Posts Tagged ‘Pet Sounds’

There’s a nice series on YouTube called “Behind The Sounds” which documents the production of several songs from “Pet Sounds”. As its celebrating the 50th anniversary of the outstanding “Pet Sounds” album, I really suggest checking out this series. I guarantee it will make you appreciate Pet Sounds even more. [Update: unfortunately, YouTube appears to have taken down some of the “Behind The Sounds” videos, but there are still a few up there!]

The following clip sheds some light on the making of the instrumental track, “Let’s Go Away For Awhile.” I like this video because it gives a sense of both the exacting quality of Brian Wilson’s vision for this record—you hear about his already fully-formed ideas of the deep sound he wanted from the snare drum, his request for Roy Caton to “turn away” as he delivers the last trumpet note, etc.—but also shows how many supremely talented musicians were involved in bringing his vision to life. 25 musicians appear on this track alone! Here’s a nice picture of some of the musicians at work during the Pet Sounds sessions (bassist Carol Kaye sits in the foreground).

WC

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The Reverberation Appreciation Society commissioned Al Lover to curate and produce a tribute to Brian Wilson’s career keystone.

The album will be released exclusively as a 180g 2xLP with gatefold packaging, limited to an edition of 2000. The album will be available at the Levitation festival starting April 29th, 2016, and available in stores with an official street date of May 27, 2016.

The Beach Boys: Pet Sounds: 50th Anniversary Collectors Edition Exclusive Signed Brian Wilson Lithograph Beach Bundle

petPet Sounds 50th Anniversary Reissue

When Capitol Records initially released “Pet Sounds” in the UK the label ran adverts in the music press like the one you can see here. At the time there were some fans who were confused by The Beach Boys’ 11th studio album where were the stripped shirts and the surf -boards? In the intervening 50 years Pet Sounds has been acknowledged as a masterpiece, a record that has topped countless polls of the greatest albums ever made and is revered by musicians and fans as the pinnacle of Brian Wilson’s song writing, production and all round creative genius. Fifty years on it is to be reissued in all its glory with bonus material that will have many drooling with pleasure.

The influence that Pet Sounds has had, began even before it’s release outside the USA. On Monday, 16th May, 1966, Bruce Johnston, who was then the newest Beach Boy, arrived at London’s Heathrow Airport carrying a copy Pet Sounds that had come out in the USA that very day – well in advance of its UK release.

The following day, in his suite at the Waldorf Hotel, Bruce played Pet Sounds, in its entirety,for John Lennon and Paul McCartney – not once but twice. After the two Beatles left the Waldorf they went straight back to Paul’s house and there, inspired by Brian’s incredible music, they worked on the introduction to their song ‘Here, There and Everywhere’ that appeared on Revolver.

“Pet Sounds blew me out of the water. First of all, it was Brian’s writing. I love the album so much. I’ve just bought my kids each a copy of it for their education in life—I figure no one is educated musically ’til they’ve heard this album.” – Paul McCartney

Beach Boys Pet Sounds 1966

Ironically, given the love and respect that exists around the world for this album, the 1966 US release failed to achieve the kind of success that had been anticipated or the level of sales achieved by the band’s earlier albums. Pet Sounds made No.10 in the US. In the UK it fared far better, making No.2 on the album charts, the most successful of the band’s albums to that point.

The 50th anniversary release includes both Brian Wilson’s original mono mix and the later stereo remaster that captures the depth and perfection of Brian’s arrangements. The two ‘session’ CDs give us amazing insight into Brian’s control of the many musicians who play much of the music that underpins the sublime vocal harmonies of The Beach Boys.

Pet Sounds features some of the greatest LA musicians of the period. There are guitarists as varied as, Glen Campbell, Barney Kessel, Tommy Tedesco and Al Casey. On keyboards there’s Larry Knetchel, drummers, Hal Blaine and Jim Gordon along with French Horns, violins, an electric Theremin, and all manner of percussion instruments, including Coca-Cola cans. Listening to Brian encouraging, demanding and cajoling the musicians on the session tapes is like a master class in record production.

