The Beach Boys’ misunderstood 1972 rock opus, ‘Carl and the Passions — So Tough’

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Learn how the Beach Boys soundly dropped their square fun in the sun moniker on 1972’s vastly underrated, rock ’n’ roll-driven “Carl and the Passions — So Tough.” The accompanying vintage still presents “Marcella” b/w “Hold On Dear Brother,” the only Beach Boys single sleeve to feature a photo of Blondie Chaplin and Ricky Fataar. Unleashed on June 26, 1972, the rockin’ track inexplicably failed to chart. Note keyboard sideman Daryl Dragon of future Captain and Tenille fame behind the driver’s wheel. Image Credit: 45Cat user DrDoom / Brother Records / Warner Music Group
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The Beach Boys explore hard rock territory with the blazing “You Need a Mess of Help to Stand Alone” b/w Dennis Wilson’s majestic “Cuddle Up.” Co-written by Brian Wilson, the A-side was released on May 15, 1972 at a time when the group’s commercial appeal was sliding. Neither side saw any chart action although their stature has grown exponentially among fans in modern times. This is a reproduction of the German single 45 cover. Image Credit: 45Cat user Serooskerke2011 / Brother Records / Warner Music Group
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Oh darlin’: Carl Wilson cuts a handsome profile in his prized Nudie suit during a Beach Boys concert at Pacific Lutheran University on March 19, 1974. Image courtesy of Jon Stebbins / Pacific Lutheran University Archives
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Transcendental meditation, anyone? The TM subscribers in the Beach Boys, frontman Mike Love (next to Al) and rhythm guitarist Al Jardine (far right), convince grinning South African guitarist Ricky Fataar (far left), drummer Dennis Wilson (second from left), and Carl Wilson to try the technique in 1974. Image Credit: SmileySmile.net messageboard
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The Beach Boys, not your parents’ square band anymore, circa May 1972. Left to right are Carl Wilson, Al Jardine, Ricky Fataar, Dennis Wilson, Blondie Chaplin, and a poncho-clad, hatless Mike Love. Image Credit: Pinterest / RB / Getty Images
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Taking a nod from the album sleeve of “Carl and the Passions — So Tough” is the German single cover of the Beach Boys’ “You Need a Mess of Help to Stand Alone” b/w Dennis Wilson’s “Cuddle Up”, released on May 15, 1972. The rocker criminally had no impact with the record buying public. Image Credit: 45Cat user Serooskerke2011 / Brother Records / Warner Music Group
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The ghostly French single cover of the Beach Boys’ “You Need a Mess of Help to Stand Alone” b/w Dennis Wilson’s “Cuddle Up”, released on May 15, 1972. Image Credit: 45Cat user Rockygonzales / Brother Records / Warner Music Group
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The original cover of the Beach Boys’ 18th long player, “Carl and the Passions — So Tough,” released by Brother Records on May 15, 1972. The LP was a moderate hit, charting at No. 50 on Billboard. Later editions had the band’s name embossed in block letters. Image Credit: Brother Records / Warner Music Group
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Circa June 1972, the Beach Boys appear for a Fender Guitar advertisement during the recording of the “Holland” album in Braamberg, Holland. Drummer Ricky Fataar convincingly switches over to pedal steel guitar. Also pictured is Blondie Chaplin, Al Jardine, Mike Love, and Carl Wilson. Image Credit: Fender Guitars
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Founding Beach Boy Al Jardine, resplendent in a shaggy beard and sporting his awesome Gibson Black Beauty guitar, tackles “Heroes and Villains” onstage circa 1972. Image Credit: SmileySmile.net message board

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Retro pop culture interviews & lovin’ someone fierce sustain this University of Georgia Master of Agricultural Leadership alum. Email: jeremylr@windstream.net

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