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Author Topic: Have the Beach Boys ever had any good film/video promos?  (Read 1696 times)
GoogaMooga
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« on: May 30, 2018, 11:53:13 AM »

Haven't seen too many, and I suppose I could just go to youtube, but what do you say? Certainly the promos for Pet Sounds were among the weirdest: the one in the pool, Mike with a Halloween mask, etc. "Summer in Paradise" was an okay promo, surprisingly good for something off that dud album. But I really can't think of any perfect sound and vision matches offhand.

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« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2018, 12:07:30 PM »

I like the one for California Dreaminí.
https://youtu.be/1Nuzp4QxAuM

Also this one that was made for Donít Worry Baby (long after the song came out though).
https://youtu.be/Yv6B6nIzwKI
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« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2018, 01:19:07 PM »

The general answer is no, not particularly. The simple performance-based ones are sometimes okay. "California Dreamin'" is an exception. Most everything else in terms of staged "promo films/videos", especially in the MTV era, is pretty awful and embarrassing.
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« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2018, 03:50:47 PM »

Most embarrassing is the Summer of Love Baywatch mess....just awful doesn't do it justice. Rock n Roll to the Rescue pretty lame too. California Dreaming likely the best, most classy effort.
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« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2018, 04:34:30 PM »

While the video for the TWGMTR single had every beach cliche going, the quality was pretty high IMO.

https://youtu.be/VAmk-Wk2pNA

I also thought the various reunion shorts were well done also.

https://youtu.be/e-9y3cwnakk
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HeyJude
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« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2018, 06:43:14 AM »

Most embarrassing is the Summer of Love Baywatch mess....just awful doesn't do it justice. Rock n Roll to the Rescue pretty lame too. California Dreaming likely the best, most classy effort.

I'm guessing (hoping?) that because that Baywatch bit for "Summer of Love", while presented as a "video", was done about three years after the SIP album had come out, that it was never actually pulled and aired as a "music video" anywhere beyond those airings of that Baywatch episode.

It *did* give us one of the more infamous, out-of-context pics of Brian and Mike together:

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« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2018, 07:15:18 AM »

The Beach Boys were never that great at the visual aspect IMO.   Their promos / videos, album art, and fashion always seemed out of step with their peers. 

As mentioned, the Sloop and Pet Sounds promos are decent, or at least interesting.   I haven't decided in California Dreamin's video was well done, or a poor attempt at an uber serious video. 

Summer of Love makes no sense to me.   Why chose the worst song from a three year old album to promote on the Baywatch thing.   They couldn't chosen any other song from their catalog. 

There's plenty of clips of The Beach Boys miming their songs from early 60s TV appearances to the MTV heavy rotation Kokomo video, and I think most of them are pretty decent.   Though the clip (I believe from Sullivan) of The Boys miming to Don't Worry Baby without their instruments as if they were a doo wop group was a bit of a misstep. 
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HeyJude
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« Reply #7 on: May 31, 2018, 08:04:36 AM »

The "Don't Worry Baby" 60s clip is from "American Bandstand", and is probably more interesting for the interview Dick Clark has with the group and specifically Brian.

Here's an even weirder thing that I'm hopefully recalling correctly: They had a "Beatles Week" sort of thing back in the 90s on VH1, and they aired an entire Beatles-themed 1964 episode of "American Bandstand." The show was rather infamous for having never been able to secure an actual performance from the Beatles (they played some promo films at various points, most infamously "Strawberry Fields Forever"), so my recollection is that they had to pad the episode out with a bunch of dancing to Beatles records, newsreel footage, etc. But, smack dab in the middle of the Beatles episode? The Beach Boys miming to "Don't Worry Baby!"

At least twice in their career (the other time being the film "The Girls on the Beach" if you're familiar with the plot), the Beach Boys were weirdly forced to play second fiddle not even to the actual Beatles, but second fiddle to the Beatles *not* showing up to perform.
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« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2018, 12:19:43 PM »

I like the one for California Dreaminí.
https://youtu.be/1Nuzp4QxAuM

Also this one that was made for Donít Worry Baby (long after the song came out though).
https://youtu.be/Yv6B6nIzwKI
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« Reply #9 on: May 31, 2018, 09:46:50 PM »

How is everyone forgetting the Good Vibrations promo film, shot in Fall '66 conceived and directed by Brian and featuring the camera work of Caleb Deschanel, father of Zooey and soon to become a highly successful cinematographer on his own?

There was a time on this board and others when I would have great discussions analyzing that film with the likes of Bill Tobelman and others, who saw more to the imagery and choices made in that film than what's on the surface. I think it's brilliant, and both perplexing and sometimes silly at the same time.

