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678643 Posts in 27431 Topics by 4045 Members - Latest Member: reecemorgan March 23, 2023, 12:47:05 AM
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126  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: SMiLE Sessions box set! on: December 07, 2011, 08:15:42 PM
One of the psycodelic sessions that did not make the box set has a participant saying something like, "we need another set of values" apparently for the next chant.

Once again folks, this is exactly what we're talking about when speaking about matrices & codes. Those are essentially a set of values.

The Act Of Creation in action (but without explanation!). Dig.

127  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: SMiLE Sessions box set! on: December 07, 2011, 07:46:54 PM
The session tapes say "Psycodelic Sounds." The reason it's "psycodelic" is because the letters in the middle spell "code."

Arthur Koestler explains that "the term 'Matrix' was introduced to refer to any skill or ability, to any pattern of activity governed by a set of rules---it's 'code'."

So that's why Brian spelled it that way.

128  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: SMiLE Sessions box set! on: December 07, 2011, 07:32:12 PM
Andrew G. Doe said;

Like all originators of spurious cults, you feel only you have The Answer, and will brook no other possible explanation. I happen to think you're wrong, based on conversations with people who were Brian's friends at the time and who don't recall him saying word one about anything Zen. Subud, yes... Christianity, yes... native American earth magic, yes. Back in the fall I asked Frank point-blank about any overt Zen involvement, and he said no, and please don't insult our collective intelligence and his integrity by repeating the "of-course-he'd-say-that-to-peserve-the-mystery" canard.

Please get your facts straight Andrew. When you asked Frank Holmes about Zen he said "it never entered my mind." You took this as proof that Zen had no part in SMiLE (& good on you for asking in the first place!). But the "it never entered my mind" response is perfect Zen for Zen's goal is "mindlessness", for the mind to be empty. To be of the proper mind-set is to never utter one word of Zen. Kudos to Frank.

Having said that I must admit that I use the Zen thing to basically bug squares. Sorry. But I still maintain that the Zen explanation is the best one available prior to Arthur Koestler & The Act Of Creation.

Let's try it once again Andrew.....FOR THE IDEAS IN Koestler's 'THE ACT OF CREATION' TO WORK----THE MEDIATING MATRIX MUST BE KEPT SECRET FROM THE CONSUMER OF THE WORK---they have to discover it for themselves!!!!!!!!!!!!! This means that there must be a secret.

Once again my hat is tipped in the direction of Brian, Van Dyke, and Frank for working towards the most FAR-OUT album EVER attempted!!!

129  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: SMiLE Sessions box set! on: December 07, 2011, 06:59:48 PM
Brian had all sorts of different ideas buzzing in his brain at that point, too many--humor, American history and manifest destiny, physical fitness and healthy living, innocence and experience, etc.  Trying to reduce it all down to one thing is a gross distortion.

Let's take them one at a time....

1) Humor - Brian felt that laughter frees one from their ego thus possibly enabling a spiritual experience. Brian also felt that when someone laughs they are open to what is making them laugh, so if a spiritual experience is making you laugh then you're open to it. SMiLE's deeper level is the spiritual experience--it's the mediating matrix in Koestler terms and so it's on the ascending gradient. Sorry for the Koestler stuff but it is part of the story.

2) American History & Manifest Destiny - This is the matrix which is the easiest to comprehend. It is necessary to have this matrix in order to enable humor, discovery, and art to work its magic. In other words this stuff is here to bring about the spiritual stuff. Once again, Arthur Koestler.

3) Physical fitness & Healthy living - The physical aspect is important as far as Koestler goes for physical energy is required for humor to work with the self assertive type of individual. Brian felt that health was "an important ingredient in spiritual enlightenment"---he said so.

4) Innocence - This--along with the child's perspective has to do with the spiritually born again viewpoint. SMiLE, inspired by a spiritual experience is thusly soaked in this impressive innocence.

To sum, I respectfully disagree with your assessment of the spiritual assessment (remember Brian Wilson's 1966 assessment was completely a spiritual assessment as well) as it is not "a gross distortion" and I will be more than happy to provide any and all sources for my claims.
130  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: SMiLE Sessions box set! on: December 06, 2011, 10:19:19 PM
This isn't about you guys it's about SMiLE.

The idea that Brian & Van Dyke & Frank came up with something that is the most far-out record EVER should honor their creative visionary genius-----it's about them & SMiLE---not about your egos.
131  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: SMiLE Sessions box set! on: December 06, 2011, 09:41:00 PM
Andrew G. Doe said:

True, true. One person's obsession with an exceedingly shaky premise shouldn't concern me to that extent.

