Holland (album)

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Studio album by The Beach Boys
Released January 8, 1973 (1973-01-08)
Recorded June 3–October 9, 1972
Genre Soft rock[1]
Length 36:28
Label Brother/Reprise
Producer The Beach Boys
The Beach Boys chronology
Carl and the Passions – "So Tough"
The Beach Boys in Concert
Singles from Holland
  1. "Sail On, Sailor" / "Only with You"
    Released: February 5, 1973
  2. "California Saga: California" / "Funky Pretty"
    Released: April 16, 1973
Mount Vernon and Fairway (A Fairy Tale)
EP by The Beach Boys
Released January 8, 1973 (1973-01-08)
Recorded September 1972 (1972-09)
Genre Fairy tale
Length 12:05
Label Brother/Reprise
Producer The Beach Boys

Holland is the 19th studio album by the American rock group The Beach Boys, released on January 8, 1973. Self-produced by the band, the album peaked at number 36 in the US and number 20 in the UK. The album is the last to feature Blondie Chaplin and Ricky Fataar, who joined the band the previous year to record Carl and the Passions - So Tough (1972).

Holland was mostly recorded in Baambrugge, Netherlands over the summer of 1972 using a reconstructed studio sent from California, and with two Brian Wilson tracks rush-recorded in Los Angeles and added to the album at the last minute. The photograph on the album's front cover is an upside down image of the Kromme Waal, a canal that runs through the center of Amsterdam.[citation needed]

Holland included a bonus EP, Mount Vernon and Fairway (A Fairy Tale), a musical fairy tale written by Brian Wilson about a magical transistor radio who appears to a young prince. Narration was provided by the group's manager: Jack Rieley.[citation needed]


To record the album, the band members and their families moved to Baambrugge, in the Netherlands, in an attempt to focus their efforts in recording a new studio album. Regarding this time, vocalist and guitarist Al Jardine later noted, "It was rough being in Holland. We were working 24/7 in a small homemade rebuilt piece meal little studio in a garage next to a cow pasture. Yeah, it was rough. We didn’t even have the correct electricity [...] so that kind of affected the sound of our equipment. It was a mixed blessing."[2]

Mount Vernon and Fairway (A Fairy Tale)[edit]

Holland's bonus EP, entitled Mount Vernon and Fairway (A Fairy Tale), was based on the intersection where the Love family lived in Los Angeles, and was primarily composed by Brian Wilson. Wilson originally intended it to be the centerpiece of a new Beach Boys album, consisting of the tracks from the EP and "Funky Pretty".[citation needed]

Brian Wilson has said that he listened to Randy Newman's 1972 album Sail Away "over and over" while physically writing down the lyrics which became the Mount Vernon and Fairway suite.[3]

The instrumental tracks for the album were later released on Good Vibrations: Thirty Years of The Beach Boys as "Fairy Tale Music", with Jack Rieley's vocal narration removed.[citation needed]


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 2.5/5 stars[4]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music 5/5 stars[5]
Mojo positive[6]
Robert Christgau C[7]
Rolling Stone positive[8]

At the end of the 1973, Rolling Stone named Holland as one of their picks for "album of the year".[citation needed] Critic Robert Christgau praised the production qualities of the album, but believed the album had strayed too far from what the Beach Boys did best, stating "I suppose that in time their tongue-tied travelogue of Big Sur may seem no more escapist than "Fun Fun Fun," but who'll ever believe it's equally simple, direct, or innocent?"[7]

In 2000, Elvis Costello ranked the album as one of his favorite records of all time.[9] Camper Van Beethoven have disclosed that when recording their album La Costa Perdida, Holland was an enormous inspiration to them.[10]


Publication Country Accolade Year Rank
The Guardian United Kingdom Top 100 Albums That Don't Appear in All the Other Top 100 Albums of All Time[11] 1999 21
OOR Magazine Netherlands 100 Best Albums of All Time[12] 2007 100
Vanity Fair United States 500 Albums You Need[9] 2000 *

(*) denotes an unordered list

Track listing[edit]

