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Author Topic: Brianís involvement in solo albums  (Read 5620 times)
Austin Shields
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« on: July 22, 2021, 09:33:52 AM »

In reading about the reevaluation of some of Brianís solo albums, it brought up a question Iíve always wanted to ask here. What is Brianís actual degree of involvement in the songwriting and production of his solo albums? I find it hard to fully enjoy a lot of these albums, because it seems so many others were involved with them, that there wasnít a lot of pure Brian input. I also know he has to deal with mental illness, and wonder how much this affects his abilities to oversee projects.

I remember when the Wild Honey and Friends box sets came out, everyone was excited to hear how much Brian had produced these albums. I wish we had something similar with the solo albums to shed some light.

Thanks for any answers.
« Last Edit: July 22, 2021, 09:37:48 AM by Austin Shields » Logged
phirnis
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« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2021, 10:32:02 AM »

I have no facts to back up my personal impressions, so this is all speculation based on years of listening. For me, the American Spring album feels like the starting point for all the Brian projects where it's hard to tell how much of an impact he really had. I hear lots of "pure Brian" on BW88 and the TLOS demos. It's different with stuff like Imagination where I'm convinced that Brian really wanted to make this album because he was hoping for a hit record; but does it sound like a real Brian (co-)production? It depends on the song I guess but overall, not really, to me anyway. I would really love to know how much he was involved in creating the arrangements for the Gershwin album.
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Wirestone
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« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2021, 10:50:01 AM »

It varied, and that's okay.

Was it like the '60s? Nope. Was he coherent and contributing? Sure.

Some projects, he spearheaded the songwriting. On others, he played more of a support role.

Ditto for production and arranging.

The main point is this -- no one (with the possible exception of Landy) ever shut him down or muzzled him in the studio. When he had something to contribute, his band and everyone around him rushed to make it happen.

It's also true that Brian has recorded a fair amount for his own enjoyment, bringing his band together to play covers, and those pieces have never been released. I recall being told a wild story about him recording an ... unusual .... take on Dylan's Mr. Tambourine Man back in the oughts with electronic percussion.
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juggler
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« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2021, 11:26:49 AM »


It's also true that Brian has recorded a fair amount for his own enjoyment, bringing his band together to play covers, and those pieces have never been released. I recall being told a wild story about him recording an ... unusual .... take on Dylan's Mr. Tambourine Man back in the oughts with electronic percussion.


You're absolutely right about Brian recording for his own enjoyment.  His son-in-law Rob Bonfiglio (Carnie's husband) had this to say five years ago:

There was a brief moment in time when Brian would come by our house and simply want to have fun in the studio without any pretense. Kind of a mini ďBasement TapesĒ sort of thing. I have the recordings we did, and they really evoke a sort of Love You-era Beach Boys vibe. Brian would say, ďDo you have such and such a sound on this keyboard?Ē and Iíd dial it up for him, and weíd build a track like that, add percussion and heíd sing, Carnie would sing, and I would sing, and a track would be born.  Needless to say, Iíd love to someday finish what we started!
https://www.rockcellarmagazine.com/rob-bonfiglio-interview-guitarist-songwriter-wanderlust-wilson-phillips-the-tribe-power-pop/
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maggie
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« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2021, 04:55:01 PM »

In reading about the reevaluation of some of Brianís solo albums, it brought up a question Iíve always wanted to ask here. What is Brianís actual degree of involvement in the songwriting and production of his solo albums? I find it hard to fully enjoy a lot of these albums, because it seems so many others were involved with them, that there wasnít a lot of pure Brian input. I also know he has to deal with mental illness, and wonder how much this affects his abilities to oversee projects.

I remember when the Wild Honey and Friends box sets came out, everyone was excited to hear how much Brian had produced these albums. I wish we had something similar with the solo albums to shed some light.

Thanks for any answers.

There are a lot of conspiracy theories about Brian's capabilities or lack thereof, and generally I find them unconvincing. Yes, many of the 21st-century Brian projects are collaborative, but I think there's ample evidence of who did what. Tl;Dr: essentially Brian generates the melodies and vocal arrangements, and the rest is collaborative to varying degrees.

