Entries tagged with: Brian Wilson
by Andrew Sacher
photo: Brian Wilson at Wellmont Theater in 2013 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Beach Boy Brian Wilson is releasing his new solo album, No Pier Pressure, on April 7 via Capitol, and he's now put out a new single from it, "The Right Time." The song features his former bandmates Al Jardine and David Marks (with Al singing lead), and if nothing else, it's got plenty of those trademark Beach Boys harmonies in the chorus. Watch the lyric video, which includes studio footage of Brian and his pals, below. You can get an instant download of the song if you pre-order the album on iTunes.
Brian doesn't have a tour announced yet, but he is playing the State Theatre 2015 Benefit Gala on May 16 in NJ. Tickets are currently on presale for State Theatre Benefactor Donors, and they go on sale to the general public on Friday (2/20) at 10 AM.
photo: Brian Wilson at Wellmont Theatre in 2013 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
A lot of people are calling Brian Wilson a liar for his false reports on the Iraq War. Though unless the former Beach Boy has a secret history as a news anchor that we're not aware of, chances are they mean NBC's Brian Williams (of BriTunes fame!), who was suspended for 6 months after admitting to those exact same accusations.
It may have seemed, however, that Brian Wilson was a liar for saying Frank Ocean and Lana Del Rey would be on his upcoming solo album. Though one of his reps has since told Pitchfork that he did intend for them to be on it, but scheduling issues wouldn't allow it.
Brian also spoke this week in a new video for Hollywood Reporter about the upcoming biopic on his life, Love & Mercy, which will screen at SXSW. You can watch a three-minute video of him and members of the cast speaking about it, below.
Meanwhile, Brian still hasn't announced a tour in support of his new album, but he did announce he'll be performing at New Brunswick, NJ's State Theatre 2015 Benefit Gala concert on May 16. Tickets go on sale Friday, 2/20 at 10 AM with a presale starting Thursday, 2/19 at 10 AM. Gala tickets are $700, but concert-only tickets range from $55-$150.
by Bill Pearis
Paul Dano as Brian Wilson in 'Love & Mercy'
The music lineup has been gradually rolling out for SXSW 2015, and now the film festival has announced its features lineup. It includes a few notable music-related titles: unconventional Brian Wilson biopic Love & Mercy which stars Paul Dano and John Cusack as the Beach Boys leader at different ages and Paul Giamatti as Wilson's psychiatrist/manager Dr. Eugene Landy; Breaking a Monster, the documentary about NYC tweenage metal band Unlocking the Truth (who just played T5 with Marilyn Manson); 808, a documentary about the famed Roland drum machine; All Things Must Pass, Colin Hanks' documentary about Tower Records; Nirvana doc Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck; and Julien Temple's The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson about the legendary Dr. Feelgood guitarist and cancer survivor.
There's also: Knock Knock, It's Tig Notaro which follows the comedian on tour playing fans houses and other unconventional spots; Russell Brand documentary BRAND: A Second Coming from DiG! director Ondi Timoner; a "work-in-progress" screening of Judd Apatow's Trainwreck, written and starring Amy Schumer (and mainly filmed in Williamsburg last summer); and Ryan Gosling's supposedly very weird directorial debut, Lost River, which features a score by Chromatics's Johnny Jewel (stream a track below).
Film Festival badges are on sale now. Full list of 2015 SXSW films, below....
by Andrew Sacher
Beach Boy Brian Wilson has revealed details for his eleventh solo album, No Pier Pressure, which will be out on April 7 via Capitol Records. The album features his former Beach Boys bandmates Al Jardine, David Marks and Blondie Chaplin; members of his touring band (including band leader Darian Sahanaja, who helped arrange the 2004 release of Smile); and a handful of collaborations with modern musicians including Zooey Deschanel, M. Ward, fun.'s Nate Ruess, Kacey Musgraves and Capital Cities' Sebu Simonian.
At the risk of bumming Brian out even more (he's already negatively reacted to backlash against these collaborations), I have to say it would've been nice to see him working with musicians who do the sound he created justice, like maybe Robin Pecknold, Panda Bear or even Rivers Cuomo, but it's also not too surprising that he went with a more mainstream cast.
