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Beautiful Dreamer: Brian Wilson and the Story of Smile

Beautiful Dreamer: Brian Wilson and the Story of Smile (2004)

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For close to four decades, Smile by the Beach Boys was perhaps the most famous unreleased album in the history of rock & roll. Brian Wilson, the group's principal songwriter, arranger, producer, and vocalist, had already turned pop music on its ear in 1966 with Pet Sounds, an ambitious concept album that reflected a new degree of maturity and musical sophistication for both the Beach Boys and rock in general. The following year, Wilson intended to release an even more imaginative album called

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SMILE was the legendary unfinished album started by Beach Boy Brian Wilson in the mid 60's as a followup to the successful and influential PET SOUNDS. Recording difficulties, resistance from the rest of the Beach Boys, and Wilson's breakdown all meant the project was shelved, apparently forever, except when bits and pieces found their way into subsequent greatest hits compilations. Nearly thirty years and a long battle with drugs and mental illness later, Wilson finally found the stability and support to finish his symphony. If it was a Hollywood movie, it would end here with a smiling Brian Wilson and a standing ovation. He being a highly talented composer, it did. Fascinating. Watch the documentary first and then the recording of the 2004 Royal Festival Hall concert premiere for maximum impact.
December 17, 2009
lesleyanorton
Lesley N

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