Holland, side one
No. Title Writer(s) Lead vocals Length
1. "Sail On, Sailor"   Brian Wilson/Tandyn Almer/Ray Kennedy/Jack Rieley/Van Dyke Parks Blondie Chaplin 3:19
2. "Steamboat"   Dennis Wilson/Rieley Carl Wilson/D. Wilson 4:33
3. "California Saga: Big Sur"   Mike Love Love 2:56
4. "California Saga: The Beaks of Eagles"   Robinson Jeffers/Al Jardine/Lynda Jardine Love/Jardine 3:49
5. "California Saga: California"   Jardine Love/B. Wilson 3:21
Holland, side two
No. Title Writer(s) Lead vocals Length
1. "The Trader"   C. Wilson/Rieley C. Wilson 5:04
2. "Leaving This Town"   Ricky Fataar/Chaplin/C. Wilson Fataar/Chaplin 5:49
3. "Only with You"   D. Wilson/Love C. Wilson 2:59
4. "Funky Pretty"   B. Wilson/Love/Rieley C. Wilson/Jardine/Chaplin/Fataar/Love 4:09

All narration by Jack Rieley, except "Magic Transistor Radio", narrated by Brian Wilson.

Mount Vernon and Fairway (A Fairy Tale), side one
No. Title Writer(s) Lead vocals Length
1. "Mt. Vernon and Fairway – Theme"   B. Wilson   1:34
2. "I'm the Pied Piper – Instrumental"   B. Wilson/C. Wilson   2:20
3. "Better Get Back in Bed"   B. Wilson C. Wilson 1:39
4. "Magic Transistor Radio"   B. Wilson B. Wilson 1:43
Mount Vernon and Fairway (A Fairy Tale), side two
No. Title Writer(s) Lead vocals Length
1. "I'm the Pied Piper"   B. Wilson/C. Wilson B. Wilson 2:09
2. "Radio King Dom"   B. Wilson/Rieley   2:38
2015 Remastered iTunes bonus track
No. Title Writer(s) Lead vocals Length
1. "We Got Love"   Fataar/Chaplin/Love Chaplin 5:56


Year Chart Position
1973 Canadian Album Chart 12[13]
1973 UK Top 40 Album Chart 20
1973 US Billboard 200 Albums Chart 36[not in citation given]
UK Singles
Year Single Chart Position
1973 "California Saga (On My Way to Sunny Californ-i-a)" UK Top 40 Single Chart 37
US Singles
Year Single Chart Position
1973 "Sail On, Sailor" US Billboard Singles Chart 79[not in citation given]
1975 "California Saga (On My Way to Sunny Californ-i-a)" US Billboard Singles Chart 84[not in citation given]
1975 "Sail On, Sailor" US Billboard Singles Chart 49[not in citation given]
1975 "Sail On, Sailor" Boston WMEX Singles Chart 1[not in citation given]

Chart information courtesy of Allmusic and other music databases.[14][not in citation given]


  1. ^ Partridge, Kenneth (June 5, 2015). "Why a Comprehensive Beach Boys Biopic Would Likely Fail". Consequence of Sound. 
  2. ^ "Brian Wilson, Al Jardine, Mike Love Interview Part 3". Rock Cellar. Retrieved 23 October 2016. 
  3. ^ YouTube video: Brian Wilson 1976 Full Interview; 1976 interview with Bob Harris.
  4. ^ Bush, John. "Holland - The Beach Boys : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2012-06-11. 
  5. ^ The Virgin Encyclopedia Of Popular Music, Concise (4th Edition), Virgin Books (UK), 2002, ed. Larkin, Colin.
  6. ^ Eccleston, Danny (2008-08-28). "The Beach Boys - Disc of the day - Mojo". Mojo4music.com. Archived from the original on June 18, 2013. Retrieved 2/11/2012.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  7. ^ a b Christgau, Robert. "Robert Christgau: CG: The Beach Boys". Retrieved 2012-10-27. 
  8. ^ Miller, Jim (March 1, 1973). "Holland | Album Reviews | Rolling Stone". Retrieved November 2, 2012. 
  9. ^ a b Costello, Elvis (November 2000). "500 Albums You Need.". Vanity Fair, issue no. 483. 
  10. ^ http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/474262/camper-van-beethoven-northern-california-girls-exclusive-song-premiere
  11. ^ [Top 100 Albums That Don't Appear in All the Other Top 100 Albums of All Time, The Guardian, January 29, 1999]
  12. ^ "100 Best Albums of All Time.". Muziekkrant OOR. 17 July 2007. 
  13. ^ http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/rpm/028020-119.01-e.php?&file_num=nlc008388.4828&type=1&interval=20&PHPSESSID=fcs5b5kmf511c6ombo6ki2alv3
  14. ^ "UK Top 40 Hit Database". EveryHit.