Jeff Beck and Johnny Depp have revealed another track from their upcoming album, 18, a stirring instrumental cover of the Beach Boys “Caroline, No,” which is available today digitally along with an accompanying live music video.
Brian Wilson has said “Caroline, No,” the final song on the Beach Boys’ 1966 album Pet Sounds could be the best song he’s ever written. “That entire album was great support for me in horrible times. I’d left the Yardbirds and regretted it because I had nothing. I was back living with my mum and dad. I thought, right, I’m not going sit around doing nothing. So, I bought a stereo and Pet Sounds, and I was just riveted to the spot. I remember it was a great big cure from losing the Yardbirds, having Jimi Hendrix stomp all over things, and losing my girlfriend. All that happened in what seemed like the same day,” reflects Beck.
In Depp, Jeff Beck found a kindred spirit when the two met in 2016. They bonded quickly over cars and guitars and spent most of their time together trying to make each other laugh. At the same time, Beck’s appreciation grew for Depp’s serious songwriting skills and his ear for music. That talent and their chemistry convinced Beck they should make an album together.
Depp agreed and they started in 2019. Over the next three years, they recorded a mix of Depp originals along with a wide range of covers that touches on everything from Celtic and Motown, to the Beach Boys and Killing Joke. In 2020, during the pandemic, they previewed their collaboration with their well-timed cover of John Lennon’s “Isolation.”
The duo’s 13-track album, dubbed 18, will arrive on July 15. Beck explains the album title: “When Johnny and I started playing together, it really ignited our youthful spirit and creativity. We would joke about how we felt 18 again, so that just became the album title too.”
Of Beck, Depp adds, “It’s an extraordinary honor to play and write music with Jeff, one of the true greats and someone I am now privileged enough to call my brother.”
In the studio, Beck says he and Depp challenged each other to leave their comfort zones with the songs they chose to cover. “I haven’t had another creative partner like him for ages,” Beck says. “He was a major force on this record. I just hope people will take him seriously as a musician because it’s a hard thing for some people to accept that Johnny Depp can sing rock and roll.”
Depp justifies Beck’s faith on the new album by showing off his incredible emotional range on songs like The Velvet Underground’s “Venus In Furs,” the Everly Brothers’ ballad “Let It Be Me” and Marvin Gaye’s soul classic “What’s Going On.” On the instrumentals, Beck demonstrates why he’s universally revered as a guitar god with stunning versions of Davy Spillane’s “Midnight Walker” and two songs from the Beach Boys’ masterpiece, Pet Sounds – “Caroline, No” and “Don’t Talk (Put Your Head On My Shoulder).”
Leading up to the release of 18, Beck has launched a European tour, with Depp as special guest, which will conclude on July 25 at L’Olympia in Paris.
JEFF BECK with special guest JOHNNY DEPP
June 24 Oslo Sentrum Scene
June 25 Kristiansund Tahiti Festival
June 27 Stockholm Annexet
June 28 Copenhagen Amager Bio
June 29 Randers Værket
June 30 Randers Værket
July 2 Oslo Sentrum Scene
July 3 Bergen Bergenhus Fortress
July 6 Offenbach Stadthalle
July 9 Monte Carlo Opera Garnier Monte Carlo
July 11 Prague Forum Karlin
July 13 Munich Tollwood Festival
July 14 Saint-Julien-en-Genevois Guitare en Scene 2022
July 15 Montreux Montreux Music & Convention Center
July 17 Perugia Arena Santa Giuliana
July 18 Brescia Gardone Riviera
July 20 Pordenone Parco San Valentino
July 21 Cattolica Arena della Regina
July 23 Vitrolles Jardin Sonore Festival
July 24 Marciac Jazz in Marciac
July 25 Paris L’Olympia
More dates TBA
All dates subject to change