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Author Topic: What did the beach boys do better than the beatles?  (Read 3320 times)
guitarfool2002
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« Reply #25 on: December 02, 2017, 09:10:08 AM »

Getting back to Brian Wilson's role. One of the issues that gets bypassed too often in the discussions overall is how a kid (and I use that term as the industry saw these people and this music in the early 60's) was able to get almost full autonomy and control including a producer credit when he did, and given the state of the music business at the time.

It is amazing to me that a young guy with a few hit records under his belt was able to get that kind of creative control and credit on and from a label like Capitol, where they basically said if you keep cutting records like this for us, do whatever you want and record wherever you want. As long as you keep making those hits.

I can't think of anyone in that situation who was given such control at a young age and was able to keep cranking out the hits. The system at that time was to have a producer assigned by the label to oversee the process, and when the BB's first got into it, of course they had Nik Venet in that role. But he was soon gone from the credits and the nuts-and-bolts process.

Again it's the fact the Beach Boys had a performing member (leader) in-house doing all those roles and being allowed to do it within a corporate structure that did not allow for that kind of control or autonomy at that time, as a general rule.

I think if anything that aspect speaks volumes about the whole scene, and I go back to that being one of the primary sources of admiration coming from someone like George Martin, because he knew intimately what was involved in making the kinds of records The Beatles and Beach Boys were making, and was impressed if not in awe that one man (with one good ear) in the band was responsible for those roles.
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« Reply #26 on: December 02, 2017, 09:32:33 AM »

Late to this thread but, I think The Beach Boys made music for the soul, or as Carl put it music that "celebrated the joy of life".

The Beach Boys music is just so soulful (and I don't mean that in a R&B/Motown/Soul genre way). It just hits you right in the heart, in a way that no other band could match. When I hear that intro to California Girls just has so much power. Or even the beginning to Surfin' or Surfin' Safari make me nostalgic about surfing--- and I've never been surfing! I sang God Only Knows to girlfriend when she was going through some hard times, because if she would ever leave me, life would have gone on, but there would have been nothing the world could offer me! I suppose I'm going on a personal tangent, and now I'm just babbling, but the point I'm trying to make is that The Beach Boys music is for the heart. And that's, in my mind, what sets them apart (and slightly above) The Beatles.

And I LOVE The Beatles.
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KDS
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« Reply #27 on: December 02, 2017, 11:06:00 AM »

The one thing The Beach Boys did better than The Beatles - Christmas music.  

That too! I find Beatle xmas music dreadful.

Although, as a solo artist, John did write one iof the greatest Christmas songs of all time.  As a group, they could only muster Christmastime is Here Again.
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« Reply #28 on: December 02, 2017, 11:07:53 AM »

Im a huge Beach Boys fan, but I think its unfair to compare ANY band to The Beatles.

There are bands Im a bigger fan of, but nobody compares. 
Say what??  Huh Huh


Yep.  Just as Cal Ripken Jr is my all time favorite baseball player, but he doesnt compare to Babe Ruth
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« Reply #29 on: December 02, 2017, 05:09:55 PM »

Ok gonna throw in another band now.. The Bee Gees
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« Reply #30 on: December 02, 2017, 07:58:31 PM »

Ok gonna throw in another band now.. The Bee Gees

Off topic, but that picture of Dennis reminds me of Jeff Bridges in Starman (1984).
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« Reply #31 on: December 02, 2017, 08:41:00 PM »

Ok gonna throw in another band now.. The Bee Gees

Agreed. The Three B's it is for me, so close together in any record store bin. So few people truly get what a great a run of superb lp's they had from "The Bee Gees First" to "Mr. Natural", before the ubiquitous disco era (which I now adore, but didn't back then). One gorgeous, indelible melody after another, eccentric lyrics, and a beautiful blend that only shared DNA can make possible (Louvins, Everlys, Wilsons, etc). First, Horizontal, Idea, , Odessa(!) (and they had Stigwood for orchestral accompaniment) , Cucumber Castle, Trafalgar, 2 Years On, To Whom It May Concern, Life in a Tin Can...love em all. (Especially Odessa). Barry's "a (melodic) genius too..."
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« Reply #32 on: December 03, 2017, 06:28:22 AM »

The Beach Boys sang better than the Beatles.

John, Paul and George wrote better lyrics then any of The Beach Boys.

In 1965and 1966 when both Bands were at their creative peak The Beach Boys peak was higher than that of the Beatles.
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« Reply #33 on: December 03, 2017, 11:02:33 AM »

Snatch defeat from the jaws of victory?

Ok too harsh. Iím sure if the Beatles had continued they would have made some career miscalculations as well. McCartneys snub of the Beatles Hall of Fame induction in 88 was a shot in his own foot, not unlike Mikes speech.
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« Reply #34 on: December 03, 2017, 11:52:14 AM »

The Beach Boys sang better than the Beatles.