The record was produced by Joe Thomas, who also co-produced the Beach Boys' 2012 reunion album, That's Why God Made the Radio, with Brian. You can check out the tracklist below...
Brian Wilson, the mastermind behind The Beach Boys, turns 72 today (happy birthday Brian!), so it's good timing for a Beach Boys cover, which we've gotten from Foxygen drummer Shaun Fleming's Diane Coffee project. One might argue there there are about 300 better options, but he has taken on "Kokomo," the 1988 hit that Brian actually had no part of (but certainly sounded like it was trying to recreate his style). Shaun said of picking this song, "Kokomo has always been one of my favorite summer songs. For as long as I can remember I've played it in my head as a slightly darker tropical tune."
You can listen to his darker (and sax-less) take on the song in this post, below...
by Bill Pearis
Having spent time in a number of bands over the last few years, Chris Catalena is set to release his new solo album, Here Comes the Time in June via Pau Wau Records. The album was made in California with Brian Jonestown Massacre's Rob Campanella producing, and the record features members of Black Angels, Strange Boys, as well as Brian Wilson percussionist Nelson Bragg. Written while staying in Los Angeles and nearby Laurel Canyon, it's definitely got some of that history infused in its dusty, twilight-psychedelic songs. We've got the premiere of one of them, "Here Comes The Time," which you can listen to in this post.
Chris Catalena and his band The Native Americans don't have tour plans as of yet, but they will be playing this weekend's Austin Psych Fest, playing Sunday (5/4) afternoon on the Reverberation Stage. So if you're heading to APF, do check him out.
Song stream below...
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
Darlene Love & Bill Medley / Brian Wilson / Elvis Costello
At Cipriani's on Wall Street in New York City, a handful of legendary artists- Little Steven Van Zandt, Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys, Elvis Costello and Bill Medley of the Righteous Brothers- came together to pay tribute to Darlene Love. It was the fifth annual "Right 2 Rock" event, raising funds for Little Kids Rock, an organization that works to restore and revitalize music education in public schools, mainly in disadvantaged areas that are threatened by budget cuts...Brian Wilson stayed busy last week, playing two shows with Jeff Beck and then appearing as part of the Darlene Love tribute at Cipriani's on Thursday (10/17) with Elvis Costello, Bill Medley, Little Steven and more. Pics from the gala event are in this post.
...Last year's honoree, E Street Band guitarist Little Steven Van Zandt is an avowed Love fan, having produced and written for her, he also led a successful campaign to get her inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. He served as the night's musical director, playing guitar while conducting the band and looking ecstatic the entire time. Last year, Love performed in Van Zandt's honor. Before last night's show, she told Radio.com that being honored this year "Is a weird feeling. It's also humbling" Always gracious, she deflected attention away from herself, saying "It's not about me, even though they're honoring me. It's about the kids. To be able to give them something they need, and can't afford, and that the government won't help them with." - [Radio.com]
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
Brian Wilson / Jeff Beck @ Wellmont Theatre, 10/16/2013
This was not a concert for casual Beach Boys fans, or Jeff Beck fans for that matter. And there were a few of each faction in the lobby near the end of the two-hour-plus set complaining about being cheated out of more material -- particularly from folks who came to see Wilson.The above review comes from Brian Wilson and Jeff Beck's show in Wallingford, CT. The pair were in NYC last week as part of their tour, having played The Beacon Theatre (where they surprised the audience by doing Pet Sounds in full) and then played Montclair, NJ's Wellmont Theatre on Wednesday (10/16) that also featured Blondie Chaplin on a few songs, not to mention fellow Beach Boys Al Jardine and Dave Marks. Pictures and setlist from that show are in this post.
Another fan sporting a Jeff Beck tour shirt was also audibly frustrated by the setlist as he stormed toward the exit before the encore.
They were counterbalanced, however, by many who sat riveted for the duration, occasionally with jaws agape or wiping tears from their eyes. There were some truly magical moments -- make that many magical moments to be found -- beginning with the opening number.
