The Beach Boys are known for bubbly surf-and-sun tunes ― making their connection to Charles Manson even more baffling.
Band member Mike Love opens up about the group’s link to the infamous criminal in his new memoir, Good Vibrations. In an excerpt shared with People magazine, Love reflects on the friendship between Beach Boys member Dennis Wilson and Manson in the ‘60s.
Love explained that, soon after a split with his wife, Wilson picked up two female hitchhikers who talked about their “guru,” Manson. The musician and Manson were later introduced, and Manson, with “his girls,” moved in with Wilson afterward.
“My cousin’s interest in Manson now seems inexplicable,” Love writes. “But in reality Manson tapped into parts of Dennis that make it all too explainable.”
Love himself encountered Manson at a party filled with naked girls and LSD. After an odd conversation with the cult leader in the shower ― yes, really ― the singer left.
“As we pulled out of the driveway, I thought, Denny, you’ve got a real nut case for a roommate now,” Love writes. In 1969, Manson and his followers (called his “family”) were implicated in the deaths of seven people, including pregnant actress Sharon Tate, who was married to director Roman Polanski.
If not for actress Doris Day, Love writes that at least one other might have died by the group’s hands. Day’s son Terry Melcher was friends with Manson and Wilson, and he even lived at the address where Tate was later killed by Manson’s followers. But, at the request of his mother, Melcher had already moved by the time of the tragedy.
“The move was no accident. Terry, Doris’ only child, was extremely close to his mom,” Love writes. “He had told her about Manson ― and about some of his scary antics, his brandishing of knives, his zombie followers ― and that Manson had been to the house on Cielo and she insisted he move out.”
Talk about creepy!
To read the rest of Love’s excerpts in People, head here.