The Beach Boys

Let Him Run Wild

Composed by Brian Wilson

Song Review by

Among hardcore Brian Wilson aficionados, "Let Him Run Wild" is one of the composer's most beloved compositions. Couched in a subtle, Burt Bacharach-inspired melody, the song swings from start to finish. Musically, the ever-changing and shifting patterns are a virtual precursor to Wilson's work on Pet Sounds. Lyrically, the song is loaded with vulnerability and a slight sense of competition (and perhaps jealousy) that always marked Wilson's finest songs. The Beach Boys' version is certainly paramount, but Brian Wilson himself covered the song successfully on his 1998 solo album, presumably because he was dissatisfied with his vocal on the original. Any way you slice it, it's a stone classic.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Summer Days (And Summer Nights!!) 1965 Capitol
No Image 1967 Capitol
Stack-o-Tracks 1968 Capitol 2:12
Endless Summer 1974 Capitol 2:23
California Girls 1987 Capitol
Today!/Summer Days (And Summer Nights!!) 1990 Capitol 2:22
Beach Boys' Party!/Stack-O-Tracks 1990 EMI Music Distribution
All Summer Long [Compilation] 1998 EMI Music Distribution 2:20
Originals 1998 EMI-Capitol Entertainment Prop. / Capitol 2:18
Unsurpassed Masters, Vol. 9 (1965): The Alternate "Summer Days (And Summer Nights!!!)" 1998 Sea of Tunes 2:24
Capitol Years 1999 EMI Music Distribution 2:19
Original Gold [2 CD Set] 1999 Original Gold (Netherlands) 2:20
No Image 1999 Disky 2:20
Sounds of Summer: The Very Best of the Beach Boys 2003 Capitol/EMI Records / Capitol 2:20
The Warmth of the Sun 2006 Capitol/EMI Records 2:20
U.S. Singles Collection: The Capitol Years 1962-1965 2008 Capitol 2:18
No Image 2009 Capitol 2:20
Classic Albums: The Beach Boys 2011 EMI
Made in California 2013 Capitol 2:22
5 Classic Albums 2013 Capitol 2:18
blue highlight denotes editor's pick