Wild Honey is the thirteenth studio album by The Beach Boys, released in 1967. A Beach Boys album like no other before it (especially Smiley Smile), it can be credited as one of the first back-to-basics albums, coming after the psychedelic heights of earlier in the year.
Upon release, it was greeted with mixed to negative reviews, though it spawned the hits "Wild Honey" and "Darlin'". However, it cannot be denied that this album has been Vindicated by History, mostly by critics in particular. In 2012, Rolling Stone magazine ranked Wild Honey at number two on its "Coolest Summer Albums of All Time" list, praising its "hedonistic rock & roll spirit", "humour" and "pensive depth".
- "Wild Honey" (2:38)
- "Aren't You Glad" (2:18)
- "I Was Made to Love Her" (2:07)
- "Country Air" (2:19)
- "A Thing or Two" (2:43)
- "Darlin'" (2:10)
- "I'd Love Just Once to See You" (1:51)
- "Here Comes the Night" (2:44)
- "Let the Wind Blow" (2:21)
- "How She Boogalooed It" (1:55)
- "Mama Says" (1:05)
Bonus Tracks (2001 Reissue):
- "Heroes and Villains (Alternate Take)" (3:30)
- "Good Vibrations (Various Session)" (6:57)
- "Good Vibrations (Early Take)" (3:03)
- "You're Welcome" (1:11)
- "Their Hearts Were Full of Spring" (2:33)
- "Can't Wait Too Long" (5:34)
- Al Jardine - vocals
- Bruce Johnston - bass, organ, vocals
- Mike Love - backing and co-lead vocals
- Brian Wilson - lead vocals
- Carl Wilson - lead vocals, guitar
- Dennis Wilson - drums, vocals
- Age-Progression Song: "I Was Made to Love Her"I was born in Little RockHad a childhood sweetheartWe were always hand in han-an-an-an-andI wore high-top shoes and shirt-tailsSuzy was in pigtailsI knew I loved her even then
- Album Filler: "Mama Says", which is a rather mundane and preachy song about manners taught by your mother and only has two lines repeated over and over again. It is a originally part of Smile's Vegetables and was not included on the Smiley Smile version.
- Cover Version: "I Was Made to Love Her", originally by Stevie Wonder. The original album would have had a version of "The Letter" by The Box Tops though it was omitted (later to see release on Rarities and Sunshine Tomorrow).
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: "I'd Love Just Once to See You" (In the nude!).
- Heavy Meta:
The way she make me wanna sing a little rock 'n' roll
- "Wild Honey"
I make up a song as I'm a-working alongNo one's watching me.
- "I'd Love Just Once to See You"
- Limited Lyrics Song: "Mama Says", just repeats these two sentences over and over.Eat a lot, sleep a lot, brush 'em like crazyRun a lot, do a lot, never be lazy
- Limited Special Collector's Ultimate Edition: 2017 sees the release of Sunshine Tomorrow, a 2-CD set containing the first-ever true stereo mix of the entire Wild Honey album as well as alternate takes, session highlights, and the first complete official release of the live album Lei'd in Hawaii.
- Lyrical Dissonance: "I'd Love Just Once to See You", which is a sweet song about rather mundane tasks at home (washing dishes, rinsing up the sink). The protagonist wonders when his woman helped him dry and baking a pie the last time. Then this rather bizarre remark comes right out of nowhere:It's not too lateI'd love just once to see you (3x)In the nude
- Momma's Boy: "Mama Says"Eat a lot, sleep a lot, brush 'em like crazyRun a lot, do a lot, never be lazy
- New Sound Album: A mixture of Pop, Soul, and R&B (with touches of Psychedelic Rock).
- One-Woman Song: "Darlin'".
- Questioning Title?: "Aren't You Glad?"
- The Power of Love and Silly Love Songs:
Oh darlin', I dream of you often, my pretty darlin'Darlin', you're so fineI love the way soften my life with your love, your precious love
You know she's got the sweetness of a honey beeWild honeyShe got it on and stung me good, yes, sirree
- "Wild Honey"
I was made to love herLike a sweet magnolia treeMy love blossomed tenderlyMy life grows sweeter through the years
- "I Was Made to Love Her"
But our love grows on and onStars who shine in loveAre making you mine to loveI've never felt a love so strong
- "Here Comes the Night"
I got a heart that just won't stop beating for youI got a love I just can't stop feeling for you
- "Aren't You Glad?"
- Something Completely Different: This album eschews the surf rock and lush psychedelia of yesteryear in favor of an uptempo R'n'B-based sound.
- Step Up to the Microphone: Mike Love sings co-lead vocals on "Aren't You Glad", "A Thing or Two" and "Let the Wind Blow". Brian sings lead vocals on "I'd Love Just Once to See You" and "Here Comes the Night". He also gets co-lead vocals on "Aren't You Glad", "A Thing or Two" and "Let the Wind Blow".
- Theremin: The title track uses the same Electro-Theremin that was featured on "I Just Wasn't Made for These Times" and "Good Vibrations".
- Three Chords and the Truth: This album reflected a back-to-basics approach after the downfall of SMiLE. It's been said that this album was one of the first deliberate invocations of this trope by a major band, before Beggars Banquet or Abbey Road.
- Title Track: "Wild Honey"Sweet sweet wild honey beeEat up, eat up, eat up honey
- Truck Driver's Gear Change: In an interesting example, the second and fourth verses of "How She Boogalooed It" employ this whilst the third reverts to the tune of the first.
- Uncommon Time: "Let the Wind Blow" is in 3/4, essentially waltz time, unusual for rock.
- Unusual Euphemism: "How She Boogalooed It"Met a fine chick that really got to meGood Lord, how she boogalooed to me