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the beach boys ! the american band that beat gb

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Showing 1-25 of 26 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 4, 2012 2:19:41 PM PDT
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In reply to an earlier post on Apr 4, 2012 3:18:57 PM PDT
Hardly a better band. They seldom played on any of their records and if you listen to their early live recordings you will know why. As musicians they were at best a decent garage band. Even on their great live album (In Concert 1973), they play great because they are backed by a number of outside musicians.
They had many many great songs including many of my all time favorites. But compare most of their albums with The Beatles albums from the same period, or The Rolling Stones from 1966 onwards, or The Kinks from 1966-71, or The Who from 1967 onwards and they fall seriously short. Great singles but album tracks - the great are few and far between.
Nobody left these songs behind? True. They did not leave the great British acts songs behind either.

Posted on Apr 4, 2012 7:23:00 PM PDT
Working Man says:

Posted on Apr 4, 2012 8:47:42 PM PDT
MTK says:
Gotta give the English the edge on mid-60's pop. Surfin' USA is good, but Motown, Stax, and all the best from the British Invasion in that era topped the Beach Boys. I give them alot of credit for their influence, but hardly a "decisive" win.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 4, 2012 9:03:29 PM PDT
Wayne Klein says:
Sorry I disagree with you Elvis Fan. Although an essential American band and a GREAT one, they weren't greater or better than The Beatles in the 60's (nor The Kinks, CCR or other important bands).

Oh, interestingly Wilson used The Wrecking Crew to play many of the seminal Beach Boys recordings because the band was too busy touring or were unavailable for one reason or another.

Posted on Apr 5, 2012 12:01:45 AM PDT
HELLO-- "Pet Sounds"... "Smile"??? Enough said. Their earlier records?? Sketchy

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 5, 2012 3:22:01 AM PDT
Also, since you call yourself "ELVIS FAN" and I assume you mean Presley not Costello, I will ask you this: How many Brian Wilson songs did Elvis record vs. how many Lennon/McCartney songs did he record?

Posted on Apr 5, 2012 5:50:22 AM PDT
Eddie H. says:
IMO. Brian Wilson is in the top 5 of greatest songwriters of the past 50 years....At his best, he had no equal! He created a sound that has been one of the most copied sound in popular music...Just for the following reasons, Pet Sounds, Smile, The Beach Boys Today,Don't Worry Baby, The warmth Of The Sun, Good Vibration...unbelievable musical acheivements and I havn't even touched the surface...Brian along with Ray Davies, John Lennon and Paul mcCartney ruled...(their music will be around long after we are dead and gone)

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 5, 2012 7:16:44 AM PDT
Shining Star says:
good post Eddie

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 5, 2012 7:43:23 AM PDT
good post but, you left out Dylan.

Posted on Apr 5, 2012 8:54:50 AM PDT
EvenSteven says:
I'd say the American band that could viably compete with the British Invasion and any other form of musical competition on the planet.

They had a "freindly" rivalry with label mates the Beatles & their influence is apparent especially on McCartney's singing & composing.

By the time they got around to recording "Today" is was apparent they had few peers. Also, in earlier recordings (surf/hot rod) they had only few peers as well...maybe Dick Dale but only on an instrumental level.

The BB's as a live band did have the goods as evidenced on the newly reissued "TAMI" show which restores their performance. I'd say their a damn site better than a garage band & no offence to garage bands, but I have never heard vocals like that from a garage group....but I also agree with the above posts that the Beach Boys would never had been as successful without the "wrecking crew" in the studio. That is a fact.

One thing you cant dispute is the genius of Brian Wilson.....just not sure I'd say he "beat" GB, but did surpass them in some ways. ....its kind of an apples & orange comparison as their sound is so different from the "beat or mod" groups....I'd say in the realm of production/songwritting & vocal arrangements....they had very few peers & that includes the Beatles & Mowtown.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 5, 2012 9:02:09 AM PDT
Shining Star says:
Good points, I love Brian Wilson & The Beach Boys. However, you're correct that the groups/artists from Motown & Stax records, as well as other artists of that time, who were writing their own songs were genius' whose songs influenced everyone both in the U.S. & abroad (see The Miracles, Stevie Wonder, Otis Reading, Sam Cooke, etc.). The top British Invasion groups & Bob Dylan were every bit as influential, if not in some ways more as Brian Wilson was never truly allowed to consistently express his full genius as he was always in conflict with others in the band, especially Mike Love.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 5, 2012 10:17:45 AM PDT
Eddie H. says:
John...I know how the masses feel about Dylan, so Dylan would have to be in that same league....I personally don't care for Dylan(I would be a Hypocrite to myself if I said otherwise)...but his stature in popular music can't be denied.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 5, 2012 4:11:18 PM PDT
I guess Dylan's not everyones cup of tea, but like you said, his place in music can't be denied. I also would add Smokey Robinson to Lennon and McCartney, Dylan, Brian, and Ray as the top 5 writers of Rock music.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 5, 2012 4:32:53 PM PDT

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 5, 2012 7:48:32 PM PDT
The beach boys were the embodiment of what most bands tried to become in the 60's. They mostly failed in comparison. Even the beatles couldn't come close to their sound. They had the california surf sounds, and many other styles that no one else could touch. Sure you could say the beatles were more popular, but they weren't good listening like the beach boys. You NEVER left those tunes behind! More popular doesn't always equal good or better listening. I found beatles music soft pop and very boring. Beach boys were more hip to the times.

