She's Goin' Bald

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"She's Goin' Bald"
Song by The Beach Boys
from the album Smiley Smile
ReleasedSeptember 18, 1967 (1967-09-18)
RecordedJune 3 – July 14, 1967
StudioBrian Wilson's home studio, Hollywood
GenreExperimental pop
Songwriter(s)Brian Wilson/Mike Love/Van Dyke Parks
Producer(s)The Beach Boys
Audio sample
"He Gives Speeches"
Song by The Beach Boys
from the album The Smile Sessions
ReleasedOctober 31, 2011 (2011-10-31)
RecordedAugust 25 or September 1, 1966
Songwriter(s)Brian Wilson/Van Dyke Parks

"She's Goin' Bald" is a song written by Brian Wilson, Mike Love, and Van Dyke Parks for the Beach Boys' 1967 album, Smiley Smile. Like many of the songs on that album, it has roots in the abandoned Smile album, as the short song "He Gives Speeches". Both compositions follow the "How Dry I Am" progression.[1]


"He Gives Speeches" was recorded for the abandoned Smile. After the collapse of Smile, "He Gives Speeches" was left unreleased.

The song was later rewritten and rerecorded for Smiley Smile as "She's Goin' Bald" with new lyrics by Mike Love.[citation needed] In 1995, Brian Wilson said that it was only a coincidence that Love himself "was on his way to goin' bald then," and that the group did the song without being aware that he might have thought it was about him. Brian then called it "one of the funnier songs [the Beach Boys] ever done, very current for its time."[2] In 1976, Dennis Wilson claimed: "I took that song in a very strange way, I thought it was more or less about oral sex. You know, [sings] 'Get a job, sha na na na, sha na na na na. What a blow...' And I thought, Jesus, that's funny as shit — [moronic voice] 'Hey, it's about getting a blow job, huh huh huh.' Then Love recalled: "We were stoned out of our heads. We were laughing our asses off when we recorded that stuff." [3]

This version includes some unusual effects, including the novel use of an "Eltro Information Rate Changer" to raise the pitch of the group's vocals without affecting the tempo. An example of this obscure effect is present in the film 2001: A Space Odyssey.[4]

When it came time to assemble the Smile material for Brian Wilson Presents Smile in 2004, Wilson passed on the song's inclusion.[5] The Beach Boys' recording of "He Gives Speeches" was then issued as a bonus track for The Smile Sessions in 2011.


"She's Goin' Bald"
"He Gives Speeches"


  1. ^ Lambert, Philip (2007). Inside the Music of Brian Wilson: The Songs, Sounds, and Influences of the Beach Boys' Founding Genius. Bloomsbury Publishing. pp. 269–70. ISBN 9781441107480.
  2. ^ Benci, Jacopo (January 1995). "Brian Wilson interview". Record Collector. UK (185).
  3. ^ Felton, David (1976). "The Healing of Brother Brian". Rolling Stone.
  4. ^ Carlos, Wendy (July 2008). "Vintage Technologies: The Eltro and the Voice of HAL". Retrieved 23 July 2013.
  5. ^ Bell, Matt (October 2004). "The Resurrection of Brian Wilson's Smile". Sound on Sound. Retrieved 16 July 2013.