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672937 Posts in 27112 Topics by 3985 Members - Latest Member: elcanja November 29, 2021, 01:32:55 PM
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26  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 14, 2010, 05:45:03 PM
You know who else is kind of a bitch?  Helen Keller.  I'm sick and tired of people making excuses for her early years.
27  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 14, 2010, 04:34:55 PM
Brian Wilson is the cause of Brian Wilson's problems.

Totally agree.  All this stuff about mental illness, abuse, and manipulation was just cooked up to make Mike look bad. He should have just rubbed some dirt on it and kept playing. LOL
28  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 12, 2010, 10:18:02 PM
"Kokomo" actually outsold "Good Vibrations"?  That's a statement in itself.
29  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Landy You Need Me on: January 09, 2010, 04:02:55 PM
Thanks, bgas!
30  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Landy You Need Me on: January 09, 2010, 02:35:10 PM
Rob, I never saw the 45.  What was on the other side of it?
31  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Landy You Need Me on: January 09, 2010, 02:13:12 PM
I think maybe I can help you in this time of need.  Give me a few minutes.
32  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 03:52:35 PM
And then we'd have World Peace. Smokin

Points taken and understood. I'm also going to give the board a well-deserved break from my verbosity.

"My woody's outside, covered in snow!"
33  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 03:27:55 PM
To be clear, I'm not saying Brian is above blame.

Me neither, Amy.



But, most are. Well, not above it, just not accountable.

Agreed- not accountable after some point between about 1970-75. He hasn't even been trusted with many important decisions since then, and was often drugged almost into a stupor during business meetings, etc. during many periods, well covered in court testimony. If you think Mike has been taken advantage of and exploited...
34  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 03:23:44 PM
SJS, fair enough.

And, regarding Brian's mental state during the lawsuit years in the 1990's....Yeah, he was mentally ill, but do you think he knew right from wrong? Did a judge think that Brian knew right from wrong, allowing him to testify?

Not a question of distinguishing right and wrong- that's actually the definition of criminal insanity.  Brian's views were acquired by compulsion on the witness stand. Was he competent to testify? Some would say "no"; I honestly don't have an opinion.  But he sure made no attempt to screw Mike once he was finally heard from in a meaningful venue. The right question would not be about his ability to distinguish right from wrong, but about his ability to manage his own business and legal affairs, which I would liken to those of a very average ten year old. That's why other people do that stuff for him.

I think Brian's great failing here was in 1963-66, when he was responsible and an adult mentally, and that was a failure to confront his abusive father.  He confronted him about three times that we know of- a studio meltdown when he fired him, a minor meltdown caught on tape during the "Rhonda" vocal session, and of course through the press with the Rolling Stone interview.  I'm sure there were others.  But it wasn't the norm in their relationship.  I think if he was still mentally healthy and functional he'd probably still have that avoidance of conflict, a personality trait common to many people I know. In the state he's been in for four decades, though, he avoids nearly everything.

On the other point, when a guy has a court-appointed conservator- because he is regarded as legally incompetent or irresponsible on some level, I would guess- wouldn't someone else have his power of attorney?  I don't think they'd be disbarred for exercising it.  But that sounds like a Dr. Tim question.
35  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 03:04:58 PM
Bingo, Andrew.
36  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 03:02:59 PM
Rob, Genesis during the Gabriel era is another example of this, and if you listen to tapes that are circulating of them composing the songs for Selling England By The Pound, the validity of those credits (including the drummer!) is verified. You can hear different things being thrown out, and Gabriel is humming and scat-singing things that would become the lyrics, and sometimes adding to the main melodies.  But everybody is in there and the songs are resulting from that chemistry.
37  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 02:53:49 PM
To be clear, I'm not saying Brian is above blame.

Me neither, Amy.

You could argue that his failure to stand up to Murry and stand up to his lawyers is a terrible flaw that cost his cousin Mike dearly.

Agreed.  Good post.
38  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 02:51:01 PM
...he had too much on his plate trying to keep his own merda together let alone trying to watch out for someone else.  

Interesting side point: "too much on his plate"/"trying to keep his own ____together" would normally be a mixed metaphor. But in this case it's not, because we know that at this time, Brian, in relation to Murry, did indeed have his own ____ on his plate.
39  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 02:46:34 PM
"Oh YEAH? Well, What about BRIAN?", shriek the offended.