Instead of launching into the chugging rocker "Do It Again," which came third in the set, Wilson's group opened playing no instruments at all. And their flawless rendition of "A Young Man Is Gone" provided electrifying evidence of what was to come. - [Soundspike]
Brian then stuck around NYC afterward to sing at the Darlene Love tribute at Cipriani's. More photos from Wellmont below...
Brian Wilson & Jeff Beck @ Beacon Theatre - 10/15/13 (via Evan Agostini)
Beach Boy Brian Wilson and guitar maestro Jeff Beck are on a tour together (that also includes ex-Beach Boys Al Jardine and Dave Marks), and that tour came to NYC for a show at Beacon Theatre last night (10/15). It was doubly special because it featured Blondie Chaplin (who sang lead on the album version of "Sail On Sailor"), but triply special because Brian unexpectedly performed the classic 1966 Beach Boys album Pet Sounds in its entirety! From Rolling Stone's review:
Jeff Beck is along for the ride, too, and is in the middle of recording a new album with Wilson. At first glance the pairing seems completely incongruous, since the 1960s British blues rock scene had little in common with the Surf Wall of Sound that Brian created 5,000 miles away in Los Angeles. But the minute the former Yardbird played the opening notes of "Surf's Up" on the guitar - flawlessly recreating the original vocal melody while Wilson and his bandmates contributed gorgeous backing vocals - the pairing made complete sense. These are artists with a lot of mutual respect, and they've found a way to perfectly compliment each other.Afterwards, Jeff Beck took the stage for his portion of the set, which included Brian joining him for a few Smile classics, "Our Prayer," "Child Is Father of the Man," and "Surf's Up." Check out a couple videos and the full setlist below.
The show began promptly at 8:00 PM with Wilson and his band performing a beautiful a-cappella rendition of "Their Hears Were Full of Spring" by the Four Freshman, a formative influence on Wilson. After getting the crowd on their feet with "California Girls," they brought out Blondie Chaplin - a man whose tenure in the Beach Boys stretches from early 1972 all the way to late 1973. He cut two albums in that time period, and song lead on the classic "Sail on Sailor." Forty years later, he delivered it with pretty stunning vocal power and followed it up with the fan favorite "Wild Honey."
It was at this point that Wilson dropped the bomb: not only were they going to play "Wouldn't It Be Nice" next, but they it would be followed by the rest of Pet Sounds in sequence. It's the first time he's done the album in many years, and the first time he's ever done an album without any prior announcement. The audience was stunned into silence, and didn't seem to even believe it was true until sometime around "That's Not Me." They didn't have the string section from the Pet Sounds tour of 2000 - 2001, but the band was clearly up for the challenge.
Pet Sounds is a very demanding album for Wilson vocally, and although Jeff Foskett handled many of the higher notes, it was clear Wilson gave it everything he had. "I Just Wasn't Made for These Times" has rarely been so touching, and "Don't Talk (Put Your Head on My Shoulder)" was incredibly moving. "Now we're going to play, I think, the best song I ever wrote," he said before "God Only Knows." "And I've written a lot of songs." Nobody can match Carl Wilson's original vocals, but he still did a stellar job and got a huge standing ovation.
The tour continues in NJ tonight (10/16) at Wellmont Theatre, and after that Brian will be hanging around to play the Right to Rock benefit (which honors Darlene Love) on Thursday (10/17) at Cipriani (55 Wall Street) with Elvis Costello, Jake Clemons, Paul Schaffer and many more special guests. There will also be a live and silent charity auction, which features "prizes like dinner with Maureen & Steven Van Zandt, a guitar signed by Bruce Springsteen and a private tour of Carlo's Bakery." $1000 tickets are available, and proceeds benefit Little Kids Rock.
Videos and the setlist below...
"Blondie was one of my favorite singers in the '70s. He blew my mind with 'Sail On, Sailor' and he also sang on a song called 'Funky Pretty' on The Beach Boys' Holland album," Brian Wilson said. "Until two weeks ago, I hadn't seen him since 1974. It was great to see him again. He came into the studio and sang on one of my new tracks called 'He Come Down' - and he sang it great. I'm stoked that he'll be performing at a few of our shows." [Pollstar]As discussed, former Beach Boy Brian Wilson and guitar maestro Jeff Beck are going on a tour together this year. Brian will be joined by fellow ex-Beach Boys Al Jardine and Dave Marks, and it's now been announced that they'll also be joined by past member Blondie Chaplin, who most famously sang lead on "Sail On, Sailor," the opening track on 1973's Holland. (The track was written by Brian and his Smile collaborator Van Dyke Parks, and performed/sung by Brian on The Beach Boys' 2012 tour.)
