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Hi all, Brian Wilson here.
‘Love & Mercy,’ a film about my life starring John Cusack and Paul Dano, and co-starring Elizabeth Banks and Paul Giamatti, will be in theaters on June 5th (http://loveandmercyfilm.com).
I was lucky enough to go to the film’s U.S. premiere last Sunday at SXSW in Austin.
I'm at the historic Capitol Records building in Hollywood, ready to answer your questions. AMAA!
** Hey guys I'm out of time thanks for all the great questions. Hope you like my new album No Pier Pressure, hope you go see 'Love & Mercy', and hope to see you out on tour! - Brian
What did you think the first time you heard the Barenaked Ladies song, "Brian Wilson?"
I was honored that they would use my name but it embarrassed me a little bit because I was lying in bed a lot haha
What's your favourite band?
A lot has been written about a rivalry between you and Lennon/McCartney, particularly about their desire to compete against Pet Sounds. I know it's a long time ago, but did you feel the same level of competition with the Beatles?
There was mutual admiration, competitiveness not a rivalry. 'Pet Sounds' inspired 'Sgt Pepper.'
What's under Mike Love's baseball cap?
A bald head.
What does it feel like to have a number one record on the charts?
It's a great feeling it's a great honor it's an achievement
If you could give any advice to yourself at age 18, what would it be?
Don't take drugs!
if I were Brian Wilson and you were me, what would you ask?
I would ask you What does it feel like to have a number one record on the charts?
How was it filming with the cast of Full House? For some reason that's one of the only episodes I remember!
I've never been on Full House
Could you tell us the name of your favorite vegatables?
Hi Mr. Wilson,
I bought my first Beach Boys album at a yard sale in the early 70s. I've been a fan since then. Do you remember the first album/record you bought?
The first album I bought was Four Freshmen and Five Trombones. It changed my life.
Hi Brian, what's your biggest fear?
Love your work Brian! Do you still maintain contact with Paul McCartney? He's always listen "God only knows" among his favourites
I talk to Paul about once a year. We get caught up on music & family.
How do you like your steak cooked? What's your favorite flavor of cake?
Medium rare with ketchup on top and my favorite flavor of cake is cheesecake
Who was your most memorable fan?
When I was in Washington DC about 8 years ago receiving the Kennedy Center Honor, President Bush and I met - I said "Nice to meet you" and he said "I'm one of your fans." I was thrilled
What is your favorite movie?
The Birds by Alfred Hitchcock because it had a sense of humor. Some guys car blew up and he got killed and it made me laugh for some reason running from the birds.
Mr Wilson, Brian, sir, or however you prefer to be called - hi! I’ve been a massive Beach Boys fan ever since I was the age of 4 (I’m 21 now). I grew up in Cornwall (UK) around the surf and as a youngster loved the obvious pop hits like Surfin’ USA, California Girls and Kokomo but since I hit my late teens and adult life where I’ve suffered with depression at times, ’Til I Die is a song that I’ve fell in love with. So I thank you dearly for writing that song.
What I wonder is what made you decide to be so open and honest within the lyrics and the way you wrote ’Til I Die?
Because I was being humble when I said "I'm a rock on a landslide, I'm a cork on the ocean..." It's a very humbling song.
What one thing do you most want to say to the whole world?
Good vibrations to you all!
You had a very well publicized battle with depression for a part of your life. What do you credit with helping you break out of it and getting your drive to make all that great music back?
Many thanks for all that music, Brian.
My doctor turned me on to exercise, running was what helped break me out of my depression and get me back to songwriting. That among other things.
Hi Brian, what's been your favorite part about seeing Carnie and Wendy achieve their own success in the business?
I'm most proud of their sound. They sing like angels
Brian, what is your favorite track from the Beatles Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album? I mean, I realize you were in competition with the band at the time and things became very troubling around then... But it's a question I've long wondered.
Thank you, sir. You're a legend.
A Little Help From My Friends because of Ringos performance and John Lennons chords and melody
What does it take to keep your voice in such amazing condition after years of singing amazingly?
