Last Friday, Mike Love published a letter in the Los Angeles Times in an attempt to set the record straight about why he and Bruce Johnston have booked Beach Boys shows this fall without Brian Wilson and Al Jardine. The dates follow the band’s historic, acclaimed 50th anniversary reunion tour, which wrapped September 28th in London. “I did not fire Brian Wilson from the Beach Boys,” Love wrote. “I am not his employer. I do not have such authority. And even if I did, I would never fire Brian Wilson from the Beach Boys. I love Brian Wilson. We are partners. He’s my cousin by birth and my brother in music.”
But today, in another L.A. Times piece, Brian Wilson responded with a different view. “As far as I know, I can’t be fired – that wouldn’t be cool,” Wilson said. “The negativity surrounding all the comments bummed me out. What’s confusing is that by Mike not wanting or letting Al, David [Marks] and me tour with the band, it sort of feels like we’re being fired.”
Wilson continued, “What’s a bummer to Al and me is that we have numerous offers to continue, so why wouldn’t we want to? We all poured our hearts and souls into that album and the fans rewarded us by giving us a Number Three debut on the Billboard charts and selling out our shows. We were all blown away by the response.”
Wilson seems genuinely shattered at the possibility of turning down the future U.S. and U.K. tour offers currently on the table. “Al and I just assumed, based on everyone’s enthusiasm, we would at least want to take those offers into consideration since we all knew about them. I mean, who wouldn’t want to play the Hollywood Bowl again, Madison Square Garden and Wrigley Field? And what better way to celebrate New Year’s Eve than with the 50th band? That would have blown the lid off things.”
Wilson concluded, “It’s Al and my opinion that all of us together makes for a great representation of the Beach Boys… I’m still left wondering why he doesn’t want to continue this great trip we’re on. Al and I want to keep going because we believe we owe it to the music… That’s it in a nutshell. All these conversations need to be between the shareholders, and I welcome Mike to call me.”
Read Wilson’s full letter here.