Sunday, January 10, 2016

Brian Wilson flattered (and elated)

By Brian Wilson's admission, he essentially worshipped Phil Spector and his famed wall of sound - complex, layered arrangements of music that left no dead air within songs. Wilson particularly loved The Ronettes' "Be My Baby." Though a little far-fetched, some music insiders even speculated Wilson's masterpiece "Pet Sounds" had the same initials as Spector as a nod to him.

But by most accounts, Spector was never very gracious to Brian's adulation. And when Brian wrote the gorgeous doo-wop, Motown-sounding ballad "Don't Worry Baby" with the intention of the Ronettes recording it, Spector was dismissive - he passed on it. The Beach Boys ended up recording a fine version.

I was surprised to learn that in 1999 Ronnie Spector, ex-wife of Phil Spector, and lead vocalist of the Ronettes finally recorded Brian's "Don't Worry Baby." Brian's reaction - when KROQ DJ Rodney Bingenheimer tells him this on the air - is pure gold.

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