175 Facts About Brian Wilson


Brian Douglas Wilson was born on June 20,1942 and is an American musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer who co-founded the Beach Boys.


Brian Wilson produced other acts, most notably the Honeys and American Spring.


Brian Wilson is considered among the first music producer auteurs and the first rock producers to apply the studio as an instrument.


In 1964, Brian Wilson had a nervous breakdown and resigned from regular concert touring, which led to more refined work, such as the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds and his first credited solo release, "Caroline, No", as well as the unfinished album Smile.


Brian Wilson disassociated from Landy in 1991 and went on to tour regularly as a solo artist from 1999 to 2022.


Brian Wilson's accolades include numerous industry awards, inductions into multiple music halls of fame, and entries on several "greatest of all time" critics' rankings.


Brian Douglas Wilson was born on June 20,1942, at Centinela Hospital Medical Center in Inglewood, California, the first child of Audree Neva and Murry Wilson, a machinist and later a part-time songwriter.


Brian Wilson has Dutch, Scottish, English, German, Irish, and Swedish ancestry.


Brian Wilson's two younger brothers Dennis and Carl were born in 1944 and 1946, respectively.


From an early age, Brian Wilson demonstrated an extraordinary skill for learning by ear.


Brian Wilson sang with various students at school functions as well as with his family and friends at home, teaching his two brothers harmony parts that all three would then practice.


Brian Wilson played piano obsessively after school, deconstructing the harmonies of the Four Freshmen by listening to short segments of their songs on a phonograph, then working to recreate the blended sounds note by note on the keyboard.


Brian Wilson used to stay in his room all day listening to records rather than play baseball.


In high school, Brian Wilson was quarterback on his local football team at Hawthorne High.


Brian Wilson played baseball for American Legion Ball and was a cross-country runner in his senior year.


Around this time, Brian Wilson auditioned to be the singer of the record to mark the launch of the Original Sound Record Company, "Chapel of Love", but he was rejected for being too young.


Brian Wilson enrolled as a psychology major at El Camino Junior College in Los Angeles, in September 1960, while simultaneously continuing his musical studies at the community college as well.


Brian Wilson was disappointed to find that his music teachers strongly disapproved of pop music, and he quit college after a year and half.


Three days previously, Brian Wilson's father had bought him an electric bass and amplifier.


Brian Wilson had learned to play the instrument in that short period of time, with Jardine moving to rhythm guitar.


Brian Wilson was the surfer and I was the songwriter.


When Candix Records ran into money problems and sold the Beach Boys' master recordings to another label, Brian Wilson's father terminated the contract.


Brian Wilson gradually dissolved his partnership with Usher due to interference from Murry.


Brian Wilson was writing song with people off the street in front of his house, disc jockeys, anyone.


Brian Wilson had so much stuff flowing through him at once he could hardly handle it.


From January to March 1963, Brian Wilson produced the Beach Boys' second album, Surfin' USA.


On July 20,1963, "Surf City", which Brian Wilson co-wrote with Jan Berry, was his first composition to reach the top of the US charts.


The resulting success pleased Brian Wilson, but angered both Murry and Capitol Records.


Brian Wilson pitched the Honeys to Capitol, envisioning them as a female counterpart to the Beach Boys.


Brian Wilson released several Honeys recordings as singles, although they sold poorly.


Brian Wilson was for the first time officially credited as the Beach Boys' producer on the album Surfer Girl, recorded in June and July 1963 and released that September.


Brian Wilson produced a set of largely car-oriented tunes for the Beach Boys' fourth album, Little Deuce Coupe, which was released in October 1963, only three weeks after the Surfer Girl LP.


Still resistant to touring, Brian Wilson was replaced onstage for many of the band's live performances in mid-1963 by Al Jardine, who had briefly quit the band to focus on school.


Brian Wilson was forced to rejoin the touring line-up upon Marks' departure in late 1963.


Murry still had a subsequent influence over the band's activities and kept a direct correspondence with Brian, giving him thoughts about the group's decisions; Wilson periodically sought music opinions from his father.


Brian Wilson had ceased writing surfing-themed material after "Don't Back Down" in April, and during the group's first major European tour, in late 1964, replied angrily to a journalist when asked how he felt about originating the surfing sound.


However, a wider public recognition of Brian Wilson's talents eluded him until 1966.


