Led by octogenarians Mike Love and Bruce Johnston, The Beach Boys made a familiar summer stop on Monday, revving up familiar hits for fans intimately familiar with the iconic band’s catalog. Review, photos.
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Contrary to “California Dreamin’,” all the leaves were green and the sky was blue on Monday for an entertaining evening of ’60s nostalgia from The Beach Boys at a sold-out Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park amphitheater.
Although it’s been 60 years since the rock/pop band released its debut album, two early band members still perform and tour with the group, led by lead singer Mike Love, 81, with Bruce Johnston, 80, on keyboards.
While missing original members such as Brian Wilson and Al Jardine, The Beach Boys — who’ve made Meijer Gardens an almost-annual tradition on tour — were still able to continue their legacy with help from newer members, including Christian Love, Mike Love’s son.
The nine-piece band played hit after hit, breaking out “Don’t Worry Baby” early on in the set list and getting the capacity crowd electrified and clapping along. Before a brief intermission, the group played another fan favorite, “I Get Around.”
Transitioning from 1964’s “All Summer Long” to 1966’s “Pet Sounds,” Christian Love crooned “God Only Knows” with a velvet voice doing justice to the original version of the song.
At one point, Mike Love paused to relive a trip to India he took with George Harrison for their birthdays years ago. After reminiscing with the audience, the band played “Pisces Brothers” and dedicated it to Harrison. Appropriately, the following tune was a heartwarming cover of “Here Comes the Sun.”
Sounding like it came straight off of the 1966 vinyl LP, The Beach Boys closed the main set with “Good Vibrations,” returning for an encore that brought about a dozen audience members onto the stage before wrapping up with “Fun, Fun, Fun.”
PHOTO GALLERY: The Beach Boys at Meijer Gardens
Photos by Chelsea Whitaker