And then there are the vocals that include Brian Wilson’s most poignant ever performance on the sublime, ‘Caroline No’, Mike Love on ‘Here Today’, as well as Carl Wilson’s heart-stopping tour de force – ‘God Only Knows’. The fourth CD features a capella versions of the songs on the album and this is where The Beach Boys collectively shine. The soaring harmonies of ‘Wouldn’t It Be Nice’, the beautiful harmonic counterpoint of ‘I Know There’s An Answer’, and ‘I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times’ are all surf-soul music

Following the release of the album, ‘Wouldn’t It Be Nice’, ‘Sloop John B’ and ‘God Only Knows’ all became staples of The Beach Boys live shows and in more recent times, both, Brian and The Beach Boys touring band have featured songs from the album in concert and versions of Pet Sounds’s tracks performed live feature on disc 4  all of these are previously unreleased.

On ‘God Only Knows’ it is just Carl, Brian and Bruce that are singing and on the a capella version, when they finish their vocal, a voice asks, “How was that? Was that cool?” It’s Bruce Johnston asking the question and it is the perfect coda for not just the song, but also the album, because Pet Sounds is arguably the coolest record of all time. This is the kind of record that makes life worth living, reaffirming the notion that pop music is the most admired art form in the world. And make no mistake, Pet Sounds is art.

Beach Boys Prog ad

All editions of the 50th anniversary Pet Sounds will be released on 10th June and we have an exclusive offer in our store for the 4CD Super Deluxe Edition that includes a Beach Ball and Beach Bag, as well as an exclusive slip mat with the stereo and mono vinyl editions of the album.

Pet Sounds (50th Anniversary Edition) will be available in several configurations, including a 4CD/Blu-ray Audio collectors edition presented in a hardbound book, featuring the remastered original album in stereo and mono, plus hi res stereo, mono, instrumental, and 5.1 surround mixes, session outtakes, alternate mixes, and previously unreleased live recordings; a 2CD and digital deluxe edition pairing the remastered album in stereo and mono with highlights from the collectors edition’s additional tracks; and remastered, 180-gram LP editions of the album in mono and stereo with faithfully replicated original artwork.

Track listings for the Pet Sounds 50th anniversary reissues

CD 1
Pet Sounds (Mono)

1. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
2. You Still Believe In Me
3. That’s Not Me
4. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder)
5. I’m Waiting For The Day
6. Let’s Go Away For Awhile
7. Sloop John B
8. God Only Knows
9. I Know There’s An Answer
10. Here Today
11. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times
12. Pet Sounds
13. Caroline No
Pet Sounds (Stereo)
14. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
15. You Still Believe In Me
16. That’s Not Me
17. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder)
18. I’m Waiting For The Day
19. Let’s Go Away For Awhile
20. Sloop John B
21. God Only Knows
22. I Know There’s An Answer
23. Here Today
24. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times
25. Pet Sounds
26. Caroline No
Additional Material
27. Caroline No (Promotional Spot #2)
28. Don’t Talk. . . (Unused Background Vocals)
29. Hang On To Your Ego (Alternate Mix)
30. Caroline No (Promotional Spot #1)

CD 2
The Pet Sounds Sessions

1. Sloop John B (Highlights from Tracking Date)
2. Sloop John B (Stereo Backing Track)
3. Trombone Dixie (Highlights from Tracking Date)
4. Trombone Dixie (Stereo Backing Track)
5. Pet Sounds (Highlights from Tracking Date)
6. Pet Sounds (Stereo Track Without Guitar Overdub)
7. Let’s Go Away For Awhile (Highlights from Tracking Date)
8. Let’s Go Away For Awhile (Stereo Track Without String Overdub)
9. Wouldn’t It Be Nice (Highlights from Tracking Date)
10. Wouldn’t It Be Nice (Stereo Backing Track)
11. Wouldn’t It Be Nice (Stereo Track with Background Vocals)
12. You Still Believe In Me (Intro – Session)
13. You Still Believe In Me (Intro – Master Take)
14. You Still Believe In Me (Highlights from Tracking Date)
15. You Still Believe In Me (Stereo Backing Track)
16. Caroline No (Highlights from Tracking Date)
17. Caroline No (Stereo Backing Track)
18. Hang On To Your Ego (Highlights from Tracking Date)
19. Hang On To Your Ego (Stereo Backing Track)
20. I Know There’s An Answer (Vocal Session) [previously unreleased]
21. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder) (Brian’s Instrumental Demo)
22. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder) (Stereo Backing Track)
23. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder) (String Overdub)
24. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times (Highlights from Tracking Date)
25. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times (Stereo Backing Track)
26. That’s Not Me (Highlights from Tracking Date)
27. That’s Not Me (Stereo Backing Track)