Brian Wilson stated that "a lot of [his] friends", who were drug users, had "turned [him] on" to drugs while he had been touring with the group.


Beforehand, according to Mike Love, Brian Wilson had been known to be strictly opposed to drugs.


Schwartz recalled that Brian Wilson's dosage was 125 micrograms of "pure Owsley" and that his first experience included "the full-on ego death".


Marilyn recalled that Brian Wilson returned home the next day and recounted his experience, telling her repeatedly that his "mind was blown" and that he had seen God.


Brian Wilson gives me the impression he's been on it for a while, and he's entirely enamored of it.


Brian Wilson said that he spent five months planning an album that would reflect his growing interest in "the making of music for people on a spiritual level".


In December 1965, Tony Asher, a jingle writer whom Brian Wilson had recently met, accepted Brian Wilson's offer to be his writing partner for what became the Beach Boys' next album, Pet Sounds.


Brian Wilson produced most of Pet Sounds from January to April 1966 at four Hollywood studios, mainly employing his bandmates on vocals and his usual pool of session musicians for the backing tracks.


Brian Wilson just lost a lot of faith in people and music.


Brian Wilson was "mortified" that his artistic growth failed to translate into a number-one album.


Thanks to mutual connections, Brian Wilson had been introduced to the Beatles' former press officer Derek Taylor, who was employed as the Beach Boys' publicist.


In turn Brian Wilson resented that the branding had the effect of creating higher public expectations for himself.


Brian Wilson touted the album as a "teenage symphony to God" and continued to involve more people in his social, business, and creative affairs.


Smile was never finished, due in large part to Brian Wilson's worsening mental condition and exhaustion.


Brian Wilson set to work on constructing a personal home studio.


Brian attempted to produce an album for singer Danny Hutton's new group, Redwood, but after the recording of three songs, including "Time to Get Alone" and "Darlin'", this motion was halted by Mike Love and Carl Wilson, who wanted Brian to focus on the Beach Boys' contractual obligations.


Brian Wilson later referred to it as his second "solo album", as well as his favorite Beach Boys album.


In mid-1968, Brian Wilson was admitted to a psychiatric hospital, possibly of his own volition.


Brian Wilson went through a period where he would write songs and play them for a few people in his living room, and that's the last you'd hear of them.


Brian Wilson would disappear back up to his bedroom and the song with him.


Journalist Brian Chidester coined "Bedroom Tapes" as a loose umbrella term for Wilson's subsequent unreleased output until 1975, despite the fact that his home studio was dismantled in 1972.


Much of the material that Brian Wilson recorded from the epoch remains unreleased and unheard by the public.


Brian Wilson was an active participant in the year-long sessions, writing more than an album's worth of material by himself or with collaborators, most of which was left off the record.


Brian Wilson recorded a single for the band, "Break Away", that was co-written with his father, after which he was rarely in the studio until August 1969.


Brian Wilson's remarks had the effect of ruining negotiations with Deutsche Grammophon and nearly compromised the band's imminent tour of the UK and Europe.


Later in 1969, Brian Wilson produced a collection of spoken-word recordings, A World of Peace Must Come, for poet Stephen Kalinich.


In mid-1970, Brian Wilson was reported to be working on a "chorus of frogs" piece for Kalinich and contemplated scoring an Andy Warhol film about a homosexual surfer.


Brian Wilson was deeply affected by the poor commercial response to Sunflower and resumed having minimal contributions to the Beach Boys' records.


In November 1970, Brian Wilson joined the live band for one-and-a-half dates at the Whisky a Go Go.


In February 1972, Brian Wilson went to an America gig at the Whisky a Go Go; according to Dan Peek, he "held court like a Mad King as Danny Hutton scurried about like his court jester" during the band's performance.


On several occasions, Marilyn Brian Wilson sent her friends to climb Hutton's fence and retrieve her husband.


An event that Brian Wilson remembered as the most embarrassing in his life was when he met Elvis Presley at RCA Victor Studio in 1975 when Presley was recording "Pieces of My Life".


Brian Wilson was accordingly "so nervous" that he attempted to karate chop the singer.


Johnston stated in another music magazine that Brian Wilson became "suicidally depressed" after reading the article.


Under Landy's care, Brian Wilson became more stable and socially engaged, with his productivity increasing .


The sessions were fraught with tension, as Brian Wilson's bandmates fought against his wish to record a covers album and did not feel that he was ready to assume control of their studio proceedings.