Blondie will only be joining the tour on a few of the dates, but one of those is the NYC show which happens on October 15 at Beacon Theatre. Tickets for that show are still available (but "not many left"). The tour also hits Wellmont Theatre (10/16) a day later, but Blondie is not currently set to appear at that one (tickets).
All dates are listed, along with a stream of "Sail On, Sailor," below...
Brian Wilson w/ The Beach Boys at Bonnaroo 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Brian Wilson (The Beach Boys) and Jeff Beck (overall classic rock guitar wizard) are touring together this year, and that tour has just been expanded to include another NYC-area date on October 16 at Wellmont Theatre. Tickets for that show go on sale Thursday (8/29) at 10 AM with Live Nation/Mobile App presales starting Wednesday (8/28) at 10 AM.
Brian and Jeff's tour also hits NYC a day earlier at Beacon Theatre (10/15), and tickets for that show are still available (but "not many left"). Updated dates are listed below.
Brian Wilson w/ The Beach Boys at Bonnaroo 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Last year, pop genius Brian Wilson reunited with The Beach Boys for a tour, which has since ended, and the Boys have gone back to touring without Brian (or Al Jardine or Dave Marks). Fortunately, Brian has some touring plans of his own. This fall, he'll be heading out with classic rock guitar maestro Jeff Beck for a tour which will include the two musicians performing solo and together.
There's no exact word on what material they'll be performing, but it seems likely that there will be some stuff played from Brian's upcoming new album, which as Consequence of Sound points out, includes appearances from Al Jardine, Dave Marks, and... Jeff Beck. The tour hits NYC on October 15 at Beacon Theatre. TIckets for that show go on sale Friday (8/9) at noon with a Citi Cardmember presale starting Tuesady (8/6) at 10 Am and another presale starting Thursday (8/8) at 10 AM.
Last month, Brian, Al and Dave went on a mini tour that included an Atlantic City show. Check out a 16 minute video from that show, along with a list of all Brian Wilson & Jeff Beck tour dates, below...
Mike Love of The Beach Boys at Jones Beach, June 2012 (more by Greg Cristman)
We knew this was coming, but now, as the Beach Boy's reunion tour comes to its scheduled end in the UK, it's official:
The reunion of founding members of the Beach Boys will not continue beyond this week, according to the band's frontman Mike Love.The end of the 50th Reunion Tour happens this week in the UK with Wilson, Marks and Al Jardine in tow. The remaining dates are 9/27 at Royal Albert Hall and 9/28 at Wembley Arena.
Brian Wilson and Al Jardine - both founding members of the legendary Californian pop group - have been told their involvement in the band's touring commitments will cease after this week.
David Marks, who originally joined the band as a replacement for Jardine in 1962, is also to be relieved of his touring duties.
