Love Song Extraordinaire: "God Only Knows" | Beaufort County Now | There are many love songs written over the ages littered along the American musical landscape, but few were ever written with the impact of Brian Wilson's and the Beach Boy's classic, "God Only Knows".

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    I do this for two reasons: 1) I want to expose the best music that I know to the rest of us. 2) Popular Music today may be the very worst it has ever been, and that is saying much, since I lived through Disco.

    For a list of the contributions to this series, please click here.


Brian Wilson's sentimental genius did find its way into the consciousness of the American fabric of humanity.

    There have been many love songs written over the ages littered along the American musical landscape, but few were ever written with the impact of Brian Wilson's and The Beach Boy's classic, "God Only Knows", recorded in 1966 on their masterpiece album of songs - "Pet Sounds". In fact, in the early days of popular music, the great propensity of American music was made with some form of the genre regarding love lost, love gained, love sustained, and all the fun in between to go along with heartbreak and lover's angst.

    The love song "God Only Knows" transcends all of the above, and touches the other human emotions that reside deep within that which is spiritual, as it regards to who we love, and how we take care of them as we take care of ourselves, so, we, in turn, can continue to take care of them. At least this theme is what I derive from the song.
The Beach Boys in the mid 1960's: (from left to right): Al Jardine, cousin Mike Love, and brothers, Dennis Wilson, Brian Wilson and Carl Wilson.

    From slow dances with some father's sweet child of the 1960's, who just graduated from a training bra, to the opening credits of the HBO hit series Big Love, "God Only Knows" is a lyrical standard for longer than one generation.

Here below, we have the album version of this classic, sang so well in full harmony by the entire group and, in particular, Brother Carl's lead vocals, from their equally classic album, "Pet Sounds", recorded in 1966.



    One active side issue that plagued Brian Wilson for all his days, including now, is his debilitating mental health, possibly schizophrenia, which became apparent in the early days of the Beach Boys; to the extent that Brian did not feel competent touring with the band, and was replaced, very competently and to this day, by long time Beach Boy surrogate Bruce Johnston.



And here in 1976, as the band toured still without Brother Brian: Below.



God Only Knows

     
melody and arrangement by Brian Wilson, lyrics by Tony Asher


I may not always love you
But long as there are stars above you
You never need to doubt it
I'll make you so sure about it

God only knows what I'd be without you
If you should ever leave me
Though life would still go on believe me
The world could show nothing to me
So what good would living do me

God only knows what I'd be without you
(God only knows what I'd be without you)
If you should ever leave me well life would still go on believe me
The world could show nothing to me
So what good would living do me

God only knows what I'd be without you
(God only knows what I'd be without you)

God only knows
God only knows what I'd be without you
God only knows what I'd be without you

God only knows
God only knows what I'd be without you
God only knows what I'd be without you

God only knows
God only knows what I'd be without you


Then later in the 1980's, I believe here after Brother Dennis's death by drowning, we see The Beach Boys performing their wonderful rendition; this time with a bloated Brian Wilson on piano, who was clearly struggling with his psychosis. Brian does not even sing harmony here: Below.



Here, we have Brian, mentally well and physically robust, touring in 2002, and singing lead after his dear brother, Carl, had passed on due to Cancer: Below.


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Comments

( October 10th, 2015 @ 11:42 am )
 
You're probably right B.T. I reckon I should have more porn here on BCN; "that'll learn 'em."
( October 10th, 2015 @ 11:38 am )
 
Ted says most people do not follow the underlined links because they do not know that's what it is.
I suspected a bunch of people followed that nudity referenced underlined link.

Proper advertising is critical to draw an audience, but i suspect the author is just as critical in this case.
( October 10th, 2015 @ 11:28 am )
 
And as much as I seem to denigrate my good friend, he works really cheap (we all do), and he has more top posts than I do. Even the top post here of all time still gets a bunch of traffic: beaufortcountynow.com

Why is it the top post, and probably will remain such: Wyatt draws and paints, so he thinks he knows a lot about art; I still say it is the nudity (about the only I have allowed here on BCN).
( October 10th, 2015 @ 10:45 am )
 
Well, there can only be one pilot per plane and Wyatt is doing a great job flying his own so I'll enjoy whatever flybys he offers.
( October 10th, 2015 @ 9:41 am )
 
Getting Wyatt to do anything is like "pulling teeth".

He liked Ted's pictorial retrospective (for Wyatt).

There is another thing I know about Wyatt, he loves The Beach Boys.
( October 10th, 2015 @ 9:35 am )
 
Great, I will look it up on my now bloated AMAZON list. Glad to hear Wyatt is back in the hunt, Have I missed his post or was he on a "walk about"?
Ted made a visit to Washington, Ga and posted based on our previous discussions.
( October 10th, 2015 @ 9:25 am )
 
Much of Brian's life is answered in the recent autobiographical film, "Love and Mercer", which Wyatt tells me he is formulating a review on.

It was a crazy ride.
( October 10th, 2015 @ 9:15 am )
 
I always enjoyed the Beach Boys but never became an active follower as in buying albums and knowing the various members of the band except through radio exposure. Given the choice now I would agree with your selection and add "Good Vibrations" Presented here with some studio video
beaufortcountynow.com


I was vaguely aware that Brian Wilson had some mental issues and subsequent research from Wiki and other sources show his problems may have been enhanced by drugs. In any event society benefited from his alternate view and musical interpretations and he has a legacy that will endure. I guess that is the endearing beauty of artist. They don't have to conform to our narrow interpretations of normal. Van Gogh and Kurt Vonnegut (mental illness or genius)maybe examples of our tendency to pigeon hole people who don't fit.

Below from WIKI.

"Wilson suffers from auditory hallucinations and has been formally diagnosed as mildly manic-depressive with schizoaffective disorder that presents itself in the form of disembodied voices. According to him, he only began having hallucinations in 1965, shortly after experimenting with psychedelic drugs. In recent years, Wilson's mental condition has improved. Although he still experiences auditory hallucinations from time to time, his relationship with his wife and his new regimen of psychiatric care have allowed him to resume his career as a musician."



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