This group signifies yet another facet of the richness and diversity of the music, fashions and culture of California
. The Beach Boys started out as just one many surf rock
bands from the late 50s SoCal
scene. They wrote pseudo-rockabilly tunes about surfing, sunshine, beaches, cars and racing, and girls (of course!) with a Chuck Berry
inspirational slant. However their famous doo-wop inflected harmonies made them really stand out from the rest of the pack. They embraced later styles like psychedlia
and medley dance hits (the band scored a huge hit with such a dance beat medley in 1981 due to the enormous success of the trend ignited by Stars On 45
). Many critics claim that the Beach Boys declined big time
after the 60s but basically all their albums have some really good music and are worth checking out. In the mid and late 80s they continued to score hits like "Getcha Back" (it comes with an amuzing video) and the #1 "Kokomo" and "Let's Cruise" from the excellant Lethal Weapon 2 movie.
1. Some people think that the Beach Boys is just "grandma, hotdogs, apple pie" and all that cornball stuff. Yes they do attract some really square
folks but many of their hits have a mischievous slant. Look at the monster LSD-soaked smash "Good Vibrations": "gotta keep those loving vibrations a-happening with her..." . Then look at "In My Room". Is it a reference to whacking off in bed or something else?
2. I came home for leave from the military
and a few relatives took me out to see the Beach Boys in concert. It was really a terrific show, their famous harmonizing was done brilliantly and they played their instruments quite well. The fun started out with "California Girls
" (hey! I was stationed in Cali
at the time and the Beach Boys were certainly right about the women there. Oh yeah!). A fun evening, topped off with a killer fireworks show. The only thing wrong with the whole thing was that I was standing on a tier in front of two young girls who did almost nothing but SCREAM.
3. After I returned to my base in California the Beach Boys had a gig in the area. Needless to say all the tix sold out like hotcakes in a matter of minutes. Local heroes, you know.
4. The Beach Boys, unique as they are (like Pink Floyd
also stand out) have influenced many other bands like the Ramones
5. I have seen live in concert three bands that boast some of the greatest harmonizing in rock'n'roll
: The Beach Boys, Huey Lewis and the News
, and Def Leppard