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M.I.U./L.A. Light Album
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Capitol/Brother Records 72435-27950-2-4

Produced for Reissue by: Cheryl Pawelski and Paul Atkinson
Tape Research: Andrew Sandoval
Digital Remastered by: Andrew Sandoval and Dan Hersch at DigiPrep
Reissue Creative Direction: Sam Gay
Reissue Art Direction; Darren Wong
Reissue Design: Chad Timmreck
Project Manager: Herb Agner, Elaine O’Grady
A&G Administration: Michael Azzopardi
Production: Bryan Kelley
Photos Courtesy Of: Michael Ochs Archives.com

Special Thanks: Elliott Lott, Roy Lott, Richard Cotrell, Bob Hyde, Mark Linett, Brian Bellomo, Chris Clough, Brad Elliott, Warren Salyer, Caroline Ray, Adam Varon and Lance Whitaker

All tracks 24-Bit Digitally Remastered
© 2000 Brother Records, Inc., under exclusive license to Capitol Records, Inc.

M.I.U. Album original art © 1978 Brother Records Inc., L.A. (Light Album) original art © 1979 Brother Records, Inc. This compilation © 2000 Brother Records, Inc. Manufactured by Capitol Records, Inc., 1750 N. Vine Street, Hollywood, CA 90028. All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized duplication s a violation of applicable laws. International copyright secured. Printed in the U.S.A.


M.I.U. Album:

1. She’s Got Rhythm
© 1978 Brother Publishing Company; New Executive Music; Challove Songs/BMI; Mesa Lane Music/ASCAP. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

2. Come Go With Me
(C.E. Quick)
© 1957 by Gill Music Corp. and See Bee Music/BMI 1650 Broadway, New York 19, NY. International Copyright Secured. Made In U.S.A. All Rights Reserved.

3. Hey Little Tomboy
(Brian Wilson)
© 1976 Brother Publishing Company/BMI All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

4. Kona Coast

© 1978 Brother Publishing Company; Jardine Music Co./BMI All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

5. Peggy Sue
© 1957 By MPL Communications, Inc. International Copyright Secured. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

6. Wontcha Come Out Tonight

© 1978 Brother Publishing Company; New Executive Music; Challove Songs/BMI. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

7. Sweet Sunday

© 1978 Brother Publishing Company; New Executive Music; Challove Songs/BMI. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

8. Belles of Paris

© 1978 Brother Publishing Company; New Executive Music; Challove Songs/BMI. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

9. Pitter Patter
© 1978 Brother Publishing Company; New Executive Music; Challove Songs/BMI. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

10. My Diane
© 1976 Brother Publishing Company/BMI. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

11. Match Point Of Our Love

© 1978 Brother Publishing Company; New Executive Music; Challove Songs/BMI. All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

12. Winds Of Change
© 1975 Mesa Lane Music/ASCAP All Rights Reserved. Used By Permission.

Executive Producer: Brian Wilson
Produced by: Alan Jardine and Ron Altbach
Recorded at: The Institute, MIU, Fairfield, Iowa and Brother Studios, Santa Monica, California

Music Contractor: Diane Rovell
Final Mix-Down and Mastering Engineer: Jeff Peters
Album Design and Graphics: Dean O. Torrence and The Beach Boys
Front Cover Photography: Warren Bolster/Surfer Magazine
Back Cover Photography: Guy Webster

Musicians: (our team)
Piano: Brian Wilson, Ron Altbach, Gary Griffin
Electric Piano: Brian Wilson, Ron Altbach, Gary Griffin
Guitar: Ed Carter, Alan Jardine, Carl Wilson, Billy Hinsche
Bass Guitar: Alan Jardine, Ed Carter
Drums: Mike Kowalski, Dennis Wilson
Percussion: Mike Kowalski, Ron Altbach
Organ: Ron Altbach, Gary Griffin
Synthesizer: Gary Griffin, Ron Altbach
Horns: Michael Andreas, Ron Altbach, Charles Lloyd, Lance Buller, John Foos, Rod Novak, Charles McCarthy, Bob Williams
Steel Pedal Guitar: Chris Midaugh