But it exists as a visual/film look inside what could have been the peak of the Smile-era creativity for Brian, Fall '66, when anything was possible. And it has some great candid Hollywood imagery as well, some streets and buildings that still exist as they did on that film and some that do not.

I'd say the GV promo - and the PS promo in the woods - are indeed good promos. Very much in line with what music promos were in 1966 that were not Scopitones or films of the bands miming the songs on a soundstage. Neat stuff.
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« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2018, 04:55:24 AM »

I like the one for California Dreaminí.
https://youtu.be/1Nuzp4QxAuM

Also this one that was made for Donít Worry Baby (long after the song came out though).
https://youtu.be/Yv6B6nIzwKI
Alexandra Morgan... Brings in a cuppa..


That is Alexandra Morgan?
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HeyJude
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« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2018, 06:27:49 AM »

Regarding the "Good Vibrations" promo film, I'm sure part of the lack of acute awareness of the film among some fans and the lack of it having a more widespread iconic stature is probably due to its availability or lack thereof over the years.

It has been released on a couple of "bonus" DVDs in the last decade or so in one or two "Pet Sounds" sets. Prior to that, it wasn't super easy to even track down and see outside of video trading circles.

It also doesn't help that it appears no restoration/HD scan has been done on the film. In other words, it has always looked rather murky and of relatively low quality. Even the official version on the official BB YouTube channel still looks like a 30-year-old video transfer of an old film print or something.

Even on the "Endless Harmony" documentary or the "Sight and Sounds of Summer" bonus DVD, they chose to go with the '68 Ed Sullivan Show GV performance to represent the song.

Pretty much anything the BBs did in the 60s, including the relative hand full of non-performance based promo films (e.g. "Friends") are more interesting than what they churned out in the 80s or 90s. But it's understandable that the original '66 GV promo film isn't as iconic as it could have been. I think it's interesting and I'm all for analysis of it. I'm not sure how substantive I think it ultimately is, but I appreciate that some thought went into it, and I'd love to see an HD scan (of even a film print if the negative is long gone).
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« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2018, 07:48:47 PM »

The video from a few years ago for ďCalifornia FeelingĒ is cheesy, but in a delightful, comfortable way.

https://youtu.be/URXUXbHoNt4
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Rocky Raccoon
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« Reply #13 on: June 02, 2018, 10:23:59 PM »

Regarding the "Good Vibrations" promo film, I'm sure part of the lack of acute awareness of the film among some fans the lack of it having a more widespread iconic stature is probably due to its availability or lack thereof over the years.

It has been released on a couple of "bonus" DVDs in the last decade or so in one or two "Pet Sounds" sets. Prior to that, it wasn't super easy to even track down and see outside of video trading circles.

It also doesn't help that it appears no restoration/HD scan has been done on the film. In other words, it has always looked rather murky and of relatively low quality. Even the official version on the official BB YouTube channel still looks like a 30-year-old video transfer of an old film print or something.

Even on the "Endless Harmony" documentary or the "Sight and Sounds of Summer" bonus DVD, they chose to go with the '68 Ed Sullivan Show GV performance to represent the song.

Pretty much anything the BBs did in the 60s, including the relative hand full of non-performance based promo films (e.g. "Friends") are more interesting than what they churned out in the 80s or 90s. But it's understandable that the original '66 GV promo film isn't as iconic as it could have been. I think it's interesting and I'm all for analysis of it. I'm not sure how substantive I think it ultimately is, but I appreciate that some thought went into it, and I'd love to see an HD scan (of even a film print if the negative is long gone).

 Thereís another Good Vibrations video from around 1970 I think with the guys miming while being embraced by some scantily clad women.  I saw it on YouTube some years ago but like with most rare Beach Boys clips, itís since been taken down sadly and I havenít seen it anywhere else since.
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William Bowe
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« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2018, 12:24:05 AM »

No. None.
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Custom Machine
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« Reply #15 on: June 03, 2018, 04:06:11 PM »

How is everyone forgetting the Good Vibrations promo film, shot in Fall '66 conceived and directed by Brian and featuring the camera work of Caleb Deschanel, father of Zooey and soon to become a highly successful cinematographer on his own?

There was a time on this board and others when I would have great discussions analyzing that film with the likes of Bill Tobelman and others, who saw more to the imagery and choices made in that film than what's on the surface. I think it's brilliant, and both perplexing and sometimes silly at the same time.

But it exists as a visual/film look inside what could have been the peak of the Smile-era creativity for Brian, Fall '66, when anything was possible. And it has some great candid Hollywood imagery as well, some streets and buildings that still exist as they did on that film and some that do not.

I'd say the GV promo - and the PS promo in the woods - are indeed good promos. Very much in line with what music promos were in 1966 that were not Scopitones or films of the bands miming the songs on a soundstage. Neat stuff.


