Friday, February 28, 2014

The Beach Boys - "Mok's SMiLE Fan Mix" (CD-R, 2001)

Hey, I’m with a few days off after an exhausting tour on most Greece’s cities for work for about half a
month. So we came to my old lady’s parents yesterday to spend days supposedly ‘relaxed’. Of course no rest when you have two little boys around but can’t complain, I REALLY like the way they’re making my wife MAD (he-he)! So here I am once again, trapped in a city that has ABSOLUTELY no relation to rock & roll and art in general, a house with no stereo but three TV sets (go figure…) and as confederates to me, an iPod and a tablet with a good measure of music and books (BTW, go catch Bobby Keys autobiography, it's a must read)... There is only a big chain record store in the city with a good 99% crap on its shelves and nothing else… Having nothing really cool to do anyway I decide to give a chance (poor me) and kill time in there. For about an hour I was hanging around with no luck at all but with a weird confidence in companion and right when I was ready to give up, BOOM, The Beach Boys’ SMiLE Sessions Box dusty and unvalued, almost thrown behind shit like Michael Bolton was waiting patiently for how long who knows, for someone like me to understand the treasures locked in! I did one last move to check the price even if I had instantly determined to proceed and then there’s another surprise for yours truly… A ridiculously low price to make things even better... There's God somewhere, Brian Wilson was right!
I rushed myself home, opened my laptop, ripped the damn thing and spent the next few hours by trying to read the booklet or Keys’ book, but no way sir! I mean what in the world was I thinking of? Is there a way to hear such a gem and doing at the same time something else except maybe for chain smoking totally released from anything that's annoying?!
I’m pretty sure there’s no need to tell you people what SMiLE is for pop culture in general. There’s no way someone seriously involved with music to not know the whole story, mystery and legend that surrounds Brian Wilson's and Van Dyke Park’s masterpiece for so many decades. After countless bootlegs and reconstructions we’re able at last, to have an officially released monster and another one by Brian and his band (2004’s ‘Brian Wilson Presents SMiLE’) to fulfill the drawing!
Did I just say ‘reconstruction’? Oh well, there are many of them around the net and if you’re a Beach Boys lunatic, you’re gonna have already most of them if not all, right? Of them all I always carry with me on my external hard drive the ones been made by Purple Chick and Mok! I mean, listen again to these 'fan mixes' if you hold ‘em and take notice that in many cases predated ‘Sessions’. Brilliant, exceptional labors by fans for fans only! And you know our approach to this already cause we 've tried many times something similar, so anything created with love and passion by fans through this space always going to have reverence!
In case you 're getting it for the first time, here’s another chance to hear Mok’s SMiLE Version, arguably one of the best around generally and not only to the ones been made by fans. Words bellow by Mok himself:

"I did this Smile edit back in 2001 way before Brian put it all together and basically, it brings in all good quality elements of the original recordings to form a nice listening experience. It's not an attempt to create a complete album, but for the sake of being completionist, it includes almost every available piece from that era, just edited together in a more cohesive manner.

It seems the more time goes by the more nostalgic I get about the time before BWPS. That might not make sense, but there was a lot to dream of then, when Smile was a perfect figment in out imaginations, different each one. Although I was thrilled at Brian's finished album, this 'version' will always have a spot in the rotation. It was quite a surprise to me that after Brian's was done, people would still want to hear what I did - maybe it is that nostalgic thing in others as well. Of course, nothing sounds like the '60s... I continue to be amazed at how it seems every few weeks I am sending out a few more copies. The thing I enjoy most about it now is reading people's comments back - the connection we make through the material. Common emotions linking people in different states and countries. Anyway, just glad to know that there's other folks out there who 'get it' too. Feel free to pass it along to anyone you think would get something out of it.

I'm uploading it in an effort to post my original contribution to this phenomenon that so many were and are involved in creating and perpetuating.  Hopefully some folks will get a kick out of it, and for others, perhaps just a point of reference.

Thanks again,

Fan Mix - "Mok's SMiLE" - finished 6/28/01 ~ This is *my* created mix of Smile, long before the master finished it himself. Enjoy!

