By Michael Cumella
“Living Doll,” Brian Wilson
It kinda made sense for Mattel to pair up The Beach Boys and Barbie, as both have a California image synonymous with sun and fun. But 1987 was not a good time for Brian Wilson or The Beach Boys, and Chicago columnist Bob Greene wrote in a column in 1987 that this was probably the only way the Beach Boys could sell records anymore.
Although this flexidisc was attributed to the band, it seems to be only a Brian Wilson project, probably at the behest of Dr. Eugene Landy, as he is listed as executive producer. Soon after this, The Beach Boys started their climb back to respectability with “Kokomo” in 1987 and continuing with a full appreciation of their contributions to popular music and plastic blondes of California.
Cumella is the curator of the Internet Museum of Flexi/Cardboard/Oddity Records. He is also the host of The Antique Phonograph Music Program heard weekly on WFMU featuring disc and cylinder records played on period crank-up phonographs. Due to the limited distribution of these records, they can be quite rare and valuable.