Brian Wilson returned to the road for the first time since the start of the pandemic with a show at Long Beach, California’s Terrace Theater on August 29th. He stuck largely to the script of the past few years by playing a long set packed with Beach Boys classics and fan favorites, and he was joined once again by founding Beach Boy Al Jardine and latter-day member Blondie Chaplin.
The set did feature a handful of surprises, including a rare rendition of the 1971 tune “Long Promised Road” (with Chaplin on vocals) and Wilson’s first-ever solo take on the 1976 obscurity “It’s OK.” They also played “Wake the World,” “Feel Flows,” and “Add Some Music to Your Day” in addition to staples like “Do It Again,” “I Get Around,” “Wouldn’t It Be Nice,” and “Surfin’ USA.” On set highlight “God Only Knows,” Wilson is helped out on some of the higher notes from Al Jardine’s son, Matt Jardine.
The show was part of a brief warmup run of California gigs before Wilson’s proper American tour begins October 5th in Huntington, New York. It wraps up October 23rd in Waukegan, Illinois. He then heads to Europe in June 2022 for a tour that was originally on the books for this year. There have been scattered whispers about a 60th anniversary Beach Boys reunion tour at some point down the line, but there have been no indications that it’s actually going to happen.
What is going to happen is a theatrical release of the new documentary Brian Wilson: Long Promised Road, which features Wilson driving around Los Angeles with Rolling Stone editor Jason Fine and reflecting on his life and music. It debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival in June, though a release date has yet to be announced.