ESQ Feel Flows giveaway!

Welcome to Endless Summer Quarterly’s Feel Flows, The Sunflower & Surf’s Up Sessions • 1969 – 1971 giveaway!

All ESQ subscribers are eligible for consideration/selection by answering the following questions between now and Sunday, Aug. 22 at 11:59 pm in the comments section below.

The giveaway items include the five-disc set, four-LP set (both translucent and black vinyl), the two-LP set, and two-CD set. The giveaway is exclusively available to subscribers of the magazine.

Questions:

  1. What do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?
  2. What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?
  3. Why do you think this music is vital?

Comments will be judged by the new collection’s producers, Alan Boyd and Mark Linett.

Names will be selected and announced below on Tuesday, Aug. 24.

To read the five-disc review, click HERE

Listen to Episode #39 of Good Vibrations: A Beach Boys Program, with Alan Boyd. The episode includes samples of “Sweet And Bitter” and “Behold The Night” from the upcoming box set.

Five CD set
esqdave101

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Cunningham Rich

1 month ago

1) What is do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

The Sunflower/Surf’s Up represents a fulfillment of transition for the band that started with the abandonment of the Smile project. The final Capitol albums seemed to be a band in search of themselves, without the core leadership that had been providing their guidance since the beginning. The collaborative efforts brought forth some of their best music, songs that stand the test of time (“Add Some Music” and “This Whole World”), songs that show their non-roots blues side (“It’s About Time” and “Got To Know the Woman”), songs that reflect their inner feelings expressed in music (“Forever”, “Disney Girls (1957)”), and a growing sense of social awareness and responsibility (“Don’t Go Near The Water”, “Student Demonstration Time”). Some of the most soulful songs show an inward look at the writer’s soul (“Till I Die”, “Surf’s Up”). There is so much excellent music in those two albums that it takes time to truly understand what ties them together, and how they stand alone on their own.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

What I’m looking forward to with the release is not only the remastering of the original albums but the extras that are included. Songs that for one reason or another did not make the final album listings. Songs that I’d first heard on bootleg albums (“San Miguel”, “I Just Got My Pay”), and released by other artists (“Seasons in the Sun”, one of my favorite songs when Terry Jacks released it). Also the production outtakes and tracks, the a capella versions, tracking, and background vocals, it’s almost like being in the studio with the members, watching them shape the music, deciding what should stay in and what should stay off the final versions. The alternate versions are interesting to listen to, and compare them to the final releases. I liken listening to them to be like sitting next to Beethoven while he writes his symphonies, or watching Da Vinci paint the Mona Lisa. Understanding the creative process, this is as close as it can be, short of sitting in the studio while it happens.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

These two albums will stand the test of time, as it shows the maturing of the group from a surf/cars/girls pop group to a musical group that has expanded their horizons where all contribute to the finished product. They form a cornerstone of the Beach Boys musical legacy and library, an important landmark of what had come before, and what was to come after.

James Talada

1 month ago

1) What is do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

The Sunflower and Surf’s Up era is probably the time when we got the purest example of what The Beach Boys could be. They weren’t constrained by the pressure of following their latest smash single, or by a label wanting more surf and car songs, or anything like that. This era was purely for all six members to do what they wanted, and how they wanted to do it. A minute-long coda at the end of “Tears In The Morning”? Go for it! Jack Rieley singing lead on a first-person narration from the perspective of a tree? Why not? It’s this apparent sense of freedom within the group that really elevates the material and makes it stand out from any other period in the band’s history.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

Certainly, the cleaned-up sound on everything, including the new masters of the two albums, will be a plus, but I’m looking forward to the live renditions and the songs we haven’t heard before. While the Beach Boys (in one lineup or another) have toured virtually non-stop over the past sixty years, there are a number of gaps in their live releases, so any additional live content is always a plus in my book. I’m especially looking forward to the 1982 version of “Disney Girls” and, based on Al’s high praise, the 1993 version of “Take a Load Off Your Feet”. As for the unheard studio songs, who wouldn’t look forward to those? Top-notch songs like “Soulful Old Man Sunshine” and “Big Sur” got left in the vaults for decades, and I figure there’s bound to be other fantastic material among the “new to the fans” content.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

