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See the Last Surviving Beach Boys Now, at 79 and 81

Brian Wilson, Mike Love, and Al Jardine co-founded the band in 1961.

"Surfin' U.S.A." "I Get Around." "God Only Knows." The list goes on when it comes to the many songs fans of The Beach Boys have known and loved during the band's 60-year history. And while they got their start way back in 1961 and have faced several lineup changes along the way, The Beach Boys are still active today, just not in the same way.

Sadly, some of the band's members are no longer around. Today, there are three surviving original members: Brian Wilson, Mike Love, and Al Jardine. Read on to find out more about the status of the band and to learn more about the surviving members' lives.

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The band's makeup has gone through many changes.

The Beach Boys performing in 1964
Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

The Beach Boys were formed in 1961 by five members: brothers Brian, Carl, and Dennis Wilson, their cousin Mike Love, and Al Jardine. Dennis, the drummer, remained in the band until his death in 1983 at age 39, and Carl, the lead guitarist, was in the band until he died in 1998 at 51. Other members have joined and left over the years. Currently, the band officially consists of Wilson, Love, Jardine, and Bruce Johnston.

The Beach Boys are still active.

The Beach Boys at a press conference in Sydney, Australia in 1978
Lorrie Graham/Fairfax Media via Getty Images via Getty Images

While fans can often catch the group on tour, the touring members differ from the ones in the official lineup. Love and Johnston tour with other musicians under The Beach Boys name, while Wilson and Jardine don't participate in those live shows.

As for recorded music, The Beach Boys haven't released any new studio albums since 2012's That's Why God Made the Radio, but they have put out more archival and unreleased recordings, including 2021's Feel Flows: The Sunflower & Surf's Up Sessions 1969–1971. This year, as the band marks the 60th anniversary of being signed to a record label, more releases and special celebrations are on the way.

Brian Wilson also found success as a solo artist.

Brian Wilson on stage at Reel to Reel: Brian Wilson: Long Promised Road in 2021
Rebecca Sapp/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

In addition to being a founding member of The Beach Boys, Wilson has also long been a solo artist, and he still releases music and tours as a solo artist now. His last album, At My Piano, debuted in 2021. The 79-year-old musician was also the subject of a documentary that came out last year, Brian Wilson: Long Promised Road.

Wilson has seven children: Wilson Phillips singers Carnie and Wendy Wilson with his first wife, Marilyn Wilson-Rutherford, and five children he adopted with his current wife, Melinda Ledbetter. He also has six grandchildren.

Mike Love's tours have led to some controversy.

Mike Love performing at the 2022 Stagecoach Festival
Scott Dudelson/Getty Images for Stagecoach

Love, 81, is the lead vocalist for The Beach Boys, and he still leads the band on tour today. Since Love's touring version of the band is different from the official lineup, this has led Jardine and Wilson to speak out against some of the shows Love's version of the group has participated in over the years. Love has also put out solo music. His latest album is 2019's 12 Sides of Summer.

The musician has been married five times, including to his current wife, Jacqueline Piesen, since 1994. He has eight children.

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Al Jardine is touring with Wilson soon.

Al Jardine performing with The Brian Wilson Band in 2021
Al Pereira/Getty Images

Like his bandmates, Jardine has also released solo music, but isn't as prolific. His only solo studio album, A Postcard from California, came out in 2010. While Jardin does not tour with Love's version of The Beach Boys, he has toured as part of Wilson's band. Jardine will soon participate his "Family & Friends" tour, which will also feature Wilson Phillips and his musician son, Matt Jardine.

Jardine has been married to his second wife, Mary Ann Helmandollar since 1983. He has four children.

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Lia Beck
Lia Beck is a writer living in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to Best Life, she has written for Refinery29, Bustle, Hello Giggles, InStyle, and more. Read more
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