Singer Mike Love, who owns the rights the band's name following a series of legal battles, released a statement which said:
"The post-50th anniversary configuration will not include Brian Wilson, Al Jardine and David Marks. The 50th Reunion Tour was designed to be a set tour with a beginning and an end to mark a special 50-year milestone for the band." -[Telegraph]
photos by Greg Cristman
The Beach Boys at Jones Beach - 6/24/12
The Beach Boys brought their tour, which already hit Beacon Theater, Bonnaroo, and Central Park for Good Morning America, to Jones Beach on Sunday (6/24). They were introduced by John Stamos, who also joined them on drums for a few songs. Like they've been doing at other shows on the tour, they mainly focused on their earlier material during the first set like "Surfer Girl," "Don't Back Down," and "I Get Around," and when they returned for their second set, we were given some of the great tracks from their late '60s/early '70s period including "Heroes and Villains" with the "Our Prayer" intro. According to this YouTube video, the Jones Beach show was the first ever performance of "Our Prayer" with Brian on stage. They also threw in others from that period like "God Only Knows," "Good Vibrations," "Forever," and more. Plus, they included a number of their standard covers in their set like "Then I Kissed Her," "Do You Wanna Dance?" and "Barbara Ann." As usual, Brian spent most of the time sitting behind his grand piano (which may or may not be real). One message boarder writes:
I was kind of put off at first because the beginning seemed to lack energy, but things picked up as the crowd became more into it. Disappointingly enough, the person to get the most applause was John Stamos. Luckily, he was only limited to "Be True to Your School" (which got the most applause, somehow) and the encore. For "Kokomo", the audience would applaud every time he appeared on the screens surrounding the stage. Seems like the casual concertgoer has their priorities mixed up.The Beach Boys will return to the NYC area on Wednesday (6/27) at PNC Bank Arts Center in NJ. More pictures from Jones Beach, and the setlist, below...
Highlights for me were "Please Let Me Wonder" and "Our Prayer"/"Heroes and Villains". Brian sounded like he was channeling his old self for the beginning of "Please Let Me Wonder", but slipped back into his current voice shortly after. Either way, it was amazing, but "Our Prayer"/"Heroes and Villains" took me by surprise. I was hoping for "Gee" after "Our Prayer", but I'll take it. The Dennis and Carl tributes were also great, and they work so well in the context of the concert. I was happy to hear "Pet Sounds", but thought David could have done a better job with the lead guitar. The spotlight was on him, and he seemed to put just the minimum amount of effort in. Maybe this will get better as the tour goes on. I was disappointed to not hear "This Whole World" or "Darlin'", the latter of which I was really happy to see had been added to the group's tour line-up recently. "Marcella" was back, at least.
I think the most heartbreaking part of the show was seeing Brian in action for the first time. He was "on" for the first set and into the show, but all of the Brian-centric songs in the second set seemed to tire him out, such that he didn't bother playing the bass he strapped on for the encore. I didn't notice how, but during "Fun, Fun, Fun", the bass was removed and he was left awkwardly standing on the stage, waiting for the song to end. It seems to be a miracle that he has managed to stay on the tour for so long, because you definitely get a sense of him not wanting to be there.
Overall, it was an excellent show. They played so many songs so well that just the first set would have been enough, and it's impossible to expect Brian to be in top form at any show, so it's hard to be picky. I hope they play here again, but I'm not holding out any hope, given the nature of the tour.
As we mentioned yesterday, June 20 was Brian Wilson's 70th birthday. Happy birthday again Brian! The band celebrated backstage at a show in Montreal as you can see in the picture above (a bigger shot of the cake is below).
How does Wilson feel about turning 70?
"Are you kidding?" he tells Rolling Stone. "I feel great! I don't think I look or act 70. I feel more like I'm in my mid-forties."The Beach Boys are now on tour and will be hitting PNC Bank Arts Center and Jones Beach soon. Watch video of them playing Good Morning America in Central Park last week (did you go?), and more, below...
Wilson celebrated with a party backstage during a tour stop at Montreal's Bell Centre, where he was gifted with a cake resembling the album cover to the Beach Boys' new LP, That's Why God Made The Radio. As the audience broke into "Happy Birthday," balloons sent by Wilson's wife surrounded him onstage. Earlier that day, Wilson received a call from his old buddy Paul McCartney, who celebrated his own 70th birthday two days earlier. "[Paul] said, 'Happy birthday, friend!" Wilson says. "I said, 'Happy birthday to you, Paul.' He told me he was headed into Abbey Road. I told him we were on our way to Montreal. I think he said something like, 'Can you believe we made it this far?' It was very pleasant and sweet.'
