Shapiro Voices BeachBoys Documentary

Shapiro Voices BeachBoys Documentary

26 June, 2024

Did you know that The Beach Boys recorded one of their albums in the Netherlands? I didn’t. But then I, Greg Shapiro, voiced a ‘making-of’ documentary about a unique Dutch-American musical project.

“Between June and October of 1972, the Beach Boys settled down in a small Dutch farming village to record their new album – not surprisingly called HOLLAND.” And in 1972, there was a Dutch teenager who had no idea he would one day create a project to convert Beach Boys pop music into classical symphonies. Rob van Weelde.


Rob van Weelde, initiator of The Seven Symphonies

The Seven Symphonies:

I knew Rob van Weelde from his days as the head of Van Weelde Shipping in Rotterdam. Years ago, I performed for his company at an event on the SS Rotterdam. I had no idea he had a background in music! Since then, he retired from shipping, and he helped set up the Wedgeview Sound Studios – not far from the farmland studio where The Beach Boys recorded Holland. Rob says he has always been a fan of The Beach Boys, and he finds their music beautiful enough to be performed by a symphony orchestra. Like: “What if we would create symphonic versions of Beach Boys music and have it recorded by the Antwerp Philharmonic Orchestra?” So that’s what he did.

Rob says he was 12 years old when Brian Wilson composed Pet Sounds. According to Rob: “Even Paul McCartney called Pet Sounds the greatest pop album ever made, and the song ‘God Only Knows’ was – in his view – the best pop song ever made.” You may already know ‘God Only Knows’ from every year on Dutch TV show All You Need Is Love. Or from the soundtrack to Love Actually.

(My mother hates this song. Not only does she call it extremely sappy and pathetic, but she finds the lyrics or the psychological cry for help.) (But lots of people like it.)

The making of The Seven Symphonies

Anyway, Rob needed someone to speak a voiceover for the making of. And that’s me.
(from YouTube) The making of The Seven Symphonies – A classical tribute to Beach Boys music: a 25 minutes documentary about our new album, in which we give you a glimpse behind the scenes at Wedgeview Studios and Galaxy Studios, where the album was recorded with the Antwerp Philharmonic Orchestra August last year. With interviews with our conductor Alexandra Arrieche, arranger Roeland Jacobs, executive producer Rob van Weelde and Jan Vereecke, director of the Antwerp Philharmonic Orchestra. Enjoy!

For more Greg VoiceOver & Acting work, click here. (It’s some good stuff…)