The music is vital as it shows the band in a true democratic period. 20/20 is kind of the same, but that’s from various unrelated sessions put together. Here, we have the band working as a cohesive unit to show the talents of every member, and it feels like this is the true example of The Beach Boys as a group. Not as Brian leading, or Al leading, or whomever at any other point in their history, but the group as a whole moving forward. The 1969-71 sessions, and Sunflower, in particular, serve as The Beach Boys’ equivalent to Abbey Road. Every member is contributing fantastic material and giving the sessions their all. It’s a more mature and adult Beach Boys, yet all of the great qualities their music has always had still shine through here. I think these two albums (and the surrounding material) are not only essential to the story of The Beach Boys, but also to the story of music as a whole and how the recording industry and its artists transitioned from the world of the sixties to that of the seventies.

esqdave101

4 weeks ago

Congratulations James, you have been selected by Alan Boyd and Mark Linett as a recipient of one of the Feel Flows formats. Details TBA!

Glyn Emmerson

1 month ago

I love the Dennis songs. Looking forward to the liner notes. The Beach Boys harmonies and good vibrations are timeless!

Bryan Ducey

1 month ago

1) What is do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

While I appreciate a number of things from the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era, I appreciate the most the fact that these are truly group efforts with each member having an opportunity to shine. At the risk of being controversial, I would say that you could find the best material from each member during this time period. This material is thoughtful and “real” and represents a group that has matured and come into their own both in the studio and on the road. These albums are anything but “cookie-cutter” and show just how creative and important the Beach Boys are.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

It is safe to say that I am looking forward to everything regarding these releases but since I probably need to give a more thoughtful answer, here it goes. First, I am looking forward to having this era captured in a single place. Remasters of the albums, unreleased tracks, track, and backing vocals are all at my fingertips in a single package now. I’ll be able to put these discs on and spend HOURS in the era. This is amazing! From a more “Beach Boys Nerd” perspective though, I am so pumped about the unreleased music, particularly the Dennis Wilson material. I truly hope that this release continues bring the talents of Dennis Wilson to the mainstream music world so he can get the credit that he is due. I can’t wait to hear these songs.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

This music is vital because it shows that the Beach Boys are more than just a 1960s surf/pop group. While hardcore fans like us already knew this, the majority of the public does not. Releases like this help to change the perception of what the group was based on publicists and labels at the time and focuses on the music and talent of the group. The fact that Big Sur has over 1 million streams on Spotify gives me hope that a change in perception of the group’s later material is coming. I am so encouraged by this!

Ronald Carter

1 month ago

1) What is do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

The Beach Boys had pretty much hit rock bottom as the sixties came to an end. Brian’s leadership role was diminished significantly, and even though he was still providing some solid songs to the group, they no longer had the commercial appeal they once had. In this environment, the other band members really stepped up! Dennis and Carl, who had pretty much taken a backseat through the groups’ hits-era, turned in some absolutely remarkable songs and performances, and the other guys, including Bruce, were also quite active and involved. With all of this “new” talent latently emerging, the Beach Boys really re-invented themselves during the Sunflower / Surf’s Up era. They retained the Beach Boys sound (e.g. the harmonies and their vocal identity), yet they really became an all-new band through the inventive and extremely professional recordings of the Sunflower / Surf’s Up period. I consider this the pinnacle of the Beach Boys’ careers as far as sheer creativity and artistry go. Each member contributed equally, and the overall effect was absolutely incredible. The overall group involvement is what I value the most.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

