The original California surfer musicians, the Beach Boys are one of the most successful and important American band of the rock music era.
The band was originally formed in 1961 in Hawthorne, CA, by the three Wilson brothers: Brian (bass, piano, vocals), Dennis (drums, vocals), and Carl (guitar, vocals).
Additional members were Mike Love (vocals), a cousin of the Wilsons', and Al Jardine (guitar, vocals).
From the early beginning, the focus of the group's music was Brian Wilson, who combined a fascination with vocal harmony in the Four Freshmen mold with a love of Chuck Berry-derived rock & roll. Added to that was the subject matter of middle-class teenage life in Southern California.
The result was massive popular success for the group during the first half of the 1960s, starting with their first chart entry, "Surfin' " in 1962.