December the fourth would have been Dennis Wilson´s 75th birthday. He joined The Beach Boys because the Wilson´s mother thought it was a good way of knowing his whereabouts. He wasn´t a technical drummer, but good live as he could always keep a good rockin´ rhythm going. And annoy Mike Love with his good looks, thus attracting the girls. Dennis didn´t seem to mind when he was replaced in the studio and later live as well.
In 1968 he had his first songs featured on an album by the group, most likely surprising every one (possibly including himself) with the beauty of his music. Quite a contrast to his energetic persona.
And so ee was the star of the great 1970 release Sunflower, contributing Slip On Through, the gorgeous Forever and co-writing the marvellous It´s About Time which, in a parallel universe, was a huge hit and now considered a classic. Got To Know That Woman, you say? Never liked it much. Very Dennis though…
In 1977, he released Pacific Ocean Blue, the greatest solo album made by a Beach Boy. Yes, I know. Brian´s first is really good too, but the production has aged worse than most. So it´s Dennis for me.
It´s also most likely he was part of the writing (uncredited) of Joe Cocker classic You Are So Beautiful, writing part of the lyrics and contributing to the melody. Dennis used to sing the song live in the seventies.
A Time To Live In Dreams is a personal favourite, recorded in 1968. It somehow managed to remain unreleased until 2001.
Do you have a personal Dennis Wilson favourite? Steamboat opportunity knocks!