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"In My Room"
Single by The Beach Boys
from the album Surfer Girl
Released October 14, 1963
Format Vinyl
Recorded July 16, 1963
Genre Pop
Length 2:11
Label Capitol
Writer(s) Brian Wilson
Gary Usher
Producer Brian Wilson
The Beach Boys singles chronology
"Surfer Girl"/"Little Deuce Coupe"
"Be True to Your School"/"In My Room"
"Little Saint Nick"/"The Lord's Prayer"

"In My Room" is a song written by Brian Wilson and Gary Usher for the American pop band The Beach Boys. It was released on their 1963 album Surfer Girl. It was also released as the B-side of the "Be True to Your School" single. The single peaked at number six in the U.S. A remake by Usher's own band, Sagittarius, peaked at number eighty-six in 1969.


Writing the song

Gary Usher explained that

"'In My Room' found us taking our craft a little more seriously. Brian and I came back to the house one night after playing 'over the line' (a baseball game). I played bass and Brian was on organ. The song was written in an hour... Brian's melody all the way. The sensitivity... the concept meant a lot to him. When we finished, it was late, after our midnight curfew. In fact, Murry [The Wilson brother's father] came in a couple of times and wanted me to leave. Anyway, we got Audree [The Wilson brothers' mother], who was putting her hair up before bed, and we played it for her. She said, 'That's the most beautiful song you've ever written.' Murry said, 'Not bad, Usher, not bad,' which was the nicest thing he ever said to me."

Gary Usher who co-wrote the lyrics with Brian Wilson further describes that "Brian was always saying that his room was his whole world." Brian seconds this opinion: "I had a room, and I thought of it as my kingdom. And I wrote that song, very definitely, that you're not afraid when you're in your room. It's absolutely true."

In 1990, Brian wrote,

"I also enjoyed producing 'In My Room'. There is a story behind this song. When Dennis, Carl and I lived in Hawthorne as kids, we all slept in the same room. One night I sang the song 'Ivory Tower' to them and they liked it. Then a couple of weeks later, I proceeded to teach them both how to sing the harmony parts to it. It took them a little while, but they finally learned it. We then sang this song night after night. It brought peace to us. When we recorded 'In My Room', there was just Dennis, Carl and me on the first verse...and we sounded just like we did in our bedroom all those nights. This story has more meaning than ever since Dennis' death."

Demo version and final release

The 1993 CD box set, Good Vibrations: Thirty Years of The Beach Boys, contains an early version of "In My Room" with a number of differences from the eventual official release. It is unclear if this fully developed demo was recorded the same day as the final version on July 16, 1963. [1] The tune features six Beach Boys: both Al Jardine (on vocals) and David Marks (whose strumming guitar backs up Carl Wilson's picked solo notes) are present.[2]

The demo begins with an intro that was later scrapped, and launches into the first verse with full group vocals, unlike the finished recording. There, as previously mentioned, the single brings in Brian Wilson's voice first, then his brother Carl Wilson and finally Dennis Wilson. Then the final version adds, in the title/hook, Al Jardine, and Mike Love's bass voicing which both join in to complete the vocal mix. [3]

Recognition and influence

"In My Room" remained on the Billboard Top 100 for 11 weeks, peaking at #23 in 1963.[4] In the UPI (United Press International) weekly survey it was #17 nationally, upheld by its widespead success across the country wherever it was treated as an A-side: #1 in Boston and Seattle; #2 San Francisco; and top ten Washington DC, Houston, Minneapolis, Pittsburgh, Columbus. Rolling Stone magazine named it #209 on its list of greatest songs of all-time. David Crosby of The Byrds and Crosby, Stills & Nash (and Young) admitted to being an admirer of the song, quoting "'In My Room' was the defining point for me. When I heard it, I thought 'I give up - I can't do that - I'll never be able to do that.'" He sang a trio cover version with Jimmy Webb and Carly Simon on "An All-Star Tribute to Brian Wilson (2001)." The song was among John Cale's selections for Desert Island Discs.

A recording by E.G. Daily & the Sydney Children's Choir appears in the animated film "Happy Feet" (2006).


See also


  1. ^ Badman, Keith- The Beach Boys: The Definitive Diary of America's Greatest Band on Stage and in the Studio- Pg. 39- 2004- Backstreet Books- San Francisco- ISBN 0-87930-818-4.
  2. ^ Stebbins, Jon (2007). The Lost Beach Boy. London: Virgin Books Ltd. ISBN 978 1 8522 7391 0.  
  3. ^ Lambert, Philip (2007). New York: Continuum International Publishing Group Inc. ISBN 13 978 0 8264 1877 7.  
  4. ^ Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955-2006 ISBN 089820-172-1 and ISBN 978-0-89820-172-7

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