Lead Vocals:

She’s Got Rhythm: Brian Wilson

Come Go With Me: Alan Jardine

Hey Little Tomboy: Brian Wilson and Mike Love

Kona Coast: Mike Love and Alan Jardine

Peggy Sue: Alan Jardine Wontcha

Come Out Tonight: Brian Wilson and Mike Love

Sweet Sunday Kinda Love: Carl Wilson

Belles Of Paris: Mike Love

Pitter Patter: Mike Love and Alan Jardine

My Diane: Dennis Wilson

Match Point Of Our Love: Brian Wilson

Winds Of Change: Alan Jardine and Mike Love


Vocals arranged and produced by: Brian Wilson and Alan Jardine
Music Coordinator: Diane Rovell
String Arrangement: Gary Griffen, Roberliegh Barnhardt
Horn Arrangement: Michael Andreas
Basic Tracks Recorded at: M.I.U., Western Recorders and Brother Studio
Sweetening Done at: Kaye Smith & Wally Heider

Recording Engineers: Steve Moffit, Jeff Peters, Earl Mankey, John Hanlon, Bob Rose

Final Mixdown Engineer: Jeff Peters
Mixdown Studio: Wally Heider Recording (Engineer: Jeff Peters)

Special assistants at Wally Heider
Recording: David Gertz, Ira ‘Regina’ Leslie, Sharon Sullon, Ralph Osborn

Mastering Suite: Location Recorders (Jeff Peters & Kevin Gray)

For Your Sincere Support On This Project

A Special “Thank You” to the following” Linda Jardine, Marilyn Wilson, Diane Rovell, Janet Lent-Koop, Jason Raphalian, and the Beach Boys’ Road Crew, The Brother Records Office: Leslie, Eileen and Susan, Steve Korthof, Stan Love, Rocky Pamplin, Rusty Ford, Matthew Jardine and Michael Sperry (for finger snaps and hand claps on Come Go With Me), Chris Roberts, Frank Hutchinson, Greg Berning, and Billy Hinsche.

Also to: Sidney and Jackie Reisberg for the program they set up for us at M.I.U., Bldg. 154 and it’s staff, and the M.I.U. students and campus where we were allowed to do our music in an environment of love.

Thank you too, Maharishi, for giving us our space.

Jai Guru Dev


The Beach Boys are considered by so many to be the quintessential American ‘60s band that it’s easy to forget that some of their greatest work was actually created in the ‘70s. Albums such as Sunflower, Surf’s Up, Holland and Wild Honey were all gems, and many believe that 1977’s The Beach Boys Love You is one of the groups unsung masterpieces. That album placed The Beach Boys’ undisputed mastermind Brian Wilson back up front after years of playing a scaled-down role, and proved the group could still challenge themselves and their fans.

M.I.U. Album came next, recorded in the fall of 1977 and released a year later. It arrived during a period of confusion and doubt for the group – neither the first nor the last, but a trouble time nonetheless. Several internal problems threatened The Beach Boys’ very survival, yet as they’d done before, the group came through.

That M.I.U. Album displayed, in spite of the climate in which it was made, such sheer sonic beauty and boasted the presence of some extraordinary – if under-appreciated – tracks is a testament to the new talent inherent within The Beach Boys. That it sounds like a Beach Boys album at all is perhaps remarkable, given that two of the five core members, Brian’s brothers Carl and Dennis Wilson, made only cameo appearances. That left most of the work to Brian, Mike Love and Alan Jardine, the other mainstays, and the team they assembled to make the album. Jardine, in fact, is co-credited as the album’s producer, along with Ron Altbach, who plays keyboards on the record.

