Tuesday, January 31, 2023

You thought you knew everything about The Beach Boys ...

I don’t scroll YouTube all that often, and I don’t know why this video came up, but it’s an incredible 2005 BBC documentary called Wouldn't It Be Nice (part 1 and part 2) and it's well worth investing an hour into for the incredible story of one of my favorite bands, The Beach Boys.

Here are some of the best new things I learned from this movie:

  • Leader Brian Wilson studied The Four Freshman and obsessively learned to play all their songs. It kind of makes me want to do the same, or at least just listen to that early, pre-rock n’ roll band.
  • Members of The Beach Boys called into local radio stations wit
    h different voices requesting their first song Surfin’, which was a one-track recording.
  • The Wilsons’ dad was a talented expert of the music profession, but he often hit the kids. Brian was strong enough to eventually fire his dad from his position as the band’s manager.
  • They travelled to England and were heckled for not being hip enough in the burgeoning era of The Beatles.
  • In 1964, when Brian was 22, he married a 16-year-old girl.
  • It’s hard to believe that Carl Wilson, not Brian or Mike Love, was the lead singer on the band’s greatest song, “God Only Knows."
  • In 1968, the year Brian had a bad LSD trip and left the band floundering without him, Dennis Wilson began hanging out with the Charles Manson Family.
  • As Brian was coming out of his funk, he appeared in a short video with Dan Ackroyd and John Belushi forcing him to get out of bed to catch a wave.
  • Brian has re-entered the touring game with a Beach Boys cover band named the Wondermints that backs him. He agreed to finally perform songs from his lost album Smile, but still has hallucinatory angels and demons whispering in his ears each day.
  • Love says he would reform the original band but Brian is quoted saying "I don't like Mike Love at all" because he's "too egotistical." The film does end on a note that doesn't completely rule out a reunion. That would definitely be the only thing that would get me out to see Mike Love.

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