The Beach Boys - After "Smile"
Episode date - November 16, 2007
This show covers the aftermath of “Smile,” the album project that Brian belabored over endlessly until the whole idea was ultimately abandoned.
The effect of dropping such a large amount of truly creative (albeit unfocused) work was ultimately cataclysmic on the Beach Boys. While the band argued endlessly about the album’s ability to meet expectations or to please their core audience, their core audience virtually evaporated. The ‘Summer of Love’ made sure of that by providing an entirely new perspective on what popular music could be. Brian’s attempt to modify the band’s sound was really the only choice the band had, but when they rejected it, they also rejected the possibility of remaining relevant.
As Brian retreated into his bedroom, unwilling or unable to face any new production project, the band tried to build something new from the bits and pieces that Brian left them. Like picking meat from a carcass, the band assembled a Frankenstein’s monster version of Brian’s project and called it “Smiley Smile.” The critical reception was brutal, and sales were awful. This was only a sign of things to come. As Jimi Hendrix stated on his debut album (which was released smack dab in the middle of the Summer of Love), “You will never hear surf music again.” These were foreboding times for the Beach Boys.
Here’s a list of songs covered;
I Love to Say Da-Da
Heroes and Villains
Vegetables (“Smile” version)
Vegetables (“Smiley Smile” version)
Fall Breaks and Back to Winter
With Me Tonight
Here Comes the Night
Let the Wind Blow
16) Busy Doin’ Nothin’
17) Diamond Head