Note: this list will always be a work-in-progress. We would like to disclaim that if you do not see something in this list, it does not necessarily mean that we don’t recommend it! But if you see it here, it comes with high recommendations from us!
An invaluable resource including information about unreleased recordings, timeline of recording sessions and concerts, and everything else you might need to look up! Compiled by Andrew Doe, coauthor of Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys: The Complete Guide to their Music.
A Viewing, Listening and Reading List for God Only Knows: The Story of Brian Wilson, The Beach Boys & The California Myth
Compiled by David Leaf, this guide comprehensively corresponds to the reading of the new update to his acclaimed book.
Online discussion forum frequented by longtime and new fans alike, including past and present Beach Boys insiders.
A longtime fan favorite, Leaf’s Brian Wilson biography is back in print, this time with new chapters to cover Brian’s life from 1988 to 2022. Highly recommended!
The Beach Boys In Concert: The Ultimate History of America’s Band on Tour and Onstage by Ian Rusten and Jon Stebbins
Published in 2013, this day-by-day guide is an invaluable resource of concert dates throughout the band’s history, including informative and entertaining behind-the-scenes stories. In the last ten years, new information has come about regarding certain tours, including corrected and new dates, but still a must-have for the die-hard Beach Boys fan.
Becoming the Beach Boys, 1961-1963 by James B. Murphy
Jim’s book is a highly necessary addition to any fan’s Beach Boys shelf. Murphy worked tirelessly to put together long-missing pieces of the puzzle that is the story of The Beach Boys’ early years, including their not-so-great beginnings as a touring band, the whole story of Al Jardine’s predental studies, the shady back story of the various releases of the “Surfin'” single, and some insight into Brian Wilson’s relationship with Judy Bowles.
The Lost Beach Boy: The true story of Beach Boy David Marks, the previously unknown founding member, by Jon Stebbins
Published in 2007 (and, rumor has it, may have an update pending!), Marks’ fascinating story is brilliantly told through Stebbins’ extensive interviews with David. A definite page-turner about a fascinating life!
I Am Brian Wilson: A Memoir, by Brian Wilson and Ben Greenman
Let’s be perfectly clear: as we have said on Tune X Podcast, it’s just not possible to read enough books to get a full understanding of what Brian Wilson is all about, but with I Am Brian Wilson, you finally get to learn about Brian’s life as told by the man himself. Unlike with a previous book purporting to be his autobiography, you can be sure this is the real thing. (The give-away: he goes into great detail about his favorite chair.) If you’re a Brianista and haven’t read this book, you owe it to yourself. (Actually, if you’re a Brianista, you probably already did read this book upon its release in 2016!)
My Life as a Beach Boy, by Mike Love with James S. Hirsch
2016 also saw the publication of the memoir of the sometimes-controversial lyricist, frontman, and bass vocalist of The Beach Boys. Mike tells a lot of stories from his life experiences, including many we’ve heard from other sources (with his own views, with often harsh realities), quite often leading up to the songwriter credits lawsuit of the mid ’90s. A highly enjoyable read that both hosts of Tune X recommend.