Surf's Up Lyrics - Beach Boys

Review The Song (15)



A diamond necklace played the pawn
Hand in hand some drummed along, oh
To a handsome mannered baton
A blind class aristocracy
Back through the opera glass you see
The pit and the pendulum drawn
Columnated ruins domino

Canvass the town and brush the backdrop
Are you sleeping?

Hung velvet overtaken me
Dim chandelier awaken me
To a song dissolved in the dawn
The music hall a costly bow
The music all is lost for now
To a muted trumpeter swan
Columnated ruins domino

Canvass the town and brush the backdrop
Are you sleeping, Brother John?

Dove nested towers the hour was
Strike the street quicksilver moon
Carriage across the fog
Two-Step to lamp lights cellar tune
The laughs come hard in Auld Lang Syne

The glass was raised, the fired-roast
The fullness of the wine, the dim last toasting
While at port adieu or die

A choke of grief heart hardened I
Beyond belief a broken man too tough to cry

Surf's Up
Aboard a tidal wave
Come about hard and join
The young and often spring you gave
I heard the word
Wonderful thing
A children's song

Child, child, child, child, child
A child is the father of the man
Child, child, child, child, child
A child is the father of the man
A children's song
Have you listened as they played
Their song is love
And the children know the way
That's why the child is the father to the man
Child, child, child, child, child
Child, child, child, child, child
Na na na na na na na na
Child, child, child, child, child
That's why the child is the father to the man
Child, child, child, child, child







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Stunning | Reviewer: Steve | 2/14/13

Few artists and musicians make music whose beauty can make you gasp. Brian Wilson is one of those, and "Surf's Up" is a trip into Chartres Cathedral. The melody, harmonies, and words are simply exquisite.

Surf's Up & Wouldn't It Be Nice | Reviewer: KMc | 8/13/12

Surf's Up is beautiful, has always been soul stirring for me. If you can find it, read Brian's biography,"Wouldn't It Be Nice". He tells events that were happening to inspire the music, including the psychedelic influences. When you hear "In My Room", after reading his story, it brings tears to your eyes. I was a little kid when the Beach Boys hit the music scene, loved them then and this many years later. Love You Brian!

Surf's Up | Reviewer: bubba | 2/6/12

I was in one of my used CD haunts last week and saw the Brian Wilson verion of Smile (not the Beach Boys Version). I have been enthralled by the harmonies on the Beach Boys release (title cut on the album) since I first heard it in 1971-1972. I will always love that version but the harmony on the Smile version is absolutely incredible ... not to be missed.

The harmonies on the Smile version of Heroes and Villains is equally good

surfs up review | Reviewer: kevin | 9/14/11

A beguiling song, haunting and soulfful. Wilson was produvcing and composing amazing music in this era,unfortunately a lot of his work is to complex and beautiful for mass appeal. This is why the Beatles were more popular as their ezperimenal music appealed to mass taste.

Simply the Best | Reviewer: Madman2001 | 6/7/11

This is no doubt my favorite Beach Boys tune. The evocative (if sometimes nonsensical) Van Dyke Parks lyrics fit perfectly with the melancholy tune. Together they provide vague but nonetheless rich insight into a world-weary beach boy. The carefree days of youth are now more complex and less straightforward. There is triumph to be sure, but there is also loss.

A masterpiece.

Surf's Up | Reviewer: bluesman mike lindner | 5/26/11

Me and my then-girlfriend Lisa saw the Brawny Sun-Tanned Fivesome at Carnegie Hall in September 1971. What a concert...

Some yahoo called out, "Where's Brian?"

Denny gave the perfect 5-word reply:

"Brian's in this song, asshole."

not brian???? | Reviewer: doug | 8/18/08

javawave writes;

I wish to add to the wonderfully prosed reviews one salient point. Carl sings this song not Brian. His vocal range is sweetly stylized and sympathic to the lyrics. I recommend track 28 on disc 2 of the Good Vibrations Thirty years of the Beach Boys compilation to hear Carl's backing vocal and piano."

Sorry, but the surf's up version has Carls vocals on the first part, then brians vocals from his 1966 demo on the second part. The track referred to in the box set is brians vocal and piano solo demo from 66.

ode to the flower children | Reviewer: bill | 1/1/08

this is a song about giving up materialism and joining the flower children AKA hippies circa late sixties until early eighties northern california often found in communes that for the most part no longer exist. as he says the laughs come hard when we are living in the past.

Reading into it. | Reviewer: Anonymous | 12/25/07

To Armands' review. V.D.Parks wrote the lyrics after B.W. explained what he felt and was trying to convey. Both young men had LSD experience which lead them to mysticism and esoteric wisdom as was the case with many youth of the day and most musical artist. The lyrics most certainly have great depth and are allegorical and part of the enjoyment for some is to decipher what is being implied. They are musical riddles.

surfs up not Brian | Reviewer: javawave | 8/24/07

I wish to add to the wonderfully prosed reviews one salient point. Carl sings this song not Brian. His vocal range is sweetly stylized and sympathic to the lyrics. I recommend track 28 on disc 2 of the Good Vibrations Thirty years of the Beach Boys compilation to hear Carl's backing vocal and piano.

If you like "Surf's Up" | Reviewer: Paul | 8/24/07

Listen to the alternate version of "Til I Die"...Brian's theme song.
It doesn't get any better than this one.

Lyrics Not Brian's | Reviewer: Anonymous | 7/29/07

To the last reviewer Armand Obraize:

It's doubtful that Brian could have composed such intricately complex, ethereally beautiful music all that 'stoned'. It would be awesome to hear a purely instrumental version without the weird lyrics, which aren't his anyway; they're by Van Dyke Parks, who very well could have been stoned (Columnated ruins domino, WTF?).

Brian was just stoned again... | Reviewer: Armand Obraize | 5/1/07

Either he was stoned or they just got out a ryhming dictionary. You guys read too much into it.

incomparable | Reviewer: Steve Sewall | 1/3/07

It will be decades before this piece of music is heard by listeners in the spirit in which it must have come to its composor. The feeling for Brian Wilson must have been like one of discovering a new country or region, like Mongolia, that no one ever saw before. But Wilson's new region of music is all about the all-too-familiar late 1960's fading dream of glittering early 60's sun-drenched surfer-haven California and, by extension, the good old USA. It's amazing the Beach Boys, not just Wilson, were able to master and throw themselves into the complexity and the transcendant sadness of this music. How could they do it? This song pushed the limits of their vocal abilities. Not hard to answer. Wilson sold to them cause it's just plain beautiful from start to finish. I bet he first got them in the final majestic (and optimistic) chorus - then got them working on the hard stuff that precedes it. Here's the chorus for ya -

Child, child, child, child, child
A child is the father of the man
Child, child, child, child, child
A child is the father of the man
A children's song
Have you listened as they played
Their song is love
And the children know the way
That's why the child is the father to the man
Child, child, child, child, child
Child, child, child, child, child
Na na na na na na na na
Child, child, child, child, child
That's why the child is the father to the man
Child, child, child, child, child



Surf's Up | Reviewer: Anonymous | 11/20/06

Probably one of the most beautiful songs ever written.From this you can hear why people say that Brian Wilson was ahead of everyone at that time.The last part of the song is just fantastic.



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