(Mike Love at home, with adoring wife # 5)
In a letter to the LA Times, Mike Love sets the record straight on Brian Wilson’s ‘firing’:
Beach Boys’ lead singer Love says that he didn’t fire Wilson and that his bandmates always knew there would be tours by two different versions of the band.
In a long ‘correction’, everything that Beach Boys Corps’ apologists always said was the case is proven correct. And, of course one can always count upon Doctor Love for the correct version of events when it comes to The Beach Boys’ history…so, if you care a jot about the facts of this seemingly-ignominious end to their 50 Big Ones Celebration, do read – savour even – what he says here.
We all stand corrected.
There’s a real nice touch at the end – especially if, as discussed here, you were ever under the impression that the song Summer’s Gone was actually
a wistful but decisive farewell to the Beach Boys that could only be sung by its surviving members…Using media and dollars to seduce Mike Love into singing a public goodbye to his breadticket – and, even better, using a repurposed version of his own hackneyed surf’n’sun terminology (shades of “Surf’s Up”) to do so… it’s tempting and not entirely implausible to think [Mike Love’s] erstwhile collaborator didn’t have a certain satirical and not entirely cousin-ly sentiment at heart when formulating that conceptual framework for a record.
Here too, this is obviously a misreading and a misapprehension:
Near the end of the very last show in London, right as Brian started singing “Summer’s Gone” off the new album, I started thinking about our journey together. I’m wondering if we’ll all get to do this again or if this is it. I’m standing proud that we came together, put our differences aside and made this tour happen. I listen:
Summer’s gone away…
Old friends have gone
They’ve gone their separate ways
Our dreams hold on
For those who still have more to say
And at the end of the song, I have an epiphany: The Beach Boys are bigger than those who created it. When all of us remaining founders have turned to dust, the band will live on in the hearts of those who relish the sounds of summer. So you see, summer’s never really gone. And neither are the Beach Boys.
So, although Summer’s Gone, it hasn’t. And for those people ‘who relish the sounds of summer’, be reassured by what Mike Love says here: his own Endless Summer will never end.