Whether it’s “Fun, Fun, Fun” or “Shut Down,” the Beach Boys often sing about their love of cars. However, not all of the albums had “hot-rod” themes, as Brian Wilson mentioned a collection that featured mostly love songs. This is what we learned from this composer’s memoirs, I’m Brian Wilson.
Brian Wilson is a founding member of the Beach Boys, co-author of ‘Fun, Fun, Fun’ and ‘Shut Down’
Brian Wilson appeared in the Beach Boys alongside brothers Dennis and Carl Wilson, Mike Love, and Al Jardine. He was listed as the group’s primary songwriter, and also addressed the band’s contributions to compilation albums.
Brian Wilson described the meaning behind ‘Shut Down’ and ‘Shut Down Volume 2’
They love girls, cars and California. Some projects had general themes, including To close — not to be confused with the Beach Boys song of the same title, released in conjunction with Surfing USA.
The To close The album included tracks from various Capitol Record artists and bands, with the Beach Boys contributing “409” and “Shut Down”. “Shut Down,” in particular, explored the band’s affinity for cars and was written by Brian Wilson and Roger Christian.
“It happened on the strip where the road is wide,” the lyrics say. “Two cool shorts standing side by side / Yeah my fuel injected Stingray and a four thirteen / A revving our engines and it sounds real bad.”
This project differed from Turn off Volume 2 — an album created exclusively by the Beach Boys. That included “Don’t Worry Baby,” “Fun Fun Fun” and “Why Fools Fall in Love.” In I’m Brian Wilson: A Memoirthe songwriter detailed his perspective on the Beach Boys’ albums.
“In spite of To close and the Capitol compilation album were part of the hot-rod thing, most of the songs on our Turn off Volume 2 album were not,” Wilson wrote. “’Fun, Fun, Fun’ was, and was, a huge success. But other songs were love songs, like ‘The Warmth of the Sun’ or ‘Keep an Eye on Summer.’”
‘Shut Down Volume 2′ featured the Beach Boys’ ‘Fun, Fun, Fun’
Turn off Volume 2 was released in 1964, with some songs written by Mike Love and others created by Brian Wilson. As Wilson’s memoir notes, one of the most popular songs on this collection was about cars: “Fun, Fun, Fun.”
“Well she got her daddy’s car / And she stopped by the burger joint now,” the first verse says. “She Seems she forgot about the library / As she told the she old of her now / And with the radio blaring / She Goes sailing as fast as she can now.”
The song’s story details a woman having fun with her father’s car without his knowledge. However, when she finds out about her, she will “take the T-bird away”. Now, the Beach Boys’ music is available on most major streaming platforms.