Sorry to burst your bubble Andrew but there are quite a few folks (not just one) who think that Brian's original intent was in line with that "exceedingly shaky premise."

Did you notice how Frank Holmes' notes for the box set booklet are perfect for the "exceedingly shaky premise" concept? Likely you didn't since Frank leaves the finalization of the creative process up to the consumer of the work (which is in complete accord with the "exceedingly shaky premise").

As a "researcher" your task is to interpret things based upon what is already known (in your own mind). SMiLE is different. It's FAR-OUT. It is based upon the idea of grasping something you have never ever known or conceived of or felt previously---that being someone else's unconscious experience/reality!!!!! It's an act of CREATION.

Frank's SMiLE work accesses his unconscious & that is why his SMiLE Shop album cover is not accessible in conscious reality----because it can only be truly accessed via unconscious means.

Brian sought out "enlightened" collaborators for SMiLE & they presented their unconscious selves. To fully appreciate SMiLE would be to access the unconscious experiences/minds of the "enlightened"------to become enlightened!

This is a similar process to the presentation of/and reception of Zen's riddle.

Riddles often lead to laughter & I can't wait to read your upcoming ESQ article on SMiLE and humour.

132  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: SMiLE Sessions box set! on: December 05, 2011, 09:37:36 PM
18th Of May said:
Bill it is what it is!!

This is what I've been telling YOU for a freakin' decade at least!!!

To be totally honest....TODAY (it took a dunce like me that long to figure this one) I realized that the answer is that SMiLE is just too far-out for most folks to grasp.

You can't clap with one hand....that's a stupid question for most people.

The "who ran the iron horse" music couldn't be related to "Heroes And Villains (intro)" because they have different titles. I get it folks...rules are rules.

A record album cannot give people a spiritual experience. That's just too far-out. I get it (maybe Brian Wilson had more faith in you folks than I suddenly do).
133  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: What Would Brian have Done After SMiLE? on: December 01, 2011, 08:08:37 PM
If SMiLE happened then Brian would have continued his subjective/personal artistic album thing.

The contents would have been determined by his life experiences & his instincts as to where things were heading.

134  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: How do YOU think Smile would have went? on: November 29, 2011, 09:43:09 PM
Similar to as presented except...

Substitute "Heroes & Villains Part Two" for "Gee."

Follow "Part Two" with "I'm In Great Shape" & then "Heroes & Villains Part One."

Edit "Vega-tables" to end after the slow ending a la BWPS.

135  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: I'm In Great Shape on: November 26, 2011, 09:27:30 PM
Thanks to all that have contributed to this thread. It's cool that folks give such thought to such nuance.

"Open country" or "upper country" interpretations seem to indicate that "agriculture" wasn't likely the original lyric.

It also would seem that most clear headed listeners would not be likely hear "fresh clean air" as the lyric on the Humble Harve demo.

That means that "I'm In Great Shape" has two lyrical passages where the official printed lyrics don't seem to match what is heard. Hmmm.

As far as the "Zen" lyric goes there are potentially 2 ties to the song's apparent meanings.

If the opening line ("fresh ____air") refers to what happened prior to waking up (morning stumble out of bed) then we can possibly relate dreaming to the air of "___ air". The bio's "hallucinations are comparable to Zen riddles" realization may refer to the dream-like state of mind (hallucinations) as being comparable to Zen in some way. The term "Zen" therefore may be tied to the idea of dreaming which is at the front of "I'm In Great Shape".

The "air around my head" idea is also cool as the bio's description of being "in the center of a giant spinning top" seems to illuminate this visual & is part of the same "hallucination" that we're talking about in the above paragraph.

Then the "look at me jump" and the physical "great shape" concept are also related to "Zen" via Brian's comments to Jules Siegel, "it's physical, really Zen right?".

So Brian's bio & the Siegel article seem to point to the lyric as being "fresh Zen air". If someone ever heard Brian using the word "freshnin" please come forward. I realize that "fresh Zen air" seems like a weird phrase but if you read about Brian's bookstore flashback you'll see a lot of weird combinations of things that don't make obvious sense. That's like SMiLE.

The next jump is to consider the album as something comparable to a Zen riddle (therefore with the ability to promote/conjure spiritual enlightenment). Then all of the wildest dreams for the project come true & Brian was working on the spiritual monument he professed & every far out claim to the greatness of SMiLE comes true.....basically all our wildest dreams come true & Brian is the musical Van Gogh-like genius of our time.

There is also the science of probability which all logicians should consider---even with Brian's bio.