Source: Various boots (original silvers) > Pro Tools 5.2 (Mac) edit > bounced to 16-bit/44.1 kHz AIFF > FLAC (Total time - 62:28)

Here's a rough idea of what's on this disc and the work that went into it:

1 - Our Prayer
This is a synchronization of the beautiful stereo mix with the mono mix found on bootleg (which I believe is a more coherent sound).
2 - Heroes and Villains
This is an amalgamation of all of the great pieces of Heroes, in an order I find appealing. There are attempts at increasing the clarity of the mix made by using the isolated vocal tracks from Sea of Tunes synchronized with the main mono track (making a rough stereo). Longer than I would like (8:00) but I feel complete by the end. (probably 3rd most worked-on)
3 - Barnyard
Pitch matched the instrumental track from bootleg with the demo piano and vocal from the GV box. It fits, amazingly, although a considerable amount of elbow grease was applied.
4 - I'm In Great Shape
The 'waking up' sounds of H&V sections mixed into the actual wakeup "mornings tumble out of bed..." vocal/piano demo by Brian (a bit cleaned up).
5 - Do You Like Worms
IMHO, the right pieces in the right order, this track sounds amazing. I believe one of the finer sounding tracks, 99% in stereo. Vocal clarity was obtained by mixing splits (again) into the stereo track.
6 - Child is the Father of the Man
Hard to get great quality, since most of the material comes from acetates, but I mixed several different 'takes' and 'remakes' of this song into one, satisfying another completions urge. Nobody's thought of *this* yet. Lots of work went into this (probably 4th most worked-on).
7 - Look
Not much editing, just judicial eq to clean up - the sequencing of this song and the next are key.
8 - Good Vibrations
A GV 'greatest hits' edit - the best parts of this song mixed as if it was whole. Now I hear this edit when I hear this song on the radio (and it hasn't ruined it). Find it in your heart to forgive my hacks, I think it's worth it.
9 - Holidays
Segueing out of GV, Holidays is not edited, just cleaned up as well. This track and Look were 'done' IMHO. A clever way in and out of GV.
10 - The Old Master Painter
A tough edit of the stereo instrumental with the mono vocal mix. These do not sync up well, but my crossfades take care of the wonky-ness.
11 - He Gives Speeches
Padded at the beginning and faded out at the end, a minor touch-up to the "beginning of side 2" (for me).
12 - Wonderful
The version from the box set, unaltered. This is beautiful, and never should be messed with.
13 - I Love to Say Da-Da
I know, I know, Cool Cool Water isn't Da-Da, but I felt this made a better flowing track with the two edited together (water chant drops in the middle).
14 - Mrs. O'Leary's Cow
H&V intro is Fire. This segues quite nicely into Cow, and that dies out.
15 - Friday Night
After the craziness, the 'rebuilding' smoothness comes in. Stereo Version was cleaner, sorry for the right channel only woodwork. (Woodwork is always in mono!)
16 - Reprise
A reprise of the H&V theme, with no H&V-specific vocal. I thought it went well here. A cleaned-up edit and fade makes it leaner, but still nice.
17 - Vega-Tables
This was just love from the beginning. This plays everything I want to hear of Veg, with only a slight weird phasing that could not be avoided. So many sections with so many edits, this was probably the most intensive editing on the project. Mostly stereo (where it counts) and I 'never was lazy' putting it together.
18 - Wind Chimes
Almost the same edit as on the box set, but using stereo sources from the bootlegs for (better?) sound.
19 - CabinEssence
This incorporates the 'instrumental' sections from the boots (I can't ever go without hearing that) with the completed Carl vocal version from the box set. I cleaned up some of the vocals on this track so they stand out a little more.
20 - You're Welcome
Regardless of the intent, I couldn't resist putting this on there. Very little work involved, but it might be noticeable to others...
21 - George Fell Into His French Horn
I clipped a small section of this because I heard the segue from this track to the next in my head months before attempting this project. It makes me laugh and works in a way you would never expect.
22 - Surf's Up
One of the hardest things to work on in the project and ultimately the most rewarding. I love the stereo backing track, but wait, there's now Brian's demo vocal (and only Brian) in sync! Pitch correction, time compression, whatever it took, I had to do it just to see if it could be done. This was the whole inspiration for the project, and the last thing I worked on. Try not to cry when you hear it the first time. Goosebumps every time.
Ultimately it's too long and overstuffed to be an 'album', but there never was an album, and this is my way to feel totally complete with Smile (if one ever can)
." - Mok

Good Vibrations anyone?!


  1. FLAC:

  2. I should see my old lady's parents more frequently, it might work for me too... Well, I'm not so sure! You're the best, thank you.

  3. Thanks... looking forward to hearing this!

  4. Likewise, thank you.


  5. To Mihaleez:
    I am a friend of jpstooges.He directed me to come over to your blog.He has told me you are a fan of the Lyres/DMZ .I recorded the Lyres in 1979.I have a full set of them playing what was their 2nd gig.If you are interested I would shoot it to you.I am not sure how to write to you so maybe you can ask jstooges to shoot me a line and I will get in touch.

    1. Hey man, sorry for my late reply. Too many things to take care the last days... OF COURSE!!!! Shoot me an email on:

      Thanx buddy!

  6. Link still down.
    Can you please re-upload?

  7. Argh! Link's dead. Could you re-up, pleaaaaaaaaase?