CD 3
The Pet Sounds Sessions (continued)

1. Good Vibrations (Highlights from First Tracking Date)
2. Good Vibrations (Stereo Backing Track)
3. I’m Waiting For The Day (Highlights from Tracking Date)
4. I’m Waiting For The Day (Stereo Backing Track)
5. God Only Knows (Highlights from Tracking Date)
6. God Only Knows (Stereo Backing Track)
7. Here Today (Highlights from Tracking Date)
8. Here Today (Stereo Backing Track)
Alternate Versions
9. Wouldn’t It Be Nice (Mono Alternate Mix 1)
10. You Still Believe In Me (Mono Alternate Mix)
11. I’m Waiting For The Day (Mono Alternate Mix, Mike sings lead)
12. Sloop John B (Mono Alternate Mix, Carl sings first verse)
13. God Only Knows (Mono Alternate Mix, with sax solo)
14. I Know There’s An Answer (Alternate Mix) [previously unreleased]
15. Here Today (Mono Alternate Mix, Brian sings lead)
16. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times (Mono Alternate Mix)
17. Banana & Louie
18. Caroline No (Original Speed, Stereo Mix)
19. Dog Barking Session
20. God Only Knows (With A Cappella Tag)
21. Wouldn’t It Be Nice (Mono Alternate Mix 2)
22. Sloop John B (Mono Alternate Mix, Brian sings lead throughout)
23. God Only Knows (Mono Alternate Mix, Brian sings lead)
24. Caroline No (Original Speed, Mono Mix)

CD 4
Live Recordings [all previously unreleased]

1. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
2. Sloop John B
3. God Only Knows
Michigan State University, October 22, 1966
4. Good Vibrations
5. God Only Knows
6. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
Daughters of the American Revolution Constitution Hall, Washington DC, November 19, 1967
7. God Only Knows
Carnegie Hall, New York, November 23, 1972 (2nd Show)
8. God Only Knows
Jamaican World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, November, 26, 1982
9. Sloop John B
Universal Studios, Universal City, California, May, 23, 1989
10. Caroline No
11. You Still Believe In Me
Paramount Theater, New York City, November 26, 1993
Stack-O-Vocals
12. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
13. You Still Believe In Me
14. That’s Not Me
15. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder)
16. I’m Waiting For The Day
17. Sloop John B
18. God Only Knows
19. I Know There’s An Answer
20. Here Today
21. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times
22. Caroline No
Bonus Track
23. Good Vibrations (Master Track with Partial Vocal) (previously unreleased)

Blu-ray Pure Audio Disc
Pet Sounds:
5.1 Surround Sound: 96kHz/24-bit
Mono; Stereo; Stereo Instrumental (new to hi res): 192kHz/24-bit

1. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
2. You Still Believe In Me
3. That’s Not Me
4. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder)
5. I’m Waiting For The Day
6. Let’s Go Away For Awhile
7. Sloop John B
8. God Only Knows
9. I Know There’s An Answer
10. Here Today
11. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times
12. Pet Sounds
13. Caroline No
Additional Material in 5.1 Surround and Stereo
14. Unreleased Backgrounds (Unused Intro for “Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder)”)
15. Wouldn’t It Be Nice (Session Highlights)
16. Wouldn’t It Be Nice (Alternative Mix without Lead Vocal)
17. God Only Knows (Session Highlights)
18. God Only Knows (Master Track Mix with A Cappella Tag)
19. Summer Means New Love
__

Pet Sounds (50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition)
2CD

CD 1
Pet Sounds (Mono)
1. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
2. You Still Believe In Me
3. That’s Not Me
4. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder)
5. I’m Waiting For The Day
6. Let’s Go Away For Awhile
7. Sloop John B
8. God Only Knows
9. I Know There’s An Answer
10. Here Today
11. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times
12. Pet Sounds
13. Caroline No
Pet Sounds (Stereo)
14. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
15. You Still Believe In Me
16. That’s Not Me
17. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder)
18. I’m Waiting For The Day
19. Let’s Go Away For Awhile
20. Sloop John B
21. God Only Knows
22. I Know There’s An Answer
23. Here Today
24. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times
25. Pet Sounds
26. Caroline No

