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Pacific Ocean Blue [Legacy Edition]

Pacific Ocean Blue [Legacy Edition]

5.0 1
by Dennis Wilson

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When Dennis Wilson's solo debut, Pacific Ocean Blue, was released on James Guercio's CBS-distributed Caribou Records in 1977, few had high expectations for it. Dennis' brother Brian Wilson was, after all, the acknowledged genius and mastermind of the Beach Boys sound and his other brother Carl Wilson had the voice, so


When Dennis Wilson's solo debut, Pacific Ocean Blue, was released on James Guercio's CBS-distributed Caribou Records in 1977, few had high expectations for it. Dennis' brother Brian Wilson was, after all, the acknowledged genius and mastermind of the Beach Boys sound and his other brother Carl Wilson had the voice, so little was expected of Dennis, the pretty boy drummer and near-professional party animal. But Pacific Ocean Blue was a gorgeous masterpiece, full of a naked and affirming spirit, romantic (in the best sense of the word), lush, wise, patient, and even panoramic, almost avant-garde, and worlds past and beyond what any of the other Beach Boys were doing at the time. It was also, perhaps not surprisingly, a resounding commercial flop, although the critical reaction to the album was strong and positive. Wilson began work on a follow-up, tentatively entitled Bambu, mixing in some new New Orleans and Caribbean elements, but the project was never finished and by the time of Wilson's death in 1983, Bambu had been sitting untouched and unfinished for nearly five years. Boots taken from LP copies of Pacific Ocean Blue and leaked tapes of the Bambu material have been bouncing around among collectors ever since and Wilson's solo work has taken on the allure and status of lost treasure. This wonderful two-disc set features a carefully restored and remastered version of the Pacific Ocean Blue LP and collects the remnants of Bambu along with other Wilson solo odds and ends to make a convincing case for Dennis Wilson as the other bona fide musical genius in the Beach Boys. It's difficult to describe Wilson's sound on these tracks, although "California gospel soul" might fit, since Wilson's raspy, wounded vocals carry more naked emotion and feeling than any of the other Beach Boys vocalists, even if Carl (and sometimes Brian) could sing like an angel. Dennis could sing like an angel, too, but an earthbound one who lost his wings yet never lost his love of the spiritual and romantic in the world. Highlights from this gorgeous, fascinating set include the majestic "River Song"; a chilling version of Carli Munoz's "It's Not Too Late"; the hauntingly tentative "Thoughts of You"; the personal, intimate, and self-autobiographical "He's a Bum"; and the two versions of "Holy Man," the first a beautiful, charming instrumental and the second, which closes things out here, featuring a newly recorded lead vocal from Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins. Beautiful, sprawling, peaceful, wise, and as tenderly romantic as the world is round, these Dennis Wilson gems are as revelatory as they are stunning. Dennis Wilson was a man in love with life, a man in love with love, and as this essential package shows, he had an achingly personal vision for it all.

