“And Then I Kissed Her” (Beach Boys Cover)

Originally posted 2007-11-02 00:52:03. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco

Here’s a great Beach Boys cover song originally done by The Crystals as “And Then He Kissed Me”. Brian Wilson loves Phil Spector’s music and re-did this tune (with Al Jardine on great lead vocals) with a Beach Boys touch. Of course, my version is stripped-down and it’s just me, but it’s a fun song to play and I think it sort of represents my project. Brian Wilson covered a song from his idol, and I cover songs from my favorite musicians here on the Laptop Sessions!

In 2013, Brian Wilson toured with Al Jardine and Al sang this song in concert.  You wouldn’t believe it, but Al (in his 70s) still sings this song great!  His voice is largely unchanged and he sings and plays it just like he did in the 60s.  It’s great to see him out there with his white Fender Stratocaster, just like he did so many years ago.  It’s actually a stark contrast from Brian Wilson himself.  I guess it just goes to show you that if you take care of yourself, you’ll still look and sound great later in life.  Paul McCartney seems to be that way, as does Ringo Starr.  But, guys like Ozzy Osbourne and Keith Richards choce the rockstar lifestyle back in the day.  Sure, they lived it up, but you can only stay that way for so long.  Their talent is still there, but it’s masked under a cloud of slurred speech and horribly wrinkled skin!

One thing about the Beach Boys is that they always did amazing cover songs.  From “Why Do Fools Fall In Love?” to “Cottonfields” and beyond, they always took songs and gave it the Beach Boys’ treatment.  Take “Sloop John B”, for example.  That was an old traditional song that Al Jardine brought to Brian Wilson’s attention.  Brian turned it into a pop song and it became a Top 5 hit!  The Beach Boys also had a Top 5 hit with their cover of Chuck Berry’s “Rock’n’roll Music” in the 70s, though that version isn’t too far of a departure from the original version back in the 50s.  Later on in the 80s, the Beach Boys collaborated with Roger McGuinn (formerly of the Byrds) to do a cover of the Mamas and the Papas’ “California Dreamin'”.  That version is a lot different from the original, mostly because of McGuinn’s amazing 12-string electric guitar (Rickenbacker) playing throughout.

So, sit back, relax, and watch my cover song version of the Beach Boys’ “And Then I Kissed Her” here on the Laptop Sessions acoustic cover songs music video blog.  I hope you enjoy and stay tuned for more!


“Soulful Old Man Sunshine” (Beach Boys Cover)

Originally posted 2008-03-10 14:14:41. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

Welcome to my Beach Boys Session for this week! Today, this song goes out by request, but I probably would’ve done it eventually, anyway.

This is a technically unreleased song called “Soulful Old Man Sunshine” that was only released on a compilation a few years ago.

I truly think the only reason the Beach Boys never released it is because of Carl’s “shun-shine” gaff in the middle 8.

I figured out this song’s chords by myself and even though I took some liberties, I think it stays true to the original.

Also, I think this is one of the few over-produced Beach Boys songs. That’s why I was so excited to strip all that excess out and just make an acoustic version. You’ll notice that I even sing a bit of it like Brian Wilson did in the original demo of the song, also included on that compilation. I love that version, too- it’s a bit more jazzy.

Thank you for making this ongoing series so incredibly popular! We’re doing a Session a day in 2008, so make sure to check back EVERY DAY you go on the computer for fresh, new material at http://laptopsessions.com. Don’t forget to RATE the songs, too!



“That’s Not Me” (The Beach Boys Cover)

Originally posted 2008-06-29 22:04:38. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

“That’s Not Me” is track three of the pivotal album, “Pet Sounds” from 1966. My family got into the Beach Boys back in 1990 or 1991 because of this album. Of course, we listened to the greatest hits, but we were more interested in this well-crafted, deeper music that “Pet Sounds” brought to the table. Seventeen years later, “Pet Sounds” doesn’t stand as my favorite Beach Boys album- that title goes to a couple of others, including “Holland”, “Sunflower”, and “The Beach Boys (1985)”. But, I still love every single track off of “Pet Sounds”. One of the reasons I like those other albums better is because of the contributions from the other band members. On “Pet Sounds”, it’s really a Brian Wilson solo album, featuring Mike Love, Al Jardine, Bruce Johnston, Carl Wilson, and Dennis Wilson on backing vocals.