M.I.U. would ultimately be the last album The Beach Boys released through the Warner Bros.-affiliate Reprise label, the title came from Mike Love, who for more than a decade had subscribed to and helped popularize Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s Transcendental Meditation philosophies and methods. Since the group had temporarily shifted its base of operations far from sunny southern California above to the Maharishi International University in Fairfield, Iowa to make the record. The Beach Boys honored the spiritual leader by naming the album after the school.

starts off on a bright note with She’s Got Rhythm, an upbeat Motown-style number by Brian, Mike and Altbach celebrating the joy of dancing and the age-old mating ritual – unfortunately our hero soon finds out that the object of his affection is with another guy. Brian turns in a giddy falsetto, sounding every bit as exuberant as he did back in the glory days.

Come Go With Me, a cover of the Dell-Vikings’ 1957 doo-wop classic, is next, sung by Al in a brilliantly produced interpretation. A full three years after it was introduced on M.I.U. Album, Come Go With Me was released as a single, giving The Beach Boys one of their last big hits.

Brian’s Hey Little Tomboy, left over from an aborted solo album, is politically incorrect in every way by modern standards, yet its innocence and simplicity are undeniably charming – and just so Brian.

Kona Coast, by Al and Mike, might be the great lost Beach Boys song, a gorgeous paean to the mystical land of Hawaii. Its layers of vocal harmonies are as lush as a tropical jungle and its melody is so contagious it’s a wonder the Honolulu Chamber of Commerce hasn’t appropriated the tune as its theme song.

Wontcha Come Out Tonight
, a Brian-Mike collaboration, has its own retro touches, particularly in the doo-woppish background vocals. But clever use of synthesizer keeps the song in line with late-‘70s trends. The track makes for a perfect lead-in to the Carl-sung Sweet Sunday Kinda Love, another sentimental Brian-Mike composition that celebrates the simpler, more timeless emotions and pursuits.

Belles Of Paris does for the ‘soul of France’ what Kona Coast does for Hawaii. Mike, who co-penned the track with Brian and Altbach, somehow gets away with rhyming “wishing well” with “Tour Eiffelle” and “quaint Montmartre” with “painters show their art.”

Brian, Mike and Al all came up with Pitter Patter, a straight-ahead rocker featuring some of the strongest lead and background vocals on the record. Pitter Patter picks the most basic of subjects – the rain – and fashions from it a pretty song that begs the listener to rethink something usually taken for granted.

My Diane is Brian baring his soul over his recent split from his wife (although the real-life Diane Rovell was actually the sister of Brian’s wife Marilyn) and if it seems odd that he would entrust the singing here to his brother Dennis, one only need listen to the pain the younger Wilson brings to the song to understand Brian’s reasoning. This is the sound of heartbreak.

Match Point Of Our Love, overabundance of tennis metaphors aside, is a fine example of Brian and Mike’s wordplay skills, and Winds Of Change, the orchestrated ballad written by Altbach and Ed Tuleja a few years before M.I.U. was cut, and beautifully sung by Mike and Al, provides a poignant coda to the album.

M.I.U. Album, at the time of it’s release, perplexed some critics and fans, but others swore by it. Now, more than two decades after it’s maiden release, and taken on its own merits as part of the overall Beach Boys canon, it stands on it’s own as a lovely, unique work. M.I.U. was as far removed from Good Vibrations and Surf’s Up as those landmarks had been from Little Deuce Coupe and Surfin’ U.S.A. What they all had in common was being among the most admirable and rewarding creations of one of the greatest of all American musical legends, The Beach Boys.

Jeff Tamarkin


L.A. (Light Album)

1. Good Timin’ (Wilson/Wilson)

2. Lady Lynda (Jardine/Altbach)

3. Full Sail (Wilson/Cushing-Murray)

4. Angel Come Home (Wilson/Cushing-Murray)

5. Love Surrounds Me (Wilson/Cushing-Murray)

6. Sumahama (Love)

7. Here Comes The Night (Wilson/Love)

8. Baby Blue (Wilson/Jakobson/Lamm)

9. Goin’ South (Wilson/Cushing-Murray)

10. Shortenin’ Bread (Traditional adapted by Wilson)

Produced by: Bruce Johnston/The Beach Boys/Jim Guercio; except:

“Here Comes The Night,”
Produced by Bruce Johnston/Curt Becher.