John, Paul and George wrote better lyrics then any of The Beach Boys.

In 1965and 1966 when both Bands were at their creative peak The Beach Boys peak was higher than that of the Beatles.

The Beach Boys sang ballads and harmony better than Bech Boys.  But on the rockers both John and Paul out sang any and all of the Boys including Carl.

At his best Brian and his collaborators wrote lyrics that matched or surpassed the best of the Beatles' lyrics.  But at his worst Brian and the other writers in The Beach Boys outstank any Beatles lyric by a wide margin.
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« Reply #35 on: December 03, 2017, 11:59:09 AM »

https://solobeatles.com/2012/03/12/solo-beatles-1-singles/

To say the the solo releases of the Beatles only had 3 memorable songs is not true, just check out the above link and as of 2012 the solo releases (and Wings), collectively, add up to 20 number one hits..and there are also memorable songs not even on that list can you say "Give peace a chance"," starting over" and "watching the wheels" just to mention a couple that are obviously memorable. Comparing the Beach Boys with the Beatles are like comparing apples to oranges. They both have their merits,.
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« Reply #36 on: December 03, 2017, 06:14:39 PM »

Brian was a singer , composer, producer ( better than G. Martin ). He was a more sophisticated artist than any solo Beatle and was more of a powerhouse than any of them and much more misunderstood by the public than any of them. His music was quite often understated which went above most peoples heads.
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« Reply #37 on: December 03, 2017, 07:40:06 PM »

Reading through some of the opinions and comments in this discussion about the Beatles, I'm a little shocked. I just got through watching the documentary "Eight Days A Week" on the local PBS station, and it's followed tonight by the documentary on Sgt Pepper that came out this year. So I'm a little biased in the moment.

But I go back to something Jim wrote in another thread about being so wrapped up in one specific music or artist, whether it be the Beach Boys or someone else, to the point where the perspective gets skewed as to all the other good if not amazing music that is out there, and therefore how to judge for ourselves what is good music. Jim's comments stuck with me, they were really insightful in that regard.

But I'd encourage everyone who has not seen it to listen to some Beatles, watch the documentary Eight Days A Week, the Pepper film, Anthology, even dust off a copy of Beatles For Sale or Revolver or any of their albums or collections and listen. If you like it or don't like it, that's everyone's perogative.

But it really surprises me whenever these Beatles v. Beach Boys talks pop up that it can feel like we're comparing Freddie And The Dreamers to the Beach Boys or something.

It's good to be reminded of what's being compared by simply listening. Both groups were different and special in their own way.
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« Reply #38 on: December 03, 2017, 10:41:55 PM »

It can never be more than subjective. For some of us, the Beatles do nothing for us, despite repeated listens. Nothing to be shocked about.

I do find this disbelief common with Beatles fans though, no offense to you there GF.

This incredulous cry of "How can you not like the Beatles???"

It only serves to reinforce my opinion.
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« Reply #39 on: December 04, 2017, 02:29:49 AM »

It can never be more than subjective. For some of us, the Beatles do nothing for us, despite repeated listens. Nothing to be shocked about.

I do find this disbelief common with Beatles fans though, no offense to you there GF.

This incredulous cry of "How can you not like the Beatles???"

It only serves to reinforce my opinion.

Some Beatles songs do something for me, but by no means everything! I had them constantly rammed down my throat at school in the UK, which has coloured my view of them ever since. So yes, never more than subjective.   
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« Reply #40 on: December 04, 2017, 04:06:05 AM »

It can never be more than subjective. For some of us, the Beatles do nothing for us, despite repeated listens. Nothing to be shocked about.

I do find this disbelief common with Beatles fans though, no offense to you there GF.

This incredulous cry of "How can you not like the Beatles???"

It only serves to reinforce my opinion.

No incredulous crying here, just mild disbelief at the lack of objectivity. Different schools of thought, though.
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« Reply #41 on: December 04, 2017, 05:27:48 AM »

Everything?

Nothing? ... Maybe somewhere in between?

It's interesting to think about, but I disagree with most that has been written in this thread. Dennis was cooler, because John was less cool at times? Dennis had his uncool moments (or years) too. Drop George Martin from the Beatles equation? Okay, are we dropping the wrecking crew too? To say Brian did more for the BBs than any individual Beatle did for the Beatles doesn't speak to what one group did better than the other. The only memorable solo Beatle songs are 'Band On The Run', 'My Sweet Lord', and 'Imagine'? Gee, shall we apply this strict standard to the BBs later material? Christmas music? We can do this all day, the BBs were better at everything the Beatles didn't attempt to do, and the Beatles were better at things the BBs didn't attempt. Mike is more spiritual than George? How many 'My Sweet Lord's did he write?

Sorry if that sounds harsh. Just didn't seem balanced enough for me.