Going back to an earlier thread on the subject, it seems to have been the editing work of Caleb Deschanel, rather than the camera work:



Not be confrontational but that film was edited together for a Good Vibrations promo film clip, it's been all but proven and when that film clip was first aired decades after it's original broadcast (which Andrew among others saw in the 60's and can back it up), it later was part of a Beach Boys video collection for AMC network's "Am Pop" series in the early 2000's. Alan Boyd compiled those clips, and this was among them. That is where I first saw it. Mr. Boyd himself can back that up. The original intent of that film was for Good Vibrations.

Here's a recent post from Alan about it:

I recently got in touch with Caleb Deschanel, and asked him about that Good Vibrations film.  it turns out he didn't actually shoot that promo....but he did cut the negative!  He was studying at USC at the time, and a call came in asking if one of the students in the film department would be interested in helping out with the post-production.  When fellow student George Lucas turned down the gig, Caleb took it on.

As far as the editing and filming, it would seem some famous names in the film industry were involved. Caleb Deschanel, famous in the industry as a cinematographer, is of course also the father of sisters Zoe and Emily whom we know. George Lucas was also a film student when he was asked to help with the editing of the Good Vibrations clip. Sure, it's a bit haphazard by modern standards but no more scattershot than the clips of Paperback Writer, Rain, etc. which The Beatles had been doing earlier in 1966 for similar purposes and continued doing in place of touring and live appearances on television to promote singles. The raw nature of these gives them some charm, IMO.

Michael Vosse, David Anderle - both men have spoken about this clip, with one of them suggesting it was a "distraction" for Brian to work on it at this time: I believe one of them mentions it specifically as the GV promo film though I could be wrong.

I think the evidence for this being filmed as a Good Vibrations promotional clip outweighs the evidence of it *not* being for that purpose. The producers and editors of American Band were the ones who confused the issue when they cut the film to "Fire" in the early 80's. That was not the original intent nor the original editing of the footage. If I'm wrong I'm wrong but I'm pretty confident with all the evidence to support it.

While the Good Vibrations promo film was shown in the UK at the time, but to the best of my knowledge not in the US, I will also add that if the original filming was in fact done specifically for a Good Vibrations promo film, it is a rather bizarre presentation for such a film, but not out of character for something Brian Wilson would have suggested back then.

And finally, has the mystery ever been solved - Who is the girl with the basketball?

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,11011.0.html
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« Reply #16 on: June 03, 2018, 07:01:06 PM »

Yeah, the Somewhere Near Japan music video is a good one. low-key with imagery that compliments the song. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1LE3dpoTOvA
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« Reply #17 on: June 03, 2018, 07:38:35 PM »

How is everyone forgetting the Good Vibrations promo film, shot in Fall '66 conceived and directed by Brian and featuring the camera work of Caleb Deschanel, father of Zooey and soon to become a highly successful cinematographer on his own?

There was a time on this board and others when I would have great discussions analyzing that film with the likes of Bill Tobelman and others, who saw more to the imagery and choices made in that film than what's on the surface. I think it's brilliant, and both perplexing and sometimes silly at the same time.

But it exists as a visual/film look inside what could have been the peak of the Smile-era creativity for Brian, Fall '66, when anything was possible. And it has some great candid Hollywood imagery as well, some streets and buildings that still exist as they did on that film and some that do not.

I'd say the GV promo - and the PS promo in the woods - are indeed good promos. Very much in line with what music promos were in 1966 that were not Scopitones or films of the bands miming the songs on a soundstage. Neat stuff.


Going back to an earlier thread on the subject, it seems to have been the editing work of Caleb Deschanel, rather than the camera work:



Not be confrontational but that film was edited together for a Good Vibrations promo film clip, it's been all but proven and when that film clip was first aired decades after it's original broadcast (which Andrew among others saw in the 60's and can back it up), it later was part of a Beach Boys video collection for AMC network's "Am Pop" series in the early 2000's. Alan Boyd compiled those clips, and this was among them. That is where I first saw it. Mr. Boyd himself can back that up. The original intent of that film was for Good Vibrations.

Here's a recent post from Alan about it:

I recently got in touch with Caleb Deschanel, and asked him about that Good Vibrations film.  it turns out he didn't actually shoot that promo....but he did cut the negative!  He was studying at USC at the time, and a call came in asking if one of the students in the film department would be interested in helping out with the post-production.  When fellow student George Lucas turned down the gig, Caleb took it on.

As far as the editing and filming, it would seem some famous names in the film industry were involved. Caleb Deschanel, famous in the industry as a cinematographer, is of course also the father of sisters Zoe and Emily whom we know. George Lucas was also a film student when he was asked to help with the editing of the Good Vibrations clip. Sure, it's a bit haphazard by modern standards but no more scattershot than the clips of Paperback Writer, Rain, etc. which The Beatles had been doing earlier in 1966 for similar purposes and continued doing in place of touring and live appearances on television to promote singles. The raw nature of these gives them some charm, IMO.