1) I'm not talking about the bio as a whole, just a few passages. Am examining those few passages to see how they fit with verifiable facts to see if they're compatible with reality. That's a far cry from simply bowing down to the bio as an authoritative work. Actually if the bio was truly boss then my SMiLE viewpoint would match the general consensus---which it doesn't.

2) The probability that any given pop album's goal is to prompt a spiritual experience is extremely remote. To my knowledge SMiLE is the only pop album ever to even have a chance at such a classification. I'd cite Brian's vegetables/health comment, his "Surf's Up" lyric explanation, the article in The BEAT, and some Michael Vosse quotes to support the spiritual enlightenment contention.

3) The way to go about crafting such an album isn't common knowledge. How would, or could, YOU do it? Awareness of such knowledge is probably very remote. The chances of someone knowing how to achieve such a thing are probably very improbable. I challenge all know-it-alls to come forward and tell how they'd achieve such a thing(haven't received a single original idea yet).

4) The bookstore flashback in Brian's bio has the line "hallucinations were comparable to Zen riddles, mysteries full of meaning." This shows how an album could possibly be made to promote spiritual enlightenment. This is supported by Koestler's theories & observations as well as by SMiLE itself which resembles a hallucination/dream.

5) What are the odds that the bookstore flashback 'tale' was conceived by Todd Gold or someone other than Brian Wilson? I would submit that the rarity of the idea of a pop album to inspire a religious experience (there's only one IMHO) and the portrayal of how such a thing could be accomplished (there's only one IMHO) was almost like DNA evidence. The odds that the two things aren't related are staggering.

And therefore I think that "I'm In Great Shape" is a key player in SMiLE.
136  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: I'm In Great Shape on: November 20, 2011, 04:52:58 PM
RollPlymouthRock said:
I think its a sign of how much time you've invested into this theory of yours that instead of hearing freshened air you hear fresh zen air. You want to believe it so much you're seeing links that aren't there.

I'm just saying that it magically works with the account in the discredited biography (Zen reference & all). And strangely enough the account in the discredited biography seems to present a way in which a record album could promote spiritual enlightenment which just happens to align with some of Brian's suggested goals for SMiLE. Pretty stupid & delusional huh?

Blame Brian.
137  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / I'm In Great Shape on: November 20, 2011, 03:43:28 PM
"I'm In Great Shape" seems like an interesting & important part of SMiLE IMHO. It's 28 seconds which takes us from sleeping (or dreaming) to the "upper country" (especially if you doubt the official lyrics  & trust your ears).

IIGS fits best after "Gee" in my line-up. That way it follows a sort of "Heroes And Villains" intro.

Speaking of the "Heroes And Villains (intro)"...that track on the GV 40 years box set reminded me of Brian's bio's bookstore flashback scene were Brian "...was in the center of a giant spinning top. Turning, turning, turning. The moment was completely surreal."

Since Brian was in a bookstore when all this happened then perhaps the phrase "heroes and villains" has something to do with what one commonly finds in books--heroes & villains. Also note that "heroes and villains" are opposites which Arthur Koestler maintains coexist quite well in dreams & hallucinations, and since this surreal bookstore scene was a hallucination this phrase works quite well.

So perhaps all the repeated "heroes & villains" lyrics that follow "Gee" represent this dream/hallucination in the bookstore.

IIGS (as in my line-up) suggests that this was a dream from which the person wakes up.

Brian's bio has him remembering Loren saying that "hallucinations were comparable to Zen riddles" and so the IIGS lyric that I insanely imagine exists "fresh Zen air around my head" seems to work quite well.

The dream scenario then changes into the "upper country" scenario which IMHO has to do with Lake Arrowhead. Regardless, the "upper country" lyric is a great intro for "I've been in this town so long....."

The point is that "I'm In Great Shape" seems like an important transition piece taking us from one dream to another.

138  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: When was the name changed from \ on: November 17, 2011, 06:12:58 PM
There's a point during the David Leaf SMiLE DVD where Van Dyke Parks says "it was Heaven on Earth" and this is where the "Angel" comes into play being the go-between Heaven & Earth. The "Dumb" part of the title means "silent" IMHO.

"Smile" has to do with laughter more than folks generally realize. You can see the two (smile & laughter) connected in Brian's opening remarks in his SMiLE Sessions introduction. As Brian told Michael Vosse when people laugh they can have a spiritual experience. This would mean Heaven on Earth.

So this is how the two titles can be related.

The opening prayer seems appropriate & "Gee" refers to Brian's bookstore riddle which led to his spiritual experience IMHO. So those two songs now seem related as well.
139  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Frank Holmes Painting on: November 11, 2011, 06:25:38 PM
Here's the painting Frank Holmes did for me in 2008. Neat!