From October 1976 to January 1977, Brian Wilson produced a large collection of studio recordings, largely by himself while his bandmates were preoccupied with other personal and creative affairs.


Originally titled Brian Loves You, Wilson played virtually all of the instruments on the album.


Shortly afterward, Brian Wilson told a journalist that he felt the treatment had been a success despite the exorbitant fees.


Brian Wilson maintained a healthy, drug-free disposition for several months under their auspices.


Album, Brian Wilson said that he went through a "mental blank-out" during this period.


Brian Wilson was credited as the album's "executive producer", likely for contractual reasons.


Days later, police officers discovered Brian Wilson lying under a tree in Balboa Park without shoes, money, or a wallet.


Brian Wilson was initially admitted in November 1978 for three months, discharged for one month, and then readmitted.


Brian Wilson's bandmates implored him to produce their next album, Keepin' the Summer Alive, but he was unable or unwilling.


Brian Wilson remained engrossed in his overeating and drug habits, spurred on partly through the influence of Dennis.


In early 1982, Brian Wilson signed a trust document that gave Carl control of his finances and Brother Records, Inc voting power, and was involuntarily admitted to a three-day stay at St John's Hospital in Santa Monica.


In 1982, after Brian Wilson overdosed on a combination of alcohol, cocaine, and other psychoactive drugs, his family and management successfully coordinated an elaborate ruse to convince him to volunteer back into Landy's program.


Brian Wilson acquiesced and was taken to Hawaii, where he was isolated from friends and family and put on a rigorous diet and health regimen.


When Landy requested more money, Carl Wilson was obliged to give away a quarter of Brian's publishing royalties.


Landy was accused of creating a Svengali-like environment for Brian Wilson, controlling every movement in his life, including his musical direction.


In January 1987, Brian Wilson agreed to a solo contract offered by Sire Records president Seymour Stein, who stipulated his own choice of co-producer, multi-instrumentalist Andy Paley, to keep Brian Wilson on-task.


In May 1989, Brian Wilson recorded "Daddy's Little Girl" for the film She's Out of Control, and in June, was among the featured guests on the charity single "The Spirit of the Forest".


Brian Wilson sought $10 million, alleging that Billet "failed to supervise the lawyers" overseeing the suits between Brian Wilson, Irving Music, and Love.


The day after the restraining order had been placed on Landy, Brian Wilson had renewed his songwriting partnership with Andy Paley and, together, subsequently wrote and recorded a large collection of material for a proposed Beach Boys album throughout the early to mid-1990s.


In 1993, Brian Wilson accepted an offer to record an album of songs written by Van Dyke Parks.


Shortly before the album's release, Brian Wilson suffered the loss of what remained of his immediate family with the deaths of his brother Carl and their mother Audree.


From March to July 1999, Brian Wilson embarked on his first ever solo tour, playing about a dozen dates in the US and Japan.


Brian Wilson's supporting band consisted of former Beach Boys touring musician Jeff Foskett, Wondermints members Darian Sahanaja, Nick Walusko, Mike D'Amico, and Probyn Gregory, and Chicago-based session musicians Scott Bennett, Paul Mertens, Bob Lizik, Todd Sucherman, and Taylor Mills.


Early in 2000, Brian Wilson released his first live album, Live at the Roxy Theatre.


Later in the year, he embarked on a series of US concert dates that included the first full live performances of Pet Sounds, with Brian Wilson backed by a 55-piece orchestra.


In March 2001, Brian Wilson attended a tribute show held in his honor at the Radio City Music Hall in New York, where he sang "Heroes and Villains" before a public audience for the first time in decades.


In support of BWPS, Brian Wilson embarked on a world tour that included stops in the US, Europe, and Japan.


Sahanaja told Australian Musician, "In six years of touring this is the happiest we've ever seen Brian Wilson, I mean consistently happy".


In July 2005, Brian Wilson performed a concert at Live 8 in Berlin watched by a television audience of about three million.


In September 2005, Brian Wilson arranged a charity drive to aid victims of Hurricane Katrina, wherein people who donated $100 or more would receive a personal phone call from Brian Wilson.


In 2007, the Southbank Centre in London commissioned Brian Wilson to create another song cycle in the style of Smile.


One year after Brian Wilson premiered the work in London, a studio-recorded version of the piece was released as his seventh solo album in September 2008.


