Photo by Philip Cosores
The Beach Boys founder Brian Wilson is a notoriously private individual. Rarely does he give interviews and, when he does, he discusses little outside of music. Which makes news of his forthcoming autobiography all that more intriguing. Da Capo Press has announced the impending release of I Am Brian Wilson: A Memoir, due out October 11th.
Wilson wrote the 320-page tome with assistance from New York Times bestselling author Ben Greenman. Previously, Greenman worked with Questlove on his own memoir as well as his forthcoming book Something to Food About. Greeman also co-authored the memoir of Paliament/Funkadelic founder George Clinton.
In anticipation, De Capo has shared an opening excerpt of I Am Brian Wilson. The enigmatic songwriter almost presents it as a thesis: that his life has been portrayed numerous times by others but this book is his opportunity to talk about it himself.
“My life has been written about over and over again, and that’s mostly okay with me. Other people can talk about my life. Sometimes they’ll get it right and sometimes they’ll get it wrong. For me, when I think back across my own life, there are so many things that are painful. Sometimes I don’t like discussing them. Sometimes I don’t even like remembering them. But as I get older, the shape of that pain has changed. Sometimes memories come back to me when I least expect them. Maybe that’s the only way it works when you’ve lived the life I’ve lived: starting a band with my brothers that was managed by my father, watching my father become difficult and then impossible, watching myself become difficult and then impossible, watching women I loved come and go, watching children come into the world, watching my brothers get older, watching them pass out of the world. Some of those things shaped me. Others scarred me. Sometimes it was hard to tell the difference. When I watched my father fly into a rage and take swings at me and my brothers, was that shaping or scarring? When we watched him grow frustrated with his day job and take solace in music, was that shaping or scarring? Those are all memories but I can’t get to them all at once. I’ve had a whole lifetime to take them in. Now I have a whole book to put them out there.”
I Am Brian Wilson: A Memoir Cover:
Pre-orders for I Am Brian Wilson are now ongoing through Da Capo’a website. The book’s release coincides with Wilson’s world tour commemorating the 50th anniversary of The Beach Boys’ seminal record Pet Sounds, which was recently reissued by Universal records.