“Passing Friend” by the Beach Boys – Chords, Tabs, & How to Play

Originally posted 2009-07-13 18:45:33. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

To see how this cover song is played, CLICK HERE!

“Passing Friend”
Beach Boys – Written by Culture Club’s George O’Dowd & Roy Hay

Intro: Gm – F  (x4)

F                    Eb                             Bb
Well, there’s nothing worse than a passing friend
Bb          Eb                        Bb
Who will die on you till the bitter end.
Bb          Eb                            Bb
There’s nothing worse than a burning heart
Bb    Eb                          Bb                                             Gm – F (x2)
Or a past that tears the world apart.

F              Gm                             F
I’ve been thinking about my situation,
Nothing ventured, nothing left to lose.
When it’s easier to just say nothing,
I had thought about what I might lose.

F                        Cm7
But through the child’s eyes,
Cm7
There were feelings
Dm7
Touching my violet skin.
Dm7         Cm7
When the love games start appealing,
Dm7
You better get out and move on in…

‘Cause there’s nothing worse than a passing friend
Or a pioneer of a dying trend,
Nothing worse than a silent ghost
Or to lose your head at the starting post.

Ain’t it always just a short vacation?
When it’s love it always has to end.
Under the sheets of life it’s just frustration,
While the body goes in search again.

But through the child’s eyes,
There were feelings
Touching my violet skin.
When the love games start appealing,
You better get out and move on in…

‘Cause there’s nothing worse than a passing friend
Who will die on you till the bitter end.
There’s nothing worse than a burning heart
Or a past that tears the world apart.

Eb                Dm7                Cm7                               Bb
Why do you love someone who wants to break your heart?
Why do you need someone who wants to tear your world apart?
No; no, not again…

SOLO

I was packing up my life in cases
For a hundred years or maybe more.
I’ve been talking to a million people,
Don’t you think I should have known the score?

But in the child’s eyes,
There were feelings
Touching my violet skin.
When the love games start appealing,
You better get out and move on in…

‘Cause there’s nothing worse than a passing friend
Who will die on you till the bitter end.
There’s nothing worse than a burning heart
Or a past that tears the world apart.

‘Cause there’s nothing worse than a passing friend
Or a pioneer of a dying trend,
Nothing worse than a silent ghost
Or to lose your head at the starting post.

No; no, not again…

** These chords and lyrics are interpretations and transcriptions, respectively, and are the sole property of the copyright holder(s). They are posted on this website free of charge for no profit for the purpose of study and commentary, as allowed for under the “fair use” provision of U.S. copyright law, and should only be used for such personal and/or academic work. **

The Beach Boys’ “The Beach Boys” (1985) – The Weekend Review

Originally posted 2010-07-01 00:47:50. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By Chris Moore:

RATING:  4.5 / 5 stars

Never before has such an excellent album been so universally scorned.

From the reviewers on down to the liner notes of the CD itself, every writer who has taken pen to paper in the name of The Beach Boys — perhaps better known to fans as “1985” — has had much in the way of criticism and, at times, outright derision for what ended up being their last full-length studio album of predominantly original material.

Take it as another subtle disapproval when only one track from this year was included on the Good Vibrations: Thirty Years of the Beach Boys box set.

One track out of well over one hundred tracks.

The truth is that The Beach Boys sounds a bit dated, clearly a product of the eighties and the decade long flirtation with digital and synthesized sounds.  Andrew Doe, writer of both the liner notes for the album and Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys: The Complete Guide to their Music, claims that the decision to experiment with this technology “removed any sense of immediacy from the proceedings.”

He also has negative commentary to share for just about every track that I like.

As Doe is one of the few writers to take the time — or, certainly, to be paid — to review these tracks, it may be useful to revisit his sentiments.  In his mind, the Mike Love/Terry Melcher-penned “Getcha Back,” one of the true gems of this period, “has a curiously unfinished feel about it.”  Bruce Johnston’s heartfelt performance on “She Believes in Love Again” is “(unusually) less than silky smooth.”  Brian Wilson’s admittedly simple but — as the Laptop Sessions have proven — beautiful song “I’m So Lonely” is simply “in no way objectionable.” “Passing Friend,” the stronger of the two covers here, is described as “a second-string Culture Club discard [that] really isn’t appropriate, nor up to par.”  (Whereas the other cover, “I Do Love You,” is “good,” even if it’s “not the Beach Boys.”)

To be fair, “Where I Belong” gets the attention it deserves, although Doe overstates it a bit as “the undoubted album highlight.”  The other track that he endorses is “California Calling,” a perfectly enjoyable track that is nostalgic of classic early Beach Boys.  Predictably, Doe again overstates, writing “why this wasn’t a single is an eternal mystery.”

Herein lies the rub: that frustrating ever-present perception of the classic early Beach Boys sound.

The Beach Boys' "The Beach Boys" (1985)

The Beach Boys' "The Beach Boys" (1985)

For nearly two decades by this point, the Beach Boys had been suffering from commercial and critical expectations.  Anyone could understand why Smiley Smile fell disappointingly flat, but strong later releases — like the placid but endearing Friends and the masterpiece Sunflower — stalled in the triple digits on the charts.

