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I Am Brian Wilson Audiobook

I Am Brian Wilson

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Publisher's Summary

They say there are no second acts in American lives, and third acts are almost unheard of. That's part of what makes Brian Wilson's story so astonishing.

As a cofounding member of the Beach Boys in the 1960s, Wilson created some of the most groundbreaking and timeless popular music ever recorded. With intricate harmonies, symphonic structures, and wide-eyed lyrics that explored life's most transcendent joys and deepest sorrows, songs like "In My Room", "God Only Knows", and "Good Vibrations" forever expanded the possibilities of pop songwriting. Derailed in the 1970s by mental illness, drug use, and the shifting fortunes of the band, Wilson came back again and again over the next few decades, surviving and - finally - thriving. Now, for the first time, he weighs in on the sources of his creative inspiration and on his struggles, the exhilarating highs and the debilitating lows.

I Am Brian Wilson reveals as never before the man who fought his way back to stability and creative relevance, who became a mesmerizing live artist, who forced himself to reckon with his own complex legacy and completed Smile, the legendary unfinished Beach Boys record that had become synonymous with both his genius and its destabilization. Today Brian Wilson is older, calmer, and filled with perspective and forgiveness. Whether he's talking about his childhood, his bandmates, or his own inner demons, Wilson's story, told in his own voice and in his own way, unforgettably illuminates the man behind the music, working through the turbulence and discord to achieve, at last, a new harmony.

©2016 Da Capo Press (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (245 )
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  •  
    Russell Keswick, ON, Canada 12-01-16
    Russell Keswick, ON, Canada 12-01-16 Member Since 2017
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    "Surviving the Minor Keys in Life - Love Overcomes"

    When I was young the Beach Boy sound made a big impact on me. Brian Wilson had written some American classic songs like God Only Knows, The Warmth of the Sun and In My Room. Like all lives, there were tough times with a overbearing father, pressure to duplicate hits, and intergroup tensions. This was made a lot worse by mental illness and incessant negative voices that plagued Brian as he was reaching the peak of his career.

    He never eliminated those voices, but with the love of a woman and a support network of friends and ethical doctors (with the exception of a manipulative Dr. Landy) he is in a good place in the last decades of his life.

    I loved listening to this story and for someone who grew up in the sixties, there was an added technological bonus that would have made me drop to my knees back then.

    I recently subscribed to Google Play which makes almost any song available after a quick search. So Brian would mention a song and if it intrigued me, I would stop the book, search out the song and listen. I do not own the extensive catalog, but with this music service i found everything. So when Brian said he had the drummer put two snare shots in this spot - I immediately went to the song and verified the effect it had. When he talked about his Gershwin tribute album I could listen to his thinking about a certain song and then check out the actual piece of music.

    If someone had told me back in the sixties that I would be listening to a book on a small handheld device and be able to use that same device to instantly find any song mentioned in the book out of hundreds of songs and listen with stereo headphones and - oh yeah you could also phone anyone in the world - i would not have believed it.

    It is true. Listen to this book with a music service and you will have a great time.

    22 of 22 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Erin 10-12-16
    Erin 10-12-16 Member Since 2014
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    "Loved it!"

    This book was awesome! I finished it in a little over a day. I was initially disappointed that Brian was not the narrator but I was pleasantly surprised - the narrator was wonderful and captured Brian's words perfectly. So glad to finally hear Brian's story in Brian's words.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James 12-01-16
    James 12-01-16 Member Since 2017
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    "the real Brian"

    a great story fills in all the details of his life and the beach boys

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Russell Henderson Greensboro, NC 01-02-17
    Russell Henderson Greensboro, NC 01-02-17
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    "Brian Wilson, finally revealed."

    An amazing book which delves into the history of The Beach Boys through the eyes and beautiful mind of their leader and creative driving force, Brian Wilson. The book is well written and the narration of the audible version is excellent. Lots of great information, delivered in an entertaining way.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Harry F. Myhre Stevenson Ranch, Ca USA 11-07-16
    Harry F. Myhre Stevenson Ranch, Ca USA 11-07-16 Member Since 2012
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    "excellent"

    listening to this audiobook gave me a new found understanding of the beach boys. I don't think there was ever a rock n roll group that compares to them.

    I also listened to Mike loves audiobook. had never studied that much about the beach boys. glad I did.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lisa BEVERLY, MA, United States 11-05-16
    Lisa BEVERLY, MA, United States 11-05-16 Member Since 2008
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    "fantastic memoir"

    I feel like I was sitting in Brian Wilson's Living room listening to his life story. I relived the numerous concerts as he recounted them. I am on a Brian Wilson music kick and counting down until I see him again in April 2017.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Philip Upper Hutt, New Zealand 10-25-17
    Philip Upper Hutt, New Zealand 10-25-17 Member Since 2011
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    "Beach boy bio"

    Although simply written, and at times repetitive, not surprisingly I found this book the most personal on Brian. It is insightful about his struggle with quite serious mental illness, supported by an unrelenting and supportive family. Surprisingly and reasonably he does not blame anyone for his illness and still suggests both ongoing admiration and love for a father who was a bullying perfectionist perhaps driving him to drugs and to the edge. Also the impact of the loss of his two brothers recurs and his love for them too. He is proud but often modest and it is nice to learn others have shown not only tribute but sensitivity to him.

    I have often wondered what went on in that now quite elderly frame sporting a seemingly anxious/bemused stage persona. It is reassuring that
    he can still know when someone is singing out of tune, including himself.

    Hard to believe it started way back when. A beautiful era of hope and release for young people when we look around us today with terrorism and wars everywhere - still not helped by a country determined to stamp its own mould on an unwilling world. Fortunately written prior to the Trump era. I wonder who will want to play at the White House now?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kim 08-28-17
    Kim 08-28-17 Member Since 2015
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    "I Am Brian Wilson: huge thumbs up"

    having just finished this memoir ..So much history ..am I suitable to rate and review his life, his genius, his self, his ability to produce and survive ergo his book. He is The Beethoven/Liszt/Mozart of my generation. The book felt like it was all him. No bulls$?t .

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen 08-17-17
    Karen 08-17-17
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    "Okay"

    I enjoyed listening most of the time; sometimes it was too repetitive, sometimes the narrator sounded too conceited and his voice too strained.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Ohio 08-14-17
    Susan Ohio 08-14-17 Member Since 2013
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    "A Musical Icon- the Man Behind a Great Band"

    I love the Beach Boys and I love Psychology. Those 2 reasons had me intrigued enough to buy this book.
    If you were a teenager when the Beatles and Stones arrived on the scene it seems amazing to me how successful the Beach Boys were, having to contend with the explosive British Invasion. But they were.

    However, I didn't follow them after high-school, They just fell off my radar for awhile, unlike the Beatles and Stones.

    But I love rock and pop. I always find my way back to great music of that era. The Beach Boys are no exception.

    Brian Wilson is the genius behind this group, hands down. I knew he had mental health issues and wanted to read about his journey. I was saddened at the early deaths of his brothers, Carl and Dennis.

    I'm so glad I did. I admire him greatly and really enjoyed this book. I love his sensitive nature.
    The only downside was i wish he narrated it. The narrator wasn't bad but it wasn't Brian. I prefer memoirs read by the author.

    My kids like the Beach Boys- that tells me something about their appeal.

    The Beach Boys have solidified themselves as an important contribution to American music.

    Thank you, Mr. Wilson- I wish you all the best.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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