Song Story: Barbara Ann by the Beach Boys

With summer fun here let’s take a look at a good beach song.

Barbara Ann was written by Fred Fassert.  He used his sister’s name for the title of the song.  The song was originally written for The Regents, a band Fassert was part of at the time.  The Regents recorded the song in 1958, but did not release it until 1961.  Their version of the song reached #13 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts.

Barbara Ann Take my hand
Barbara Ann
Take my hand

In 1965, the Beach Boys were contracted to release another album.  Brian Wilson was working on another project, “Pet Sounds” and wanted to fulfill his Beach Boys obligation quickly.  This spurned the “Party” album idea.

The Beach Boys decided to throw a party in the studio and record the party and “whatever they felt like singing”.

Brian Wilson had helped write Dead Man’s Curve, with the then popular group, Jan & Dean.

Jan & Dean showed up for the Party and Dean suggested they all sing the song together.  Dean was the lead singer on this song.  At the end of the track you can hear Carl Wilson say, “thanks Dean.”

On December 20, 1965 the song was released by Capital Records as a single.

The song has become greatly loved by fans and beach goers.  The Beach Boys has appeared on several TV shows, including Home Improvement and Full House, to perform some version of the song.  There have also been various parodies of Barbara Ann over the years.

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