SJ, I believe much of it IS that. It definitely is for me. At the risk of sounding like Holden Caulfield, it is the continued hypocrisy that is sparking this debate, and the Mike Love criticism in general. I'll speak for myself, but I wouldn't doubt if this hypocrisy is also what is bugging the posters who are defending Mike Love. This is it in a nutshell, and Nicko hinted at it in an above, excellent post:

We are debating songwriting royalties, and Mike Love is being SINGLED out and name called as greedy, selfish, money-hungry, dishonest, and a few more. But, after almost 200 replies on this thread, HOW MANY OF THEM MENTIONED BRIAN WILSON AS THE VILLAIN? There's something definitely wrong with this picture.

Mike Love worked on a number of songs with Brian Wilson. On a couple dozen of them, Mike came up with the CONCEPT for the song, either partially or in full. On those songs, Mike wrote a large portion if not all of the LYRICS. Milke also contributed some VOCAL ARRANGEMENTS, a melody line here or there, and an occasional phrase/hook. When the single or album came out, there was no label credit for Mike. He got none of the publishing, no public recognition, and no money for his contributions.

Who was to blame for that? Mike? No, it was allegedly Murry Wilson, the group's manager. OK, assume that's true; Murry screwed Mike, and gave ALL of the credit to his son, Brian. But, the bigger question is, where was Brian in all of this? I'll ask all of the Mike Love bashers again - where was Brian in all of this?

Did Brian confront his dad and insist that the credits be given fairly? Did Brian contact the publishing company on his own? The record company? That Brian, a prince of a guy...

Now, after three decades of Mike continually praising his cousin Brian as a musical genius, the sage of the age, and the best songwriter in the business, Mike has the opportunity to get what is rightfully due to him. So, now, Mike asks Brian for some compensation - financial and label credit - and Brian basically tells Mike to go fu-- himself. This was the perfect opportunity for Brian Wilson to make things right, but Brian basically said, "Sue me...." Again, Brian Wilson, what a helluva guy. And this was Brian's cousin we're talking about. Brian knew Mike was due compensation, but did he care? Eventually, on the witness stand, Brian told the truth, but, it had to take hauling his ass into a courtroom and sitting him in a witness chair to get him to settle this issue.

Sheriff, this is a pretty outrageous example of hysterical one-sided spin that just makes my point yet again. 

So, now, Mike asks Brian for some compensation - financial and label credit - and Brian basically tells Mike to go fu-- himself.

Raise your hand, anyone else, if you really think Brian Wilson told Mike, basically or otherwise,  to "go fu-- himself." 

It's not even a question of character, it's a question of the guy's mental state.  He had been drugged silly for years and was (by even Mike's account) not making his own decisions.  So which is it?  Whichever's convenient?

But, the bigger question is, where was Brian in all of this? I'll ask all of the Mike Love bashers again - where was Brian in all of this?

My guess would be sitting home watching reruns of "Flipper", while being severely mentally ill, brain-damaged, drug-addled by an irresponsible professional care-giver who was eventually brought to account, or waiting for his handler of the moment to tell him what to do or what to sign next.  Or maybe he was in Hawaii with his nurse.  Or passed out in an airport and missing from a flight he walked off.  Or maybe he was in a San Diego gay bar playing piano for beers.  There are some books on Brian- you should check 'em out. 

Then again, his masterful performance in court belies the whole mental illness/incompetence theory. Maybe Brian is actually this evil mastermind who evilly went to court with Mike rather than settle, thereby basically telling him to "go f___ himself", and then agreed with everything Mike's lawyers said, thus weaving a plot so dense and insidious that we still haven't unraveled it.

Now, after three decades of Mike continually praising his cousin Brian as a musical genius, the sage of the age, and the best songwriter in the business...

That is a truly wonderful mini-biography of Mike. He's kind of made it his life's work, hasn't he?

Adam, great stuff- I have gotten a lot of insight from all your posts.

Cam, this is just my read on it, but I think the only thing really in serious question here is the issue of over-claiming.  I can't imagine anyone thinks Mike was out of line to sue, but the question over something like the "Wouldn't It Be Nice" claims is a reasonable discussion from either side.
40  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Murry's eight page letter on: January 08, 2010, 01:38:44 PM
You have a different read on it than me, CD (I guess everyone does).  I'm sympathetic to Murry, too- he was pathetic and a beaten man.  But it couldn't be more clear to me what the letter is about.  It's an attempt to re-take management or get back into the picture on any basis possible.  "You've broken the law and I can prove it. Now I'm calling a meeting to discuss your future.". It's a blackmail attempt.
41  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 01:23:28 PM
So it's...

Brian Wilson: Untouchably gifted and incapable of malice vs. manipulative and washed up
Melinda Wilson: Guardian angel and love of Brian's life vs. evil shrew who is trying to profit off Brian
Mike Love: Misunderstood and severely underestimated lyric genius vs. phony, bitter and talentless

Can we get some nuance in here?