Posted on Apr 5, 2012 7:50:17 PM PDT
For one album they were just as good, perhaps. That's all I'm going to give 'em though because they weren't consistent after "Pet Sounds"(the ONLY Beach Boys album that can touch anything The Beatles did after "Rubber Soul"). Their albums were spotty and there wasn't enough innovation. Probably because Brian was losing his mind and Mike Love wanting to keep the band a nostalgic surf act. They had the potential to be great in the 70's...they blew it however.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 5, 2012 7:50:51 PM PDT
Yes, Yes Yes. Very good. at least someone else here has good taste in music!

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 7, 2012 6:09:04 PM PDT
Good observation.

Posted on Apr 7, 2012 7:10:27 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 7, 2012 8:09:38 PM PDT
Bob Bykowski says:
The Beach Boys were NOT better than the Beatles, the Stones or the Who. But they were one of the only two American bands who could keep up with them artistically (the Byrds being the other band). Had the 'Smile' album been originally released in 1967 the way it was intended to be, Brian Wilson would have probably been looked upon as the most serious American counterpart or rival to Lennon and McCartney. He was already beginning to be looked upon as such with the release of the 'Pet Sounds' album in 1966.

It should also be noted that the great British bands were pretty much united in musical intent and purpose. With the Beach Boys, you had Brian who really wanted to branch out artistically with the music the BB's made, and then you had Mike Love constantly voicing his disagreements about breaking away from the "surfing-and-cars" subject matter of their early records. This created a dichotomy in the band's creativity that really never resolved itself. It also played a part in Brian's mental collapse during the late '60's (along with prodigous LSD intake and post-traumatic memories of the Wilson brothers' father's abusive ways, both mentally and physically in terms of beatings).

Posted on Apr 10, 2012 10:34:57 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 10, 2012 10:35:44 AM PDT
Shining Star says:
" With the Beach Boys, you had Brian who really wanted to branch out artistically with the music the BB's made, and then you had Mike Love constantly voicing his disagreements about breaking away from the "surfing-and-cars" subject matter of their early records. This created a dichotomy in the band's creativity that really never resolved itself."

Exactly Robert and this is precisely the reason I always felt Brian should have left the Beach Boys right after "Pet Sounds" as it was clear this was never going to be resolved. He could have completed "Smile" with the Wrecking Crew or any other group of musicians. While the Beach Boys trademark vocals and harmonies would have been missed, it still would have been a spectacular album and I believe Brian would have recovered quicker from his "inner demons" as he truly needed an outlet for his genius and was being granted that in the Beach Boys at that time.

Posted on Apr 10, 2012 2:25:19 PM PDT
Bob Bykowski says:
M. Jones,

Nice point. I never really considered the possibility of Brian becoming a solo artist after 'Pet Sounds', but it really does make sense from the way you explain it. And I agree with you that Brian most likely would have recovered from his so-called inner demons quicker had he decided to take that route of action.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 10, 2012 2:41:30 PM PDT
Shining Star says:
Hi Robert,

I've always felt that way as he basically put together "Pet Sounds" without the BB anyway. They were on tour when he wrote, recorded, arranged and produced that album which is one of the single most important in modern music history. The main thing provided by the BB were their vocals, which, of course, are fantastic. He was at his creative peak and needed to immediately seize upon that with "Smile". I think his life and music in general would have changed dramatically at that time if he had.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 10, 2012 5:54:14 PM PDT
Dee Zee says:
Watched for the very first time Good Timin'- The Beach Boys Live at Knebworth DVD. Now the audio was probably sweetened as most film shows are but this was a great concert and perhaps the last time the original band (3 Wilson Brothers, Mike Love, Al Jardine and Bruce Johnston) played together. On stage was 4 supporting musicians which included 2 vocalists. But the show is very tight. Brian only seems to appear for 4 or 5 songs, playing piano. Brian does sing vocals on Sloop John B and Surfer Girl but it seems he was there just for being who he is.

The DVD does have 2 surround mixes, Dolby and DTS. I enjoyed the video and you would too if you're a BB fan.
The Beach Boys - Good Timin' - Live at Knebworth, England 1980

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 10, 2012 6:01:25 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 11, 2012 7:22:04 AM PDT
Shining Star says:
Hi Dee Zee,

I am a fan of the BB and I will check this out. I really loved the band and they were one of the few non Motown, Stax or Chess Records acts I truly enjoyed back in the day in regards to R&B, Pop, Rock. I loved their early albums and find nothing wrong with them choosing the "Surfing" or "Car" concepts and themes those early LP's had. You could see the growth they, especially Brian Wilson, were going throug towards the release of "Pet Sounds" & what should have been the release of "Smile".

That being said, I still feel Brian should have left after "Pet Sounds" & began to explore the music in his head & heart. If the others couldn't get on board, they could have continued on, without him, doing their own thing. I did happen to like "Smiley Smile" and other things they did after "Smile" was shelved but Brian was never allowed to go to the places he wanted to fully as a member of the band.
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Discussion in:  Music forum
Participants:  14
Total posts:  26
Initial post:  Apr 4, 2012
Latest post:  Apr 10, 2012

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