Ed Carter: guitar and bass
Carlos Munoz: Piano
Bobby Figueroa: Drums
Sterling Smith: Harpsichord
Phil Shenale: Oberheim
Bruce Johnston: Piano
Jim Guercio: Bass
Gary Mallaber: Drums
Ritchie Zito: Guitar
Mike Baird: Drums
Joel Peskin: Alto Sax Solos
Jimmy Lyons: Guitar
Mike Maros: Clavinet
Bob Esty: Synthesizer
Wah Wah Watson: Guitar
Joe Chemay: Bass
Steve Foreman: Percussion
Victor Feldman: Percussion

Wah Wah Watson courtesy of Columbia Records
Victor Feldman courtesy of Good Vibes Productions


Dennis Wilson, Strings and horns on: “Baby Blue”

Bob Alcivar, strings and horn on: “Angel Come Home” and “Sumahama”

Harry Betts, strings and horns on: “Lady Lynda,” “Full Sail” and “Goin’ South”

Bob Esty, strings, Synthesizer and percussion on: “Here Comes The Night”

Trevor Vitch, orchestra contractor

Studios: Brother Studio, Caribou, Sounds Good Recording, Criteria, United Western, Kaye Smith, Super Sound, Brittania, Sound Arts/Dan Wyman, Westlake.

This album has been mixed using the APHEX Aural Exciter.

Mastering: Brian Gardner at Allen Zentz Recorders.

Instrument rental: Studio Instrument rentals, Leeds.
Audio Equipment Rental: Canyon Recorders, Ed Leiber, Audio Rents, SDS. Beach Boys

Music Coordinator: Diane Rovell
Road Crew: Jason Raphalian, Bill Jennings, Ray Upton.

Cover Artist: Troy Lane; Art Direction and Design: Gary Meyer, “The Beach Boys;” Jim Heimann, “Light Album;” Drew Struzan, “Sumahama;” Dave McMacken, “Lady Lynda;” Steve Carver, “Full Sail;” Nick Taggart, “Here Comes The Night;” Howard Carriker, “Angel Come Home;” Peter Green, “Good Timin’;” Neon Park, “Baby Blue;” Blue Beach, “Shortenin’ Bread;” Mick Haggerty, “Here Comes The Night;” William Stout, “Goin’ South;”

Ed Roach: Photography, Innersleeve.

Special thanks:
Walter Yetnikoff, Bruce Lundvall, Don Dempsey, Tony Martell, Steve Einczig, Audree Wilson, Harriett Johnston, Jerry Schilling, Christine McVie, Janet Lent-Koop.

Engineers: Chuck Britz, Bill Fletcher, Joel Moss, Curt Becher, Earl Mankey, Tom Murphy, Chuck Leary, Greg Venable, Jeff Guercio, John Hanlon.


Put yourself in the Beach Boys’ position. It’s the end of the ‘70s. Disco and Punk-rock are all the rage, and although some of the hippest new bands, i.e., The Ramones, worship you and the ground you walk on, to many rock fans you are considered an oldies act, inextricably inked with the ‘60s, a bygone ear. They will want to hear Fun, Fun, Fun and Surfer Girl but you are full of new ideas, still artistically viable. You want to keep moving ahead, but you also love who you are and where you’ve been, and you don’t want to abandon that legacy. What do you do?

The answer: L.A. (Light Album) the group’s final album of the 1970s and first for the CBS-distributed Caribou Records, to which The Beach Boys were signed after several years at Reprise. Here is where the past and future of The Beach Boys collided to define the present. “The word ‘light,’ it says on the original album’s innersleeve “refers to the awareness of, and the presence of God, here in this world as an ongoing, loving reality.” The quote reflects so beautifully the spirituality that The Beach Boys brought to their music. Despite the group’s widely publicized trouble and inner conflicts, theirs was indeed a music of illumination, a beacon that always shone brightly. L.A. (Light Album) – its title doubling as an obvious play on the group’s longtime home ground – may not have been the most celebrated (or most celebratory) of The Beach Boys’ recordings, but to refer back to its title one more time, there is undeniable brilliance here if one dares to look.