Some basics that I've put together over the years:

Imagination/That's Why God/No Pier Pressure: apparently these all drew from a common well of songs where generally Joe Thomas would be running through progressions and if Brian heard something he liked, he would improvise a melody on top. Joe would then wrangle this material into songs. Then for the first two projects Brian would focus on the vocal arrangements while Joe would arrange the band. For No Pier Pressure, Joe left the project fairly early on and Brian worked with Paul von Mertens and the guests on the arrangements.

Gershwin/Disney: Paul von Mertens would work up the basic band arrangements which Brian would modify to greater or lesser degrees as he saw fit. Paul would then handle the orchestrations while Brian arranged the vocals

Christmas: I think Brian was really in the driver's seat for this one. The two new songs were repurposed from existing, relatively recent Brian compositions.

Smile: Darian Sahanaja essentially put this together, albeit in close consultation with Brian

I Just Wasn't Made...: Reportedly no production/arrangement involvement from Brian

That Lucky Old Sun: Brian generated all the basic tunes in what was apparently a tremendous late rush of creativity, some of the lyrics, and the basic band arrangements, which Scott Bennett then had the job of reshaping -- to make everything fit together, changing tempos and dynamics, adding instruments, reconfiguring songs and then writing the bulk of the lyrics to fit the theme.

I'm sure I've made some mistakes here but that's what I gather off the top of my head. I haven't mentioned the 1988 album or Gettin In Over My Head because those projects are a bit more mysterious.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2021, 04:57:50 PM by maggie » Logged
thetojo
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« Reply #5 on: July 25, 2021, 08:07:16 PM »

In reading about the reevaluation of some of Brianís solo albums, it brought up a question Iíve always wanted to ask here. What is Brianís actual degree of involvement in the songwriting and production of his solo albums? I find it hard to fully enjoy a lot of these albums, because it seems so many others were involved with them, that there wasnít a lot of pure Brian input. I also know he has to deal with mental illness, and wonder how much this affects his abilities to oversee projects.

I remember when the Wild Honey and Friends box sets came out, everyone was excited to hear how much Brian had produced these albums. I wish we had something similar with the solo albums to shed some light.

Thanks for any answers.

There are a lot of conspiracy theories about Brian's capabilities or lack thereof, and generally I find them unconvincing. Yes, many of the 21st-century Brian projects are collaborative, but I think there's ample evidence of who did what. Tl;Dr: essentially Brian generates the melodies and vocal arrangements, and the rest is collaborative to varying degrees.

Some basics that I've put together over the years:

Imagination/That's Why God/No Pier Pressure: apparently these all drew from a common well of songs where generally Joe Thomas would be running through progressions and if Brian heard something he liked, he would improvise a melody on top. Joe would then wrangle this material into songs. Then for the first two projects Brian would focus on the vocal arrangements while Joe would arrange the band. For No Pier Pressure, Joe left the project fairly early on and Brian worked with Paul von Mertens and the guests on the arrangements.

Gershwin/Disney: Paul von Mertens would work up the basic band arrangements which Brian would modify to greater or lesser degrees as he saw fit. Paul would then handle the orchestrations while Brian arranged the vocals

Christmas: I think Brian was really in the driver's seat for this one. The two new songs were repurposed from existing, relatively recent Brian compositions.

Smile: Darian Sahanaja essentially put this together, albeit in close consultation with Brian

I Just Wasn't Made...: Reportedly no production/arrangement involvement from Brian

That Lucky Old Sun: Brian generated all the basic tunes in what was apparently a tremendous late rush of creativity, some of the lyrics, and the basic band arrangements, which Scott Bennett then had the job of reshaping -- to make everything fit together, changing tempos and dynamics, adding instruments, reconfiguring songs and then writing the bulk of the lyrics to fit the theme.

I'm sure I've made some mistakes here but that's what I gather off the top of my head. I haven't mentioned the 1988 album or Gettin In Over My Head because those projects are a bit more mysterious.

Your impressions seem about right. I think most of what you say is probably correct. I did think that Scott drove the songwriting a bit more than Brian on TLOS.