I sing at my piano and I practice every 2 or 3 days singing Beach Boys songs and thats how I keep my voice in good shape
How did you feel about seeing John Cusack and Paul Dano portraying you on film? Is it weird to see aspects of the life that you really lived acted out by others?
Well..the movie is on my life and when I saw it it took me back to where I was back in the '60s and '80s. It took me back to when I was young and all different places. It was a thrill to see John and Paul portraying me, they did it very well.
What advice do you have to offer to new songwriters? And do you have a favorite Bob Dylan song?
Blowin' In The Wind i like the lyrics. I met Bob Dylan in an emergency hospital in Malibu..he accidentally had his thumb broken. It was a cool place to meet him. I'm a fan of his for sure
I'm sure you still often get recognized by fans when out in public. How do you feel about fans approaching you?
A little bit paranoid to be honest but I'm proud to be recognized
You are the greatest. What musicians do you admire that have come along in the next generation? Anyone that would surprise people?
Al Blaine because of his great drumming. He played on "California Girls."
Could you describe your most vivid childhood memory? Musical or otherwise?
The first time that my brothers and I saw the ocean. My dad brought us there. That was the most memorable part of my childhood.
I'm a young songwriter and you're a huge inspiration to my songwriting. I have 2 questions:
1) When writing some of The Beach Boys songs, specifically Pet Sounds/SMiLE era, did you have a melodic structure to follow or did the songs just come to you sitting on a piano or out of nowhere?
2) Do you have a favourite key to play/sing in? Any favourite chords to play/sing with?
The songs came to me sitting at a piano and out of nowhere and came down from my brain and onto the keyboard. My favorite key is B, the song "Darlin'" is in B. No favorite chords, but I like Major chords.
Any other Smile's sitting in your closet waiting to be released?
No, Smile was a one of a kind.
Hi Brian! What songs or albums would you recommend to someone trying to get into the Beach Boys?
Darlin with Carl on lead and California Girls would be the two
50 to 100 years from now, what do you want people to take from your legacy of music?
The timelessness of "California Girls" and "Surfer Girl," maybe who knows?
I like The Beach Boys. 'Get Around' is my favourite and I have fond memories of an holiday on The Isle of Wight listening to it.
What's your favourite ice cream?
Hi Brian, you're the absolute best.
Question: What's one little-known fact about you or your life that you'd like people to know?
That I'm deaf in my right ear and that I used to do transcendental meditation at my house. Most people don't know that.
What do you miss most about the 1960's?
I miss the spirit of competition and all the cool restaurants and places we used to hang out.
since this might be your last tour, will you consider coming to the UK?
Well...as I've said before this could be my last tour but of course I will try to get to the UK.
Have you ever met John Lennon?
He's the only Beatle I never met but I admire him, very much so. I've spent time with both of his sons Sean and Julian.
what is the greatest advice you have been given?
Follow through with my songs and don't stop halfway through the song. Write the whole song.
how did you come up with the title "do you like worms"?
Van dyke came up with that title. I thought it was a strange strange title.
On your favourite hamburger, what toppings are on it?
I really hope to see your show in Toronto, I saw your show in Ottawa 4 years ago on the George Gershwin tour and it was delightful.
Ketchup mustard onions and cheese
Favourite place to go in London?
Hey Brian! What is your favorite song from the Love You album?
Thank you for all your music and I’m really looking forward to your new album and movie!
"Ding Dang" because I like my brother Carl's vocal
What makes you cringe when you hear a bad tune? Any cliche's that bug you?
It bugs me when people sing flat
What song on No Pier Pressure do you enjoy the most?
Sail Away because of Blondie's performance
Mr. Wilson, are you a TV game show fan? Which one would you like to a contestant?
Wheel of Fortune I love game shows. I watch Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy everyday. I would love to go on but I don't think I'd be very good haha
What do you consider the best songs on Dennis' solo album?
You and I that's my favorite because I liked his vocal. Great vocal
Do you have a favourite concert venue that you like performing in the most?
Royal Festival Hall in London because of the crowds and the sound of the room