Al Jardine (Beach Boys)

Al Jardine, Guitarist with the Beach boys was born 3rd September 1942 in Lima, Ohio. His family moved to San Francisco and later to Hawthorne, California. At Hawthorne High School, he befriended fellow football player Brian Wilson and watched Brian and brother Carl Wilson singing at a school assembly. After attending Ferris State University during the 1960-61 academic year, Jardine registered as a student at El Camino College in 1961. There, he was reunited with Brian and suggested forming a band while they worked through harmony ideas together in the college’s music room. Jardine’s primary musical interest was folk, and he learned banjo and guitar specifically to play folk music. When the Beach Boys formed at Wilson’s home, he first tried to push the band toward folk, but was overruled in favour of rock ‘n’ roll

They first gelled as a music group in the summer of 1961, initially named the Pendletones. Brian Wilson began to experiment with recording songs after receiving a Wollensak tape recorder on his 16th birthday, which lead to the Formation of The Beach Boys, and After being encouraged by Dennis to write a song about the local water sports craze, Brian and Mike Love together created what would become the first single for the band, “Surfin’”. Brian Wilson was mainly the lead singer of the Beach Boys, whilst Al was the Guitarist and Mike Love played the saxophone in the first years of the band eventually becoming the co -lead singer while Denis Wilson sang lead vocals on the early Beach Boys recordings (“Little Girl (You’re My Miss America)” and “This Car of Mine” as well as the bridge verse on “Girls on the Beach”)and “Do You Wanna Dance?”. Jardine played stand-up bass on the Beach Boys’ first recording, the song “Surfin’” (1961). Following his brief departure from the band in early 1962, he dabbled with a career in the air industry in Los Angeles. Jardine fully rejoined the Beach Boys in the summer of 1963 at Brian Wilson’s request and worked alongside guitarist David Marks with the band until October 1963, when Marks quit the Beach Boys after an altercation with the band’s manager, Murry Wilson.

Jardine left the Beach Boys in 1961 to pursue a career in dentistry, But filled in on bass for Brian during concerts and returned full-time in 1963 following David Marks’ departure after an argument with Murry Wilson. Jardine is the band’s rhythm guitarist and middle-range harmony vocalist. He first sang lead on “Christmas Day,” on 1964’s The Beach Boys’ Christmas Album and followed shortly after with the Number 1 hit “Help Me, Rhonda”. Thereafter he regularly sang leads on tracks. Jardine wrote or co-wrote a number of songs for the Beach Boys. Including “California Saga: California” from the Holland album, “Lady Lynda”, “Cotton Fields,” “Come Go with Me” and “Peggy Sue”. Al also became involved alongside Carl Wilson in production duties for the Beach Boys.Jardine also suggested that the Beach Boys cover the Mamas and the Papas’ song “California Dreamin’”. The video featured all the surviving Beach Boys and two of the three surviving members of the Mamas and the Papas, John Phillips and Michelle Phillips (Denny Doherty was on the East coast and declined), along with former Byrds guitarist Roger McGuinn.

Following Carl Wilson’s death in 1998, Jardine left the touring version of The Beach Boys, leaving Love as the only original member in the group playing live concerts. Jardine continued to tour and recorded with his Endless Summer Band, which included musicians who toured with the Beach Boys, including Billy Hinsche of Dino, Desi and Billy; Ed Carter; Bobby Figueroa; and Jardine’s sons, Matt and Adam. In 2001, Jardine’s band released Live in Las Vegas. In 2006, Jardine joined Brian Wilson’s band for a short tour celebrating the 40th anniversary of Pet Sounds. In March 2008, Jardine settled a lawsuit brought against him by Love and the estate of Carl Wilson regarding use of the “Beach Boys” name. Love had leased the Beach Boys’ name, and it was deemed that Jardine’s newly formed band, called the Beach Boys Family & Friends (featuring sons Matt and Adam Jardine, Carnie and Wendy Wilson, Daryl Dragon, Billy Hinsche and others), was a breach of title use. In 2009, Jardine’s sang lead vocal on “Big Sur Christmas” By Hey Stevie.

In 2010 Jardine released his solo debut album A Postcard from California, which features contributions from Beach Boys Brian Wilson, Carl Wilson (a posthumous track), Bruce Johnston, David Marks and Mike Love. There are also guest appearances from Glen Campbell, Neil Young, Steve Miller, Scott Mathews, Gerry Beckley and Dewey Bunnell (members of America) and Flea. A spoken intermission written by Stephen Kalinich, called “Tidepool Interlude”, features actor Alec Baldwin. In 2011 Jardine made his first appearance with the Beach Boys in more than 10 years at a tribute concert for Ronald Reagan’s 100th birthday, where he sang “Help Me, Rhonda” and “Sloop John B”.

Brian Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine, Bruce Johnston and David Marks also reunited for a new Beach Boys album “That’s why God made the Radio” and The Beach Boys 50th Anniversary Reunion Tour in 2012. Following the tour it was announced that Jardine, Wilson and Marks would no longer tour with the band. Love returned the lineup to its pre-Anniversary Tour configuration, with Love as the only original member (Bruce Johnston joined in 1965). Jardine appeared with Marks and Wilson, along with Wilson’s band, for a short summer tour in 2013. Al Jardine and Marks also contributed to Wilson’s 2015 solo album, No Pier Pressure and to Wilson’s Pet Sounds 50th Anniversary World Tour. In 2016, Jardine appeared in an episode of the Adult Swim series Decker: Unclassified, playing the role of the President’s “science advisor”. Jardine and his son, Matt, also contributed backing vocals to John Mayer’s 2017 song “Emoji of a Wave”,

Some of the Beach Boys’ biggest hits, include “Surfin’ Safari”, “Surfin’ USA“, “Shut Down”, “Little Deuce Coupe“, “Be True to Your School”, “Little Saint Nick”, “Fun, Fun, Fun“, “I Get Around”, “When I Grow Up (To Be a Man)”, “Little Honda”, “Dance, Dance, Dance” and “California Girls“. Love also wrote or co-wrote lyrics to many of the Beach Boys songs, mostly with the themes of surfing, cars or love, but also memorable ballads such as “The Warmth of the Sun”. The Beach Boys were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.