For many years The Beach Boys have influenced the lives of people from all over the world. Co-founder Brian Wilson, who will tour Japan in April, once made a decision to resign from his touring role in order to maintain his health and focus on the group’s 11th studio album "Pet Sounds." The iconic effort was a change to the original California Sound that was produced in earlier records.
Forming in 1961 with his younger brothers Dennis and Carl, along with their cousin Mike Love and a great friend Al Jardine, The Beach Boys had released a string of hits before the "Pet Sounds" record came about. These included "Surfin’ U.S.A.," "I Get Around" and "California Girls."
“We recorded some records in the studio; then we did ‘Pet Sounds’ and people loved it," Wilson says of the early days in a phone interview.
Wilson needed a change after the songs about girls, cars and surfing that the band was writing. He wanted to make an album where the music brought together a theme, similar to his thoughts of how "Rubber Soul" by The Beatles was presented. It did not take him long to arrange the songs of "Pet Sounds" in order. “It all rolled into place from the opening classic ‘Wouldn’t It Be Nice’ to closer ‘Caroline, No,'" he says.
With his inspiration from The Beatles, Paul McCartney has previously returned praise with "Pet Sounds" in regards to "Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band."
Wilson reflected on the first time he met McCartney. “It was an event for me. I liked his music and I was in awe of The Beatles because they were a very great group, so I talked with him for a few minutes and he said that he liked ‘God Only Knows.'"
The album was always going to be a success and Capitol Records wasted no time in getting it out to the public in 1966. “They released ‘Pet Sounds’ about a month after we recorded it," Wilson recalls. "Good Vibrations" was also written around the same time and a single was released a few months later. Wilson says, “It would not have fit on the album”, and was instead on the "Smiley Smile" record the following year.
After its release, "Good Vibrations" became the most popular song by The Beach Boys. Wilson says that there were multiple ideas toward it. He explains, “My cousin Mike (Love) said he would like to write a song called ‘Good Vibrations,’ so I made up a little music thing and he put his bass line to ‘I’m pickin’ up good vibrations’ - he came up with that part.”
For Wilson, coming to Japan is always a lot of fun and on this special occasion he is celebrating the 50th anniversary of "Pet Sounds." He will be performing the album in full one last time and is set to arrive with Al Jardine, a longtime friend and co-founder of The Beach Boys, and will also share the stage with former member Blondie Chaplin. With shows in Tokyo and Osaka, he says: “I hope they like ‘Pet Sounds’ and The Beach Boys’ classics!”
Brian Wilson “Pet Sounds 50th Anniversary World Tour”
Tuesday, April 12 - Tokyo International Forum - Hall A, Tokyo Wednesday, April 13 - Tokyo International Forum - Hall A, Tokyo Friday, April 15 - Orix Theatre, Osaka© Japan Today