I think Brian had the concept / initial inspiration for the theme, but I somehow think Scotty did most of the writing. Not to suggest Brian didn't contribute enormously. Just my impression.

Thinking back, that "All Day - Lucky Old Sun Theme" can't remember what it ended up being called - dropped from the album, but performed live a few times - that's gotta be pure Brian.
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maggie
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« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2021, 12:46:19 PM »

In reading about the reevaluation of some of Brianís solo albums, it brought up a question Iíve always wanted to ask here. What is Brianís actual degree of involvement in the songwriting and production of his solo albums? I find it hard to fully enjoy a lot of these albums, because it seems so many others were involved with them, that there wasnít a lot of pure Brian input. I also know he has to deal with mental illness, and wonder how much this affects his abilities to oversee projects.

I remember when the Wild Honey and Friends box sets came out, everyone was excited to hear how much Brian had produced these albums. I wish we had something similar with the solo albums to shed some light.

Thanks for any answers.

There are a lot of conspiracy theories about Brian's capabilities or lack thereof, and generally I find them unconvincing. Yes, many of the 21st-century Brian projects are collaborative, but I think there's ample evidence of who did what. Tl;Dr: essentially Brian generates the melodies and vocal arrangements, and the rest is collaborative to varying degrees.

Some basics that I've put together over the years:

Imagination/That's Why God/No Pier Pressure: apparently these all drew from a common well of songs where generally Joe Thomas would be running through progressions and if Brian heard something he liked, he would improvise a melody on top. Joe would then wrangle this material into songs. Then for the first two projects Brian would focus on the vocal arrangements while Joe would arrange the band. For No Pier Pressure, Joe left the project fairly early on and Brian worked with Paul von Mertens and the guests on the arrangements.

Gershwin/Disney: Paul von Mertens would work up the basic band arrangements which Brian would modify to greater or lesser degrees as he saw fit. Paul would then handle the orchestrations while Brian arranged the vocals

Christmas: I think Brian was really in the driver's seat for this one. The two new songs were repurposed from existing, relatively recent Brian compositions.

Smile: Darian Sahanaja essentially put this together, albeit in close consultation with Brian

I Just Wasn't Made...: Reportedly no production/arrangement involvement from Brian

That Lucky Old Sun: Brian generated all the basic tunes in what was apparently a tremendous late rush of creativity, some of the lyrics, and the basic band arrangements, which Scott Bennett then had the job of reshaping -- to make everything fit together, changing tempos and dynamics, adding instruments, reconfiguring songs and then writing the bulk of the lyrics to fit the theme.

I'm sure I've made some mistakes here but that's what I gather off the top of my head. I haven't mentioned the 1988 album or Gettin In Over My Head because those projects are a bit more mysterious.

Your impressions seem about right. I think most of what you say is probably correct. I did think that Scott drove the songwriting a bit more than Brian on TLOS.

I think Brian had the concept / initial inspiration for the theme, but I somehow think Scotty did most of the writing. Not to suggest Brian didn't contribute enormously. Just my impression.

Thinking back, that "All Day - Lucky Old Sun Theme" can't remember what it ended up being called - dropped from the album, but performed live a few times - that's gotta be pure Brian.

The thing is, so much of the working material for TLOS has leaked, the songwriting credits are right there, there are multiple witnesses. There's the friend of Brian's, Ray Lawlor IIRC, that he would call in the middle of the night and play songs for, apparently in a state of extreme excitement.

 There are songs credited to Brian with no Scott involvement (Oxygen, Good Kind of Love, Message Man, O Mi Amor). Before he committed his hideous crime, Scott was very transparent about what his role was, and what he said then lines up with reality. For example, he took "Message Man" and shaped it into "Midnight's Another Day". You can hear the process by comparing the two songs. The music came from Brian, the structure came largely from Scott, the band arrangements were collaborative with a bit more band (Scott, Darian, and Paul), the vocal arrangements are all Brian.

Scott wrote most of the lyrics and helped shape the fragments into songs. He was not in the driver's seat, he was not a mere amanuensis, it was a collaboration.

