Beach Boys Legend Brian Wilson Surfs On at Artpark

Following a Seven-Week Postponement, Brian Wilson Keeps his Promise to Fans to bring his Pet Sounds Tour show to Lewiston, New York

“Dear Friends,

“It is with great regret that I need to postpone my upcoming June tour,” wrote Brian Wilson this past spring in an open letter to ticket holders for the Artpark show and other shows on the tour.

“It is no secret that I have been living with mental illness for many decades. There were times when it was unbearable but with doctors and medications I have been able to live a wonderful, healthy and productive life with support from my family, friends and fans who have helped me through this journey. …  But then it crept back and I’ve been struggling with stuff in my head and saying things I don’t mean and I don’t know why.

“It’s something I’ve never dealt with before and we can’t quite figure it out just yet.

“I’m going to rest, recover and work with my doctors on this. I’m looking forward to my recovery and seeing everyone later in the year.

“The music and my fans keep me going and I know this will be something I can AGAIN overcome.” – Love & Mercy, Brian Wilson”

Beach Boys co-founder and music legend Brian Wilson

A Brief Tribute to Music Legend Brian Wilson By Doug Draper

Posted August 9th, 2019 on Niagara At Large

I’m one of those people who can still remember where I was the first time I heard a song that I immediately fell in love with.

In this case, it was a family vacation in July of 1966 and we were driving from the Gettysburg battlefield site in Pennsylvania to Washington, D.C., and somewhere on our driver along the Potomac River, with sunlight sparking off the bright blue waters, the voice of a D.J. on the radio said ‘here is a brand new one by Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys’.

I was barely 15, and   listening very intently at the time to The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Animals, The Rascals and all the other sounds punching out of Top 40 Radio, and this song sounded like nothing I had ever heard before. 

The sound of it flowing from the radio in my dad’s car seemed to make the waters of the Potomac glow even more effervescently.

The song was called “God Only Knows” and had a melody line that was beautiful and, yet, seemed all over the place, following an introduction and instrumental breaks that had amildly classic, epic feel to them. tThen, of course, there were those trademark three and four-part Beach Boys harmonies, sounding more spacey and Avant grade than ever before.

You knew right away, that no garage band in the world was going to attempt to cover this one.

As legend has it, Paul McCartney and John Lennon were also listening to this song and to the others on the mostly  Brian Wilson-produced Pet Sounds album, and they got to work on writing songs for  one of The Beatles’ masterworks, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

This August 7th, at Artpark in Lewiston, New York, I finally had a chance to go hear and watch Brian Wilson perform ‘God Only Knows’ and so many other Beach Boys classics live, and it was good enough to bring back the sight of those sparkling waters.

Seventy-seven now and recovering from three recent back surgeries, he had to be helped to his big, white grand piano at the centre of the stage. But once he got there and his great band, including original Beach Boy Al Jardine, broke in to the opening chords of ‘California Girls’, it was surf up from there, and the audience was repeatedly on its feet and clapping.

Following a set of other Beach Boy classics, Wilson and company performed the entire Pet Sounds album, including ‘God Only Knows’ and ‘Wouldn’t It Be Nice’, in sequence, reminding everyone in attendance why this album was so pivotal in the evolution of rock music as an art form and why the music critics for Rolling Stone magazine list ‘Pet Sounds’ as one of the top two or three pop albums of all time.

Thanks for the great night and for all of the great music going on almost ix decades now Brian, Love & Mercy

To hear Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys perform ‘God Only Knows’, click on the screen below

As Randy Bachman of Guess Who and Backman-Turner Overdrive, has reminded listeners many times on his CBC Vinyl Tap radio program, if one of the older artists that you love comes touring somewhere near your hometown, go see them while you can because you never know.

“I’m a leaf on a windy day
Pretty soon I’ll be blown away
How long will the wind blow?
How long will the wind blow?

Until I die
Until I die
These things I’ll be until I die.”

 – lyrics from the song ‘TilI Die’ by Brian Wilson

To read a Rolling Stone article from this past June about the postponement of Brian Wilson’s tour, click on –

Here is also remembering two music legends from New Orleans who have gone to the great gig in the sky – Dr. John, who died in June, and Art Neville of Neville Brothers fame, who died in July.

NIAGARA AT LARGE encourages you to join the conversation by sharing your views on this post in the space following the Bernie Sanders quote below.

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“A politician thinks of the next election. A leader thinks of the next generation.” – Bernie Sanders

One response to “Beach Boys Legend Brian Wilson Surfs On at Artpark

  1. Totally agree! I try and see all artists that come through, especially those from my youth. Great post!


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