd guess most casual radio listeners don't realize that Darlin' was from the Beach Boys.

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« Reply #23 on: April 19, 2017, 07:00:31 PM »

As new fan, I recognized it's Carl in both tracks right from the start. Again, it's the same voice, timbre & other characteristics that give away the "ID". I'd recognize him should he leave the band & join San Francisco Bay Area band - there were many during 60s - & be apponted lead singer performing completely different music. Whereas Mike-Al-Brian, maybe Dennis here & there could be very alike. See, listening experience differs from fan to fan. I say Carl is easy to pick, you say took time. Therefore, I stand by everything I said.

GDTM preceded GOK & GV so Carl's voice would have been largely unfamiliar.
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« Reply #24 on: April 19, 2017, 09:59:44 PM »

I think "Here Comes The Night," the original version. Brian's vocal is great, but it's not in his instantly-recognizable falsetto. And, like most of the songs on the "Wild Honey" album, there aren't a lot of harmonies, which were the Boys' calling card.

It's a great song, but one that doesn't scream "Beach Boys," if you didn't know it was them.
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