Brian Wilson’s lyricists

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Muskrat
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Brian Wilson’s lyricists

Postby Muskrat » 10 Jun 2018, 21:34

Place in some meaningful order (this is, I think, chronological)

Brian
Mike Love
Gary Usher
Roger Christian
Jan Berry
Tony Asher
Russ Titelman
Van Dyke Parks
Steven Kalinich
Dr. Eugene Landy


Whomever I missed. And no, Brian didn’t use Chuck Berry’s lyrics
Last edited by Muskrat on 11 Jun 2018, 04:55, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Brian Wilson’s lyricists

Postby Rayge » 10 Jun 2018, 21:49

Muskrat wrote:Place in some meaningful order (this is, I think, chronological)

Brian
Mike Love
Roger Christian
Tony Asher
Van Dyke Parks

Whomever I missed. And no, Brian didn’t use Chuck Berry’s lyrics


Wrote with Jan Berry though (not for Beach Boys, as far as I know). Surf City and Dead Man's Curve for two
In timeless moments we live forever

You can't play a tune on an absolute

When the ball sleeps it dreams it is a Frisbee

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law. Love is the law, love under will

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Re: Brian Wilson’s lyricists

Postby Muskrat » 10 Jun 2018, 22:40

Rayge wrote:
Wrote with Jan Berry though (not for Beach Boys, as far as I know). Surf City and Dead Man's Curve for two

Added.
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Re: Brian Wilson’s lyricists

Postby Davey the Fat Boy » 10 Jun 2018, 22:51

Stephen Kalinich.

Oh...and Landy. :evil:
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Re: Brian Wilson’s lyricists

Postby Muskrat » 11 Jun 2018, 01:46

I find it interesting than that -- other than Love -- Brian tends to go through lyricists and not return. I can get being past sports cars (f Christian was that limited), but wouldn't a reunion with Tony Asher have been interesting?
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Quaco wrote: Not that I advocate writing "Several Species of Small Furry Animals Gathered Together in a Cave and Grooving with a Pict" if that happens to be in the set, but just don't shorten it quite so much!

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Re: Brian Wilson’s lyricists

Postby Bent Fabric » 11 Jun 2018, 03:37

Muskrat wrote:I find it interesting than that -- other than Love -- Brian tends to go through lyricists and not return. I can get being past sports cars (f Christian was that limited), but wouldn't a reunion with Tony Asher have been interesting?


In the prime of his creative life, this really was a reliable pattern, wasn't it? These fruitful collaborations that just seemed to permanently expire. Would his own immaturity and convoluted "family business bullshit" have conceivably contributed to the terseness of these relationships?

I feel like there were always ongoing efforts to reunite with people (Usher in the 80s? Asher maybe in the 90s? Somehow always went south...Van Dyke Parks pops back in for "Sail On Sailor" and the more prosaic task of closing the SMiLE circle). Brian really did change enormously over the years, and...some of those partnerships might have been virtually impossible to "re-activate" to any worthwhile end in subsequent eras. Plus...I can't imagine how utterly "political" his creative life has been for the past 35 years or so. One does not remotely get the sense of this musical titan being "his own man". I can think of few things more inorganic than a latter day Wilson co-write (the names in the parentheses speak for themselves, and perhaps to Brian's own diminished creative abilities/input/increased apathy). Sean O Hagan (High Llamas) was tantalizingly solicited and available to deal with the Beach Boys at one point and eventually went back to his own life when the labyrinthine grimness began to unfold. Similarly, there was a period of collaboration with Andy Paley that may or may not have been better than what we ended up with (the released evidence is not promising).

Not surprisingly, I guess I find that I really restrict myself to discussing his peak. I do this with any number of people. I'm absolutely thrilled that he survived, amazed that he returned to the stage and the studio, got to see some once under-loved classic works receive their due...but...my general feeling is that we're probably just fortunate to have him around at this point. One hopes his life contains greater joy than his later records provide.

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Re: Brian Wilson’s lyricists

Postby Charlie O. » 11 Jun 2018, 04:34

Bent Fabric wrote:Plus...I can't imagine how utterly "political" his creative life has been for the past 35 years or so.

55 years! Mike, Murry, Capitol... even when he was nominally "his own man" (and he was, to a much greater degree than most pop music creators), he was still having to try to keep all these other people happy. It's tempting to think that it might have been better for his long-range mental and creative health if he had "gone solo" after Summer Days (And Summer Nights!!). Then again, maybe "the boys" and his obligations to them helped to anchor him at least a little during his "acid phase". Hard to second-guess.

Anyway:

Tony Asher - It's tempting to put Mike Love first, but as Pet Sounds is practically my favorite thing in the world, I have to let Asher have this one.

Mike Love - lots of dumb songs, sure (and I'm pretty much restricting this discussion to the sixties, for everybody's sake), but most of them pretty GREAT dumb songs, and some of them not really all that dumb really. And then there's "The Warmth Of The Sun", "When I Grow Up (To Be A Man)", "Please Let Me Wonder", "Good Vibrations"... Plus he spared us "Hang On To Your Ego". Give the goober his props.

Van Dyke Parks - precious abstruse eggheaded cutesy smarmy gobbledegook though they may be, most of the Smile lyrics actually work the way Van and Brian intended them to. Overall, I am moved and/or amused by nearly all of them, and even if I weren't I suspect I would still admire their ambition and audacity. At the same time, I'm glad it was a one-off ("Sail On Sailor" notwithstanding - and I don't know how much if any of his work ended up in the final product there).

Gary Usher - wrote most of the lyrics on the first album (which I for one quite enjoy) before getting 86'd by Murry. Reunited with Brian long enough to create "In My Room". I wish there had been more.

Roger Christian - wrote great car songs. Well, how many others can?

Jan Berry - of course.

Russ Titleman - collaborated on "Guess I'm Dumb". I've always wondered how that happened, and how it never happened again.

The rest - I do not care.
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Re: Brian Wilson’s lyricists

Postby Muskrat » 11 Jun 2018, 04:53

As people remind me of collaborators (the initial list was off the top of my head and woefully incomplete) I’ve been adding them to the initial list.
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Re: Brian Wilson’s lyricists

Postby joels344 » 11 Jun 2018, 19:00

Tony Asher above all, follow by Van Dyke Parks, then I guess Brian and Mike Love.