cover art

 

track by track

 

historical context

 

final thoughts

 

 

Click On Each Title Below For A Full Page Review of Each Track:

 

Heroes and Villains

 

Vegetables

 

Fall Breaks

 

Shes' Goin' Bald

 

Little Pad

 

Good Vibrations

 

With Me Tonight

 

Wind Chimes

 

Gettin' Hungry

 

Wonderful

 

Whistle In

 

 

archives

 

 

Interesting Events 1967

 

January: Packers win first Super Bowl

 

April: Muhammad Ali stripped of Heavyweight Champ title for refusing the draft.

 

May: Carl Wilson indicted by Federal Grand Jury for draft evasion, misses first Beach Boys concert in Dublin at beginning of European tour.

 

June: Aretha Franklin's I Never Loved A Man The Way I Love You tops album chart.

 

July; Detroit erupts. 5 days, 43 dead, 1,189 injured, 7,200 arrested, 2,000 buildings destroyed.

 

August: Thurgood Marshall first African-American appointed to Supreme Court.

Doors' Light My Fire tops singles chart.

 

October: Anti-war march on

Pentagon

 

November: Supremes Greatest Hits replaces Sgt. Pepper at top of album chart.

 

December: Rolling Stone magazine knocks Beach Boys

Extras & Links

 

My review of Smile from the Village Voice

Sept 21, 2004: Click Here

 

 

Rolling Stone, December 14, 1967

 

Below, scanned and cobbled together: an actual very old, falling apart Rolling Stone page, with a lengthy put down, from founder and editor Jann Wenner, of the Beach Boys and Smiley Smile. Over the top Beatles adulation in full flower fails to heed Smiley's warning: they won't top Sgt. Pepper. Those were the days.

 

Rolling Stone Full Page

 

 

extract a

 

extract b

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And A Few Months Later

 

wild honey 1Here's some snippets from the beginning and the end of a Rolling Stone review of Wild Honey that feels obligated to throw in some further digs at Smiley Smile and the Beach Boys for the sin, apparently, of thinking they were as good as the Beatles and the Stones. Or something like that.

 

Smiley was "a disaster" and "an abortive attempt to match the talents of Lennon and McCartney." Wild Honey, the review continues isn't that good, but at least qualifies as "a convelescence after the illness."

 

In all fairness, Rolling Stone would eventually come round to writing favorably and at length about the Beach Boys and Brian Wilson, but in the late '60s the magazine amassed a lot of wild honey 2influence and power as it solidified its place in the establishment of the counterculture. Struggling against such "official" disapproval became a dynamic in the career path of the Beach Boys as well as a part of one's (my) identity as a fan, and in the long run added to the complex pleasures of such devotions.

 

There were, of course, other perspectives in the newly forming world of rock criticism, some more, (and some too) benevolent towards Smiley Smile.

 

Thankfully, WH did not represent "the Beach Boys getting their heads straight once again." Smiley Smile was a turn, not a derailment