L.A. (Light Album) marked the return to the fold of Bruce Johnston, who had replaced leader Brian Wilson in the group for live shows in 1965 and stayed for seven years. In essence, he was doing the same here, as Brian once again withdrew to tackle personal demons – Johnston produced the new album along with the group and Jim Guercio, the owner of Caribou Records. Work on the album took place at a number of recording studios between July and November of 1978, although some of the instrumental tracks dated as far back as ’74.

If The Beach Boys wanted to let their fans know right off the bat that they were still in touch with contemporary music they couldn’t have done so in a more radical fashion. Here Comes The Night, in its original form on the group’s Wild Honey album in 1967, was a danceable rhythm and blues-influenced stomper, but the remake, released first as a single in early 1979, was an all-out disco raver, complete with mechanized drum beats and bleeping synthesizers. Although the record climbed to number 44 on the Billboard chart, many longtime fans were appalled by it – anti-disco fever was at a peak in 1979, and The Beach Boys’ headfirst jump into the genre alienated many of their loyal followers.

If the single made them nervous, those fans were even more shaken when the album itself followed, with Here Comes The Night extended to nearly 11 minutes. Today, the group’s sole foray into disco actually seems somewhat charming, and even if it did throw off a number of listeners, the rest of L.A. offered more comfortingly familiar Beach Boys sounds.

The album opens with one of several sweet ballads on the record, Good Timin’, written by Brian and Carl Wilson with lead vocal by the latter. Good Timin’ was saturated with those time-tested pure Beach Boys harmonies and followed Here Comes The Night onto the charts, outranking it with a number 40 placement.

Lady Lynda was Al Jardine’s tribute to his wife, based on Bach’s Jesu, Joy Of Man’s Desiring and given a lush production. The song was an unexpected huge smash in the U.K.

Full Sail is one of three songs on L.A. co-written by Carl and Geoffrey Cushing-Murray, a song-writer that Carl met through his brother-in-law, Billy Hinsche. It’s a melancholy, heavily orchestrated ballad that returns to a tried-and-true Beach Boys lyrical technique of using water-related metaphors to confront some of life’s larger issues.

Carl and Cushing-Murray also penned Angel Come Home which expresses so effectively the desperate sense of loss felt by a man whose loved one has flown. This time the lead vocal is given over to Dennis Wilson, who brings to the song the toughness that it so required.

Dennis also sings Love Surrounds Me, which he co-wrote with Gregg Jakobson. With a similar theme of lost love, and a mournful, funky rhythm, the track makes a perfect pair with Angel Come Home.

Sumahama is Mike Love’s major contribution to L.A. (Light Album), another lush ballad that finds the singer alternating Japanese verses with English. A sad tale of a family torn apart, it’s one of Love’s more endearing vocal performances and a highlight of the record.

Following the Here Comes The Night disco extravaganza, produced by Johnston and Curt Becher (formerly Boettcher), the mood changes considerably for Baby Blue, a truly plaintive ballad written by Dennis, his wife Karen Lamm and Jakobson. With Carl singing the verses and Dennis the choruses, the piano-driven track is the model of simplicity.

Goin’ South, penned by Carl and Cushing-Murray, is another moody offering sung by Carl, its easygoing electric keyboard and doleful sax accentuating the singer’s desire to get a new start. L.A. (Light Album) is a record dominated – save for the disco track – with quiet, sentimental songs. So the final track, a high-steppin’ take on the traditional Shortenin’ Bread, arranged by Brian – whose input on the album was otherwise minimal – and sung by Carl, is the perfect way to take us out with a smile.

L.A. (Light Album) found The Beach Boys standing at a crossroad. The following year they would perform for hundreds of thousands in Washington, D.C., and by the end of the ‘80s they’d be back at the top of the charts. There would be heartbreak in their future as well, no the lease of it the deaths of Dennis and Carl Wilson, but through it all The Beach Boys never stopped searching for that light.

Jeff Tamarkin

Thanks to Geoffrey Cushing-Murray and Dawn Eden.


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