Beach Boys Founder Brian Wilson Postpones Tour to Deal With Mental Health

What the 76-year-old is saying to fans

June 7, 2019
 Brian Wilson performs at the Hard Rock Live

© Ron Elkman/USA TODAY NETWORK

Beach Boys founder Brian Wilson’s struggles with mental health issues earlier in his career have been the subject of headlines, books, and movies ever since. Unfortunately, the legendary songwriter is dealing with something again.

Related: Brian Wilson’s Daughter Shares Tender Moment With Beach Boys Legend

Wilson has announced the postponement of his upcoming tour. He says he is physically stronger than he’s ever been following three surgeries on his back, but that he’s been feeling mentally insecure ever since.

“We're not sure what is causing it, but I do know that it’s not good for me to be on the road right now so I’m heading back to Los Angeles,” the 76-year-old said in a letter posted on his website. “It is no secret that I have been living with mental illness for many decades. There were times when it was unbearable, but with doctors and medications I have been able to live a wonderful, healthy and productive life with support from my family, friends and fans who have helped me through this journey.” 

Wilson says he has every intention to get back to performing, and that he’s even been in the studio recording. He says he’s going to rest and work with his doctors to figure out what’s wrong.

“I’ve been struggling with stuff in my head and saying things I don’t mean and I don’t know why,” Wilson said. “It’s something I’ve never dealt with before and we can’t quite figure it out just yet. 

Wilson suffered a nervous breakdown at the height of the Beach Boys’ popularity in the mid-60s and quit touring to focus on writing and producing. He later admitted that drugs like LSD eventually made things worse. Wilson’s life turned around after being removed from the care of controversial psychologist Eugene Landy in the early 90s to focus on more conventional treatment. That part of Wilson’s story was explained in the 2014 biopic Love and Mercy.

Mental health issues are very real -- and you are not alone. If you or anyone you know is struggling with depression or in distress, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides free and confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week: 1-800-273-8255.

All RADIO.COM stations are committed to ending the stigma of talking about mental health. For more information and resources, visit ImListening.org