To the Beach Boys & Beyond
Cutting his musical teeth in a Puerto Rican jazz club in the 1960s, Carli Muñoz came of age during the countercultural flowering of that era; he lived for music, knowledge, and the mind-expanding magic of LSD. Wanting to expand creative horizons for his successful psychedelic rock band, Muñoz flew to New York on a whim with $11 in his pocket and embarked on a deep dive into the gritty scene of gigs, girls, and trips, struggling to fill his pockets with dollars and his belly with food. Free-falling into the dark underbelly of the city, Muñoz ended up homeless and penniless until an epiphany on the subway brought him back to the surface.
On the cusp of a new decade, Muñoz moved to LA to fight for a new life and a second chance. Hanging out in Houdini’s old mansion in Laurel Canyon, he watched the free-loving idealism of the ’60s melt into the disco- and cocaine-saturated hedonism of the ’70s, until one day he found himself on tour with the Beach Boys. He became close friends with Dennis Wilson—a friendship that ranged from pranking each other to working on an album together to watching him spiral irretrievably into self-destruction. He witnessed the feud between Mike Love and the Wilsons firsthand, as well as the unchecked instability of Brian Wilson. Despite the chaos and power struggles within the band, Muñoz was able to create enthralling music with them, as well as with some of the other popular musicians of the ’70s, including Wilson Pickett, the Association, George Benson, and Peter Cetera.
Populated with an eclectic cast of artists, musicians, clairvoyants, record producers, hippies, hobos, and superstars, A Fool’s Journey is a vivid snapshot of an era-defining moment that will never be repeated.
Although Muñoz toured with the Beach Boys for ten years and partied with rock stars, he was also just an island kid from Puerto Rico, forever in exile, forever “the other.” The story of his journey is as compelling as it is timely.