Michael Vosse, David Anderle - both men have spoken about this clip, with one of them suggesting it was a "distraction" for Brian to work on it at this time: I believe one of them mentions it specifically as the GV promo film though I could be wrong.

I think the evidence for this being filmed as a Good Vibrations promotional clip outweighs the evidence of it *not* being for that purpose. The producers and editors of American Band were the ones who confused the issue when they cut the film to "Fire" in the early 80's. That was not the original intent nor the original editing of the footage. If I'm wrong I'm wrong but I'm pretty confident with all the evidence to support it.

While the Good Vibrations promo film was shown in the UK at the time, but to the best of my knowledge not in the US, I will also add that if the original filming was in fact done specifically for a Good Vibrations promo film, it is a rather bizarre presentation for such a film, but not out of character for something Brian Wilson would have suggested back then.

And finally, has the mystery ever been solved - Who is the girl with the basketball?

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,11011.0.html


Borrowing a phrase from the late, great voice of Mel Allen - "How about that!"  LOL

It's good the archives for this place exist and hold such things from the past. I forgot about that entirely, and it was my post! Ahh, the memory failures of getting old(er) and busier. Too bad the Smile Shop archives don't exist the same way.

Anyway, yes Alan Boyd did clarify that. BUT - The photo of Brian with the cameraman shooting the GV film...it looks kinda like Caleb Deschanel holding the camera, but looks can be deceiving. If it's not him, I wonder who it is. I thought for years the photo was of Caleb and Brian. Hmm.

I think the film is very much in line with what Brian was thinking and doing at the time, specifically surrounding Smile. Think conceptual humor and even more, think "elements" and some shots in the film might make more sense.

I have absolutely, positively no doubt the footage was created for a GV promo - It's mentioned specifically by people who were there and in the film, and mentioned in a period article as the next film being sent to the UK for broadcast on TV...the article was covering the BB's in England and ready to appear on RSG.

Some scenes in the film are also "cut" to the beats of the song GV. Check it out - it's pretty cool.

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"Every single person who criticized Brian for having She & Him, Kacey Musgraves, Sebu and Nate Ruess guesting on his solo album can now officially go heartily f*** themselves." - Wirestone
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« Reply #18 on: June 03, 2018, 10:46:27 PM »

I read the GV clip discussion thread back when I found this board, very interesting & intriguing case. To this day am not sure who's that girl playing ball. If I rmbr it well, Jon Stebbins said she looks like The Rovell sisters & by process of elimination said it's Barbara. But the airport picture where she stands with boyfriend, she's got little different face than ball-bouncing girl. Did this puzzling case get the answer? By the by, the way clip goes does fit at times the rhythm, the way the BBs song goes.
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« Reply #19 on: June 04, 2018, 06:34:46 PM »

I really dig the "Long Promised Road" one with Carl:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NVoDULF4sAM
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« Reply #20 on: June 04, 2018, 08:17:24 PM »

I read the GV clip discussion thread back when I found this board, very interesting & intriguing case. To this day am not sure who's that girl playing ball. If I rmbr it well, Jon Stebbins said she looks like The Rovell sisters & by process of elimination said it's Barbara. But the airport picture where she stands with boyfriend, she's got little different face than ball-bouncing girl. Did this puzzling case get the answer? By the by, the way clip goes does fit at times the rhythm, the way the BBs song goes.

In this case, and I may need to reupload the photos I originally posted 7 years ago or whenever in that original discussion, since my photo host site changed their terms and blocked the uploads, we have multiple photos of Barbara Rovell at the LAX airport from almost exactly the same time frame as when the GV film was shot. If you compare the images, the girl bouncing the red ball in the GV film does not look like Barbara, whether it be facial features, body type, or even the hair.

But considering the internet memes that went viral over whether that dress was blue or if the guy was saying Yanny or Laurel, some see/hear what they want to see/hear whether it's accurate or not.  Grin

And yes, I'll repeat again and suggest fans who haven't delved as deep into the GV film yet watch it with an eye toward how the edits and cuts at specific points match the song GV. It is indeed pretty cool if you pay attention to the rhythm of some of the editing work that was done.
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ďSome people think you have to knock somebody down in order to build yourself up, I donít look at it that way. To the mentality that likes to disparage other people, I say perhaps you should get a life. Itís just wrong thinking in my opinion and I donít mind saying that.Ē - Mike Love

"Every single person who criticized Brian for having She & Him, Kacey Musgraves, Sebu and Nate Ruess guesting on his solo album can now officially go heartily f*** themselves." - Wirestone
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