gfxgfx
 
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
logo
 
gfx gfx
gfx
671923 Posts in 27044 Topics by 3973 Members - Latest Member: Tante September 22, 2021, 11:16:39 PM
*
gfx*HomeHelpSearchCalendarLoginRegistergfx
gfxgfx
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.       « previous next »
Pages: 1 [2] Go Down Print
Author Topic: A newbie to the Beach Boys----advice needed  (Read 2270 times)
guitarfool2002
Global Moderator
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 9614


"Barba non facit aliam historici"


View Profile WWW
« Reply #25 on: August 31, 2021, 11:01:57 AM »

Do be aware that, if you happen to come across a book titled Wouldn't It Be Nice, purportedly written by Brian Wilson and Todd Gold, the book is NOT an autobiography. Brian didn't co-write it, Eugene Landy did.

Brian's for-real autobiography is I Am Brian Wilson, co-written with Ben Greenman.


 LOL I Am Brian Wilson is almost entirely composed of slightly rewritten passages taken from Wikipedia. You can tell because it has all the same misconceptions that used to be printed on Wikipedia, like the band recording at Wally Heider's studio in San Francisco. It's a cheap, poorly researched biography written by a ghostwriter who was obviously not familiar with the Beach Boys, as evidenced by absurd errors like the claim that Brian used an Eltro Information Rate Changer in 2004 for the recording of She's Goin' Bald.

This is in addition to the 15% of the book in which Ray Lawlor and Brian's publicists recite anecdotes and quotes involving other famous musicians. And of course, maybe 1% of content that probably did come from Brian's mouth, like a previously unpublished anecdote about being in a mental hospital in the late '70s, or everything that he calls "quite an experience."

The book never said the ELTRO was used in 2004. The page in question clearly says it was used in 1967. The Heider's SF location was an error, yes - sh*t happens, mistakes slip by sometimes. Just like spelling errors. So the entire book is bad because it put Heider's studio in SF rather than LA?

And given your quoting of percentages, do you know those percentages as a fact or are they just numbers you made up to criticize the book without knowledge of how it was written?

It's clear that you and others don't like the book, and you're free to criticize it, but if you're going to try to denigrate it for other fans who haven't read it using "facts" like those percentages, I'd double-check what you're saying before passing them off as fact.
Logged

"All of us have the privilege of making music that helps and heals - to make music that makes people happier, stronger, and kinder. Don't forget: Music is God's voice." - Brian Wilson
terrei
Smiley Smile Associate
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 118


View Profile
« Reply #26 on: August 31, 2021, 11:30:07 AM »

The book never said the ELTRO was used in 2004. The page in question clearly says it was used in 1967.

"Brian Wilson"/Ben Greenman: To do that in 1967, we used something called an Eltro Information Rate Changer, which changed pitch without speeding up or slowing down the tape. The Eltro was one of those toys we used as a tool. About a year after we tried the Eltro, it was the voice of HAL in 2001: A Space Odyssey. When we were doing SMiLE again in 2004, people who heard it thought abut HAL, not the original record.

So the entire book is bad because it put Heider's studio in SF rather than LA?

No, the book is bad because those examples demonstrate that the book does not necessarily contain Brian's account of his own life. And those are just the two examples I remember the most. It's been five years. I'd have to go through the whole book again to find more. Even if the book was riddled with errors, it still would have been "good" if it was presenting Brian's actual memories, feelings, and perspective, complete with the factual distortions.

And given your quoting of percentages, do you know those percentages as a fact or are they just numbers you made up to criticize the book without knowledge of how it was written?

Brian himself stated that he wrote the book with Ray. I recognize about 80% of the book's content as reworded tidbits from Wikipedia, stuffed with points of trivia that Brian has never brought up in interviews. That leaves about 20% of the book certainly to Brian, Ray, Ben Greenman, and God only knows who else. Brian himself stated that he wrote the book through phone interviews with Ben.

