1974 — On The Road With The Beach Boys
Documentary by Billy Hinsche
By David M. Beard
Hard to describe how cool this really is. Having the opportunity to do special themed editions of ESQ through the years, this DVD is really my kind of bag. No matter how many interviews you can do, there is no substitute for being there, and thankfully, Billy Hinsche was.
This was a true labor of love for Billy, so much in fact, that he had very real concerns about sharing his very first video project with the public, particularly one that is so near and dear to his heart.
In a sense, Hinsche tested the waters over the last several years with his "One In A Million" tribute recording and video of Dennis Wilson from this footage, and the very enjoyable "The Match" (both appearing on Billy's "The Road Well Traveled" DVD). Both gave us brief insight into the 1974 tour, but hardly scratched the surface. The quality, because of the age and equipment used, suffers at times, but the insight and testimonials given by Jim Guercio, Ed Carter, Bobby Figueroa, Ricky Fataar, Carli Munoz, road manager Rick Nelson, Steve Moffitt, and Billy add the needed depth to this documentary, making it a priceless treasure.
Billy closes the set with an in-depth explanation of the type of video he used in 1974, and several nice touches are included that add very nice historical nuances. Hinsche's video project is an invaluable resource, as well as true keepsake for any Beach Boys fan. Watching the Beach Boys on tour during a time when they were rediscovering themselves and slowly gaining recognition from a second generation of fans allows for a fascinating look into a otherwise forgotten era, and it's great to see Dennis and Carl Wilson in this vintage footage. One amusing and poignant moment is when Al Jardine is sharing TM practices with Dennis on the group's airplane in an effort to help him deal with things that are bothering him.
This is a DVD that we'll be talking about for the rest of our lives, and for generations to come.