Beach Boys news: Upcoming album + Brian Wilson's dementia and a new conservatorship

Some news on Brian Wilson's mental health and the long-awaited release of a previously canceled album
2004 BMI Pop Awards - Show
2004 BMI Pop Awards - Show / Kevin Winter/GettyImages

Beach Boys luminary Brian Wilson faces the challenging reality of dementia, prompting a move by his family to establish a new conservatorship for him in the wake of his wife Melinda's recent passing. In the aftermath of Melinda's demise, Wilson's family, alongside his housekeeper Gloria Ramos and medical advisors, have deliberated and decided on LeeAnn Hard and Jean Sievers to serve as co-conservators for Brian, as detailed in a statement on his website. Court documents outline Wilson's incapacity to provide informed consent for the treatment of his neurocognitive condition, along with his inability to cater to his basic personal needs — the result of a "major neurocognitive disorder (such as dementia)."

Described as frequently disoriented and unable to maintain focus or appropriate behavior, Wilson's condition necessitates significant support. Scheduled for April 26th, a hearing aims to finalize the new conservatorship arrangement. Melinda, who played a pivotal role in Brian's life and career, had been his primary caregiver until her recent passing. Their marriage, which began in 1995, was a source of emotional stability for Wilson, allowing him to pursue his musical passions.

Wilson's struggles with mental health, exacerbated by drug use in the 1960s, led to diagnoses of schizoaffective disorder and mild manic depression. He has also contended with auditory hallucinations, a persistent challenge in his daily life. The proposed conservatorship aims to afford Wilson the opportunity to remain connected with his family, engage in ongoing projects, and participate in activities of his choosing.

The Brian Wilson conservatorship has reminded journalists of Britney Spears

This marks a significant chapter in Wilson's journey, which has seen previous conservatorship arrangements and battles over control, and pop culture writers are using this as an opportunity to reminisce about another high-profile case: Britney Spears. Of course, it should be clarified that not all conservatorships are particularly scandalous, though Spears's conservatorship was legally ended
after Spears "...articulated she feels the conservatorship has become an oppressive and controlling tool against her..."

Other Brian Wilson and Beach Boys news

In parallel Beach Boys/Brian Wilson news, the forthcoming release of Cows in the Pasture, a once-forgotten country music album recorded in 1970 by Wilson and former Beach Boys manager Fred Vail, offers a glimpse into Wilson's musical legacy. It's said the album will feature guest appearances by "country music legends...rock and roll legends, contemporary country and pop stars..."
Set for release in 2025, the album promises to be a noteworthy addition to Wilson's extensive body of work, which includes a Christmas album (to add to your list of rock and roll Christmas favorites). The Beach Boys were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988.