The conspiracy theories around TLOS stemmed almost entirely from three meagre but concrete facts:

1) Scott sang the incomplete demo for "Southern California"
2) Scott sang part of "California Role"
3) Scott apparently said he did "a whole lot more" than write the lyrics

#3 is explained above, #2 was clearly a stylistic choice (or maybe that song did originate with Scott), and #1 was clearly because they had JUST slapped the song together on the eve of rehearsals and knew it would be the climax of the whole set/project, but they didn't have time to have Brian put together a satisfactory demo vocal. The song wasn't even finished being written yet!

In my very humble and non-expert opinion, the idea that Brian had a late spurt of motivation and creativity to do TLOS is much more believable than the idea that everyone involved in the project is lying. As early as the Christmas album, and partly (I'm sure) due to the rapturous reception of the Smile revival, Brian was really hyped to be in the studio again. Hence the almost continuous flurry of musical activity on his part stretching from the Christmas LP to NPP. And, of course, the motivation and creativity noticeably petered out toward the end of that period.

There is this idea among the conspiracists that the idea of Brian's mastery of songwriting and production is the main selling point of these records, which is why everyone is lying about his lack of involvement. But the thing is, beyond a small number of clued-in fans, the greater music-buying public cares about these things about as much as they care about who writes Madonna's songs. And very few people in Brian's organization stand to gain from minimizing their own involvement in the making of the music (particularly Scott Bennett, whose personal reputation and career are -- justifiably -- destroyed). And no one is claiming a greater role in the music-making for Brian than the evidence bears out, even Brian (from whom the information about the songwriting process with Thomas comes).
« Last Edit: July 27, 2021, 09:05:37 AM by maggie » Logged
phirnis
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« Reply #7 on: July 27, 2021, 02:33:24 AM »

They really should've used the "All Day" part of TLOS on the album, that's one of my favorites from these sessions. Interesting to hear that Midnight's Another Day is something that Scott Bennett made based on another Brian song. This one has always struck me as sounding a little forced, like they were trying just a tiny bit too hard to come up with a "deep" song like 'Til I Die. I much prefer something like Good Kind of Love which sounds very Brian to me (and that said, I love the entire TLOS album despite some minor flaws).
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thetojo
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« Reply #8 on: July 27, 2021, 03:17:37 PM »


I accept what I'm reading above - don't dispute any of that. And I don't consider myself a conspiracy theorist. All I ever said was what my impression was.

That impression was formed in Part from interviews with Brian.

 To be more specific I recall one where he's talking about the origins of TLOS - because unusually, that album was essentially a commissioned work with a hard deadline - and I recall Brian saying he asked Scott Bennett if they would have the thing they were working on ready in time - that's Brian asking Scott - the driver doesn't usually ask the passenger how fast are we driving . .

Secondly I recall Brian being asked about some of the lyrics (maybe "Midnight's Another Day") and Brian's answer is 'I don't know, Scott wrote that'.
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« Reply #9 on: July 27, 2021, 03:21:45 PM »

They really should've used the "All Day" part of TLOS on the album, that's one of my favorites from these sessions. Interesting to hear that Midnight's Another Day is something that Scott Bennett made based on another Brian song. This one has always struck me as sounding a little forced, like they were trying just a tiny bit too hard to come up with a "deep" song like 'Til I Die. I much prefer something like Good Kind of Love which sounds very Brian to me (and that said, I love the entire TLOS album despite some minor flaws).

It came to me that it's probably titled "Roll Around Heaven" - and yes, it works beautifully, because I made an edit from the snippet available on the DVD or somewhere and slotted it into the place where I think it fit best in the album, and it flows and adds to rather than retracting from the album.

[I could post the way it fits together in an attachment, but not really sure if that's proper (allowed)]
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Jim V.
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« Reply #10 on: July 27, 2021, 03:35:32 PM »

I keep hearing about this ďAll DayĒ part of an early TLOS. I was definitely part of The Beach Boys fan community at the time of the concerts and the album. But I have no memory of ďAll DayĒ at least as far as TLOS is concerned. Maybe the SMiLE ďAll DayĒ yes, but not this one. Can anyone help me out here?
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« Reply #11 on: July 27, 2021, 04:07:19 PM »

If we're talking about the little chanting piece Brian created based on TLOS, it is on the album.