Yet another person says it better in fifty words than I did in two hundred.

I like Mike a lot.  I respect Mike a lot. I recognize his many achievements.  He also says snarky things sometimes and that annoys some people.  Brian has  his shortcomings, too.  So did Dennis.  So do I. So do you.
42  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 12:26:21 PM
We're at a very special turning point on this board when AGD -- AGD! -- is accused, however pleasantly, of carrying water for Brian.

Give it up, guys. Part of accepting Mike is accepting that he's an unpleasant, flawed person, who has often tried to bend circumstances to his own ends. That doesn't necessarily make him evil, just a person. We don't have to deify him to move beyond villification.

I don't know if you are including me but I think an earlier post of mine shows I in no way see Andrew as carrying anyone's water, quite the opposite. I just don't happen to agree that because Mike hadn't publically complained, before he knew he had the rights to do something about it, that it means he didn't have something to do about.

Thanks for dismissing us but pointing out the vagaries of arguments against someone is not deifying them.

It's not a question of that, Cam- and I'm not directing this at you or anyone, but over the course of time you will see any criticism of anything Mike has ever said or done bitterly contested and disputed to a point that becomes comical.  ("Oh YEAH? Well, What about BRIAN?", shriek the offended.  Can't speak for others, but I have always accepted that Brian is a flawed human, as were Dennis and Carl, and would have no trouble believing or accepting- for example- that Brian shouldn't have been credited for "Deirdre". It just wouldn't be a devastating reversal of my world view).

A couple years ago Brian's much-vilified wife supposedly quoted Mike as making a somewhat snarky joke to her on the roof of the Capitol building. Personally, I found the remark completely harmless.  Mike's vilifiers, of course, didn't like it at all, and Mike's Guardian Angels, to coin a phrase, angrily decided it was all a lie, another part of the great David Leaf conspiracy against Mike, and they based this accusation on...well, nothing.  They weren't there, had no information beyond the quote itself, but since it was quoted by Mrs. Brian, and she's an evil strumpet from Hell, and Mike is this misunderstood guy with no flaws whatsoever, with no history of saying blunt things or making jokes some find tacky, well, let's call the lady a liar. It's laughable, but you have to admire the dedication.

The irony I've pointed out often is that Mike, from what I've seen, mans up about these things, and I'll bet if you asked him, even now, if he made the silly little joke on the Capitol roof (which no one ever did or would, because it wasn't significant enough to bother) he'd probably say something like "Oh, hell, I don't know. Probably.  Sounds like me."  Say it ain't so, Mike!
43  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 08, 2010, 12:05:48 PM
Give it up, guys. Part of accepting Mike is accepting that he's an unpleasant, flawed person, who has often tried to bend circumstances to his own ends. That doesn't necessarily make him evil, just a person. We don't have to deify him to move beyond villification.

GREAT post. 

What I've been trying to say all along.
44  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Tom Scott and Brother Studio on: January 07, 2010, 01:59:01 PM
Love Tom Scott's sound...if, a musician, you achieve your own identifiable "sound", you've "made it" in my book. 

Agreed, unless you're Kenny G.
45  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 07, 2010, 12:27:06 PM
Interesting subject. I'd also like to know the percentages that were arrived at.  Fun fact: every time Frank Sinatra added the word "Jack" to a song, he was added to the credits.  "Something in the way she moves- Jack!"= Harrison/Sinatra.  (Of course, Sinatra always attributed the song to Lennon/McCartney).  I think Aretha Franklin may have some royalties coming now, too- she did a lot of improvising over tags.

One I can break down for you- seriously- is "Layla". (Not the confusion over Jim Gordon's piano section, that's another story). When Eric Clapton invited Duane Allman to play on the song, he played him the low part of the opening riff, as you hear on the record. Allman responded with the high, wailing part over Clapton's, exactly as you hear on the record" Clapton low, and then Allman high.  If I asked you to hum the riff from "Layla" for me, you'd hum Allman's part.  It amounts to only the last five notes being different, but it defines the song.  (Allman also plays the beautiful slide guitar over Gordon's piano in the second section, and closes it all out with his signature "bird chirps"). For this, Allman got a 2% royalty (never paid until his daughter sued about five years ago), but no composer's credit.

On the other hand, McCartney has always said that  people threw things in to his songs with Lennon, and they considered that below the radar of significance.  They were freely offered, and either taken or not taken at the composer's discretion. The song was still by Lennon and McCartney.  And in that spirit, they apparently threw a lot of ideas to other people uncredited.  The big known example of an uncredited  toss-in, obviously, is Donovan's "sky of blue, sea of green" from "Yellow Submarine". 