I agree.   Fandom is funny that way.  When the Yankees Aaron Judge deservedly won the AL Rookie of the Year last month, there was a segment of Baltimore Orioles fans who cried fowl thinking it was Yankee bias that gave Judge the award over Orioles rookie Trey Mancini. 

I basically put Christmas music down half jokingly because the Beach Boys did a full fledged Christmas album, and The Beatles did a song segment for their fan club. 

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« Reply #42 on: December 04, 2017, 06:18:21 AM »

My two all time favourite bands are The Beatles & The Beach Boys. But to me The Beatles never made me as happy or as sad as Beach Boys music could. Listening to Pets Sounds makes me so emotional and often leads me to cry,Sgt Pepper is a perfect album but I don't really have a very deep emotional connection to it.

This one speaks for me as well...although, given the lack of a very deep emotional [or spiritual for that matter] connection...I would also, personally, put Bob Marley and the Wailers ahead of the Beatles as well.
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« Reply #43 on: December 04, 2017, 07:28:18 AM »

What did the Beach Boys do better than the Beatles?

I don't know, but the Beach Boys touched my heart and the Beatles didn't.
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« Reply #44 on: December 04, 2017, 07:34:48 AM »

Objectively, the Beach Boys sang more intricate multi-part harmonies than the Beatles did on record. And that's about it.

If we're trying to quantify something one did *better* than the other. Literally everything else either the Beatles measurably did better at, or it's completely subjective.

"The Beach Boys touched me more than the Beatles"; that's subjective. Which is fine.

I'm just not a fan of this sort of stuff, where we can like both bands and find them equally great in whatever measures we choose. Threads like this tend to come across as another of many BB fan hangups about the Beatles being more popular than the BBs.
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« Reply #45 on: December 04, 2017, 07:36:56 AM »

The Beach Boys sang better than the Beatles.

John, Paul and George wrote better lyrics then any of The Beach Boys.

In 1965and 1966 when both Bands were at their creative peak The Beach Boys peak was higher than that of the Beatles.

"Rubber Soul" is front to back (US or UK version) stronger than any '65 BB album. I'd put "Help" up against either as well. The highs of the BB albums are right up there with the Beatles. But as *albums*, there's still more lows/fillers on BB albums. It's once again why I posit than PS is amazing more than anything not due to some unifying feeling or theme, but because they're simply *all* great songs. Though "Revolver" is its equal and I'd say probably better.
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« Reply #46 on: December 04, 2017, 07:58:40 AM »

What did the Beach Boys do better than the Beatles?

I don't know, but the Beach Boys touched my heart and the Beatles didn't.

This is why I think The Beach Boys are the better band. There is something spiritual connected with The Beach Boys Music, itís a feeling I donít get when listening to the Beatles. I think itís the harmonies and the angelic voices that completely soar above the Beatles. In regards to hits, the Beatles knock it out of the park - there are some moments in their songs (be they chord changes, lyrics, or experimental instrumentation) that blow me away as much as the greatest Beach Boys music. But there is an atmosphere in Beach Boys songs that has never been duplicated by anyone.
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« Reply #47 on: December 04, 2017, 08:09:27 AM »

No incredulous crying here, just mild disbelief at the lack of objectivity. Different schools of thought, though.

How can it be objective?

Define 'better'

Were the Beatles better instrumentalists than the Beach Boys? To answer that objectively you'd first need to define a sytem of judging rock playing in a way that eveyone hearing it agrees on. It would need to be a consistent, cross-genre scale of judging. Would it be purely technical? A big problem would be that rock is generally not written down, so there would be no score to consult. At least in a classical performance you could judge a players expressive capabilities by seeing how they interpret a score.  How is that possible with rock? You have no frame of reference.

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

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

I think Baroque music is better than Hip Hop. I could give 100 reasons why. Why am I right and some kid in New York wrong? Unless we have a frame of reference we can agree on, it is subjective.

Sorry to give you aestetics 101, I'm sure you know all this already. And I would defend your right to love the Beatles to the death.

What I don't like though, is having my opinion met with any sort of shock or disbelief.

Or judgement.

It's snobbery of the worst kind.

Rant over, you know I love you guys.......
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« Reply #48 on: December 04, 2017, 08:22:04 AM »

Beatles had two great musicians, Paul and Ringo

Beach Boys had longevity, better songs

Beach Boys had Dennis, how cool is that


Just Paul and Ringo? LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL

What about those other two guys?
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« Reply #49 on: December 04, 2017, 08:31:56 AM »

I believe the Beach Boys top the Beatles in terms of:

Vocal Harmony

Production/Arrangement (in general, backing tracks are more orchestral, specifically 1964-1968)



For example, compare what the two groups were doing in the studio at the end of 1964.  Compare the backing track of In the Back of My Mind with stuff from Beatles for Sale.

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