Author Topic: The Smile Sessions  (Read 7485 times)

positivemusic

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The Smile Sessions
« on: November 04, 2011, 10:43:38 PM »
What are everyone's thoughts on The Beach Boys' Smile Sessions?

Although a lot of comparisons between Carnival Of Sound and Smile have already been made, I, personally find it interesting that both Jan and Brian chose to work in songs of the past, ie "Louisiana Man," "Old Master Painter," etc. into their respective takes on psychedelic/progressive music.

Its truly a gift that we now have a representation of both these albums officially released!

Mark A. Moore

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Re: The Smile Sessions
« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2011, 10:59:46 PM »
Brian Wilson also used a fragment of "Gee" in SMILE . . . an old R&B classic that Jan & Dean had covered in 1960.

positivemusic

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Re: The Smile Sessions
« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2011, 11:09:31 PM »
Brian Wilson also used a fragment of "Gee" in SMILE . . . an old R&B classic that Jan & Dean had covered in 1960.

I had forgot about that being on the Jan & Dean album!

Interesting that "Gee" would be of interest to both of these geniuses.

Mark A. Moore

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Re: The Smile Sessions
« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2011, 11:18:41 PM »
"Gee" was a single released by Jan & Dean on the Dore label in late 1960. It cracked the Top 100 at #81 . . . and the B-side was "Such A Good Night For Dreaming" (one of their best ballads from the early period).

surferbee

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Re: The Smile Sessions
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2011, 06:37:24 AM »
I've read a few times that the main distinction between Brian and Jan's work 66 onwards was lyrics. Do we have any sense that Jan was looking at more 'contemporary' lyrics? I guess Carnival is a little deceptive as probably Jan was unlikely to be able to comment on the lyrics.
I've always understood that even before the accident Jan tended to write the music rather than the lyrics. Am I right? Have your researches found any more detail Mark? By looking at Jan's handwritten lyrics it seems he played around with words a lot to get the sound and feel he wanted.


Mark A. Moore

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Re: The Smile Sessions
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2011, 10:14:54 PM »
Jan mostly wrote the music and arrangements, but he did write lyrics on occasion . . . and was credited as such on "Universal Coward."

jdman

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Re: The Smile Sessions
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2011, 11:43:45 AM »
I'm enjoying the Smile Sessions. Some of the songs would have been classics. however, I must say that several of the songs don't have a lot of entertainment value. The vocals and production are great. But I'm not sure that Smile would have topped Pet Sounds. Some of the tunes are a little weird for my taste. Surf's Up, Heroes and Villians, Worms, Wonderful and Good Vibrations are very good. The album as a whole? I'd probably skip a few of the songs.

Salzburg Surf Scene

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Re: The Smile Sessions
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2011, 02:46:49 PM »
Beach Boys? That name rings a bell...hold on, weren't they one of J&D's backing bands in the early 60s? I always wondered what happened to them afterwards.

Okay, seriously now. I've long been a fan of SMiLE, and look forward to hearing the new release. But, as we all know, Dean was the real creative force behind the entire project. I mean, its well known that several of the other BBs hated the record, and Brian was somewhat out of it at the time. Think about it: in recording Mrs O'Leary's Cow, the musicians were supposedly wearing firemans' helmets (and isn't there video of the BBs wearing them?), a direct imitation of the helmets J&D wore at one point in the TAMI show. And the Laughing Gravy release of "Vegatables" is definitive. In fact the surreal humour throughout SMiLE is much more Dean than Brian. Just like he did with Surf City and Barbara Ann, Dean was far too modest to claim his rightful credit.

So there you have it. Proof that SMiLE was basically a J&D project. Smiley Smile, on the other hand, was entirely BBs... and isn't very good.

« Last Edit: November 14, 2011, 02:48:45 PM by Salzburg Surf Scene »

Mark A. Moore

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Re: The Smile Sessions
« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2011, 09:45:58 PM »
Ha! . . . I'll have some of what you're smokin' there, Salzburg  :)

Dean couldn't claim any contemporary credit for "Barbara Ann" for contractual reasons. But his participation has been well known and touted since at least the early '70s.


2dean2

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Re: The Smile Sessions
« Reply #9 on: November 15, 2011, 06:48:54 PM »
When I was living in Phoenix Az in the late 80's , The local oldies station kept saying "The BB'S with Jan Berry . So I called them off air and corrected them . After that it was just the BB's No mention of Dean's involvement. My nephew a professional part DJ in Milwaukee Wi Bought his equipment to a family function and played Barbara Ann . Came over to me and said he was sorry he couldnt find any J&D . And was surprised to find out it was Dean with them. Not alot of people know it was Dean on the record. BTW I havent read May on here for a while I wonder if she's OK ?

2dean2

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Re: The Smile Sessions
« Reply #10 on: November 15, 2011, 06:50:24 PM »
That Party DJ and Mary  :o