It's just a hidden snippet after "Southern California." About 20 seconds or so. I've timestamped it here: https://youtu.be/E3taL_EbgTg?t=250
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maggie
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« Reply #12 on: July 28, 2021, 10:18:23 AM »

If we're talking about the little chanting piece Brian created based on TLOS, it is on the album.

It's just a hidden snippet after "Southern California." About 20 seconds or so. I've timestamped it here: https://youtu.be/E3taL_EbgTg?t=250

Yeah, I'm as perplexed by what they're talking about as you are. Maybe they're referring to some other fragment that isn't on the CD?
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maggie
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« Reply #13 on: July 28, 2021, 10:22:11 AM »

Secondly I recall Brian being asked about some of the lyrics (maybe "Midnight's Another Day") and Brian's answer is 'I don't know, Scott wrote that'.

Well it's true, though. Scott wrote almost all of the lyrics for the album. Everything except "Oxygen" and "Good Kind of Love." Brian says almost the exact same thing in his "autobiography" about "Your Imagination" ("I didn't write that line, Joe did").

It would be interesting if Brian genuinely doesn't consider that he wrote "Midnight's Another Day." I mean, in a certain sense he *didn't* write it. He wrote a quite different song that Scott adapted into "Midnight's." But to my knowledge that track is not typical of their process on the rest of the album.

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« Reply #14 on: July 28, 2021, 12:05:14 PM »

Asked if he liked BW 88,       Brian said ĎYesí
Why?  Answer. ĎCuz I wrote most of the songs....í.      Nuff said.
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« Reply #15 on: July 29, 2021, 08:52:30 AM »

My question to those who say that it was Joe Thomas who wrote most/all of the new songs on Imagination/TWGMTR/NPP is -

Where are all the other great Joe Thomas songs that he wrote outside of his involvement with Brian?

I am sure that Thomas had input into the creation of this material, perhaps to help 'start Brian off' as it were, but there are some fine songs on those albums and I have never heard of any other songs/ albums with lots of fine songs with a Joe Thomas credit minus BW.
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Wirestone
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« Reply #16 on: July 29, 2021, 09:59:05 AM »

My question to those who say that it was Joe Thomas who wrote most/all of the new songs on Imagination/TWGMTR/NPP is -

Where are all the other great Joe Thomas songs that he wrote outside of his involvement with Brian?

I am sure that Thomas had input into the creation of this material, perhaps to help 'start Brian off' as it were, but there are some fine songs on those albums and I have never heard of any other songs/ albums with lots of fine songs with a Joe Thomas credit minus BW.

This goes for much of the Bennett and Paley material as well. It's pretty clear that Brian played an important role in writing all of the tracks that he's credited with co-writing. Might it have just been contributing a title and a couple of lyrical lines? In some cases, sure. Might it have been writing much of the music and lyrics? In other cases, absolutely.
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« Reply #17 on: July 29, 2021, 11:03:59 AM »

My question to those who say that it was Joe Thomas who wrote most/all of the new songs on Imagination/TWGMTR/NPP is -

Where are all the other great Joe Thomas songs that he wrote outside of his involvement with Brian?

I am sure that Thomas had input into the creation of this material, perhaps to help 'start Brian off' as it were, but there are some fine songs on those albums and I have never heard of any other songs/ albums with lots of fine songs with a Joe Thomas credit minus BW.

This goes for much of the Bennett and Paley material as well. It's pretty clear that Brian played an important role in writing all of the tracks that he's credited with co-writing. Might it have just been contributing a title and a couple of lyrical lines? In some cases, sure. Might it have been writing much of the music and lyrics? In other cases, absolutely.

Exactly. Even with a lot of well-documented songwriting partnerships with participants who are happy to discuss these things in detail and at length, delineating an exact "split" on the writing is not always easy.

But I think, up to a point, we can trust our ears to some degree. It's no coincidence that songs on TLOS like "Good Kind of Love" and "Message Man", credited solely to Brian, sound much more like unfiltered "Brian", while stuff like "Midnight's Another Day" have some hallmarks that are very much atypical of Brian's writing/style.