I think McCartney also commissioned the French lyrics to "Michelle", and while he didn't give credit ("it's almost a co-write", he said) he has continued to pay a woman for that.  Somebody correct me if I'm misremembering.

46  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian Wilson/Beach Boys demos on: January 04, 2010, 09:12:53 PM
Just scanned this thread, and it seems obvious it should rate a mention- Bernstein/CBS "Surf's Up"?
47  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 04, 2010, 08:26:47 PM
So we're back to square one: the history of Mike's reputation or image is simply the history of misinformation, disinformation, lies, and a vast conspiracy against him.  But recently, the newly revealed facts have repudiated all negative responses to Mike's (falsely portrayed) words and actions, and a new age of enlightenment has come upon the land. 

Mike himself has nothing to do with any of this; it all happens completely outside of him. When I was reading that Goldmine "Bad Vibrations" interview back in '93 or so, purportedly with Mike himself, and thinking Mike was being sort of an ass, it was actually just David Leaf and Van Dyke Parks in my head like a couple of mindworms, getting me all confused.  Or maybe it was mind gangsters. 

We've all been the victims of some cunning and devious opinion-makers.  Until now, of course, when we've all been set straight. Mike is actually outtasite.

Yeah, I know- that's me doing what I complained about earlier in this same thread- oversimplifying other peoples' views.

All kidding aside, I like Mike and always have, and have always said so.  I admire and respect his contributions.  But I also think who Mike is perceived to be is pretty much who he is, and I'll go out on a limb to say that he'd probably agree.  He's a blunt, outspoken guy with his own priorities, who- given many chances-  has never really tried to spin things any other way. Others try to do that for him.  If you ask his fans why he had problems with this or that aspect of SMiLE, some of them will say "That's a lie!" Ask Mike and he'll say "Here's why..."  And I respect that.

I think Beach Boys fans are well-informed and yet- maddeningly to some- they still arrive at their own informed opinions and responses, and see things differently.  I don't think Mike's rep, for better or worse, ever really came from David Leaf or Derek Taylor or the evil "Brianistas" or anywhere else nearly as much as it came from Mike, and his own words and actions.

When Brian pops off and says his new band is better than the Beach Boys people get mad at him, and rightfully so.  When Mike pops off about something or says he didn't even give a listen to BWPS, people get mad about that. When he gives a good interview people like him more.  What's so hard to get?
48  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 03, 2010, 06:00:44 PM
Once again, Mike is apparently just a function of Brian. Any alleged shortcomings of Mike are directly rebutted by the shortcomings of Brian. If Brian screws up one more thing, Mike might achieve sainthood.

Comparisons arise because the "Mike Love is evil" assertion was the other side of the "it's Brian and four morons" coin.
 

I think they arise because people divide into two rival teams and try to promote their own team by throwing dirt on the other and calling each other hypocrites for seeing the two men differently.  "Brian Rules, so Mike Sucks!" "No, Mike Rules, because Brian Sucks more!" Either way, it's ignorance for ignorance. Much better to argue with the best points the other side has to offer (and each side has far better points than the dirt-throwing) instead of the catcalls from the cheap seats, which will always be plentiful- though this is a very intelligent board.

It actually demeans Mike to make him a pure function of Brian.

Mike and Brian are two vastly separate people with vastly separate issues. Different achievements, different problems.  I respect them both, and try to keep them both in perspective. To view them differently and apply different standards to them, though, is not hypocritical.  It's discerning.
49  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 03, 2010, 04:37:01 PM
It's not Mike Love's fault that Pet Sounds was a commercial failure.

Point of order: while Pet Sounds was thought at the time to be a commercial failure, by comparison with Party!, we now know that, for various reasons, Capitol underreported sales.  So while this remark was assumed to be true then, we now know it is false.  And of course Pet Sounds killed in the UK.  So neither Mike nor Brian was "responsible."

I was waiting for someone to raise that. Complicated story, hashed out here in good detail several times.

Besides, I thought the topic was Mike's reputation going up and down over the years, not whether he deserves to be thought a righteous dude vs. a finger-lickin-chicken-bittfvcker.

Good point, and absolutely correct.  But the other topic always beckons to this board, like the tar baby that it is.
50  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: History of Mike's reputation on: January 03, 2010, 04:03:56 PM
Once again, Mike is apparently just a function of Brian. Any alleged shortcomings of Mike are directly rebutted by the shortcomings of Brian. If Brian screws up one more thing, Mike might achieve sainthood.

Again, I just don't see the comparison of a very seriously and chronically mentally ill person to one who isn't.
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