Is it a coincidence that an album on which the Beach Boys experiment with new technology and stretch out beyond some of their more typical arrangements is so widely disdained?

I think not.

Consider for even a moment the runaway success of their subsequent album (more like an EP) Still Cruisin’ based on the merits of the crowd-pleasing “Kokomo” and in spite of the downright embarrassing “Wipe Out.”

When this band sings within the ranges of their image (i.e. anything related to summer, the beach, waves, sun, etc.), they are met with far more success than when they stretch out beyond the expected.

As for me, I can see beyond the eighties textures.  I don’t feel the compulsive need to value this music primarily in comparison to the other albums in the Beach Boys catalog; even if I did, it would hold up as one of the pillars, particularly post-Holland.  And I applaud the Beach Boys for rebounding from a tumultuous series of years that saw Carl temporarily quitting the band, Brian falling under the influence of Dr. Landy, and Dennis passing away, due to drowning.

Despite all the tension and tragedy, The Beach Boys is the combined effort of five adults still able to perform with positive energy, adding the element of uplift to nearly every track.  This album is host to what have become lost Beach Boys tracks, including excellent little numbers like “It’s Gettin’ Late,” the catchy “Crack at Your Love,” and the electric, rockin’ “Maybe I Don’t Know.”  And, as much as I like Keepin’ the Summer Alive (1980) for a spin or maybe two, this is the album I put on repeat for days at a time to kick off or to recharge my summer spirit each year.

Few may agree with me, but that’s okay.  The Beach Boys truly is the under-appreciated pinnacle of the Beach Boys final full decade as a band.  Not since Holland had they produced such a strong album, and they would sadly never match it again.

At this point, I’ve written all that can be communicated, and I’ll have to agree to disagree with the masses, tolerating “Kokomo” and loving The Beach Boys (1985).

“Passing Friend” (Beach Boys/Culture Club Cover)

Originally posted 2009-07-13 23:32:18. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

For Beach Boys / Culture Club chords & lyrics, CLICK HERE!

By Chris Moore:

The general public’s response to my video tonight will most likely be:

“Culture Club?  Finally!”

Since I’ve been focusing so heavily on more recent music, I decided tonight to go back to one of the best bands of all time, the Beach Boys!  (You might be thinking: “Wait, I thought he said ‘Culture Club,’ and you’d be right.  Be patient; all will become clear soon…)  For the past week, I’ve been listening back and forth to newer and older music.  In the car, it’s been newer — Wilco and Marcy Playground — and in the house, it’s been older — Beach Boys and George Harrison.  (I’m trying to iron out my George Harrison essentials playlist; I made the first selection of tracks months ago, but the recent release of the Let it Roll CD has inspired me to finally make the next set of cuts necessary to carve out the compilation.)

For tonight’s session, I’ve chosen to cover “Passing Friend,” a track from the Beach Boys’ self-titled release back in 1985.  This song was penned by George O’Dowd — better known as Boy George — and Roy Hay of Culture Club.  (So, I suppose, this technically isn’t a Culture Club song, but it’s as close as we’re going to come on this blog at least for now!)  “Passing Friend” is generally considered to be a disposable track on what is often considered a disposable album in the Beach Boys catalog.

Nonsense!

Okay, so maybe “Passing Friend” is somewhat disposable.  But let’s be very clear here that The Beach Boys (1985) is one of my favorite albums of all time.  I think that I’m one of only two people who would give it that distinction, but it really is an enjoyable, versatile, all-around great album.  “Passing Friend” isn’t one of the strongest songs on the album by any means, but it’s still a solid track.  I was surprised by how easy and fun it was to learn, play, and record an acoustic cover of the over-produced studio version.

The story behind the song is based on members of the then-popular band Culture Club — singer Boy George and guitarist/keyboardist Roy Hay — writing a track for the Beach Boys to record.  It seems that the Beach Boys were experimenting with new ways to regain some semblance of relevance in a musical climate that was drastically different from their 1960’s hey day.  At the time, Culture Club had taken a break after touring England.  Hay was involved in a new band (This Way Up) and Boy George was making the rounds on the club scene.  Although they came together to write this song, Culture Club was destined to disband the following year due to tensions within the band and Boy George’s addiction to drugs.

Thus, we have “Passing Friend,” a deep track if I’ve ever heard one!  I hope you enjoy this stripped down version.  Maybe it will even encourage you to give The Beach Boys (1985) either a shot or a second chance…

To address old business, I had promised in last week’s cover song music video post that I would bring you a double header this week.  Well, today was a tremendously busy day, so I decided to hold off, as I need just a little more time to focus and figure out the chords for the second of the two songs.  I won’t give them away just yet, but suffice it to say that I’m presenting an all-new band to the blog.  They are big time one hit wonders — probably for good reason — and I’ll be recording a video of their hit single, as well as the single from their most recent album.  More on that next Monday…

But this is certainly NOT the last time you’ll be hearing from me this week.  You can look forward to a very special post — one that is very near and dear to me — coming on Wednesday and then another post on either Saturday or Sunday.

