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Help!!!Who played the bass on the album Pet Sounds??

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Nicklas, Apr 19, 2004.

  1. Nicklas


    Mar 15, 2003
    Everyone says that Brian Wilson is such a great bass player.........but on the Pet sounds album i have heard that it was Carol Kaye who played bass anyone knows more about this??

    If Brian is such a great bass player why dosent he play bass when he tours??

    On the concert for the queen for a cpl of years ago Brian only played electric piano and no bass...
  2. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio
  3. From everything I've heard it's Carol Kaye.

    Re: Brian Wilson, being a genius writer and arranger doesn't necessarily mean he's a great player. The opposite is true as well.
  4. Thor

    Thor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    The word always was the Brian was so skitzed out that
    he couldn't handle the live part, it made him literally ill.


    This Check this Link

    The reference at CD Universe review offers the following:

    The Beach Boys: Brian Wilson, Carl Wilson, Dennis Wilson, Mike Love, Bruce Johnston, Al Jardine.
    Additional personnel: Glen Campbell, Tommy Tedesco, Jerry Cole, Billy Strange, Barney Kessel (guitar); The Sid Sharpe Strings (strings); Tommy Morgan (harmonica); Carl Fortina, Frank Marocco (accordion); Steve Douglas, Jay Migliori, Roy Caton, Lou Backburn (horns); Leon Russell, Al De Lory, Don Randi (piano); Ray Pohlman, Carole Kaye, Lyle Ritz, Julius Wechter, Bill Pitman (bass); Hal Blaine (drums); Gene Estes, Frank Capp, Jim Gordon (percussion).

    Producer: Brian Wilson.
    Reissue producer: Cheryl Pawelski.
    Engineers include: Larry Levine, Chuck Britz, Bruce Botnick.
    Recorded at Gold Star Recording Studios, Western Recorders, Sunset Sound, Hollywood, California in 1965 & 1966. Includes liner notes by Brad Elliot and Brian Wilson.
    Digitally remastered by Ron McMaster (1999, Capitol Mastering, Hollywood, California).

    It appears she was involved, this link does not
    delineate which sessions she may have played on.
  5. JimK


    Dec 12, 1999

    Of course it's CK.

    On the flipside-
    The new Prince album(Musicology) just arrived today...personally, I was hoping for a band effort, instead, it's 98% Prince doing everything(which is "OK", but why have Blackwell, Rhonda S., Reto, etc at yer disposal & NOT use the Hell out of 'em?).
  6. DaveBeny


    Mar 22, 2000
    London, UK
    Brian Wilson wrote out the bass parts for 'Pet Sounds'. Carol Kaye played them. The bassline on 'Good Vibrations' is doubled with acoustic bass - can't recall the player's name right now.

    Brian Wilson DOES play some bass live these days, but generally only during one or two early-Beach Boys tracks during the encores.
  7. Nicklas, it's Carol Kaye on Pet Sounds, the upright is Lyle Ritz.

    If you really wish to know the entire truth, why don't you go to Carol's forum and ask her what songs she played on.


    Carol's credits....(some of them) taken from the LA Musician Union Contracts, for The Beach Boys.

    Good Vibrations, Help Me Rhonda, Sloop John B, I Get Around, Wouldn't It Be Nice (dano), Calif. Girls, God Only Knows, Pet Sounds lp, Heroes & Villains, Caroline No, Surf's Up, Child Is The Father Of The Man, Do You Like Worms?, Smile lp, Cabinessence, Fire sessions, I Was Made To Love Her, Let Him Run Wild - Beach Boys.

    Like I suggested before, check out Carol's forum and you'll get the truth about her credits!!


    I was going to purchase a copy of Pet Sounds. After reading the link above, it says there was a stereo version released in 1999. Is the mono or the stereo version better? The link said that the stereo version was both "heresy and revelation".

  9. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    I think the stereo version is only available as part of the Pet Sounds box set, which contains many alternate takes, such as "Hold on to your ego", which was the original title of "I know there's an answer". There are also outtakes and tracks that didn't make it on the album, such as "Trombone Dixie" which is available as a bonus track on some recent mono releases. Whether it's worth your while to get all the extra stuff is up to you, but I'd get the "Good Vibrations" box set instead, as it has many outtakes from the "Smile" album, plus a bonus CD with radio promos and some Pet Sounds outtakes as well.

