By Jim Fusco:
Here’s a great tune from the Beach Boys, originally sung by the legendary Carl Wilson (written mostly by Brian). Good Timin’ is one of those gems that clocks in at just over 2 minutes. But, so do many of the Beach Boys’ hit songs. Of course, most of those I’m talking about came out in the early 60s. “Good Timin'” is from 1980, off of the “Keepin’ the Summer Alive”. (**EDIT: no it’s not! It’s from “L.A. (Light Album) in 1979! But the whole original post is about “Keepin’ the Summer Alive”, so I’ll keep the rest of the original post intact. 😃). It’s not the best album of all time, but it holds some serious sentimental value with me.
You see, every year on the last day of school, we would get picked up from school in my dad’s 1990 Camaro. He’d pull up to the school, blasting “Keeping the Summer Alive”. It was the sure-fire way to know that summer was here! So, I associate this album with being extremely happy and that great times were ahead. So, even though I know “Keeping the Summer Alive” isn’t the Beach Boys’ best album, I still love it. I’ll be doing many acoustic cover songs off of that album in the future.
“Good Timin'” just sounds like a classic Beach Boys song. I can imagine that they were all very proud of this track when they were finished. Plus, the song has a great message. I end up singing “Good Timin'” to myself quite often. And nothing feels better than when you’ve got good timing on something- it could even be a well-timed joke. When the timing clicks, you can’t help but feel good about yourself.
One note about “Keepin’ the Summer Alive”- it’s the last album Dennis Wilson appeared on for the Beach Boys, but he’s hardly on it. In fact, the credits only say he played percussion on the song “Endless Harmony”! I always thought he had the line, “Goin’ on!” in the raspy voice (in the song with the same name), but it turns out it was just a 350 pound Brian that sang that line. It’s such a shame that Dennis didn’t get to contribute, whether it was his fault or not. He had such a great contribution to “L.A. (Light Album)” the year before with songs like “Baby Blue” and “Love Surrounds Me”, plus an amazing lead vocal on “Angel Come Home”, written by his brother, Carl. I’ll probably be recording acoustic versions of those songs, too, as they could use the Laptop Sessions acoustic cover song treatment!
I love this period in Beach Boys history, as they were making great music from every one of the band members, not just Brian. I hope you’ll agree and that you’ll enjoy tonight’s Beach Boys cover song.