Little Deuce Coupe (1:40)

Cover of 50 Big Ones: Greatest Hits

From 50 Big Ones: Greatest Hits and 65 other releases

The music was written by Brian Wilson with the lyric by local radio station DJ Roger Christian; it typified the Beach Boys’ “car songs” which along with “surfing”, glamorized the teenage 1960s Californian lifestyle. The car referred to is the Ford Model B; the 1932 model was referred to as a “deuce coupe”. Model Bs were readily available and easily modified, as auto enthusiasts (or “hot rodders”) removed spare weight and improved the engine.

Brian Wilson commented on the song in the liner notes of the 1990 CD re-release of the original Surfer Girl album: “We loved doing ‘Little Deuce Coupe’. It was a good ‘shuffle’ rhythm, which was not like most of the rhythms of the records on the radio in those days. It had a bouncy feel to it. Like most of our records, it had a competitive lyric. This record was my favorite Beach Boys car song.”

Frank Zappa was quoted in his autobiography The Real Frank Zappa Book, “One of the most exciting things that ever happened in the world of ‘white-person music’ was when the Beach Boys used the progression V-II on “Little Deuce Coupe.” An important step forward by going backward.”

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