David Sandler

Written By: Stomp

davidsandlerDavid Sandler was the writer of the two great American Spring classics ‘Shyin Away’ and ‘Sweet Mountain’ he also helped to produce the American Spring album with Brian, here he tells us of how that came to be:

I was in Los Angeles in 1969 at age 21 and kicking around. I had met Bruce Johnston and he’d expressed some interest in a tape that I gotten to him through Freddie Vail a promoter of Beach Boy concerts. Bruce was kind enough to invite me to a Beach Boy session at Brian’s house. Previous to that Bruce had invited me to an overdub session at Goldstar for “Tears in The Morning”, a very interesting session involving a french accordian. Being around Bruce, Brian and the other Beach Boys really opened up my eyes to the possibilities of what could be done in the studio, particularly with different kinds of instruments.That french accordian that Bruce used blew me away, both the sound and the part- it sounded so new and yet quaintly European all at the same time. I was completely flattered when Bruce asked me my opinion on a tempo issue in the track.
When the day came to visit Brian’s I drove up to the house and was let in by Marilyn who introduced herself. She was quite cordial and led me to the studio which was the former living room. I don’t think Marilyn much cared for the arrangement but for awhile the Beach Boys and the first Spring album was recorded there.
That day there were eight professional horn players there to do overdubs to “Good Time”. Someone went upstairs to get Brian to do the session. I remember his coming into the room. He seemed a little dazed like maybe he’d just awakened but he quickly retired to his office and, much to my amazement, he was rattling off the charts for the waiting players while reminiscing with me about the Beach Boys trips to cold Minnesota in the winter time. When I heard his handiwork in the studio, I was absolutely stunned: contrapuntal parts working simultaneously with each other and the song melody. It was an utterly disarming experience.
rockawards047I returned to Minnesota and kept in touch Brian. A few months after I moved to California Brian called out of the blue and asked if I would be interested in working with him on an album of his wife, Marilyn, and sister-law, Diane Rovell. I, of course, accepted.
The “girls” as we called them chose most of the songs and Brian had a few he favored as well. We used the finest Hollywood people and went for some unusual treatments such as the slower “Mama Said” version. Rick Henn came in and did some great work, too. “Mountain”
was a one-of-a-kinder. I had written a song called “Standin’ Tall” which we reworked into the “Sweet Mountain” number on which I played moog bass.
While the Beach Boys and families were in the Netherlands recording “Holland” I wrote “Shyin ‘Away” specifically for Marilyn and sent a cassette of it to Marilyn and Brian. I had recorded an Iowa band in their farm studio and the idea of a rural setting appealed so we went there upon their return to the states to record “Shyin” and another song I had written called “Snowflakes Fall”. Those sessions were special because of all the snow that winter. We skated in Minneapolis and shushed around in the country snow in Iowa. I lived in Iowa until I was 15 so it was all very familiar, homelike and fun! We used local musicians from the area and they performed very well.Mike Connor who incidentally hails originally from Minneapolis managed Spring and got us our deals with United Artists and CBS, but it was Clive Davis who signed the single, “Shyin Away”.

David is now in the Group ‘Northern Light’ their website is Glacierdisc.com and their cd’s are available at cdbaby.com, Amazon.com and very good they are too!

The Pictures below were very kindly sent to me by David Sandler and have never been seen before! and what great pictures they are thank you VERY much David