CD 2
Live Recordings [all previously unreleased]

1. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
2. Sloop John B
3. God Only Knows
Michigan State University, October 22, 1966
4. Good Vibrations
5. God Only Knows
6. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
Daughters of the American Revolution Constitution Hall, Washington DC, November 19, 1967
7. God Only Knows
Carnegie Hall, New York, November 23, 1972 (2nd Show)
8. God Only Knows
Jamaican World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, November, 26, 1982
9. Sloop John B
Universal Studios, Universal City, California, May, 23, 1989
10. Caroline No
11. You Still Believe In Me
Paramount Theater, New York City, November 26, 1993
Instrumentals
12. Wouldn’t It Be Nice
13. You Still Believe In Me
14. That’s Not Me
15. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder)
16. I’m Waiting For The Day
17. Let’s Go Away For A While
18. Sloop John B
19. God Only Knows
20. I Know There’s An Answer
21. Here Today
22. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times
23. Pet Sounds
24. Caroline, No
__

Mono Vinyl Reissue
1LP + download card

180-gram heavyweight black vinyl LP reissue of ‘Pet Sounds’ remastered in Mono. Includes download card for digital redemption of the audio.

Side A
1. Wouldn’t It Be Nice – Mono (2:22)
2. You Still Believe In Me – Mono (2:29)
3. That’s Not Me – Mono (2:27)
4. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder) – Mono (2:50)
5. I’m Waiting For The Day – Mono (3:03)
6. Let’s Go Away For Awhile – Mono (2:18)
7. Sloop John B – Mono (2:55)
Side B
1. God Only Knows – Mono (2:49)
2. I Know There’s An Answer – Mono (3:07)
3. Here Today – Mono (2:52)
4. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times – Mono (3:10)
5. Pet Sounds – Mono (2:20)
6. Caroline, No – Mono (2:53)
__

Stereo Vinyl Reissue
1LP + download card

180-gram heavyweight black vinyl LP reissue of ‘Pet Sounds’ remastered in Stereo. Includes download card for digital redemption of the audio.

Side A
1. Wouldn’t It Be Nice – Stereo (2:34)
2. You Still Believe In Me – Stereo (2:34)
3. That’s Not Me – Stereo (2:29)
4. Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder) – Stereo (2:57)
5. I’m Waiting For The Day – Stereo (3:05)
6. Let’s Go Away For Awhile – Stereo (2:25)
7. Sloop John B – Stereo (3:00)
Side B
1. God Only Knows – Stereo (2:56)
2. I Know There’s An Answer – Stereo (3:16)
3. Here Today – Stereo (3:06)
4. I Just Wasn’t Made For These Times – Stereo (3:22)
5. Pet Sounds – Stereo (2:38)
6. Caroline, No – Stereo (2:52)

Pet Sounds 50th

 

 

On this day march 10th to April 11th in 1966 at CBS Columbia Square and United Western Recorders in Hollywood: The Beach Boys started recording the track “God Only Knows”; composed & produced by Brian Wilson with lyrics by Tony Asher and with lead vocal by Carl Wilson, it became a UK No2 single later that year & the B-side of “Wouldn’t It Be Nice” in the US (plus, of course, the 8th track on the group’s legendary 11th studio album, ‘Pet Sounds’); it broke new ground as one of the first commercial songs to use the word ‘God’ in its title…Sung by his younger brother Carl Wilson, the Beach Boys recording was produced and arranged by Brian using an unorthodox selection of instruments, including french horns, accordians, sleigh bell and harpiscord plus a quartet of viola’s and cello heard throughout the piece.  The musical structure has been variously cited for its harmonic complexity,

The late George Martin, seen here sitting behind the wheel of a vintage Cadillac convertible, cruising through the streets Los Angeles and talking about the city’s history as a studio town. In the clip, taken from the 1997 BBC documentary “The Rhythm of Life,” Martin’s got a destination in mind as he rolls down Sunset Boulevard and up into the Hollywood Hills towards Brian Wilson’s house.

As he drives, Martin, whose work producing the Beatles changed the course of popular music, discusses the city.

