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Brian Wilson takes a liking to England’s Magic Numbers

Music group Magic Numbers.

Music group the Magic Numbers.

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Updated: August 24, 2013 6:06AM

Brian Wilson, whose last solo studio album was a tribute to composers George and Ira Gershwin, isn’t a student of new sounds.

“Brian is mostly interested in music of his youth,” says his musical director, Paul Von Mertens.

But one band caught his eye. “We were doing a tour of England a couple years ago,” Von Mertens says. “We rarely have an opening act, but on this tour for some dates we had the Magic Numbers.”

The Magic Numbers are a British pop-rock band, related like the original Beach Boys, but two brother-sister elements instead.

“He went down by the side of the stage and listened to their set every night,” Von Mertens recalled. “That was unusual for him. I remember he said, ‘They sound really good for a four-piece.’ He was impressed with how lean the band was, but very musical.”

Dave Hoekstra

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