But, then you get songs like “God Only Knows” that clearly benefited from Carl’s lead vocals and “That’s Not Me”, which benefited from Mike Love’s great lyrics and singing. This song is a great one to play on acoustic guitar and do a cover of because I didn’t have that feeling of stripping too much away from the song. This is a very personal-sounding song and I think it works great as an intimate cover music video. Of course, I plan on doing pretty much every song from “Pet Sounds”, but I arrived at this choice now because it’s the track that still hung on to that Brian Wilson/Mike Love writing tandem that put them on top in the early 60s.

I hope you enjoy tonight’s Laptop Session acoustic cover song and I hope you’ll come back to see another great cover music video from Chris Moore tomorrow!


Ranking every Beach Boys song/album: The Beach Boys Today! (by Songwriter Jim Fusco)

Originally posted 2008-03-19 10:36:55. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Jim Fusco:

THE BEACH BOYS TODAY!

Dance, Dance, Dance – 8
Kiss Me, Baby – 9.5
Please Let Me Wonder – 9 (I actually like the arrangement on the “Live at the Roxy” CD better- which really doesn’t fit with my stance on live versions…)
She Knows Me Too Well – 8 (What an ending! Probably one of the best endings ever)
When I Grow Up – 7 (This song is great, don’t get me wrong, but when I first learned it, I always found it to be a bit boring. But, the subject matter is amazing.)
Help Me, Ronda – 6 (I love this song, but sadly, not this version.)
Do You Wanna Dance? – 7 (Great Denny vocal here and I consider this the “standard” version of the song)
Good to My Baby – 7.5 (I love the style of this song, the great guitar riff, and the a capella vocals in the beginning)
*Dance, Dance, Dance (alternate) – 6 (Why do the unreleased alternate takes always sound so tinny?)
Don’t Hurt My Little Sister – 5 (Funny story about this song- my friends and I talk in the tune of this song! I know it sounds weird, and that’s because it is. We’ll say any line with seven syllables to the tune of this song, for instance, “Did you go buy the hot dogs?” Sing it- it fits!)
I’m So Young – 6 (This has some interesting sounds to it. Even though I like Dennis’ part at the end, it’s a bit out of his range)
*Graduation Day – 5 (Great harmonies, just not exactly “engaging”)
In the Back of My Mind – 6.5 (This is a great song with a personal message from Brian Wilson shroud in the vocals of Dennis Wilson. He really nails this and the tune is so unique that I have to give it a good rating)
*I’m So Young (alternate) – 5
Bull Session with the “Big Daddy” – 1

** This is clearly one of the Boys’ best albums of all-time. The production quality, although mixed in mono (which I’m not a fan of, growing up in the surround-sound age), is great. I do miss the Boys playing their own instruments, as they did on the Christmas album’s first side, but the song quality is so good here, that I can look far past it.

I think, without using composite song scores, but ranking albums as “albums”, that this would probably end up in the Top 5 for me. With it would be “Holland”, “Sunflower”, “Pet Sounds”, and the fifth spot is up for grabs. Of course, everyone knows by now my affinity for the ’85 album, but I do value my life, here! :-)

As a bit of genealogy to my Beach Boys past, we actually started with Pet Sounds (after the Greatest Hits, of course), which we got in 1992. I was 8. Talk about starting with some heavy stuff! But, we hear it over and over and over and over again. My father couldn’t get enough. We listened to “God Only Knows” about three times a day for a year- I’m not exaggerating. It was like Brian Wilson listening to “Be My Baby”. We then moved on (because many of the Beach Boys albums weren’t so easy to find) to the Box Set that just came out in 1992. Now, you have an 8 year old kid listening to Smile!! But, I do think that listening to, and really getting into, such deep and complex music at the age of 8 helped me to grow into a musician and songwriter at an early age. And, thus, is the reason why Brian Wilson will always be my musical idol.

Well, enough about me- this album’s great, and it’s only gonna get better for me, as I’m such a fan of the other band members’ compositions that I can’t wait for the “Sunflower” days! **