There are a few songs on the set that I have yet to hear. Over the decades, many recordings have leaked out on various bootlegs and been posted on assorted websites, and through those, I have heard a number of officially unreleased songs; however, each time an archival set is issued by The Beach Boys, there are “new to me” tracks included, and I look so forward to that. I am often amazed that the group was so prolific in the studio, and I am even more amazed that so friggin’ much good music was left in the vaults. Also, with this particular set, I am really looking forward to hearing the a cappella vocals. The Beach Boys’ vocals during the Sunflower / Surf’s Up era were at an all-time high, so hearing these songs without the music will be wonderful.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

The Beach Boys’ music from the Sunflower / Surf’s Up period has been shamelessly overlooked and underappreciated for far too long. It is about time light is shone on the pure artistry, talent, and variety of what the group was doing at that time. Also, without taking anything away from Brian Wilson as the band’s primary creative force, it is about time that the other members received their due and recognition for their input into the band. The Beach Boys’ hits are a vital part of world culture; everyone knows their biggest hits, yet without the pristine recordings of the Sunflower and Surf’s Up years, people are not really getting the whole story.

esqdave101

4 weeks ago

Congratulations Ron, you have been selected by Alan Boyd and Mark Linett as a recipient of one of the Feel Flows formats. Details TBA!

Ryan Hicks

1 month ago

1) What is do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

I appreciate the songs and production. The two albums are favourites of mine as I first discovered them in the 2000s. While a positive quality is the contributions of all members, I think it is more than that. The same reason why my favourite Beatles’ album is The White Album is that it is so varied. Feel Flows, Deirdre, At My Window, Our Sweet Love to name a few. Brian’s contributions are fantastic, but Carl and Dennis really leave their fingerprint on these albums. I love their performances and arrangement ideas. I think another quality that I love is how timeless the songs are. It feels like audiences in 2021 are rediscovering these albums when at the time of being released they were mostly ignored. Listeners are hearing this music for what it is; two fantastic albums.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

Already I can hear the clarity of the album so well. While other releases by other artists seem to be cash grabs, the audio quality is so amazing for this. Not a hyped-up mix, but everything sounds so clear and like you are in the studio with them. I appreciate the quality of the original recordings and also knowing that many of the instruments are played by the band. Certainly, the production ideas are coming from the band. The new mixes are beautiful and give the albums the best representation they have had yet.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

Vital for production in that it is one of the first home-studio recordings, how well it is engineered. Vital in my favourite period of the band where the band seemed to be inspired nay a contemporary sound, without sounding dated. Important in the themes of spirituality and living in harmony with the earth. Vital in their honesty in a track like ‘Til I Die. Vital in the performances with incredible lead and backing vocals. These albums mean so much to me and I hope new listeners will hear and see why I love these albums so much.

Kyle Te Poel

1 month ago

1) What do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

The thing I most appreciate about the Sunflower/Surf’s Up era is the melodic and harmonic qualities of the music. The backing vocals alone, along with the impeccable instrumental tracks, carry as much of the feel and meaning of these songs as the lyrics do, and sometimes possibly even more. It’s not just that they’re sonically gorgeous, but also that they’re often incredibly advanced musically. Very few pop artists outside the Beach Boys would have come up with the chords that make up the backing vocals of “Slip On Through,” for example. And, true to their name, several songs practically evoke the beach (or at least gentle waves rushing the shore) in the perfectly echo-drenched harmonies on “Deirdre,” “All I Wanna Do,” “Tear in the Morning,” “Disney Girls (1957),” and “Surf’s Up,” to name just a few. By and large, this is calming, emotionally impactful music.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

While I am certainly looking forward to the unreleased material, I am equally excited to hear the isolated backing tracks and vocal tracks. Since first hearing this done on the “Pet Sounds Sessions” box set, I’ve always been in awe of how intricately performed both of these aspects are, and sometimes they can not be fully appreciated in the context of the finished song.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

This music is vital for its emotional resonance. Between the two albums, practically the full range of our earthly experience is covered: the feeling of belonging to larger humanity; love, lust, and abandonment; nostalgia and melancholy; peace; our connection to the natural world; spirituality; violence and anger; desperation; exaltation as well as depression; joy and sadness. There are songs I can’t hear (or certainly can’t sing along to) without choking up. There are others I can’t hear without feeling overcome with joy. It is vital because, for all of the Beach Boys’ great works–and there are many–if I could only keep one era’s worth of their music, it would be this one.

