Matt Brundage

Music of the Beach Boys

The reason they were paid the big bucks

  • The Beach Boys, 1965The vibraphone/bass combo of 'Til I Die (Steve Desper alternate mix)
  • The very end (2:40) of "A Day in the Life of a Tree" in which Alan strains out "oh Lord, I lay me down / my branches to the ground / there's nothing left for me". The church organ does the trick, too, especially in the third minute.
  • Brian's double-tracked vocal on his 1966 version of "Surf's Up", especially his falsetto on the words "domino", and "children's song"
  • The vocal pause at the end of "Surfer Girl": "Do you love me, do you surfer … girl, surfer girl, my little surfer girl …"
  • The instrumental drop-out in the alternate mix of "The Little Girl I Once Knew". Brian's joyous falsetto is highlighted here; this passage is incredibly uplifting. The roughness of the mix doesn't seem to hurt it.
  • The abrupt tempo change and simultaneous key change at the end of "At My Window" that gives the illusion of the tape slowing down. Leaves me breathless.
  • Brian's voice on "Don't Worry Baby" and the soothing harmonies. Marilyn's soothing words.
  • The thumping bass on "Little Deuce Coupe" and boogie-woogie chord progression.
  • The achingly flawless harmonies on "Car Crazy Cutie"; the echo on "run, run, a doo run run …"
  • The backing vocals on the second verse of "California Girls", especially when isolated.
  • The complex chord changes of "The Warmth of the Sun" and "'Til I Die". The falsetto of the former. The immortal longings of the latter.
  • The keyboards/vocal combination on the "Smile" version of "With Me Tonight"; the way Brian sang lead, while the backing vocals followed another unheard melody, making it sound as if the song were going at multiple speeds at the same time.
  • The haunting, ghost-like harpsichord on Smile-era "Heroes and Villains" sessions.
  • Basically any Brian Wilson vocal; especially pre-1974.

personal wishlist

  • The Beach Boys, 1965 or 1966The entire Beach Boys catalog remixed for surround DTS-HD Master Audio.
  • "You Still Believe in Me" double tracked vocal a capella.
  • True stereo mixes of "I Get Around", and "Good Vibrations"; preferably the original mixes.
  • "I Get Around" a capella. vocal sessions. rehearsals.
  • Dennis Wilson's test vocals for "Sloop John B."
  • "California Girls" backing vocal rehearsals.
  • Pet Sounds rehearsals.
  • Legal Smile six-disc box set and Sweet Insanity.
  • The original Van Dyke Parks/Brian Wilson demo of "Sail On, Sailor"
  • The 11-minute January 1967 mix of "Heroes and Villains".
  • Demo of "When Summer Comes (Gonna Hustle You)"
  • "Sandy/Sherry She Needs Me" vocal sessions and finished mixes.
  • Beach Boys Today! and Summer Days (and Summer Nights!!) remixed to stereo.
  • Pre-1966 non-concert video footage.

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Beach Boys photographs © Capitol Records