Q&A: Brian Wilson Is 'Thrilled' For The Release Of 'The Smile Sessions Box Set'
SP: I want to talk about your other albums as well with The Beach Boys, when you listen to something like SMiLE, how do you think it holds up against something like Today?
BW: What do you mean?
SP: Well, they sound totally different. I was just wondering what kind of feelings come up when you listen to Today versus when you listen to SMiLE?
BW: Well it brings back the memory of a very happy time of life. We were in our twenties. It was a very happy time.
SP: I read that your favorite Beach Boys album was Love You, is that still the case?
BW: That’s one of my favorites, yeah.
SP: Why that album?
BW: Well, because I like the songs on it, you know?
SP: I wanted to touch on your new album with the Disney [songs] if that’s okay.
SP: How did you go about choosing the songs for that album, did you even have a choice?
BW: The Disney people came to me and asked me if I would like to do that album. And so we took 15 songs, narrowed it down to 12 and then did the album. We said we’ll rehearse it, we all learned it together and then we recorded it.
SP: I was wondering if you considered doing your own version of “Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah” because of the Phil Spector and Bob B. Soxx version?
BW: No, I never thought of doing that, no.
SP: While we’re on the subject of Phil Spector real quick, I want to talk to you about The Ronettes
SP: You seem to like them most out of other Phil Spector artists, is that true?
BW: Yeah, I was always partial to Ronnie Bennett [Spector]’s voice, I thought she was a good singer… Ronnie Spector is my favorite singer and “Be My Baby” is my favorite record.
SP: Is there any chance in the future that we’re going to see you take on any other people’s music, like you’ve done with Gershwin and Disney?
BW: I don’t know. We don’t know yet all, we don’t know.
SP: I understand you’re working on a new Brian Wilson album, is that right?
BW: That’s right.
SP: What can we expect out of that?
BW: You can expect some good some good vocals, some interesting songs and... some concept songs.
SP: And you’ve started working on that already, haven’t you?
SP: Have you recorded anything so far or are you just writing?
BW: We’ve already recorded four or five things, and this Friday, we start working again this Friday.
SP: Do you have an idea of when it’s going to be out?
BW: No, I don’t. Next year some time, probably.
SP: So you’re just kind of taking your time with it?
SP: Do you listen to new, contemporary music at all?
BW: I don’t, I listen to oldies but goodies.
SP: Is there any reason why you don’t dwell into anything that’s new, [because you’re a big influence on a lot of musicians today.]
BW: I don’t know what that would be because I don’t listen to current music.
SP: I wanted to ask you something about, the other day in the news that they’re making a movie about your brother Dennis [Randall Miller and Jody Savin’s The Drummer starring Aaron Eckhart as Dennis Wilson].
SP: Do you have any thoughts on that at all?
BW: Well I miss him a lot, and I’ll watch it when it comes out.
SP: And I also read recently about his album, and I was a little confused as to whether or not you had actually heard it, because I read in one instance it said you hadn’t heard it and one said that you had. Do you know what I’m talking about?
BW: No, I don’t follow you. What do you mean?
SP: Well, Pacific Ocean Blue, I read once that you said that you loved it and I also read that you had never heard it.
BW: Well, I was lying when I said that I loved it because I have never heard his album. I never heard it.
SP: Is there any reason you never listened to it?
BW: No there wasn’t, I just never got around to listening to it. I’m going to because I think he might have made some good music.
SP: It’s a great album. I think you might like it.
BW: Have you heard it?
SP: Yes, I have.
BW: What sort of songs are on it?
SP: It’s him but he’s a little bit more grizzled and weathered, and there’s a nice [dark beauty] to everything. It’s a good album, it has a great vibe. [Forgive the panicky, half-assed description; Brian Wilson put me on the spot – K]
BW: Well, I’m going to listen to it then. I’m going to listen to it.
SP: Okay, well you’ll have to let me know what you think about it.