[**note: since this contest is only open to subscribers, please note that I am one, though it may(?) be under my wife’s name (Nicole), as she got me the subscription as a gift.]

esqdave101

4 weeks ago

Congratulations Kyle, you have been selected by Alan Boyd and Mark Linett as a recipient of one of the Feel Flows formats. Details TBA!

Samantha Morrison

1 month ago

1) What do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

I love that each member was able to express their talents during this era. Mike Love’s lyrics/vocals on All I Wanna Do, Bruce Johnston’s increased input on Sunflower, and Carl and Al’s leads on various songs are all appreciated (of course everybody’s contributions are valued, these are just a few examples!). This era shows the band’s ‘60s dynamic changing, with everybody’s creativity being equally expressed in the ‘70s. This is something that wasn’t seen as much on previous albums, so as a fan it’s fun to dive deeper into this era that’s indicative of each member’s individuality as a musician!

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

For me, hearing previously unreleased tracks, along with bonus tracks is exciting! With this box set being such a big release, I’m also looking forward to this music reaching a wider array of listeners, since this is a lesser-known era vs. their earlier material. Many of these songs sound fresh and modern, which may draw in some new fans! Most of all, I’m looking forward to Dennis Wilson getting well-deserved recognition for his talents as a singer/songwriter. I think Dennis brought raw emotion, passion, and vulnerability to his songs, his musicianship blossoming during this era. Wouldn’t It Be Nice To Live Again, Sound of Free, and Lady are all beautiful, captivating songs that display these qualities! It will be nice for people to hear his skills at work.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

This era (as with all of their eras) is made up of material that sums up different themes of life. Themes of hope, love, sadness, and even humor. For many life situations, there’s a song that you can draw from to help get you through. Also, there’s a spiritual element to the band’s harmonies, melodies, and lyrics that makes them timeless. This boxset being released in 2021 with so much unheard material is proof of this. When you listen to these songs, a piece of them touches the deepest part of you. The Beach Boys are and always will be deeply complex and complementary to one another, their music surpassing generational differences. To me, that is what makes this music vital to any Beach Boys fan, and to any listener!

esqdave101

4 weeks ago

Congratulations Samantha, you have been selected by Alan Boyd and Mark Linett as a recipient of one of the Feel Flows formats. Details TBA!

Tom Maddox

1 month ago

1) What do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

Both these albums show the talent of all the Beach Boys and these 2 albums made me into the fan that I’m today.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

The live recording of the Sunflower and Surfs Up and yes the outtakes can’t wait for them.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

The new collection shows the guys are more than just cars girls and surf they are musicians and they do change in time and yes I’m can’t wait to put my headphones on and listen all night and beyond

Hekla Egils

4 weeks ago

1) What do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

What I love the most about this era is the contrast between albums. Sunflower is just a beautiful piece of work and shows an array of all the members’ talents. Surf’s Up is melancholic and heavy but in a bittersweet kind of way. I think that’s what makes it so relatable; this sense of vulnerability. It’s very human and that’s why I connect with it. This era really sees Carl coming into his own, that’s probably my favourite thing about it.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

I’m very much looking forward to the a capella versions. They’re so ethereal and while instruments obviously do a lot for the songs, I feel that the vocals can completely stand on their own. I’m so excited to hear H.E.L.P. Is On The Way, Lady, and I Just Got my Pay on vinyl. And of course, what I look forward to the most is to just hear all the unreleased songs and different versions. It’s ALWAYS so exciting to hear something “new” by them because every version is so unique. I just can’t wait to hear all of it.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

I think this music is vital because it really defines and shows the creative genius behind the music. It shows all the layers of the songs and the journey of where it ended up to be. Every little detail that changes before the final product is recorded and we can hear the deconstruction of the songs with these new releases. I think that that’s important and also inspirational to music today. It’s so intricate and there is so much that goes into the music.

