Long Promised Road, director Brent Wilson's 2021 documentary film about Beach Boys visionary Brian Wilson (no relation) was described by Variety as "affectionate and satisfying...sentimental at times but often stirringly insightful." The Hollywood Reporter called it "a portrait of friendship and love as much as it's about music." American Songwriter noted that it was "flush with pathos and poignancy...a remarkable documentary that is, at once, both heartbreaking and heartwarming." By chronicling Brian's candid conversations while driving through southern California with his friend Jason Fine, the filmmaker vividly examined past and present as filtered through Brian's singular sensibility. Last year, the film yielded a digital-only soundtrack comprising a dozen previously unreleased tracks, some recorded specifically for the film and others dating back decades. On June 17, Lakeshore Records will belatedly bring that album to CD for its premiere in the format.
Of the new songs, the uplifting "Right Where I Belong" was penned and performed by Wilson with My Morning Jacket's Jim James. The documentary's moving title song, written not by Brian but by his late brother Carl Wilson, is passionately led by Blondie Chaplin (whose performance of the song is always a highlight of a Brian Wilson concert) with Brian touchingly handling the bridge. "Honeycomb," the Jimmie Rodgers oldie written by Bob Merrill (Funny Girl, Carnival) inspires one of the most mesmerizing sequences in the film when Brian springs to life in the studio. The completed version of the song is presented here. The feel-good, piano-pounding "Rock and Roll Has Got a Hold on Me" is a solo Brian composition.
Much of the soundtrack has been drawn from Brian's 1990s collaborations with singer-songwriter-producer Andy Paley including "I'm Goin' Home," "It's Not Easy Being Me," "Must Be a Miracle," "Slightly American Music," and "I'm Broke." Other tracks from these sessions have appeared on various releases throughout the years such as 2004's Gettin' In Over My Head, 2017's Playback: The Brian Wilson Anthology, and various collections and one-offs. The soundtrack is rounded out with new recordings from Brian and his band of Beach Boys gems "It's O.K." (another song which inspired a memorable moment in the film) and "The Night Is So Young" as well as a live rendition of "In My Room" from Nashville's venerable Ryman Auditorium.
Long Promised Road: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack is due from Lakeshore Records on June 17. You'll find the track listing and pre-order links below.
Brian Wilson, Long Promised Road: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Lakeshore Records, 2022) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada Links TBD)
- Right Where I Belong
- I'm Goin Home
- It's Not Easy Being Me
- Must Be a Miracle
- Slightly American Music
- It's O.K.
- Rock & Roll Has Got a Hold On Me
- The Night Was So Young
- Long Promised Road
- In My Room (Live From The Ryman Auditorium)
- I'm Broke