Album Title
Artist IconThe Beach Boys
Artist Icon Sunflower
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2:19
1:58
3:35
2:43
3:29
2:56
4:09
2:36
2:42
2:40
2:32
5:03

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Back Cover
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CD Art
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3D Case
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First Released

Calendar Icon 1970

Genre

Genre Icon Rock

Mood

Mood Icon Relaxed

Style

Style Icon Rock/Pop

Theme

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Tempo

Speed Icon Medium

Release Format

Release Format Icon Album

Record Label Release

Speed Icon Reprise Records

World Sales Figure

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Album Description
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Sunflower is the sixteenth studio album by American rock group The Beach Boys, their first on Reprise Records. The album reached a respectable no. 29 in the UK, but only achieved no. 151 on the US albums chart during a four week stay, becoming the lowest charting Beach Boys album until 1978's M.I.U. Album equalled it.

The album's critical reputation has grown since its original appearance; notable for the emergence of significant songwriting contributions by all members of the band. In 2003, the album was ranked number 380 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

After their last album, 20/20, Dennis Wilson was the first Beach Boy to head back into the recording studio, producing five tracks in the first two months of 1969: "Forever", "San Miguel", "Got to Know the Woman", "What Can the Matter Be?", and "Celebrate The News". Bruce Johnston's "Deirdre" was also recorded during these sessions. In early March the entire band went into the studio to record "Loop de Loop" and "All I Wanna Do", and also finish up Dennis's "Forever".

On April 12, The Beach Boys sued Capitol Records for unpaid royalties and unpaid production fees in the amount of two million dollars. This was the second time that they had sued Capitol (the first being in the spring of 1967), and it may have contributed to a lack of promotion of The Beach Boys' final Capitol releases.

They then turned their attention to "Break Away", written by Brian Wilson and his father Murry, who used the pseudonym Reggie Dunbar. At the time, it was thought that it would be their last single for Capitol and was a very small hit in the U.S., where it reached number 63. It did much better overseas, peaking at number six in the UK. "Celebrate the News" was the b-side, and neither song was released on a Beach Boys album.

After they were done recording "Break Away", the band went on a tour of Europe. When they got back, they recorded two more Dennis Wilson songs, "Slip on Through" and "I'm Going Your Way". Next on the agenda was a rerecording of "Cotton Fields", a Lead Belly song that was released on The Beach Boys previous album, 20/20. Al Jardine was the producer for this recording of the song.

After giving Live in London to Capitol, the band began to work seriously on a new album. In October and November 1969, they started recording "Walkin'", "Games Two Can Play", "Add Some Music to Your Day", "When Girls Get Together", "Soulful Old Man Sunshine", "Raspberries, Strawberries", "This Whole World", and "Tears in the Morning". They also continued work on Dennis's "Slip on Through".

In fall of 1969, The Beach Boys intensified work on their new project. Their reputation had fallen sharply in the US since 1967, but Mo Ostin decided to sign them to Reprise Records in November (reportedly on Van Dyke Parks' urging) despite Brian Wilson's personal attempts at sabotage by painting his face green before meeting with label executives. Part of the deal was to revive their Brother Records imprint, initially founded during the Smile era and used only for the Smiley Smile album, and the "Heroes and Villains" and "Gettin' Hungry" singles before becoming dormant.

The picture of the band on the front sleeve, featuring all six group members, was taken on the golf course at the family ranch owned by Dean Martin (named The Hidden Valley Ranch) near Thousand Oaks in Ventura County, California. Dean's son Ricci Martin, a friend of the band, took the photograph, also featuring Brian's daughter Wendy, Alan's first son Matthew (later an auxiliary Beach Boy himself), Mike's children Hayleigh and Christian (the latter a current touring member of the Beach Boys Band), and Carl's son Jonah.

The inner gatefold spread on the original vinyl LP featured a series of photographs taken by designer/photographer Ed Thrasher at the Warner Brothers studio backlot.
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