I'm not much buying into highlighting Joe Thomas's lack of writing credits outside of Brian to suggest, what, that Thomas didn't have a heavy hand in the writing, often more than 50% to the degree one can even measure such things?

Now, I do think Thomas's instrumental arrangements and production/mixing style is so heavy that he also heavily influences songs *not* written by him to the point where you'd think he did. Listen to what he did to "She Says That She Needs Me" or "Gettin' In Over My Head."

From the moment I heard "That Lucky Old Sun", I liked a lot of it but felt there are definitely chunks of that album, sometimes within specific elements of songs, that sound very un-Brian. Which is okay; a good song is a good song. One of my favorite tracks on Brian's solo albums is "Let It Shine", and I'm pretty sure on the writing side that thing is 75/25 if not 85/15 a Jeff Lynne song. Similarly, I dig the song "That's Why God Made the Radio", but with that many writers, there are some other hands in that song that you can detect. But it's a good song.
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« Reply #18 on: July 29, 2021, 11:31:46 AM »

TWGMTR (the song) is a situation where I suspect Brian contributed the title and not much else. And yet, that title is the song. He clearly deserves a credit, given that the entire piece is built around it.

For reference, Scott Bennett did a similar thing with his solo track "No Wrong Notes in Heaven," which is based on a Brianism, and Wendy and Carnie did so on their song "Miracle," built around BW blurting out "Am I a fool to expect a miracle?" He gets co-writing credits on both, and he deserves to.

"No Wrong Notes": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cTTSVYg6P3M
"Miracle": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xOf_359m_sA

Yet, to take alternate examples from the same dang records, the song "Shelter" on TWGMTR (the album) seems to be almost all written by Brian. The chorus could be Joe, but the rest of its weird little sections sound very much like something BW would cook up. Likewise "Everything I Need" on the Carnie and Wendy album has music entirely by Brian. That's why the subject bedevils folk here at times -- there's no single way that Brian writes songs, even at the exact same points chronologically.
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« Reply #19 on: July 29, 2021, 12:07:09 PM »

Matching up songwriting credits on BB (and solo) records is a huge rabbit hole. I mean, how many songs are credited solely to Mike Love where clearly *someone* had to have some hand in writing some of the music?

Then they went through a stage in the late 60s and earl 70s where, despite having SIX members writing great material, were still trying to buy off other writers for their songs on occasion.

Occasionally there are surprises when early work tapes/demos surface. To use a non-BB example, McCartney a few years ago released a demo on his website of a song he wrote with Elvis Costello, "Back On My Feet." Unlike most of their collaborations, this was one where McCartney had a song partially finished and then gave it to Costello to finish. For years, folks assumed the lyrics were all Costello. Surely, he had taken McCartney's music, struck off his filler lyrics, and wrote very Costello-ish, un-McCartney-like lyrics. But then we finally hear the demo, and hear that McCartney not only had all of the music locked in, but the first portion of the lyric as well.

But yes, we can often make pretty spot on educated guesses as to where a song primarily comes from; "Male Ego" has more Brian going on in it than, say, "Santa Ana Winds."
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« Reply #20 on: July 29, 2021, 12:22:31 PM »

TWGMTR (the song) is a situation where I suspect Brian contributed the title and not much else. And yet, that title is the song. He clearly deserves a credit, given that the entire piece is built around it.

For reference, Scott Bennett did a similar thing with his solo track "No Wrong Notes in Heaven," which is based on a Brianism, and Wendy and Carnie did so on their song "Miracle," built around BW blurting out "Am I a fool to expect a miracle?" He gets co-writing credits on both, and he deserves to.

"No Wrong Notes": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cTTSVYg6P3M
"Miracle": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xOf_359m_sA

Yet, to take alternate examples from the same dang records, the song "Shelter" on TWGMTR (the album) seems to be almost all written by Brian. The chorus could be Joe, but the rest of its weird little sections sound very much like something BW would cook up. Likewise "Everything I Need" on the Carnie and Wendy album has music entirely by Brian. That's why the subject bedevils folk here at times -- there's no single way that Brian writes songs, even at the exact same points chronologically.