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
" The band has a treasure trove of outright classics, and they performed what felt like all of them during their Sunday afternoon set. "Surfer Girl," "Barbara Ann," "Wouldn't It Be Nice," "Sloop John B," "Surfin' Safari," even "Kokomo" -- you name it, they probably played it. While that wasn't inherently surprising, what came as a bit of a shock was how fresh the band sounded -- even if its elder members didn't look the part -- both on their classics and on tunes from their recently released reunion LP, "That's Why God Made the Radio." Brian Wilson's presence is what makes this reunion so successful, but onstage he looked like the Queen of England, sitting idly behind a grand piano and taking the occasional vocal lead; Mike Love, meanwhile, seemed to be the main Beach Boy behind the wheel. Taken together with the afternoon's balmy weather and the day-in-the-park vibe of festivalgoers knocking around beach balls and splaying out on towels, the group's sublime set was just the thing for a lazy, hungover Sunday." [Rolling Stone / CNN]The reunited Beach Boys (Brian Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine, Bruce Johnston and David Marks), on a tour that also brought them to Chicago and NYC's Beeacon Theater recently, played Bonnaroo on Sunday (6/10). Our pictures from their 3pm Tennesee set are in this post (with the rest of our Sunday Bonnaroo pics coming shortly. Saturday can be seen HERE.)
If you're curious what the band sound like live, listen to some tour highlights at NPR. If you're curious what their new album cover looks like, head to their Facebook where you can also change the colors if they're not to your liking. If you're curious what the new album sounds like, you can listen to the whole thing below.
If you're in NYC and can't wait to see the band live at PNC Bank Arts Center or Jones Beach, don't forget you can catch them EARLY FRIDAY MORNING in Central Park courtesy of Good Morning America (free and also being televised).
More pictures from Bonnaroo, their 31 song setlist, and the new album stream, below...
by Andrew Sacher
"Saw the beach boys tonight @ the beacon. Wow 50 years and still going strong. Brian wilson,#legend. Uncle Jessie was on the drums.#Fullhouse" - Dan Abramowitz
Beach Boys at Beacon Theater 5/8/12 (via Andrew Kirell)
The Beach Boys, who played Fallon on Monday (5/7), played their first of two Beacon Theater shows last night (5/8) on their 50th Anniversary tour, the first full tour with Brian Wilson on board for a very long time. The set appropriately kicked off with "Do It Again," off 1969's 20/20, before going into a set of their early '60s material including "Surfer Girl," "Don't Back Down," "Wendy," "I Get Around," and a few others.
After a short break, the band returned for a second set which kicked off with a cover of The Mamas & the Papas' "California Dreamin'" and went on to include a handful of cuts from Pet Sounds and others from their late '60s/early '70s period. John Stamos, who sat in on drums for part of the first set (some, like the NYTimes, may say that he overstayed his welcome), sang lead vocals on the Dennis Wilson-written/sung classic "Forever," off 1970's Sunflower. In addition to Pet Sounds cuts like "Wouldn't It Be Nice," "God Only Knows," and "I Just Wasn't Made for These Times," the band played Smiley Smile opener "Heroes and Villains," Holland opener "Sail on, Sailor" and a few more earlier ones like the classic Summer Days singles, "California Girls" and "Help Me, Rhonda," and one of Brian's earliest foreshadowing moments of the personal material he would eventually become known and loved for, "In My Room." The band returned for an encore, which included "Kokomo," "Good Vibrations," and "Fun, Fun, Fun." Some videos and setlist from the show below.
One of the tracks in the Beach Boys' second set was their new single, "That's why God Made the Radio," off the upcoming album of the same name. Its echoing drums and big sax lines make the track reminiscent of something off Holland, with carefree lyrics that bring to mind the band's earlier material. Check out the lyric video for the song below.
The Beach Boys "Do It Again" at Beacon Theater tonight (5/9) and have other upcoming NYC-area shows at Westchester County Center on 5/15, Jones Beach on 6/24, and PNC Banks Arts Center on 6/27.
Video and setlist from last night's show below...
The reunited Beach Boys, after playing the Grammys and announcing their appearance at Bonnaroo, have announced a full North American tour including two shows at NYC's Beacon Theater: May 8 & 9 (both on sale 2/21). All tour dates are listed, with on sale dates, below...