Based on the hundreds of interviews with Brian that I've read, watched, and listened, I am absolutely certain that less than 5% of the book was spoken by Brian over the phone to some random dude from the New Yorker. Instead, much of the "unique" portions of the book reminded me of Ray's posts about Brian and the posts from Brian Wilson/Beach Boys social media pages written by the guy/woman whose name escapes me.

These numbers are just my rough estimates. Do you expect me to get out a highlighter and do some wordcount math to figure out the exact percentages?
« Last Edit: August 31, 2021, 12:10:49 PM by terrei » Logged
guitarfool2002
Global Moderator
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 9614


"Barba non facit aliam historici"


View Profile WWW
« Reply #27 on: August 31, 2021, 12:31:00 PM »

The book never said the ELTRO was used in 2004. The page in question clearly says it was used in 1967.

"Brian Wilson"/Ben Greenman: To do that in 1967, we used something called an Eltro Information Rate Changer, which changed pitch without speeding up or slowing down the tape. The Eltro was one of those toys we used as a tool. About a year after we tried the Eltro, it was the voice of HAL in 2001: A Space Odyssey. When we were doing SMiLE again in 2004, people who heard it thought abut HAL, not the original record.

So the entire book is bad because it put Heider's studio in SF rather than LA?

No, the book is bad because those examples demonstrate that the book does not necessarily contain Brian's account of his own life. And those are just the two examples I remember the most. It's been five years. I'd have to go through the whole book again to find more. Even if the book was riddled with errors, it still would have been "good" if it was presenting Brian's actual memories, feelings, and perspective, complete with the factual distortions.

And given your quoting of percentages, do you know those percentages as a fact or are they just numbers you made up to criticize the book without knowledge of how it was written?

Brian himself stated that he wrote the book with Ray. I recognize about 80% of the book's content as reworded tidbits from Wikipedia, stuffed with points of trivia that Brian has never brought up in interviews. That leaves about 20% of the book certainly to Brian, Ray, Ben Greenman, and God only knows who else. Brian himself stated that he wrote the book through phone interviews with Ben.

Based on the hundreds of interviews with Brian that I've read, watched, and listened, I am absolutely certain that less than 5% of the book was spoken by Brian over the phone to some random dude from the New Yorker. Instead, much of the "unique" portions of the book reminded me of Ray's posts about Brian and the posts from Brian Wilson/Beach Boys social media pages written by the guy/woman whose name escapes me.

These numbers are just my rough estimates. Do you expect me to get out a highlighter and do some wordcount math to figure out the exact percentages?

That's the quote! I don't see where it says they used the ELTRO in 2004.

I'll say again it's fine to not like the book and critique it, but the way you cited percentages and in the original post suggested the ELTRO passage and the wrong Heider location - one which isn't even an issue based on the quote posted above and the other which is 6 words out of thousands -  to suggest the whole thing was poorly researched and worse isn't presenting an accurate overview of the book for people who haven't read it. If you're going to tell people who haven't read it that it was 15% of this, and 1% of that, and 80% of this...it suggests you actually did tally all that up, or that you know more than the average fan about how the book came together in order to give that much detail. Did you, or do you?

And as far as being "absolutely certain" about what was said over the phone, again you're just presenting your opinion, and unless you know this for a fact, it isn't certain enough to state it as fact. I can believe other books were taken from a myriad of existing sources or even taken in any percentage from posts on the internet, but unless I heard that information from the author or the subject of the book, it's not as factual as you make it out to be, it's just your opinion. And that opinion could be wrong...so why base a critique on those points instead of actually doing a critique of the book?

If someone doesn't like something, it doesn't mean it's bad overall based on their assumptions and estimates on who said or wrote what versus what actually happened. Unless you know what Brian's input into this book really was.

I saw issues similar to this when Brian came on this board for a live Q&A (still in the archives BTW) to answer fan questions, and some people insisted it wasn't Brian answering them because they "just knew" it couldn't be him. So if they knew in their hearts it wasn't Brian, but it actually was Brian (which it was, if any clarification is needed at this point), what grounds is that to critique or dismiss the whole thing if their basing their criticism on something false or inaccurate?