I realize this is all very vague, but believe me: these posts promise to be well worth your time clicking back to the best acoustic cover song blog in the universe!  (And we’re modest, too…)  Just think: you’ve got Jim Fusco Tuesday tomorrow (maybe more Beach Boys cover songs?), then I’ll be back on Wednesday, Jeff Copperthite’s “Thumpin’ Thursday,” and at least one more post this weekend.  Don’t miss any of the musical fun!

See you next session!  (Or, in this case, sooner…)

The Deep Racks Report: “Carl and the Passions – ‘So Tough'”

By Chris Moore:

I think we’ve all heard the term “deep track,” used to refer to songs that do not receive much (or any) commercial radio airplay.  This series is dedicated to brief but focused reports on ALBUMS that do not receive as much commercial or critical attention as they should.

Carl and the Passions – “So Tough” by the Beach Boys

After a series of unfortunate career moves in the late sixties, not the least of which involved Brian’s last-minute withdrawal from the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival and the release of Smiley Smile in lieu of SMiLE, the Beach Boys’ reputation — particularly in the rock press — was lackluster at best.  By the early seventies, the band was experimenting with new sounds and recording what are arguably among the best albums of their career.

Carl and the Passions – “So Tough” arrived just as their re-established stardom was fading again.

While some may argue that the album is more a compilation of songs from four different, disconnected sets of writers, the end result must be weighed without placing too much emphasis on the drama that surrounded the sessions.  And there was certainly no shortage of drama.  During the sessions for Carl and the Passions, Brian Wilson drew further away from his brothers and the band, disappointing record executives and fans alike.  Dennis Wilson put his hand through a window and was unable to play drums either in the studio or in concert.  And, to top it off, Bruce Johnston had a falling out with Beach Boys collaborator Jack Rieley and subsequently left — either of his own free will or after being fired.

For any fan of the band, the history surrounding these sessions can only serve to affect one’s expectations of the album itself.

And that simply isn’t fair.

Granted, Carl and the Passions – “So Tough” may not be a masterpiece like Pet Sounds and Sunflower were (even though it was packaged with Pet Sounds, further increasing the probability that it would pale in comparison).  Yet, from the first piano notes of “You Need A Mess Of Help To Stand Alone” to the final fadeout of Wilson’s tremendously moving “Cuddle Up,” Carl and the Passions makes good on all that could ever be hoped for on any Beach Boys album — namely, by delivering superb vocals,  fantastic instrumental arrangements, and a combination of upbeat tracks and more introspective ballads.

There is something intriguing about seeing the band fight to hold its own and truly redefine itself without Brian Wilson at the helm.  In a sense, they went back to the drawing board, inviting new members Blondie Chaplin and Ricky Fataar to join the band, naming the album after an early incarnation of the Beach Boys that performed at a Hawthorne High School talent show, and returning if only momentarily to the endearing directness of their early liner notes with the inclusion of “Thanks to Alan’s Mom for renting the Bass Fiddle on the first session.”

“You Need A Mess Of Help To Stand Alone” is a great opening track, offering an interesting groove and somehow straddling the line between raw and perfectly honed.  “Here She Comes” boasts catchy bass and piano parts and properly introduces the influences of Fataar and Chaplin.  In their book Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys: The Complete Guide to their Music, Andrew G. Doe and John Tobler label this song as well as Fataar and Chaplin’s previous band and self-titled effort The Flame as “boring, overlong, and self-indulgent.”  Why they make this assessment, I cannot justify.

Look for a “Deep Racks Report” on The Flame in the not-so-distant future…

“He Come Down” is gospel rock that borders on the cheesy, but is still fun and convincingly felt.  Still, it is all but forgotten by the time track four kicks off.  “Marcella” is certainly a standout here and continues to prove why the powers-that-be were at least somewhat justified in endlessly seeking after new material from Brian Wilson.

“Hold on Dear Brother” and “Make it Good” are solid, enjoyable tracks, if perhaps overshadowed by the other Fataar/Chaplin and Wilson/Dragon tracks (respectively) also on this album.

“All This is That” is another perfectly rendered performance on the album, taking Robert Frost’s poem “The Road Not Taken” and adding a pleasant transcendental twist in a manner that only the Beach Boys ever could.

“Cuddle Up” is easily one of the great Dennis Wilson tracks of all time.  Its simple, beautiful lyrics are delivered in this heartbreaking vocal performance with haunting yet pretty background vocals, always knowing when to build up and when to back off, fading out the album on a subdued orchestral note.

At the end of the day, Carl and the Passions – “So Tough” is an essential Beach Boys album for any fan who acknowledges their presence post-1966.  And if you’re a rock music enthusiast that doesn’t own a seventies Beach Boys album, then by all means go out and get Sunflower.

If you like that one, then you’d be missing out if you didn’t pick up Carl and the Passions, too!