"Superfly Presents and A.C. Entertainment are excited to announce the initial lineup for the 2012 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival. The 11th annual four-day camping and music festival will be held on June 7 - 10 on the same beautiful 700-acre farm in Manchester, Tennessee, 60 miles south of Nashville. A full list of confirmed acts follows, and more will be announced in the coming weeks. The final Bonnaroo 2012 lineup will total over 125 bands and over 20 comedians performing on 13 stages over four days.Tickets for the event will go on sale on this Saturday, February 18, 2012 at 12 noon EST exclusively at bonnaroo.com."Radiohead, Beach Boys, Phish, Little Dragon, SBTRKT, The Antlers, Bad Brains, Laura Marling, St. Vinent, Tune-Yards, Flying Lotus, and many more are playing Bonnaroo this year. Full list below...
Brian Wilson played the Highline Ballroom [Sunday] night as part of its sister club's month-long Blue Note Jazz Festival, and though the two-set show featured his entire current Brian Wilson Reimagines Gershwin album of Gershwin standards, it wasn't jazz, really, but no less demanding--and rewarding.As mentioned in that review, Brian Wilson's three shows at Highline Ballroom this week are part of the ongoing and inaugural Blue Note Jazz Festival, a month-long celebration of Blue Note's 30th Anniversary. The fest includes a ton of shows including the recent Aloe Blacc, Idle Warship, and Larry Graham gigs. Brian finished his run Tuesday night, while, Dave Brubeck (who just turned 90) and George Wein & the Newport All-Stars each began their own three-night run at Blue Note Jazz Club. Advanced tickets to the Dave Brubeck shows are sold out, but you can line up to sit be at the bar on a first come, first served basis (if you're 21+). Tickets are still on sale for George Wein.
The Beach Boys' beloved creative genius brought a 12-piece band of multi-instrumentalists/vocalists--and a local female string section--and all lived up to his contention that it's one of his best bands ever.
The Gershwin album, which was conceived under the aegis of his hero George Gershwin's estate, led off the second set--the first being a breathtaking recreation of Beach Boys classics ranging from the ultra-romantic 1963 ballad "Surfer Girl," his first composition, to the symphonic "Heroes And Villains" of 1967. While Wilson's ability to sing his signature falsetto vocal leads and harmonies is long gone, guitarist Jeff Foskett was downright spooky in mimicking it on hits like "Don't Worry Baby" and "Wouldn't It Be Nice." [Examiner]
The recently mentioned Bjorkestra show at Highline Ballroom on June 14 is also part of the festival. As discussed, tickets are on sale and can be purchased with a 50% discount by using the access code "BIGBAND."
Bootsy Collins, who just played Bonnaroo, brings his previously announced Blue Note festival show to BB King's on June 26....
"Bootsy Collins was just one more band on our to-do list -- we didn't expect him to nearly steal the whole festival. After an annoying hour-plus wait that had the crowd chanting "bullshit," Collins instantly won the fans back in his favor by bringing THA FUNK. Everything was on the one after that. Lead guitarist Blackbyrd McKnight melted minds, while original P-Funk keyboardist Bernie Worrell provided the ballast. A special mid-set run found the band tackling classics by P-Funk, Jimi Hendrix, and Sly and The Family Stone." [American Songwriter]Tickets are still available for the NYC show.
Questlove is presenting Mo' Meta Blues I at The Blue Note on June 20 and 21. Both days consist of an early show and a late show. Mo' Meta Blues I features Questlove on drums/electronics, Booker T on organ/keyboards/vocals, Eric Krasno on guitar, and Christian McBridge on bass. Tickets are on sale.
The following night (6/23), The Roots will present Mo' Meta Blues II - Paid In Full 25th Anniversary featuring Black Thought and Rakim at The Blue Note. There will also be an early and a late show. Advance tickets for table reservations are sold out, but you can still get in at the bar on a first come, first served basis (if you're 21+).
"The Music of Stax Records" featuring Steve Cropper, Duck Dunn, Eddie Floyd and Lester Snell is happening on June 26 at Highline Ballroom. Tickets are on sale.
Last but not least, we want to highlight the Dances of Vice presentred Powerhouse Stomp II: a musical tribute to the classic cartoons of the 1920s, '30s, and '40s on June 29 at Highline Ballroom featuring Brian Carpenter's Ghost Train Orchestra. Sounds fun and tickets are on sale.