Around this time, Brian Wilson announced that he was developing another concept album, titled Pleasure Island: A Rock Fantasy.


In 2009, Brian Wilson was asked by Walt Disney Records to record an album of Disney songs.


Brian Wilson accepted on the condition that he could record an album of George Gershwin songs as part of the deal.


Brian Wilson embarked on a concert tour in which he performed the album in its entirety.


Whether Brian Wilson had truly consented to his semi-regular touring schedule since the 2000s remained a subject of debate among fans.


In mid-2011, Brian Wilson reunited with his bandmates to rerecord "Do It Again" surreptitiously for a potential 50th anniversary album.


In June 2013, Brian Wilson's website announced that he was recording and self-producing new material with Don Was, Al Jardine, David Marks, former Beach Boy Blondie Chaplin, and guitarist Jeff Beck.


In January 2014, Brian Wilson declared in an interview that the Beck collaborations would not be released.


Brian Wilson had contributed a song to the film, "One Kind of Love", that was nominated for Best Original Song at the 2016 Golden Globe Awards.


Fans reacted negatively to the announcement that Brian Wilson would be recording a duets album, describing it as a "cash-in".


Later in the year, Sahanaja was asked if Brian Wilson was reaching the end of his career as a performing artist.


In March 2016, Brian Wilson embarked on the Pet Sounds 50th Anniversary World Tour, promoted as his final performances of the album.


In 2019, Brian Wilson embarked on a co-headlining tour with the Zombies, performing selections from Friends and Surf's Up.


Around this time, Brian Wilson had two back surgeries that left him unable to get around without a walker.


Brian Wilson was still performing concerts shows at the time the COVID-19 pandemic emerged in early 2020.


Brian Wilson resumed his concert touring in August 2021, with many dates rescheduled to the next year.


The first, At My Piano, was issued by Decca and consists of new instrumental rerecordings of Brian Wilson's songs played by himself on piano.


Brian Wilson was paid almost $32 million for his songwriter share plus $19 million for his reversion rights.


On July 26,2022, Brian Wilson played his final concert as part of a joint tour with Chicago at the Pine Knob Music Theatre in Clarkston, Michigan, where he was reported to have "sat rigid and expressionless" throughout the performance.


Brian Wilson credited his mother with introducing him to the Four Freshmen, and he attributed his love for harmonies and the human voice to the group, whom he considered had a "groovy sectional sound".


Brian Wilson disliked surf music when the Beach Boys began forming; in the estimation of biographer Timothy White, Wilson instead aspired for a "new plateau midway between Gershwin and the best Four Freshmen material".


In 1994, Brian Wilson recorded a choral version of Rhapsody in Blue with Van Dyke Parks.


I'd like to have a nickel for every joint [Brian Wilson] smoked trying to figure out how I got the "Be My Baby" sound.


Brian Wilson stated that he was made aware of Spector's records via Bob Norberg.


Brian Wilson recalled that when he heard the Ronettes' 1963 hit "Be My Baby" for the first time through his car radio, he immediately pulled over to the side of the road and deemed it the greatest record he had ever heard.


Brian Wilson unsuccessfully submitted two of his compositions to the producer: "Don't Worry Baby" and "Don't Hurt My Little Sister"; both written with the Ronettes in mind.


Brian Wilson named Bacharach as his main influences chord-wise.


Brian Wilson acknowledged that he was highly self-conscious of the Beatles as a cultural force.


Brian Wilson recalled that he and Mike Love immediately felt threatened by the Beatles and added that he knew the Beach Boys could never match the excitement created by the Beatles as performers, and that this realization led him to concentrate his efforts on trying to outdo them in the recording studio.


Granata writes that Brian Wilson admired Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, although Brian Wilson rarely singled them out in interviews.


In 1976, Brian Wilson commented that he felt contemporary popular music had lacked the artistic integrity it once had, with Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" being one exception.


Brian Wilson typically sang in a pure tenor voice until later in his adult life, when he began invoking his tenor only on rare occasions.


Brian Wilson was sometimes embarrassed by his singing, as he was worried of being perceived as a homosexual, and would avoid performing in a high voice for this reason.


Brian Wilson acknowledged that he had "never been the type" to preach social messages in his songs.