Pete Clapsis

4 weeks ago

1) What do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

For me it was the group evolving yet again, growing, expanding their sound and their message. At that time it was difficult to stay relevant, especially being tagged a surf group, but as the music changed (helped by Brian’s Pet Sounds genius) they managed to stay in step, despite faux pas in public relations …

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

As a lifelong fan, I am always excited by hearing an unreleased song, an alternate take, anything that helps show growth or process, or anything that allows us to (almost) be flys on the wall in the studio.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

The Beach Boys’ music is vital, especially from this period that held such promise as the slate was being wiped clean and they could have become anything. Other than the early days, this was such an important time as Brian’s presence, still (and always) keenly felt but waning, and Carl stepped up, Dennis showed his amazing writing skills, and their sound evolved. For me, I’ll always be a fan- ‘Til I Die…

Drew Severs

4 weeks ago

1) What do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

I was 14 years old in 1970 when Sunflower was issued. I bought it on a whim and quickly became enthralled with the album. I willingly endured endless teasing from my friends who considered the Beach Boys to be an anachronism. When Surf’s Up came out a year later I was seduced not only by the music but by how COOL each band member looked. This was a group that followed its muse despite a lack of attention and acceptance by FM radio and the general public at the time. I feel incredibly fortunate to have come of age at the same time the Beach Boys were expanding their horizons and so many member were blossoming as songwriters and performers.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

I cannot wait to listen to both the a cappella and the instrumental versions of these songs. Peeling back the layers lets you really appreciate the sophistication of the arrangements and the productions.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

Not to diminish the contributions of the various band members, but any music Brian Wilson had a hand in is head and shoulders above anything else you could find at the time. His material will be studied by scholars 100 years from now…especially This Whole World, Til I Die, and Surf’s Up. There is a majesty to his music that stands alone.

Peter Staehr Hansen

4 weeks ago

Sunflower is the best Beach Boys album, i really enjoy it

Reinhold Lüthen

4 weeks ago

1) What do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

This era was like a kind of reset for the Beach Boys. It was no longer Brian Wilson, but all the band members who took responsibility for “Sunflower” and “Surf`s Up”- and it worked! Two great albums. Not just a collection of songs loosely connected but song cycles with challenging lyrics and challenging music. The band started to regain credibility. They rocked! I was 16 when “Sunflower” was released and I felt proud again to be a Beach Boys fan when I bought this album in London during a language course. I could not wait to be back in Germany to introduce it to my friends.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

First of all, I hope this release will be a “fly-on-the-wall” experience for me, that is to get an insight into the making of the two albums by experiencing previously unreleased outtakes, alternate versions etc. accompanied by a book full of great background information.

Secondly, I am looking forward to the original albums in pristine audio quality.

And last but not least I will enjoy all the a cappella and backing track versions. It is just gorgeous to listen to the Beach Boys singing a cappella. And the backing tracks in case of the Beach Boys are sometimes outstanding instrumental pieces in their own right.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

It brings back to mind that the music of the Beach Boys can´t be reduced to Pet Sounds and the big hits. I am of the opinion that the music and the lyrics of these two albums were ahead of their time and are still relevant today. For example, the lyrics that deal with ecology on “Surf’s Up” could be songs for Greta! Some songs are widely unknown classics.
This boxed set offers the opportunity to set the path from only a limited public awareness for the excellence of these two albums to a broader one. Maybe songs from “Sunflower” and “Surf`s Up” will be heard far more often on the radio in the near future.

esqdave101

4 weeks ago

Congratulations Reinhold, you have been selected by Alan Boyd and Mark Linett as a recipient of one of the Feel Flows formats. Details TBA!