Product Details

Release Date:
Sony Legacy

Related Subjects


Album Credits

Performance Credits

Dennis Wilson   Primary Artist
Steve Douglas & the Rebel Rousers   Reeds,Horn
Bruce Johnston   Background Vocals
Christine McVie   Background Vocals
Carl Wilson   Guitar,Background Vocals
Joe Chemay   Bass,Background Vocals
Ron Altbach   Harmonica,Accordion
Michael Andreas   Reeds,Horn
Manolo Badrena   Percussion
Hal Blaine   Drums
Curt Becher   Background Vocals
Gerry Beckley   Background Vocals
Lance Buller   Reeds,Horn
Dewey Bunnell   Background Vocals
Roy Carr   Background Vocals
David Cohen   Guitar
Chuck Domanico   Bass
Ricky Fataar   Drums
Glenn Ferris   Reeds,Horn
Bobby Figueroa   Drums
Steve Forman   Percussion
John Foss   Reeds,Horn
Alexander Hamilton   Background Vocals
John Hanlon   Guitar
Billy Hinsche   Background Vocals
Janice Hubbard   Reeds,Horn
James Jamerson   Bass
David Kemper   Drums
Bill Lamb   Reeds,Horn
Neil Levang   Guitar
Earle Mankey   Guitar
Rod Novak   Reeds,Horn
Joel Peskin   Reeds,Horn
Thom Rotella   Guitar
Sterling Smith   Keyboards
Baron Stewart   Background Vocals
Fred Tackett   Guitar
Wayne Tweed   Bass
Alton Hendrickson   Bass
Gayle Levant   Harp
Dangerous Dave Hessler   Bass
Carli Munoz   Percussion,Keyboards
Steve Ross   Guitar
David Leaf   Background Vocals
Vincent Fanuele   Reeds,Horn
Dean Torrence   Background Vocals
Ed Tuleja   Guitar,Background Vocals
Richard Hurwitz   Reeds,Horn
John Joyce   Background Vocals
Taylor Hawkins   Vocals,Lead
Gregg Jakobson   Background Vocals
Ed Carter   Bass,Guitar
Bill Lamb   Reeds,Horn
Tommy Smith Youth Jazz Orchestra/Jim Locke   Drums
Dennis Quartet Wilson   Harmonica,Percussion,Drums,Keyboards,Background Vocals
Sterling Altbach   Keyboards
Trisha Campo   Background Vocals
Double Rock Baptist Choir   Background Vocals
Jim Dutch   Background Vocals
Charlie Hurwitz   Reeds,Horn
Karen Lamm-Wilson   Background Vocals
Jeff Legg   Guitar
Trisha Roach   Background Vocals
David Duke   Reeds,Horn

Technical Credits

Mike Love   Composer
Carl Wilson   Composer
Ben Edmonds   Liner Notes
James William Guercio   Executive Producer
John Hanlon   Composer,Producer,Engineer
Jimmie Haskell   Arranger
Michael Horn   Composer
Earle Mankey   Engineer
Stephen Moffitt   Producer,Engineer
Joel Moss   Engineer
Tom Murphy   Engineer
Sid Sharp   Arranger
Dennis Wilson   Composer
Carli Munoz   Arranger,Composer,Producer
Vic Anesini   Producer,Reissue Producer
Rob Santos   Producer,Reissue Producer
David Gorman   Art Direction
Taylor Hawkins   Composer
Adam Farber   Director,Production Director
David Beard   Liner Notes
Steve Kalinich   Composer
Gregg Jakobson   Composer,Producer
Doug Tyo   Engineer
Arthur Nakata   Art Direction
Adam Fuller   Engineer
Dennis Quartet Wilson   Arranger,Producer,Liner Notes
Jim Dutch   Composer
Karen Lamm-Wilson   Composer

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Pacific Ocean Blue 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What will you find on this stellar re-issue? If you take the time to really listen to the 2-CD’s instead of just shuffling through the songs, you will hear a raw, emotion-filled voice singing tender lyrics to gorgeous melodies. The CD’s include beautiful love ballads as only Dennis Wilson could create them such as You and I, Love Remember Me, and Only With You. It contains symphonious songs like River Song and Rainbows…pleasing piano compositions like Album Tag Song, Piano Variations On Thoughts of You, and Common…and a taste of Dennis’ sense of humor with songs like He’s a Bum and Wild Situation. Some of the songs will give you chills… some are so touching that they make you sad… some, such as Holy Man, are so stunning that you feel honored to hear them…and some are so personal that you feel like you’re overhearing a private conversation. I think DW and BB fans can’t believe their eyes as they look down at this CD re-issue in their hands. After almost 30 long years, most of us doubted a re-issue of Pacific Ocean Blue and release of Bambu would ever happen. Thank you Jim Guercio and all involved for this. It is apparent that those who genuinely cared put forth this re-issue. Dennis Wilson’s music is timeless… it transcends generations, and he has certainly put to rest the notion that he was just the Beach Boys handsome drummer. Will there be a forthcoming Dennis Wilson CD that includes more of his unreleased music that has been stored away in some dusty vault?? I certainly hope so, and please don’t make us fans wait another 30 years for it!