The Story Behind ‘Good Vibrations’ By The Beach Boys
The Beach Boys - Celebrity Tribute / Youtube
“Good Vibrations” was a Beach Boys song that had been extensively worked on by primary creative Brian Wilson. While the band was on the road touring, Wilson cooped up at his home and wrote music for the song, living a somewhat reclusive life to focus on sharpening his edge in the craft. He was praised by admirers and critics alike, due to the sheer amount of innovation he developed during this particular era.
The song also notably doesn’t feature any Beach Boys member playing instruments in it, including Wilson himself, as he hired sessions musicians to fulfill the project. “Good Vibrations” took around 90 hours in the studio and around 70 hours of tape to be completed, making it one of the most tedious songs ever released by the band.
Mike Love wrote the lyrics of the song, in which psychedelic imagery was used to convey the contents of the song, which he notes was a unique twist amidst their usual material. He also said that he wanted to write something that was relevant to the music and the era they were living in, as he was unsure of how Beach Boys fans would receive “Good Vibrations”.
One notable aspect of the song was the use of a theremin, which was the first thing he thought about when he was looking for something to match the cellos on the song. It can also be noted that “Good Vibrations” was written in the wake of Pet Sounds, which wasn’t that successful upon release and pushed Wilson to do better. The song was also recorded in pieces in six different studios, then pieced together to end up with the final product.