Maggie Vanwinkle

4 weeks ago

1) What do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

This era quite literally saved my life. It represents a new beginning. Growing up, learning about love, life, etc. The Boys had grown, just as we all have, and their music changed drastically. This era is important because it proves the genius of the Beach Boys, and their ability to express their emotions fully and reach people in a way that is almost intoxicating.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

I’m looking forward to the new versions of songs that I already love so much. Getting new content makes me so happy and I’m grateful that I get to experience it.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

This music is vital because love is vital. Life is hard, and really, all we have is love and music. All it takes is one word, one sound, one song, or one harmony to change or save someone’s life – as it did mine. Love is for everyone, and the Beach Boys are love. Thank you.

Jim Murphy

4 weeks ago

1) What do you appreciate the most about the Sunflower and Surf’s Up era?

Resiliency, Revitalization, Rebirth, Renaissance, and, ultimately, Vindication.

After the stunning achievement of Pet Sounds, “Good Vibrations,” and topping the New Musical Express reader’s poll, the band stumbled. The delay and abandonment of the SMiLE vision, the withdrawal from the Monterey Pop Festival, and the disappointing bunt of Smiley Smile.

They were down. But they weren’t out. But bear in mind, Beach Boys fans didn’t know any of this at the time. The U.S. rock music press was still in its infancy and information was scarce. The most you could scrounge was some teaser your mom and pop record store read in Billboard or Cash Box.

The band rallied with a resurgence of songwriting and recording sessions amidst a grueling domestic and international touring schedule. They cooled out with Wild Honey and Friends, bookending another misstep—the ill-advised Maharishi tour—and bid farewell to Capitol with a hastily packaged 20/20 and a breathtaking “Break Away” backed with a hidden Dennis Wilson gem (“Celebrate the News”).

One of the beautiful things that unite Beach Boys fans is the joy of their rich and diverse musical journey despite or is it because of, the hair-wrenching frustration of so many missed opportunities. Much had changed since the eternally romantic innocence of Pet Sounds. A seismic cultural shift—Vietnam, civic unrest, Woodstock, Altamont—made the Beach Boys, well, uncool.

Three weeks after I bought Sunflower, I turned 14 and began navigating that puberty-fueled minefield called high school. A year to the day, the band released Surf’s Up and I scratched out an amateurish track-by-track review to my brother warding off malaria in Vietnam. Like so many teenage kids in high school cafeterias across the country, I was adrift in my Beach Boys obsession, defending the band against names being slung at me like lawn darts—Sabbath, Deep Purple, Tull, the Dead, Hendrix. “Christ, have you heard Sunflower and Surf’s Up? I pleaded my case to a deaf, dumb, and blind boy. No, of course, they hadn’t.

So, here we are. Five days from something I’ve waited for 50 years—irrefutable proof that the most important American band of the pop/rock era was mysteriously shunned by Radio and American aural sensitivity during their most creative, prolific, and experimental period. Glorious songs, fun-filled mixtures of cultural relativism and whimsy, stellar production, innovative instrumentation, angelic harmonies. Just ten years out from the “bom-bom-dip-di-dip” of “Surfin’.” Staggering. Perhaps they’ll listen now.

2) What aspects of the new release are you looking forward to the most?

Everything! Remastered sound, alternate mixes, live cuts, a cappella tracks, outtakes. Under “embarrassment of riches,” Webster should place an image of Feel Flows.

3) Why do you think this music is vital?

Because history and the passage of time make us smarter. This artfully curated collection is a living document to the genius of the music of the Beach Boys—Brian Wilson, Michael Love, Dennis Wilson, Carl Wilson, Alan Jardine, and Bruce Johnston. Such a gift.

esqdave101

4 weeks ago

Congratulations Jim, you have been selected by Alan Boyd and Mark Linett as a recipient of one of the Feel Flows formats. Details TBA!

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