10 Interesting Facts About the Beach Boys Band

One of the most famous U.S. bends in the history - The Beach Boys, have chosen the year 2012 for launching their 50th Anniversary Reunion Tour, also marketed as Celebration! This world concert tour has been also associated with their latest album (29th studio album in the raw) called “That's Why God Made the Radio" that was released in June 2012.

10 Interesting Facts About the Beach Boys band

1. Name evolution of the band

It didn't start all with the "Beach Boys". Earlier names of the band were Kenny and the Cadets, Carl and the Passions, and finally the Pendletones. The name Pendletones has been chosen due to the popularity of Pendleton flannel shirts which were a kind of  the group's uniform during  the 1960s. Afterwards they decided to change it for a name which would reflect their passion for the so called "Beach Lifestyle". That's how we got the Beach Boys.

2. The “family” band

Brian Wilson from the Beach Boys played the crucial role in the bend’s development and creation of musical masterpieces that even young generations are enjoying nowadays. He was the central figure in the band, together with his younger brothers Dennis and Carl, as well as cousin Mike Love. This was the core concept of the family band that was later joined by a friend Al Jardine in the late 1950s.

3. Surfer among the Beach Boys

Although the band brought with their hits in 1963: “Surfer Girl" and  "Surfin' U.S.A.", a kind of surf craze among the youth population in U.S., not all the Beach Boys were real surfers.  Actually there was only one – Dennis Wilson. His personal life was a real example of a beach lifestyle that the Beach Boys’s songs often praised and portrayed. Dennis was the one who was really hooked on the surfing as sport and he made strong influence over his older brother Brian to create songs that promote surfing. As a real surfer, Dennis Wilson finally ended his life in the sea at Marina Del Rey, Los Angeles in 1983.

4. Taxi hit

Many of the Beach Boys’ songs have been “subscribed” to the top positions of the hits charts in the 1960s, but one song took them over night straight to number one position. It was a hit called “I Get Around”, recorded in early July of 1964.  The funny thing about this song is that it was written by Brian Wilson and Mike Love while driving in a cab towards the Salt Lake City airport. I would say that there is definitely more inspiration for writing such song (and later to become hit) when driving in a cab, than for instance waiting in a gate for boarding on a plane.

5. The top album

The LP called “Pet Sounds” recorded in 1966, is said to be the creative peak for the Brain Wilsons’s talent in writing the songs and complex music arrangement. It managed to layout strange harmony and inventive use of instruments that set a new standard for popular music. This album as his masterpiece has been recognized as one of the best musical albums of all time by many renowned music industry magazines such as TIME, Rolling Stone, Mojo, New Musical Times and even The Times. Paul McCartney of the Beatles also considers this as one of his favorite music albums of all time. He backed this statement by admitting that the “Pet Sounds” album was the main inspiration for the famous Beatles’ album "Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band".

6. The most expensive song of that time?

It was the Capitol Records that released The Beach Boys next hit. It was a song that took Brian Willson months to work on, and he finally wrote it together with Mike Love. The famous “Good Vibrations” have been recorded in four different LA studios during seventeen creative sessions. The total cost of creating such a hit was over sixteen thousand dollars - which was considered as a huge amount for recording of a single song in that time. Later, it turned out that investment paid off, sine the song became the Beach Boys' biggest hit to date and a U.S. and U.K. No. 1 single in 1966 . In addition to this, many music critics consider it to be one of the best rock singles of all time. In 1997, it was named the "Greatest Single of All Time" by Mojo music magazine. The music channel VH1 placed it in 2000 at number 8 on their "100 Greatest Rock Songs" list. In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine placed it at number 6 on their "500 Greatest Songs of All Time" list.

7. Music tradition continues with offspring

Brian Wilson's daughters Carnie and Wendy, have formed a music group by 1990.  It was called “Wilson Phillips” as the music band was result of joint forces between the Wilson’s daughters and Chynna Phillips, the daughter of John and Michelle Phillips of The Mamas And The Papas. Their 1990 self-titled debut album sold over 10 million copies worldwide and scored three number one singles on the Billboard Hot 100, making this trio the best-selling female group at the time. As you can hear from many songs (such as “You're in Love“) the music influence of parents has been evident in the work of “Wilson Philips” group.  

8. Frequent internal problems – finally seeing the light at the end of tunnel

There have been many conflicts within the “Family Band” over the course of its existence. The last one was the legal dispute over rights to the Beach Boys’ name. It was resolved in 2008 when the live band members finally reached a settlement after a long lasting court process. The lawyers of the formerly conflicting parties told the press in front of the Los Angeles Superior Court judge that surviving bend members are looking forward to bringing more great Beach Boys music to the United States and around the world, particularly as they approach their 50th anniversary.

9. Long lasting impact

It is often said that the only American group that had strong influence on the masses next to the legendary and British originated Beatles was the Beach Boys. It is literally impossible to listen any top hits chart that spreads over the last century where you don’t hear at least one the band’s famous melodies. Simply you can’t miss the Beach Boys.

10. New beginning for the Beach Boys?

Sounds strange? Definitely. Especially if you consider that the three original members of the band are round their 70s these days. But apparently, they're well prepared to shake the audience again withe their old hits. And not only old. With their last single “That's Why God Made the Radio" which launched again the Beach Boys on the top charts and radio signals round the globe, Brian Wilson showed once more that quality simply never goes out of style. I am glad to hear the boys rocking back after so many years of silence.