A 12 string
I will take you backstage with the Beach Boys on that fateful night...I was there.
Correct answer: B!
For the complete details on that fateful night, scroll below.
Who sang lead on the Beach Boys "Good Vibrations?"
A) Brian Wilson
B) Carl Wilson
C) Mike Love
For the answer: Click here.
Scroll below for first hand, eyewitness details on the night Brian Wilson could no longer perform with the Beach Boys.
On this page we will set the record straight. When was Brian Wilson's last appearance with the Beach Boys on their 1964 tour?
You can get a glimpse of what was happening to Brian Wilson in the sound and words to "In My Room." If anything it was a cry for help.
He was on tour, expected to write songs, produce songs, keep hits coming, stay on tour, write more songs, and on and on it went until he snapped. The question rock historians want to know is when did he snap.
At what point in the 1964 tour did Brian Wilson stop going on stage?
I was there.
The short answer to this question is that he did not peform in Houston on stage.
Here's the story of how I know what I know and how I got backstage with the Beach Boys on that fateful night.
If you want to check out how I got backstage that night when I was 14 years old:
A group called the Dynamics were the headliners for the Beach Boys on that fateful concert night in Houston, Texas in 1964. They had borrowed their red jackets with a "D" with a note through it on the pocket. They had borrowed 5 of our jackets. I was the lead singer for a group called the Detours from Texas City, Texas. Those jackets belonged to our group and we all out on loan. Except two. My friend and I used those two jackets to pose as members of the Dynamics and get backstage as "members of the group. There we were.
I was looking through the curtains and thinking that our jackets must look pretty cool onstage but basically all I could hear or see was the drummer who happened to be positioned closest to us.
Here's where it gets interesting. The drummer for the Dynamics was dating a girlfriend I'd broken up with a few months before.
The fact that the Dynamics were using our jackets, I would love to see the Beach Boys, and it would be cool to see this guy my ex-gf was seeing. He had blue hair.
Actually, I thought of how our band was better than the Dynamics but Dynamics were very good as well buty they had a thing going with the drummer with blue hair. He was different. Everyone was looking for something different at that time. The Beatles were just landing.
There I was at the curtain watching the Dynamics when I noticed Dennis Wilson a few feet away also looking at the group and especially the drummer.
It was not the time to greet someone so I let the moment go. I eventally wound up way backstage to the comfort of a piano and began fiddling around with "Blueberry Hill." It was far enough away from the stage that it shouldn't be a problem. The sound from the stage was drowning out my futile attempts to get a run going on "Blueberry Hill" playing both the high and low notes.
Suddenly the piano lit up. I felt like I was the world's greatest pianist who had yet to be discovered when I realized it was Dennis Wilson sitting next to me going nuts on the higher end of the piano. The guy was great.
It was a time in my life that I will never forget. There I was. Sitting at a piano backstage at a Beach Boys concert, confident that our band was better than the Dynamics (though they were very good), and playing "Blueberry Hill" with Dennis Wilson.
What could be better?
I don't know how it came up but it was floated that it would be cool if my friend and I could get backstage to meet the other guys. Dennis said he would try. I thanked him and that was pretty much it.
I was shocked when he found me backstage to tell me that "tonight wouldn't be a good night. Sorry."
He seemed really sorry. I thanked him for trying and wished him success on the show.
Don't ask me why, but about 5 minutes later he came back to me and told me to hurry: "I can get you in."
The next thing I knew I was backstage with the Beach Boys. There was an old green couch and Carl Wilson and Al Jardine were across from me and invited me to sit down.
I told them how much we admired their music and that I was in a group and we'd love to learn some of their songs..."
Carl handed me a 12 string guitar. "Try this."
A 12 string is the same as a 6 string but with 12 strings. They began showing us the chords to "Warmth of the Sun."
Are you kidding me? There was no way we could learn that plus we weren't a harmony kind of group. They had no way of knowing that and were extremely kind to allow me to actually play one of their guitars. A 12 string.
There was another guy I saw sitting on the end of the couch to my left. He was kind of either staring into space or he had his head tucked between his knees. He didn't feel good or was nervous. There wes something wrong.
The Beach Boys wore those blue stiped shirts back then and the guy on the end of the couch had one of them on. He was Brian Wilson.
Word has gotten around in rock circles that I was there. I was. If you google it enough you will find as many stories about that fateful night in Houston as you will find types of dinosaurs. You will read the Brian Wilson had his nervous breakdown on the way into Houston and another article will tell you he had it on the way in to Houston.
One story will tell you that I say that Brian Wilson did play on stage that night while Al Jardine says Brian did not play on stage that night.
Let me set the record straight. The way the question was presented to me was a newspaper asking me, since it's known that I was there, did Brian Wilson play that night?"
I told them I didn't know. I had just been back stage with these regular guys and now they were on stage and the police were having to hold back the girls. I didn't remember much after that
Then I was asked, "Okay, if you might have caught a glimpse of them on stage on your way out, was Brian there or not?"
My imagination filled in the blanks without any thought of how the media can twist the truth. I said "If I had to guess, I'd say he was on stage."
I'd like to imagine he was but if Al says he wasn't, he wasn't. I really don't remember.
Since there is no right or wrong answer here, give yourself 20 points.