Rather than using Gold Star Studios, Spector's favorite studio, Brian Wilson preferred working at the Studio 3 room of Western for its privacy and for the presence of staff engineer Chuck Britz.


Once Britz assembled a preliminary recording setup, Brian Wilson would take over the console, directing the session musicians from the booth using an intercom or verbal gestures after supplying them with chord charts.


Brian Wilson first used the Wrecking Crew for his productions with the Honeys in March 1963.


Brian Wilson usually instructed Blaine to play only the snare and floor-tom afterbeats used on Spector's records.


In Priore's assessment, Brian Wilson reconfigured Spector's Wall of Sound techniques in the pursuit of "audio clarity" and "a more lush, comfortable feel".


At age 11, during a Christmas choir recital, Brian Wilson was discovered to have significantly diminished hearing in his right ear.


One account from Brian Wilson suggested that the deafness was caused by his father slapping his ear shortly before his third birthday.


Timothy White states that Brian Wilson rarely discussed the issue with Murry after the father had "reacted so menacingly the one time Brian Wilson had brought up the subject".


Brian Wilson had ringing in the ear that worsens when he is tired or subjected to loud noise.


Brian Wilson believed that he "wasn't a good husband", nor "much of a father".


In turn, Brian Wilson had simultaneous affairs with Diane and a teenage telephone operator named Debbie Keil.


Brian Wilson wrote "The Night Was So Young" about Keil and her nightly visits and "My Diane" about his affair with his sister-in-law.


Brian Wilson subsequently maintained a relationship with Keil until 1981.


Brian Wilson seemed to always be looking for something to rebel against and withhold from.


Brian Wilson initially dated former model and car saleswoman Melinda Kae Ledbetter from 1986 to late 1989.


Brian Wilson had a fascination with matters such as astrology, numerology, and the occult that was reflected in his original conceptions for Smile.


Brian Wilson is diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder and mild bipolar disorder.


Brian Wilson typically refused counseling, and it had been long thought by his family that, rather than mental illness, his idiosyncrasies stemmed from his drug habits, or were merely natural to his personality.


Marilyn said that while Brian Wilson had displayed instances of odd behavior, she began having serious concerns about his mental well-being after the birth of their first child in 1968.


Later that year, Brian Wilson was admitted to a psychiatric hospital, where he was prescribed thorazine for severe anxiety disorder.


Under Landy's regimen, Brian Wilson developed facial tics, called tardive dyskinesia, that were symptomatic of the excessive psychotropic medications he was taking.


In 2019, Brian Wilson postponed some concert dates due to worsening mental health.


Brian Wilson is an artist wrapped densely in myth and enigma who, in person, in interview, creates as many questions as he answers.


In later years, many writers have accused Brian Wilson of being difficult to interview, as his responses are usually curt or lacking in substance.


Brian Wilson has admitted to having a poor memory and occasionally lying in interviews to "test" people.


From 1962 to 1979, Brian Wilson wrote or co-wrote more than two dozen US Top 40 hits for the Beach Boys.


The level of creative control that Brian Wilson asserted over his own record output was unprecedented in the music industry, leading him to become the first pop artist credited for writing, arranging, producing, and performing his own material.


Carlin writes that Brian Wilson originated "a new kind of art-rock that would combine the transcendent possibilities of art with the mainstream accessibility of pop music".


Academic Larry Starr writes, "In a sense, Brian Wilson was the first self-conscious second-generation rock 'n' roller" as well as "the first fully realized" example of both an innovative and majorly successful pop musician.


Starr credits Brian Wilson with establishing a successful career model that was then followed by the Beatles and other mid-1960s British Invasion acts:.


Ultimately, Brian Wilson became regarded as the most famous outsider musician.


Brian Wilson has been declared the "godfather" of punk, indie rock, and emo.


Principally through his early records, Brian Wilson, alongside his collaborator Mike Love, was a key influence on the development of punk rock and the movement's evolution into indie rock.


Later in the 20th century, Brian Wilson became known as the "godfather" to an era of independently produced music that was heavily indebted to his melodic sensibilities, chamber pop orchestrations, and recording experiments.


Thanks to acts such as Panda Bear and his 2007 album Person Pitch, Brian Wilson began to be recognized for his continued impact on the indie music vanguard since the late 2000s.


Brian Wilson's influence continues to be attributed to modern dream pop acts such as Au Revoir Simone, Wild Nothing, Alvvays, and Lana Del Rey.