Beach Boys, Vic Chesnutt earn a tribute from L.A. artists


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On the surface, the Beach Boys and Vic Chesnutt are among the most polar opposite artists you could draw inspiration from. The former embodied California optimism and pristine, grand vocal harmonies; the latter made album after album of piercingly intimate Southern gothic folk rooted in literature and his harrowing life story. But then again, “God Only Knows” is kind of the saddest song ever written, and until Chesnutt’s suicide last year, he seemed to have made peace with the idea of death and redemption on his final album.

A bevy of L.A. folk-inclined artists will explore the legacies of each at “A Tribute to the Beach Boys: A Backyard Benefit in Support of the Sweet Relief Musician’s Fund” on June 19.


Sponsored by the local music blog When You Awake, Victoria Williams, the Chapin Sisters, Leslie Stevens of Leslie and the Badgers, Joel Jerome of Dios, Whispertown and comedian Charlyne Yi are among the performers who will tackle Beach Boys tunes onstage.

All proceeds go in Chesnutt’s name to Sweet Relief, a non-profit that helps musicians and music business veterans struggling with medical bills.

At the time of his death, Chesnutt was deeply in debt from medical procedures. Big Star’s Alex Chilton, who passed away during this year’s South by Southwest conference in Austin, Texas, was also uninsured and had avoided medical treatments. This set should underscore the dire situation that many uninsured musicians face.

-- August Brown

The tribute will be held June 19 at Historical Monument 157 at 3110 N. Broadway Ave. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $14 in advance, $16 at the door.

Beach Boys photo by the Associated Press, Vic Chesnutt photo by Sandlin Gaither.

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