    Is the stereo version "better"? well, that's subjective. One little known fact about Brian Wilson is that he's deaf in one ear, so the mono version is as close to his vision of the music as you're gonna get. I have heard the stereo version and it doesn't rock my world any more than the mono version. YMMV
  10. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas
    I bought a copy that had both stereo and mono versions on one disc.
  11. corinpills


    Nov 19, 2000
    Boston, MA
    I think that most of the acclaim Brian Wilson has gotten as a bas player are for the parts he wrote later on, not the rudimentary parts he actually played on earlier Beach Boys material. It has a lot to to do with context, and I can see a lot of younger players not really being able to appreciate Pet Sounds (the production probably sounds pretty cheesy to people brought up on modern rock- no distorted guitars anywhere), but the leap from "Fun, Fun, Fun" to Pet Sounds in only 3 years is simply incredible. Just imagine if Christina Aguilara all of a sudden busted out and wrote, orchestrated, produced and sang the **** out of an incredible album, how surprising it would be.

    Anyway, the bass parts are just fabulous on Pet Sounds- great counterpoint that stands up to years of listening. I've been listening to taht album for 20 years and still trying to understand it.
  12. On a sidenote, I've been hearing rumors that Brian is finishing "Smile" and will put it out this fall--I know he's playing the entire album live lately. There's a bootleg of one of these shows on various P2P networks, but I can never seem to get it to open.
  13. byrdsfan


    Feb 9, 2004
    In that HBO concert, i think he played bass on a couple of tunes (or maybe one). Not very enthusiastically.
  14. I have a 2001 re-issue... one cd with 28 tracks. First 14, mono. Second half stereo.

    It lists CK as the electric bassist on all the songs except "I Know There's an Answer", "I Just wasn't made for these times" and the bonus track "Hang on to you ego"- Ray Pohlman

    All the string bass seems to be credited to Lyle Ritz. Danelectro bass on "God Only Knows" - Ray Pohlman.
  15. sunburstbasser


    Oct 18, 2003
    The original Smile is coming out. I found that in some weekly news magazine, I think The Week. Originally, it was supposed to be the Beach Boys answer to Sgt. Pepper's, which was the Beatle's answer to Pet Sounds, which answered Rubber Soul, etc etc. The Smilely Smile that was released back then was only a glimpse of the real album.

    Brian didn't play bass very much even on the early records. He hired a guy who I think was named Glenn Campbell to do it. Glenn would play in the studio sometimes, might sing, and live he always did it because he could hit Brian's high notes (most of the high notes until 1968 or so were Brian, then Carl). Brian didn't tour, instead staying in the studio writing the music while the Beach Boys toured and played it, only coming in to do their vocal parts. Because he was in the studio so much, Brian was allowed to develop his ideas quickly, and released as many as three albums a year, both in 1964 and 1965.
  16. The "guy named Glenn Campbell" was, in fact, the Glen Campbell, who later went on to be a huge country star and part-time movie actor.

    He was a session monster prior to all that. And he toured with the Beach Boys, taking Brian's place, until Bruce Johnston became a permanent substitute.
  17. slackdaddy


    Mar 1, 2004
    Athens, GA
    Endorsing Artist: David Eden Amplifiers / Rob Wave Custom basses
    You really should check out Carol Kaye's website http://www.carolkaye.com The woman is a wealth of information. She is very active in her forum as well. You can actually correspond with a LIVING LEGEND! Just check out her credits 10,000+ known sessions. You hear her playing everyday and probably just don't know it. Her books are great as well.
  18. doc540


    Jul 28, 2003
    Beaumont, Texas
    Pet Sounds was the ultimate makeout album when I was in high school. (When "makeout" meant "kiss till your jaws locked".) :cool:

    When I finally moved to SoCal in '71 I rented a little surf pad beside Hwy101. When I heard the AmTrak going thru late at night I realized it was the train I'd heard so many times on Pet Sounds.


    Nearly four decades after it was initially slated for release on
    Capitol, Brian Wilson's "lost" Beach Boys masterpiece "SMiLE" will
    finally be heard by the record-buying public. A newly recorded version of the album is to be released Sept. 28 worldwide by Nonesuch Records. Recorded with Brian and his band, The Wondermints!


    Glenn Campbell did not play bass in the studio's, just because he toured with the early BB's doesn't mean he played bass for the studio/session work. He was a guitarist (not a bassist) for the session work he did in the 60's and 70's in LA.

    Carol Kaye, Ray Pohlman, Lyle Ritz, Bill Pitman and Julius Wechter were the bassist used for that album.

    Check out http://billystrangemusic.com/

    Billy Strange also played guitar on most of those sessions along with Tommy Tedesco and Glenn Campbell.

    I'm not sure where that info came from but it's not correct, try talking with the electric bassist who lived it, played it and, is still involved with Brians career to this very day. Carol will talk with anyone on her forum!


  20. Jerry Ziarko

    Jerry Ziarko Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Rochester, NY
    No offense, but a bit harsh don't you think?

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