The Weekend Review: November 2011

Originally posted 2012-01-02 14:00:52. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Chris Moore:

The SMiLE Sessions (The Beach Boys)

Producer: Brian Wilson, Mark Linett, Alan Boyd, and Dennis Wolfe

Released: November 1, 2011

Rating: 5 / 5 stars

Top Two Tracks: “Surf’s Up” & “Our Prayer ‘Dialog’”

I’ll keep this one brief, as there’s already been so, so, so much written about SMiLE, that infamous, legendary album that almost was, then wasn’t, then in 2004 pretty much was, and finally in 2011 finally is.  Well, it “is” in the best, closest manner it could ever have been, as The SMiLE Sessions are compiled from what Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys managed to finish before it all fell apart, nothing new added.  So, the Sessions lack the polish and finality of 2004’s Brian Wilson Presents… SMiLE!, afforded it by modern recording equipment and, no less significantly, Wilson’s healthier state of mind.  Inversely, the 2004 version lacked the spark, the elusive x factor presented by the Beach Boys’ voices.  When blended, there simply has never been another group quite like Brian, Dennis, and Carl Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine, and Bruce Johnston.  Accordingly, I would first recommend you hear Pet Sounds (1966).  If you’ve already heard that, you might be ready for SMiLE.  If you are, judge the version of the Sessions you’ll buy relative to how hardcore a fan you are (I had to go for the full 5-disc boxset, but you might not).  If you’re not, try out Sunflower (1970) or The Beach Boys Today! (1965) first.  But don’t forget to make it back to the greatest album that never was.  And also don’t forget to check back for more Beach Boys cover songs here on the music blog!

 

Camp (Childish Gambino)

Producer: Donald Glover & Ludwig Goransson

Released: November 15, 2011

Rating: 3 / 5 stars

Top Two Tracks: “Fire Fly” & “Hold You Down”

Camp is an imperfect album, with flares of talent and inspiration tempered with stretches of less notable work.  Being that this is Childish Gambino’s first studio album proper, this is all to be expected, particularly of an up and coming talent, and there is much evidence here to suggest that he is.  His attitude toward achieving success, especially in light of past experiences being ignored by girls and others, is explored across multiple tracks, the best of which is “Fire Fly,” truly the standout track for its incisive catchiness.  Childish Gambino has all the necessary bravado, as well as a unique personality and willingness to let his guard down; although I’ve heard it argued that his beats are derivative (I’m far from an authority on this front), his lyrics have an interesting blend between those typical of contemporary rap and those drastically different from the normal.

“Busy Doin’ Nothing” (Beach Boys Cover)

Originally posted 2008-01-22 12:31:45. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

Back into my favorite domain: the obscure Beach Boys cover songs! Today’s song is by request, and I’ll tell you, it wasn’t easy.

I always loved the acoustic guitar part in “Busy Doin’ Nothing”, especially because there’s not too many acoustic-guitar driven Brian Wilson songs.

But, this song uses some crazy chords, including some that 99.9% of rock songs never use- kind of like old jazz chords.

Needless to say, I learned all these new chords and practiced it over and over again for this cover song music video. That same night, I made this recording. It was actually pretty easy because I knew the words completely by heart (any Beach Boys songs I can sing in my sleep). That’s always the hardest part of the Laptop Sessions- learning the chords to a cover song is easy, but if you forget the order of the verses (see Jeff’s post yesterday), you’re stuck.

About this song: From the Friends album, this tune (I always thought) kind of shows the state of mind Brian Wilson was in during the late 60s. I think after the craziness of SMiLE, he wanted to be at home. This song describes a “day in the life”. Although, I still don’t know why Brian Wilson had a “pocket book”! Reminds me of that Seinfeld episode where Jerry had the pocket-book: “It’s European!”  But seriously, “Busy Doin’ Nothing” doesn’t really sound like any other Beach Boys song.  It has it’s own sound, from the acoustic guitars (that I mentioned earlier) to the flutes.  It has the same bossa nova beat The Beach Boys were into during the Friends sessions, though.  I think The Beach Boys were looking for a way to forge their own niche.  After the SMiLE project broke down, the Beach Boys tried doing psychedelic music on “Smiley Smile”, but to me, it just didn’t work.  I can imagine that they didn’t want to always follow in the (large) footsteps of the Beatles.  At that time, they were working on the White Album and were going back to basics with their sound.  The Beach Boys kind of did that in a way, but they also changed their style.  It became more relaxed.  Beach Boy music was always peppy and fast-paced under the tutelage of Murray Wilson, the Wilson brothers’ father.  Under their own management, the Boys decided to take a more mellow approach.  It didn’t gain them much commercial success for quite a while, but I do look back on this period of albums fondly.

This is a big shout-out to all the Blueboarders (fans of Brian Wilson’s message board on his official website) that always give me encouragement and always want more videos! I have so many great cover song music videos up my sleeve, I can’t wait to release them to the world!  Enjoy tonight’s cover song video in the Beach Boys’ “Busy Doin’ Nothing” here on the Laptop Sessions acoustic cover songs music video blog!

“Getcha Back” (Beach Boys Cover)

Originally posted 2012-07-11 21:52:53. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

For chords & lyrics, CLICK HERE!

By Chris Moore:

Hello and welcome, one and all, to my favorite type of acoustic cover song — a collaboration with fellow Fusco-Moore Productions artist Jim Fusco. (I’ll be posting another one soon with Jim and his girlfriend — fiance, to be more precise! — Becky Daly.) Tonight, I’m happy to present our rendition of the Beach Boys’ “Getcha Back” from their 1985 self-titled release.

This is probably their last great record, as such. After this, Dennis’ absence is all the more profound and the overall quality of involvement and projects seems to decline. But this album should not be ignored, even taking into account how much it sounds like “eighties music.”

“Getcha Back” is the first track and sets the tone for the album as a whole. I used to turn this on, set it to repeat, turn off the lights in my room, and lay on the floor listening to it again and again. There’s so much running through Mike Love’s vocal and the instrumental accompaniment is both rocking and sad. It made me want to write and record a song that could be that simple, and yet that good!

Years later, I still love the track, and I feel privileged that Jim would relinquish his claim on a Beach Boys cover — one of my favorites — so that I could record it for the acoustic cover songs music blog. Not only did he let me record it, but he joined in to make it probably one of my favorite Laptop Sessions thus far. I hope you enjoy it too!

Don’t forget to hurry back tomorrow for a new acoustic rock cover by Jeff…

See you next session!

“She Knows Me Too Well” (Beach Boys Cover mp3) by Jim Fusco

Originally posted 2013-08-28 22:51:55. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

Ladies and gentlemen- I give you a brand-new recording!!

This is a cover of the Beach Boys’ classic song “She Knows Me Too Well” off of the “Today!” album from 1965.

I got some new equipment, so I wanted to try to match the original recording the best I could (with a little more flair on the drums, no disrespect to Dennis Wilson). I used my new Shure SM57 mic, Epiphone Les Paul Special II with P-90 pickups, and my Samson 7-piece drum mic set. I rounded-it out with my Fender Stratocaster, Fender Jazz Bass, electric piano, and ten vocal tracks, recorded with my Shure SM27 condenser mic.

I really hope you enjoy all the hard work I put into this and hope you’ll share it with all of your friends, too!

http://jimfusco.com/audio/sheknowsmetoowell.mp3

And here’s a special “vocals-only” version for you super-fans:

http://jimfusco.com/audio/sheknowsme-vocals.mp3

Stay tuned for even more Beach Boys cover songs coming your way on the Laptop Sessions cover songs music blog!