140  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian's Most Complex Composition? on: November 11, 2011, 05:13:16 PM
"This Whole World" almost sounds like it was written to see how much stuff you could cram into one song.
141  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: The Act Of Creation by Arthur Koestler on: November 08, 2011, 05:58:04 PM
Sorry about this one intolerant folks but since I said that The Act Of Creation & the Zen thing were parallel paths last week here's some support for the claim.

"Zen philosophy, in the form in which it is taught by its contemporary propounders (foremost among them Prof. D.T.Suzuki and his Western disciples), is a welter of confusions, derived from the failure to discriminate between automated skills and creative originality--between the 'downward' and the 'upward' traffic to and from the unconscious. The former results in getting the 'knack' of a skill; the latter in the sudden flash of a new insight (the 'It'). The practitioner of the various applied Zen arts was trained to act 'spontaneously, unthinkingly'--and this led to the added confusion between the pseudo-spontaneity displayed by the responses of a well-oiled auotoman, and the genuine spontaneity of original inspiration."

Koestler's above endnote basically relates Zen's Enlightenment to The Act Of Creation's creative act. This gives a degree of credence to Brian's discredited bio's idea that "hallucinations were comparable to Zen riddles" as they both, according to Koestler, yield similar results.
142  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Evolution of Heroes and Villains on: November 04, 2011, 05:28:54 AM
After December '66 the only two songs the group did vocals for were "Heroes & Villains" and "Vega-Tables"--both of which were reported to become the group's next single. Have often wondered if the group tended to cooperate more in the studio with the pressure to get the next single done.

At the beginning of the Humble Harv Brian is talking about repetition & things being around for a long time & becoming visual. The "Heroes & Villains" "Sections", "Part 2", and the like are perhaps an attempt to achieve this effect via repetition. These little bits & pieces did not included few VDP lyrics.

One may wonder if Brian didn't change plans along the way to achieve the same end result. The Jules Siegel article even has Brian questioning the effectiveness of the lyrics in December right before the bits & repetitive pieces took precedence.

Trying a new way to achieve the same end result may be why there is more than an album's worth of material for SMiLE.

143  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Brian's favourite music on: November 04, 2011, 05:08:40 AM
"It's Magic" by Pilot and "76 Trombones" from Meredith Wilson's Music Man.
144  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Boxset Book Discussion: Brian's liner notes and the essays on: November 02, 2011, 06:04:07 PM
I love the book.

In 2004 there was a lot of Brian & Van Dyke in that concert program but what bugged me was the "It's about Americana" vibe that went around.

With the box set book & the cd set notes there is an admission that there may be more going on than initially meets the eyes & ears. For that reason alone this is a big step forward.

Brian's notes are awesome--other folks have already stated as much.

Tom Nolan's are terrific as well IMHO. I like the quotes he selected & where he was going with things.

Frank Holmes' comments are the most important & best as usual. Come on folks get on board with Frank's comments.

Peter Reum branched out a bit this time around-building upon his past observations with his unique level of sensitivity. When BWPS came out Peter added Gershwin into the conversation. This time around LSD was mentioned. Nice job Peter.

Domenic Priore also summed up his past observations nicely linking the times & places & bands & people & ideas which is his forte.

If there's a bombshell here it's that we've moved from "It's Americana" to "It's maybe more than you think." That's a huge step in SMiLE-land.
145  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: King of the Hill Beach Boys Reference? on: October 29, 2011, 05:09:28 PM
To follow up. I've heard it has no cred.
146  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: A Very Simple Question: What Is It About SMiLE? on: October 29, 2011, 04:36:09 PM
The four geniuses behind SMiLE  are Brian Wilson, Arthur Koestler, Van Dyke Parks, and Frank Holmes.
147  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: King of the Hill Beach Boys Reference? on: October 29, 2011, 03:56:13 PM
But this would make sense SMiLE-wise.

All the stuff about childhood & being reborn & all that stuff.

Even if this is a fake, those ideas are there.
148  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: SMiLE Sessions box set! on: October 29, 2011, 03:50:54 PM
Don't want to blow anybody's mind but my local independent record store (in the USA) had the goods on Wednesday (only 6 days before the official release).

The "Vega-Tables" vinyl 45 is better than the CD version!
149  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: A Very Simple Question: What Is It About SMiLE? on: October 28, 2011, 08:23:05 PM
It's the four geniuses at the helm.
150  Smiley Smile Stuff / General On Topic Discussions / Re: Smile Sessions reviews anyone?! on: October 27, 2011, 06:05:52 PM
Like here:

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