Break Away

Album: 20 Golden Greats (1969)
Charted: 6 63
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Songfacts®:

  • This is a positive, life-affirming song about changing one's life for the better. It was written by Brian Wilson and "Reggie Dunbar" - a pseudonym for Brian, Dennis and Carl's father, Murry Wilson. It is the only Beach Boys single that Brian Wilson ever created with his Dad. However the contributions Murry Wilson made to the record are not known.
  • In the summer of 1969, Brian Wilson was coaxed out of semi-retirement to write the Beach Boys a hit song. It was to be their last record for Capitol before they switched record companies and signed with Warner Brother's Reprise label. However, in the US it failed as a single due to Capitol's lack of promotion.
  • This song features Carl Wilson with the help of Mike Love singing the verses and Al Jardine singing the chorus.

Comments: 11

  • Pete from UkMike Love's deep sound on the end of the track adds to it a lot.
  • Andrew from EnglandMurry Wilson contributed the lyrics.
  • Anonymous from AnonymousI agree with Giuseppe that Mike Love doesn't "help" sing the verses. Also, Carl does sing most of the song, but Brian sings the line "That very same love, that passes me by, and that is why..." then Al takes over.
  • Giuseppe from Bangor, MeEveryone asserts that Carl sings this song--but to my ears the lead vocal is unmistakably Brian. Carl's distinctive voice doesn't take the lead until near the end, in the line, "Oh, boy, you'll jump for joy ...." And Mike never "helps" sing any of the verses, though his counterpoint is evident especially under Carl's line, previously mentioned.
  • George from Belleville, NjThis is classic Beach Boys.The upbeat sound,the melody,the harmony.The lyrics are good and the music is great.A very catchy tune,it makes me feel positive when I listen to it.
  • Ross from Brooklyn, NyArt Garfunkle's "Break Away" is a completely different song (although with Beach Boys flourishes in it's chorus). Anyway, this is indeed one of the Beach Boys' finest tracks -- one of a hundred or so!
  • Phil from Palatine, IlThis is a beautiful song (search for the vocal-only version) and critical to the then future of the band. I was privileged to write an article about the role of Break Away in the Winter 2009 issue of Endless Summer Quarterly

    Phil
    http://www.PrayForSurfBlog.blogspot.com
  • Vinny from Dublin, IrelandThis is a most beautiful song. I guess, to an extent I've tried to live my life by this on. It is the best Beach Boy song (arguably. It's a typical Beach Boys song, happy music and down right depressing lyrics. Although in this case, its about a life changing experience and for anyone feeling sad or depressed, it is a song for them. I have to be honest, when I read that Brian's dad had a part in this song I was soooo disapointed. For me, it is such a beautiful song that needs to come from a beautiful mind and that should be Brian alone. Not sure that his Dad fits that catagory. Anyway, I love the sone and I love the great, great, great Beach Boys. Vinny (Ireland)
  • Dave from Scottsdale, AzThe song by Art Garfunkel is not the Beach Boys song.
  • Guy from Woodinville, WaI've never even heard the Beach Boys version, but Art Garfunkle did a great cover on his Breakaway album.
  • Przemek from Warsaw, Polandmy favourite Beach Boys sing, even if it's not the most popular. The last single produced by Brian Wilson only.
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