ABOUT A SONG
BEACH BOYS- Girl Don't Tell Me
This is one of those great moments just before everything begins to progress a bit too fast. There was just enough of a hint of the innocent wonder of the late 50s malt-shop-arama ethos mixed with what is obviously a musical step out of the simple surfdom Brain was seeking; the movement is on par with the best of “A Hard Day’s Night.”
And still it ended up being a b-side. Maybe they weren’t convinced that Carl’s big vocal debut (well, his 2nd, but this IS his big entry point) was worthy. Granted, it was probably being measured against the big Kahunas (“California Girls,” “Let Him Run Wild,” and “You’re So Good To Me”). And it’s fate was sealed.
A few weeks ago Bill Lloyd posted a clip of “Guess I’m Dumb” and there was some interesting points made; one of which was Marshall Crenshaw having a beef about the lyrics. Marshall noted Brian’s lack of experience with that department dragged the song down. I, on the contrary, thought Brian’s lyrics (as confused and sometimes awkward as they were) had a very unique and honest charm to them.
I know, the NHA boss (Steve Potocin), doesn’t give the lyrics as much thought as some other people do; and I’m one who can let some weak stuff slide with a genius song. But still, I wanted to take a better look at the songs Brian tackled all on his own.
What you get are tunes like the aforementioned “Guess I’m Dumb,” “She Knows Me Too Well,” “Wind Chimes,” “Time To Get Alone,” “This Whole World,” “Til I Die” and “Love And Mercy.” Oh, and this little gem…which really accentuates the “GURL” word which I’m sure Alex Chilton took note of.
Brian’s take: some girl he met on summer vacation up at his grandmother’s really played him and left him high and dry, although he sounds like it’s toughened him up over the ensuing September-to-June grind of school.
Sure, she’s gonna look that much hotter-- as that wonder of biological forms do when 15 goes to 16 (I’m guessing)--but this time, he’s gonna play it cool and not wear his heart on his sleeve.
Growin’ up’s a bitch.
(Another one that originally appeared on Steve Potocin's NHA group on Facebook. The song was Steve's choice for me to wax on about...)
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