“Los Angeles then, as well as now, was the center of the entertainment business,” he says. “Not just the film business, but music too. And everybody gravitated here. If you wanted to make records, generally speaking, Los Angeles was the place to come to.”

Then he gets to his point: “To mind my mind, no one ever made better records here than the local Southern California group the Beach Boys.”

For students of pop songwriting, the next four minutes are a lesson on artistic inspiration and technical agility. Martin quizzes Wilson on those essential Beach Boys melodies while the songwriter dots out the notes on a piano. Soon Wilson is pouring forth the chords to “God Only Knows.”

The scene cuts to the two in their natural habitat, a recording studio. They sit in front of a mixing board, the “God Only Knows” unmixed master playing in the background, and discuss the ways in which Wilson worked his magic.

Martin offers narrated insight: “What Brian Wilson had done was to write a beautiful song full of unusual changes, and then devise a tapestry of sounds to enhance it. To me it was fascinating, being a musical detective looking at the song structure back in the sort of studio in which I’d spent most of my working life.”

As the song plays, Wilson looks up at the ceiling, lost inside his brilliant creation while Martin plays with the mix, exploring the arrangements, techniques and tricks of Wilson’s trade. Martin adds a compliment — “It’s a lovely song and a beautiful record” — while making his own mix of “God Only Knows.” He slides vocal tracks up and down, mixes in percussion, explores the odd rhythmic accents.

As Wilson looks on, listening to what Martin has just done to his song, the Beach Boy comes to a startled conclusion: “You know what? That’s a better mix than I had on the master. You’re making a better mix of this than I did on the master!” “Never,” says Martin with typical humility.

Brian Wilson, his face filled with joyful wonder, concludes the scene by heaping praise George Martin’s casual accomplishment. “George, I can’t believe this is happening.”

BRIAN WILSON has announced a massive world tour to honor the 50th anniversary of ‘Pet Sounds’, the Beach Boys‘ groundbreaking 1966 LP. The 70-plus date trek begins March 26th in Auckland, New Zealand, progressing through Australia, Japan & Europe. The American leg begins June 14th in Burlington, Vermont, running until late July & picking up again in September. These will be the Brian’s final performances of Pet Sounds’…Brian Wilson has announced a world tour to celebrate the 50th anniversary of “Pet Sounds”. According to Wilson’s official website, it will be the last time he performs the Beach Boys album live. The tour kicks off at the end of March in Australia, and includes a performance at Primavera Festival.

The Beach Boys‘ classic ‘Pet Sounds’ wasn’t designed as a concept album, and it may not even appear to be one on the surface. But there’s no mistaking the underlying theme of teenage anxiety in Brian Wilsons ambitious, and gorgeously orchestrated, song cycle. It’s the moment where ’60s pop gained the sophistication of Frank Sinatra’s classic concept albums of the ’50s. Without it, there’d be no ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ … or probably any other album on this list.In 1966, several albums were deemed as concept albums by their thematically-linked songs, and became inspiration for other artists to follow. The Beach Boys‘ “Pet Sounds” portrayed Brian Wilson state of mind at the time, and was in turn a major inspiration to Paul McCartney.

Album writers Brian Wilson and Tony Asher insist that the narrative was not intended, though Wilson has stated that the idea of the record being a “concept album” is mainly within the way the album was produced and structured. Later in 1966, Wilson began work on “Smile” , an intentional narrative, though it was scrapped and later revived in November 2011. Freak Out!, Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention‘s sardonic farce about rock music and America as a whole, and Face to Face by The Kinks, the first collection of Ray Davies‘s idiosyncratic character studies of ordinary people, are conceptually oriented albums. However, of the three, only Pet Sounds attracted a large commercial audience.

Welcome to the latest edition of Masterpiece Reviews. Once again, we’ve thrown on our favorite velvet robe, turned up the fire, and are here to regale you with stories of the greatest and most classic albums of all time. It’s a fresh, new perspective on why these albums are filed under “M” for masterpiece.

In honor of the upcoming summer season, we pull the curtain back on one of the greatest albums ever recorded. Following their 1965 release, Beach Boys Party!, Brian Wilson began penning new music for the band to record. Utilizing new recording techniques and instruments, 1966’s Pet Sounds would go on to become The Beach Boys’ most heralded album and still considered one of the best albums to this day.