Brian Wilson and Jeff Beck at Paramount Theatre 10/22/2013

Posted: October 24, 2013 in Classic Rock, Paramount Theatre, Photos, Review
Tags: , , , ,
Brian Wilson and Jeff Beck
Paramount Theatre, Oakland, CA

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I saw this show listed as it seems a rather incongruous pairing. It was surprisingly good especially for the few songs where the bands played together.

Brian Wilson and Jeff Beck at the Oakland Paramount Theatre

Brian Wilson and Jeff Beck at the Oakland Paramount Theatre. Click for more photos.

Brian Wilson went first and I had low expectations because the last couple times I saw him he was downright awful. He was much better this time but it was still sad. His voice still has recognizable hints at his former Beach Boys’ sound; he showed glimmers of engagement at the keyboard but he often sat near catatonic for long sections. He had a huge band with him eleven other musicians including Al Jardine and David Marks. Blondie Chaplin even came out for a couple of songs including “Sail On, Sailor”. The size of the band was key as they easily covered for any of Brian Wilson’s shortcomings and let the audience focus on the mastery of the song-writing.

All-in-all, I got the feeling that he was simply sitting in at a Beach Boys tribute set.

Between sets there was a huge audience transition as a lot of people left.

Jeff Beck was perfect counterpoint. OMG he and his band were fabulous. Outside of the Yardbirds and his early work with Rod Stewart, I don’t know him at all. I expected a rock/blues band it was much more on the fusion side of the house. What surprised me most was that it was a true ensemble with him only stepping out in front and playing the guitar god role a few times.

He played for about 45 minutes or so then brought Brian Wilson and some of his band back and they performed a few songs off of Smile. After that, Jeff Beck played a few more songs on his own and closed his set with “Day in the Life” which was the highlight of the show for me.


They brought both bands together for the encores. Hearing Jeff Beck playing slide during “Surfin’ USA” was a treat.

Set List:

Brian Wilson

Their Hearts Were Full of Spring
California Girls
Do It Again
Don’t Worry Baby
Little Bird
Old Man River ->
Sail On, Sailor
Wild Honey
Heroes and Villains
Pet Sounds
God Only Knows
Sloop John B
Wouldn’t It Be Nice
I Get Around
Good Vibrations
Fun, Fun, Fun

Jeff Beck

[Several that I don’t know including]

Little Wing
Over the Rainbow
Our Prayer *
Child Is Father of the Man *
Surf’s Up *
Rollin’ and Tumbin’
Day in the Life

Barbara Ann *
Surfin’ U.S.A. *
Danny Boy *

* w/ Brian Wilson et al

Brian Wilson – Vocals, keyboards
Al Jardine – Vocals, guitar
David Marks – Vocals, guitar
Blondie Chaplin – Vocals, guitar
And too many more to remember

Jeff Beck – Guitar
Lizzie Ball – Violin
Rhonda Smith – Bass
Jonathan Joseph – Drums
Nicholas Meier – Guitar


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