Love of music remains

Published 7:13 pm Wednesday, October 10, 2018

was walking along Cherry Street during last Saturday’s flea market, when an acquaintance asked me if I saw the Beach Boys in Jackson.

Ah, the Beach Boys. Those great songs with that magnificent harmony; how that brings back memories. Lying on my bed in my room with the radio on listening to “Little Deuce Coup,” “Fun, Fun,” “Good Vibrations” and “Sloop John B.” I had a copy of “Pet Sounds,” which was hailed at the time by the rock industry as a revolutionary album, and caught the attention of the Beatles.

It was a simpler time then. I was in high school and the major worries were homework, tests and where would I take my girlfriend on Saturday night.

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I remember taking her and our sisters to see the Beach Boys perform at the Ag Center at LSU. The warm-up acts were the Strawberry Alarm Clock doing their one-hit wonder “Incense and Peppermints,” and the Buffalo Springfield, which performed “For What It’s Worth.” The concert was a great time, the music was fantastic and I still remember the experience fondly.

I also remember the Beach Boys’ song “California Girls” was used in a shampoo commercial, and an 80s version of the song was performed by former Van Halen singer David Lee Roth. Neither his performance nor the video featuring bikini-clad girls measured up to the original.

And while I’m thinking of it, I wonder why companies have to botch up or play portions of songs to advertise their products, and why political parties used rock songs for their rallies, especially when they don’t know what the song is all about.

Take Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the USA,” a staple at Republican Party events in the 80s and 90s. I haven’t heard it played in a while. I guess they finally listened to the words of the protest song: “So they put a rifle in my hand; sent me off to a foreign land to go and kill the yellow man.”

The Trump campaign used the Rolling Stones’ “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” which Mick Jagger said was a song about trying to buy drugs in the London section of Chelsea.

But I digress. The subject is the Beach Boys and their music.

They are a part of my youth that I am not letting go. Today, I have “Pet Sounds” on CD as well as several other Beach Boys albums. I have a subscription to Pandora, and one of my “radio” selections is the Beach Boys, which allows me to listen to their music and the music of other favorite artists whenever I wish.

I find as I get older many things that have remained from my younger years seem to slip away, but one thing that has not is my love of music, whether it’s rock, R&B, Doo-Wop, jazz, big band or classical. These are the elements of my youth that will never leave, and with the Beach Boys, I can go back in time.

John Surratt is a staff writer at The Vicksburg Post. You may reach him at

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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