It's like the Gaines book - Some don't like the information Gaines published, so there are attempts to write the whole thing off as tabloid writing or publishing false information. Yet Gaines had his sources and they weren't making the stuff up.
Logged

"All of us have the privilege of making music that helps and heals - to make music that makes people happier, stronger, and kinder. Don't forget: Music is God's voice." - Brian Wilson
terrei
Smiley Smile Associate
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 118


View Profile
« Reply #28 on: September 01, 2021, 11:36:38 AM »

That's the quote! I don't see where it says they used the ELTRO in 2004.

If you cannot extrapolate that from "when we were doing Smile again in 2004, people who heard it thought about HAL" then... I dunno. I'm not the only person who interpreted the text this way. We'll have to agree to disagree.

If you're going to tell people who haven't read it that it was 15% of this, and 1% of that, and 80% of this...it suggests you actually did tally all that up, or that you know more than the average fan about how the book came together in order to give that much detail. Did you, or do you?

All I did was read the Wikipedia articles in the mid-2010s and cross reference them with the thousands of interviews, books, and articles written about the Beach Boys. From this, I found that various topics in the book were summarized with verbage that was particular only to the Wiki articles. I also noticed that a lot of claims and observations that had only been printed in the form of unsourced Wiki statements were reprinted in the book. So I guess, yeah, I do know more than the "average" fan?

It's not too different from the astute fans who read My Own Story and realized that some sentences were copied almost verbatim from, say, Goodbye Surfing, Hello God. Thus, I take issue when anyone claims that I Am Brian Wilson should be elevated over My Own Story.
Logged
thetojo
Smiley Smile Associate
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 462



View Profile
« Reply #29 on: September 03, 2021, 07:21:11 PM »

That's the quote! I don't see where it says they used the ELTRO in 2004.

If you cannot extrapolate that from "when we were doing Smile again in 2004, people who heard it thought about HAL" then... I dunno. I'm not the only person who interpreted the text this way. We'll have to agree to disagree.

If you're going to tell people who haven't read it that it was 15% of this, and 1% of that, and 80% of this...it suggests you actually did tally all that up, or that you know more than the average fan about how the book came together in order to give that much detail. Did you, or do you?

All I did was read the Wikipedia articles in the mid-2010s and cross reference them with the thousands of interviews, books, and articles written about the Beach Boys. From this, I found that various topics in the book were summarized with verbage that was particular only to the Wiki articles. I also noticed that a lot of claims and observations that had only been printed in the form of unsourced Wiki statements were reprinted in the book. So I guess, yeah, I do know more than the "average" fan?

It's not too different from the astute fans who read My Own Story and realized that some sentences were copied almost verbatim from, say, Goodbye Surfing, Hello God. Thus, I take issue when anyone claims that I Am Brian Wilson should be elevated over My Own Story.

There's probably a reason that Brian lost one co-(ghost-)writer and another had to be found during the process of writing this. What you raise terrei may be a symptom of the problems with interviewing Brian and getting proper answers to the extent that would be necessary to write an autobiography.
Logged
Lonely Summer
Smiley Smile Associate
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 3691


View Profile
« Reply #30 on: September 03, 2021, 10:09:21 PM »

Brian's not a verbose guy these days, so it's gonna be hard for any writer to construct an autobiography using strictly his own words.
Now back in the days when he was on drugs, no problem. There's one video where starts talking about something, and comments on here - "here I am yapping my head off" - almost embarrassed to be talking so much. And then says "I like food!"  LOL
Logged
Emdeeh
Smiley Smile Associate
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 2809



View Profile
« Reply #31 on: September 04, 2021, 11:19:31 AM »

It's like the Gaines book - Some don't like the information Gaines published, so there are attempts to write the whole thing off as tabloid writing or publishing false information. Yet Gaines had his sources and they weren't making the stuff up.

My issue with the Gaines book is that he was perfectly happy to dish the dirt, but couldn't be bothered to balance it out. Example: Discussing all of Carl's substance abuse issues, but never mentioning that Carl had cleaned up his act afterward. The book is unbalanced and therefore unreliable, imo.

