Graduation Day

Various Artists
FORMAT: Audio CD - 2 Disc
Release date: 17 Jun 2013

'[Graduation Day] earns it's diploma' Record Collector

'Surf's up!' Shindig!

'A peek inside young Brian Wilson’s vinyl collection…the inspiration that sparked his genius' Vintage Rock

CAT No: FVDD168UPC TEXT: 5055311001685

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50 Songs That Shaped the Beach Boys

 50 years ago, the Beach Boys cracked the US Top 10 with Surfin’ USA, consolidating a career that had been successful from their very first single, and which has remained so ever since. The hits continued until the end of the ’80s, and the group was back in the headlines in 2012 when the surviving original members took part in the 50th Anniversary Reunion Tour. Compiled and annotated by writer and radio presenter Spencer Leigh, the 2CD set Graduation Day celebrates the Beach Boys’ illustrious career by looking at the music that influenced chief songwriter Brian Wilson and the rest of the group, including songs recorded by them. By embracing mainstream pop (Patti Page), doo-wop (the Delroys, the Olympics, the Regents), folk (the Kingston Trio), the first surf instrumentals (Dick Dale), novelty acts (Bobby Boris Pickett & the Crypt Kickers) and one-off geniuses like George Gershwin and Phil Spector, as well as the better-known rock & roll (Eddie Cochran, Freddy Cannon) and R&B (Little Willie John) influences, Graduation Day represents the full extent of the Beach Boys’ musical tastes.

As might be expected, the musical predilections of Brian Wilson dominate the selection, but Graduation Day also reflects the tastes of the rest of the group – Brian’s brothers Dennis and Carl, their cousin Mike Love, as well as Al Jardine, David Marks and Bruce Johnston. In order to have as broad a range of artists as possible, most of the acts have been limited to one track apiece. However, it would be mistaken to limit Chuck Berry and vocal harmony group the Four Freshmen as it was the combination of Berry’s rhythms and the Freshmen’s harmonies that got the Beach Boys started. It’s also intriguing to observe, as Spencer Leigh does in his notes, how often the same names pop up behind the scenes on the diverse recordings which constitute Graduation Day. Brought to you by the same team that was responsible for the highly popular Love Me Do: 50 Songs That Shaped the Beatles, and sporting a 20pp illustrated booklet, Graduation Day will make the Beach Boys’ many fans very happy.



  1. Graduation Day (The Four Freshmen)
  2. Smokey Joe’s Café (The Robins)
  3. Two Step Side Step (Bonnie Lou)
  4. Jennie Lee (Jan and Arnie)
  5. Teen Beat (Sandy Nelson)
  6. Hideout (John and Judy)
  7. Sweet Little Sixteen (Chuck Berry)
  8. At The Hop (Danny and The Juniors)
  9. Bluebirds Over The Mountain (Ritchie Valens)
  10. Bermuda Shorts (The Delroys)
  11. Devoted To You (The Everly Brothers)
  12. Baby Hully Gully (The Olympics)
  13. Summertime Blues (Eddie Cochran)
  14. Sloop John B (The Kingston Trio)
  15. Barbara-Ann (The Regents)
  16. Corinna, Corinna (Ray Peterson)
  17. He’s Sure The Boy I Love (The Crystals)
  18. Why Do Fools Fall In Love (Frankie Lymon and The Teenagers)
  19. A Casual Look (The Six Teens)
  20. Young Blood (The Coasters)
  21. When You Wish Upon A Star (Dion and The Belmonts)
  22. The Train Of Love (Annette)
  23. Old Cape Cod (Patti Page)
  24. Rhapsody In Blue (Glenn Miller and His Orchestra)
  25. I Got Rhythm (Ella Fitzgerald)


  1. Let’s Go Trippin’ (Dick Dale)
  2. Their Hearts Were Full Of Spring (The Four Freshmen)
  3. The Wanderer (Dion)
  4. A Million To One (Jimmy Charles)
  5. Palisades Park (Freddy Cannon)
  6. Cindy, Oh Cindy (Vince Martin)
  7. Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow (The Rivingtons)
  8. Hushabye (The Mystics)
  9. Do You Want To Dance (Bobby Freeman)
  10. Money Honey (Clyde McPhatter and The Drifters)
  11. Johnny B Goode (Chuck Berry)
  12. Mountain Of Love (Harold Dorman)
  13. Heart And Soul (Jan and Dean)
  14. Alley-Oop (The Hollywood Argyles)
  15. Monster Mash (Bobby Boris Pickett and The Crypt Kickers)
  16. In The Still Of The Nite (The Five Satins)
  17. Running Bear (Johnny Preston)
  18. Come Go With Me (The Dell-Vikings)
  19. Talk To Me, Talk To Me (Little Willie John)
  20. Sea Cruise (Frankie Ford)
  21. Miserlou (Dick Dale and The Del-Tones)
  22. I’m So Young (The Students)
  23. Cotton Fields (The Highwaymen)
  24. Little Girl Blue (The Four Freshmen)
  25. Louie Louie (Richard Berry and The Pharaohs)