I thought Brian's part of No Wrong Notes was the shorten' bread part.
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« Reply #21 on: July 29, 2021, 01:06:34 PM »

TWGMTR (the song) is a situation where I suspect Brian contributed the title and not much else. And yet, that title is the song. He clearly deserves a credit, given that the entire piece is built around it.

Yet, to take alternate examples from the same dang records, the song "Shelter" on TWGMTR (the album) seems to be almost all written by Brian. The chorus could be Joe, but the rest of its weird little sections sound very much like something BW would cook up.

I believe it has been acknowledged that Brian's credit on "That's Why God..." is a courtesy credit for coming up with the title, and for the verses being derived from "Keep an Eye on Summer."

It's funny that you ascribe the chorus of "Shelter" to Joe Thomas, considering that it is clearly very closely based on "Thinkin' 'Bout You Baby"/"Darlin'". I believe "Shelter" is indeed one of the songs that Joe Thomas himself ascribed largely to Brian.

I gather that the opening verse lyrics and melody of "Summer's Gone" are 100% Brian and then Jon Bon Jovi came up with the rest of the song including all subsequent melodic variations.

Joe Thomas has a signature ascending/descending chord figure -- "Whatever Happened" comes to mind -- that I think typifies his "brainstorming" process and helps identify the songs he initiated.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2021, 01:07:41 PM by maggie » Logged
Pablo.
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« Reply #22 on: July 29, 2021, 09:18:50 PM »

TWGMTR (the song) is a situation where I suspect Brian contributed the title and not much else. And yet, that title is the song. He clearly deserves a credit, given that the entire piece is built around it.

Yet, to take alternate examples from the same dang records, the song "Shelter" on TWGMTR (the album) seems to be almost all written by Brian. The chorus could be Joe, but the rest of its weird little sections sound very much like something BW would cook up.

I believe it has been acknowledged that Brian's credit on "That's Why God..." is a courtesy credit for coming up with the title, and for the verses being derived from "Keep an Eye on Summer."


More like "Your Summer Dream", actually.

Matching up songwriting credits on BB (and solo) records is a huge rabbit hole. I mean, how many songs are credited solely to Mike Love where clearly *someone* had to have some hand in writing some of the music?


On the latest Uncut magazine, Al Jardine seems to imply that Daryl Dragon should have gotten a credit on Don't Go Near The Water: "Daryl Dragon helped a lot too. He was the piano assistant and we had those crazy little chords going on there" I guess he was talking about the dissonant chords at the beginning, and the coda. Obviously they considered all of that as arranging.
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« Reply #23 on: July 30, 2021, 12:19:46 AM »

Is it just me or does TWGMTR sound a bit like Why? off the Made in California box set (written by Brian according to the credits)?
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« Reply #24 on: July 30, 2021, 04:44:29 AM »

TWGMTR (the song) is a situation where I suspect Brian contributed the title and not much else. And yet, that title is the song. He clearly deserves a credit, given that the entire piece is built around it.

Yet, to take alternate examples from the same dang records, the song "Shelter" on TWGMTR (the album) seems to be almost all written by Brian. The chorus could be Joe, but the rest of its weird little sections sound very much like something BW would cook up.

I believe it has been acknowledged that Brian's credit on "That's Why God..." is a courtesy credit for coming up with the title, and for the verses being derived from "Keep an Eye on Summer."

It's funny that you ascribe the chorus of "Shelter" to Joe Thomas, considering that it is clearly very closely based on "Thinkin' 'Bout You Baby"/"Darlin'". I believe "Shelter" is indeed one of the songs that Joe Thomas himself ascribed largely to Brian.

I gather that the opening verse lyrics and melody of "Summer's Gone" are 100% Brian and then Jon Bon Jovi came up with the rest of the song including all subsequent melodic variations.

Joe Thomas has a signature ascending/descending chord figure -- "Whatever Happened" comes to mind -- that I think typifies his "brainstorming" process and helps identify the songs he initiated.

On Summer's Gone, I thought I had read somewhere that Jon Bon Jovi wrote some of the lyrics for the last verse, and that was it, but I can't remember where I read that.
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