Let's Go Away for Awhile
|"Let's Go Away for Awhile"|
Cover of "Good Vibrations" single backed with "Let's Go Away for a While"
|Instrumental by The Beach Boys from the album Pet Sounds|
|Released||May 16, 1966|
|Recorded||January 18–19, 1966; United Western Recorders, Los Angeles|
|Pet Sounds track listing|
The track was composed and produced by Brian Wilson and was originally titled "The Old Man and The Baby". An early full working title was "Let's Go Away for Awhile (And Then We'll Have World Peace)"—the parenthetical being a reference to Del Close and John Brent's comedy album How to Speak Hip. Tony Asher explained,
"There was an album out called How to Speak Hip [...] a lampooning of the language instruction albums. I played it for Brian, and it destroyed him, killed him. Brian picked up a couple of references on the album. One of them was this hip character that said if everyone were 'laid back and cool, then we'd have world peace.' So Brian started going around saying, 'Hey, would somebody get me a candy bar, and then we'll have world peace.'. [Brian] even made an acetate disc with a label on it with the title."
Wilson speculated that he may have subconsciously based the chord progression similar to the way Burt Bacharach would construct his compositions, believing that Bacharach "had such a profound thing" which made Wilson go in a particular direction with his music.
The bulk of "Let's Go Away for a While" was recorded on January 18, 1966 at United Western Recorders. String overdubs were recorded the next day. Wilson stated: "We used dynamics like Beethoven. You know, Beethoven, the dynamic music maker." In 1966, Wilson considered the track to be "the finest piece of art" he had made up to that point, and that every component of its production "worked perfectly". A year later he expounded,
"I applied a certain set of dynamics through the arrangement and the mixing and got a full musical extension of what I'd planned during the earliest stages of the theme. I think the chord changes are very special. I used a lot of musicians on the track; twelve violins, piano, four saxes, oboe, vibes, a guitar with a coke bottle on the strings for a semi-steel guitar effect. Also, I used two basses and percussion. The total effect is 'Let's Go Away For Awhile', which is something everyone in the world must have said at some time or another. Nice thought; most of us don't go away, but it's still a nice thought. The track was supposed to be the backing for a vocal, but I decided to leave it alone. It stands up well alone."
- It was included as the B-side of the Beach Boys' October 1966 single "Good Vibrations".
- It appears on the Neil Young soundtrack album Journey Through the Past as the closing track.
Sourced from liner notes included with the 1999 mono/stereo reissue of Pet Sounds.
- Session musicians
- Hal Blaine – drums
- Al Casey – guitar
- Steve Douglas – tenor saxophone, flute
- Lyle Ritz – string bass
- Carol Kaye – electric bass
- Barney Kessel – guitar
- Al de Lory – piano
- Plas Johnson – tenor saxophone
- Jay Migliori – baritone saxophone
- Jim Horn – baritone saxophone
- Roy Caton – trumpet
- Jules Jacob – flute
- Julius Wechter – tympani, vibraphone
- Arnold Belnick, James Getzoff, William Kurasch, Leonard Malarsky, Jerome Reisler, Ralph Schaeffer, Sid Sharp, Tibor Zelig – violins
- Joseph Di Fiore, Harry Hyams – violas
- Justin Di Tullio, Joseph Saxon – cellos
- Elliott, Brad (August 31, 1999). "Pet Sounds Track Notes". beachboysfanclub.com. Retrieved March 3, 2009.
- Linett, Mark (2001). "Track-by-Track Notes". In Pet Sounds (p. 19) [CD booklet]. Hollywood: Capitol Records, Inc.
- The Pet Sounds Sessions: "The Making Of Pet Sounds" booklet (1996)
- "Brian Pop Genius!". Melody Maker. May 21, 1966.
- Pet Sounds (CD Liner). The Beach Boys. Capitol Records. 1999.