Brian has publically disavowed the WIBN book (also in court, iirc), and it was denounced as a scam by notable rock critics and authors at the time it was published. It's a biography, NOT an autobiography -- and that's the scam.

I'm not going to discuss this topic further. Please continue your discussion.
Logged
guitarfool2002
Global Moderator
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 9614


"Barba non facit aliam historici"


View Profile WWW
« Reply #32 on: September 04, 2021, 02:56:16 PM »

It's like the Gaines book - Some don't like the information Gaines published, so there are attempts to write the whole thing off as tabloid writing or publishing false information. Yet Gaines had his sources and they weren't making the stuff up.

My issue with the Gaines book is that he was perfectly happy to dish the dirt, but couldn't be bothered to balance it out. Example: Discussing all of Carl's substance abuse issues, but never mentioning that Carl had cleaned up his act afterward. The book is unbalanced and therefore unreliable, imo.

Brian has publically disavowed the WIBN book (also in court, iirc), and it was denounced as a scam by notable rock critics and authors at the time it was published. It's a biography, NOT an autobiography -- and that's the scam.

I'm not going to discuss this topic further. Please continue your discussion.

That's perfectly fine to object to the way Gaines presented the information in his book and to suggest it's not balanced. But, when some people write it off as pure fiction, or insinuate that Gaines just made things up instead of reporting details that were told to him by sources very, very close to the band and its members, that's just not right and it comes off as either petty criticism (attack the author as a liar instead of confront the information he wrote), or people who don't want some of that information to be part of the narrative.

And I'd suggest some other band books, like those written by or about some of the band members, are also biased in that they omit key pieces of information that would change both the narrative and perceptions, and fell far short of "setting the record straight". In some of those cases, nothing was balanced out either.

The issue wasn't the WIBN book, that was roundly and overwhelmingly dismissed as Landy's fantasy fiction and lawsuits against the book were won handily, in fact I don't think that any party who filed a suit against the book lost their case.

The same cannot be said of "I Am Brian Wilson".

Logged

"All of us have the privilege of making music that helps and heals - to make music that makes people happier, stronger, and kinder. Don't forget: Music is God's voice." - Brian Wilson
Wirestone
Smiley Smile Associate
*
Offline Offline

Posts: 5917



View Profile
« Reply #33 on: September 04, 2021, 06:11:35 PM »

That's the quote! I don't see where it says they used the ELTRO in 2004.

If you cannot extrapolate that from "when we were doing Smile again in 2004, people who heard it thought about HAL" then... I dunno. I'm not the only person who interpreted the text this way. We'll have to agree to disagree.

If you're going to tell people who haven't read it that it was 15% of this, and 1% of that, and 80% of this...it suggests you actually did tally all that up, or that you know more than the average fan about how the book came together in order to give that much detail. Did you, or do you?

All I did was read the Wikipedia articles in the mid-2010s and cross reference them with the thousands of interviews, books, and articles written about the Beach Boys. From this, I found that various topics in the book were summarized with verbage that was particular only to the Wiki articles. I also noticed that a lot of claims and observations that had only been printed in the form of unsourced Wiki statements were reprinted in the book. So I guess, yeah, I do know more than the "average" fan?

It's not too different from the astute fans who read My Own Story and realized that some sentences were copied almost verbatim from, say, Goodbye Surfing, Hello God. Thus, I take issue when anyone claims that I Am Brian Wilson should be elevated over My Own Story.

Big claims require extraordinary proof. Either provide documented examples or take down these posts. They’re shockingly disrespectful of Brian and his co-author. The fact you have been unwilling to do so thus far suggests you’re not able to.
« Last Edit: September 04, 2021, 06:12:29 PM by Wirestone » Logged
gfx
Pages: 1 [2] Go Up Print 
gfx
Jump to:  
gfx
Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines Page created in 0.465 seconds with 21 queries.
Helios Multi design by Bloc
gfx
Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!