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« Last post by Surfermike on July 21, 2019, 07:19:08 AM »
On my way home from the beach yesterday(a little cooler down there with the sea breeze) I popped in my CD and blasted Drag City. I have to admit, I always liked this song better than DMC. And I like Hot Stocker even better than both of those. But Drag City is one powerful song. The background vocals are top notch and Jan delivers another stellar vocal. Listen to the end of the song when his voice gets deep “goin’ to drag city runnin’ through now”. What a great sound.
« Last post by jdman on July 19, 2019, 05:25:29 AM »
Drag City was a masterpiece! Like you, I hardly ever name that one as my favorite, but I listen to it all the time. Great production!!
« Last post by NateRuvin on July 19, 2019, 02:25:29 AM »
I totally agree. It's a masterpiece. The backing track sounds really heavy, even today. Double drums, guitars, basses, keys. It's brilliant. The harmonies and modulations are out of this world. Love both Jan & Dean's vocals on this one. Great backups by The Matadors (and Jan, Dean,) and Brian Wilson??)    It all culminates in one of the most exciting rock songs ever produced. Jan was advancing so quickly in 1963 it's insane. Everyone in Jan's team was so talented- Dean, Roger, Don, Brian, Lou, Wrecking Crew, etc --- but Jan was a genius. Those records were totally visionary and ahead of their time
« Last post by surferbee on July 18, 2019, 11:50:18 AM »
When asked to name my favourite Jan and Dean song I usually go for Dead Man's Curve but auditing my listening over time I keep coming back to Drag City.
The driving beat (two drummers and great rhythm guitars) and the immaculate harmonies - plus some great lyrics - it sone of Jan's best arrangements and productions.
I love the way the harmonies build uo and the way Jan layers the vocals - especially his own is incredible.
Almost impossible to do justice live - this is an outstanding studio production.

Listening to the backgrounds vocals on the oddly named From Suf City to Drag City compilation you can tell Jan and the Matadors were having a blast. And I think you can hear that listening to the record.

Great! Truly great!
DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Jan Berry Biography
« Last post by surferbee on July 18, 2019, 11:45:03 AM »
Hi Mark

Just touching base again. Any news on the stand alone?

DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Surf City collaboration
« Last post by jdman on June 20, 2019, 04:06:41 AM »
Thank you Mark! I'd like to make one more point about song writing. I've written a few. None of them went to number 1. lol but there were times when a friend suggested I change a word here and there. The song was already written, musically and lyrically. I don't think a word change constitutes writers credit. Surf City contains over 170 words. If you count the repeated words, it's over 200. If Dean changed a couple of words, that's only 1% of the lyrics. When you count the music, then it's less than .5% of the song. So if Dean indeed made those suggestions, then he can always say he did his small part to help the song have credibility. But does .5% constitute writers credit? I don't think it does. Surf City was written by Jan Berry and Brian Wilson. There was no reason to credit anyone else. Like Mark said, this was determined before the song was released.
DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Surf City collaboration
« Last post by Mark A. Moore on June 19, 2019, 02:51:21 PM »
Jan was writing toward fulfilling the terms of his songwriting contract with Nevins-Kirshner (which was in the process of changing over to Screen Gems), and they viewed Jan as the principal creator of product for the company. He had quotas to meet. A documented fact. Jan was free to work with collaborators, so long as they understood that Screen Gems would be the publisher.

The fact that Brian was comfortable enough to collaborate with Jan—on a song that originated with Brian—knowing full well that Sea of Tunes would not be able to claim the publishing, is telling. Brian understood that Screen Gems would be the publisher, per the terms of Jan’s contract, which indicates Brian’s level of comfort with Jan’s creative input.

Jan and Brian split the songwriting royalty for “Surf City” 50-50 (the publishing royalty was separate, which is why Murry Wilson flipped out). The copyright for “Surf City” was filed on May 13, 1963, four days before the song was released.

Questions to ponder . . .

There was no way to know that “Surf City” would become a hit, let alone reach #1. So why would Jan want to deprive Dean of credit prior to release? Especially since they had co-written half of their first album together.

Why would Dean get credit for songs like “Bucket ‘T,’” “Schlock Rod,” and “Old Ladies Seldom Powershift,” but not the majority of other songs in the Jan & Dean canon?

If Dean co-wrote “Surf City,” he should have received credit. But there is no basis for minimizing Jan’s contribution. There’s a reason he was the one signed to the production companies as a songwriter, both Nevins-Kirshner and successor Screen Gems.

And remember, Roger Christian also claimed to have co-written “Surf City” . . . after it hit #1.
DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: Surf City collaboration
« Last post by Surfermike on June 19, 2019, 11:52:17 AM »
I remember when Michael “Doc Rock” Kelly interviewed Dean years ago in his Sunshine Music fanzine. Just as he mentioned in his latest book, Dean corrected a lot of the words to make more sense with the surfing lingo he was familiar with. According to him, collaborating and changing a few words in a novel like War and Peace is very insignificant, but not in a 2 minute and 24 second song with just a few lines in it. He should have received writers credit along with Berry and Wilson. I’m surprised that Jan wasn’t that generous towards Dean. As for Brian, it’s well known he omitted Mike Love’s name from many songs. Unfortunately, I guess we’ll never know how much Jan or Brian wrote lyrically or musically. Thankfully, Dean knew to put in the proper surfing terms of that era.
DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Surf City collaboration
« Last post by jdman on June 19, 2019, 04:34:24 AM »
Listening to Dean's interviews, past and present, one can get confused. Dean has said recently that he has no idea what Jan wrote and that he(Dean) wrote more of Surf City than Jan did. In other interviews He's stated that Brian wrote 50%, Jan wrote 35% and he wrote 15%. He's also stated that he has no idea what happened when Jan and Brian met privately, which is probably accurate. The lyrics were written in Brian's handwriting, but that does not mean that Jan wasn't sitting next to him sharing ideas. Brian and Jan have both stated that they were at a piano banging out keys and writing together. So I guess it's hard to figure out exactly what Jan wrote, but I'd assume he contributed significantly. Any thoughts?
DON'T YOU JUST KNOW IT / Re: 1966 concert
« Last post by surferbee on April 12, 2019, 02:14:01 AM »
It is all speculation of course. Jan and Dean were undoubtedly at a crossroads. Music was changing. The Beach Boys were changing. Whilst this was going on Jan was running down the Liberty contract and it showed in some of the music but there were signs that he was looking to a different future. 'Girl You're Blowing My Mind' was an insight into that. Of course the accident cut into all of that.
For me? Well Jan had been writing and recording since 1958 and seemed to be in for the long term if his medical training didn't take him away!
Jan - with or without Dean - would have needed to change - but he had a strong track record of doing that. The accident robbed us of ever knowing. Of course if Jan had been drafted that might have meant another ending altogether!
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