Check the Blue Note Jazz Festival's website for the full schedule. A selection of related videos below..
Two days after he plays Wellmont Theater (on 6/9, tickets), Brian Wilson will start a three-night NYC run at Highline Ballroom with first-come-first-served seated shows on June 11th, 12th, & 13th. The performances, like at the Wellmont show, and a recently-added CT show, will see Brian performing "Brian Wilson Reimagines Gershwin in its entirety, along with a selection of solo and Beach Boys classics." Tickets for all three shows are on sale.
Updated tour dates below...
Brian Wilson released Brain Wilson Reimagines Gershwin last year, an LP that put his own spin on classics by the American composers. Now comes word that Wilson will take those revamped classics on the road and play the album in its entirety "as well as classics from the Beach Boys back-catalogue." He'll be doing that all across Canada in June and in Europe in September, but first he'll kick things off on June 9th at Wellmont Theater in NJ. Tickets for that one are currently on AMEX presale and go on regular sale March 4th at noon.
Wilson also recently completed a second "reimagining" LP, one where he revisits Disney songs, though no release date on that yet. A Gershwin video and all tour dates below...
"The Beach Boys continue to tour approximately 150 shows a year in multiple countries. At this time there are no plans for my cousin Brian to rejoin the tour. He has new solo projects on the horizon and I wish him love and success. We have had some discussions of writing and possibly recording together, but nothing has been planned." [Mike Love]That statement comes in response to rumors that Brian Wilson would rejoin the group for a 50th Anniversary reunion performance.
The non-reunited Beach Boys play a free show in Coney Island on Thursday night.
All Beach Boys tour dates below...
Brian Wilson @ Hammerstein Ballroom last November (more by Tim Griffin)
Paul Zollo: You've been regarded as a musical genius throughout your career. Has that put too much pressure on you?Brian and his brain will head out on a tour of Europe and the US this fall. While his November 2008 show at the Hammerstein Ballroom featured "50 minutes of Beach Boys stuff" along with the entirety of That Lucky Old Sun, these shows, billed as "Greatest Hits Live," will be sure to focus on more classic material.
Brian Wilson: No, it doesn't put pressure on me. The only thing that puts the pressure on me is having to live up to my name, you know. As who I think I might be or should be or am. According to people, what they think I should be. You know, everybody goes through it. I'm not the only one who goes through that. Everybody goes through it.
PZ: But not everybody is the driving force of the Beach Boys. You had the pressure to produce sunny, happy songs, even if you didn't feel that way. What was that like?
BW: I was on the spot. You know what it was, though, that's when I was younger. Right? When I was in my twenties I was on the go all the time, producing, writing, you know, just creating all the time. It was such that it was a big burden on my shoulders. I took on a lot of karma and burdens on my shoulders. For some unknown reason, I just found myself involved in a name dilemma. After my twenties, when I was in my thirties and forties, I had age dilemma problems.
I say to myself, "I miss the feeling of being young." I say, "OK, so I do. That's established." Then I go through that, I get back on the track, and I say, "Yeah, but I got a great brain. Maybe I don't feel like taking a sprint every ten seconds down the street, but I have a great brain." Know what I mean?
There are no NYC shows on the tour (at this point), but four of the scheduled gigs are an NJ Transit or LIRR train ride away. Those dates are on sale now:
photos by Tim Griffin
"Brian was really into the music and in command- He did about 50 minutes of Beach Boys stuff (including a great Marcella), than after intermission did the whole That Lucky Old Sun album-it was really good. Midnight's Just Another Day was better than the album. Encores of Johnny B Goode, Fun, Fun, Fun, Help Me Rhonda, Surfing USA and Love and Mercy- Truly a great show-Hammerstein Ballroom has great sound too- far better then the Beacon.As advertised, Brian played hits in addtion to his entire new album last night (11/21) at Hammerstein Ballroom in NYC. His tour continues for three more shows (PA, NJ & Westbury). Thursday night he performed two songs on Conan O'Brien. You can watch the whole episode at Conan's site. More pictures from Hammerstein below...
In all honesty-the show far exceeded my expectations." [ian rusten]