1944, Dec. 4 (Monday) - Born Dennis Carl Wilson. First home: 8012 So. Harvard Blvd. Family moves in 1945.
1950 Enters York Elementary School. Attends Inglewood Covenant Church with family.
1955 Disneyland opens, and the Wilsons visit twice a year. Dennis likes Tom Sawyer Island.
1957, Oct. Murry buys Carl & Dennis a 400B go-cart.
1958, Dec. Dennis sees the first Barbie doll, says "Whoa! I'd rather have this in my room than a stag magazine!"
1959 Mike and Dennis spend time at the beach together. Mike tries to get Dennis to get Brian to start a group. They talk about surfing.
1960 Sophomore year at Hawthorne High. Dennis participates in track meets. Coach catches Dennis smoking and makes him run the track daily until he promises to quit. He refuses. Dennis takes drum lessons at school (HHS). Music teacher Fred Morgan later referres to him as " a beater, not a drummer. A fast learner when he wanted to learn."
1961-Suggests lyrical subject to Brian, helping to establish the musical direction of the band. 9/15/61, Dennis is not allowed to participate in recording. On probation at school, Brian attempts to find another drummer. Murry also says he isn't good enough. Participates in first series of demo recording sessions w/ Beach Boys - is allowed to participate at Mother's urging. (10/3/61) - Records at World Pacific Studios, first single, Surfin, with the Beach Boys. 12/8/61 - "Surfin" released and the Pendletones become the Beach Boys.
1962 - Fall - records first lead vocal on a BB album "Little Girl (You're My Miss America)", co-written w/ Herb
Alpert. Dennis is expelled from Hawthorne High for fighting, Senior year. Dennis crashes his blue Corvair and is so shaken he is replaced for 4 gigs by Mark Groseclose.
1963 - First collaborative songwriting attempt w/Hot Rod songwriter Gary Usher. "RPM & My Stingray - Play's drums on the recordings (credited to "The 4-Speeds"). Also plays drums on the second single "Cheater Slicks" b/w "Four on the Floor. Purchases first car 1963 Vet Stingray. - OR 1964 Buys a Jaguar XKE,
totalling it the same day, THEN buys the Stingray.
1964 Receives first Beach Boys album credit for Drum Solo, "Denny's Drums". Beach Boys do the TAMI Show and 2 movies, Monkey's Uncle and Girls on the Beach. BBs appear on Ed Sullivan and American Bandstand. 4/2/64 - During recording session of I Get Around, Dennis is so upset by Murry's criticism that he puts his hand through a wall and walks out. Brian fires Murry that day.
1965 - Marries Carole Freedman, adopts infant son Scott on July 29, Moves into 2600 Benedict Canyon Dr.
1966 Dennis files for divorce from Carole, they reconcile soon after.
1967 - In June, Carol files for divorce - Daughter Jennifer is born Feb 25, 1967.
1968 Hangs out with Steve McQueen. Dennis is the first BB to meet the Marharishi, whose first words to Dennis are "Live your life to the fullest." Recording debut of a Dennis Wilson composition on BB album Friends -- Little Bird and Be Still, co-written by Steve Kalinich. Suzanne Love files for divorce from Mike, he counters claiming adultery with Dennis. She denies it (Dennis doesn't). Dennis meets Charles Manson. Manson family moves into house on Sunset Blvd. Re-writes and records Manson's "Cease to Exist" as "Never Learn Not to Love" 9/11/68. At the end of the year Dennis moves to Palisades without telling Manson, then moves in with Gregg Jakobsen in Benedict Canyon (Manson always finds him).
1969 - On 20/20, writes and produces first "orchestral" epic "Be with Me". Re-writes and records Manson's "Cease to Exist" as "Never Learn Not to Love" - 6 months later, Manson is arrested for Tate - La Bianca (Griffith Park) murders. (committed 8/9/69 at record producer and Beach Boys friend Terry Melcher's old house at 10050 Cielo Dr.)
1970 - Marries Barbara Cherren Aug 4, son Michael born. Manson sent to prison.
1971, Jan, . Records his most popular ballad, "Forever", released on the BB album Sunflower. Co-written by Gregg Jakobsen, this marks the beginning of Dennis' most productive musical collaboration, which sees it's culmination 7 years later on Pacific Ocean Blue. Releases the first genuine Beach Boy solo record: the single Sound of Free b/w Lady, released in the UK on Dec 4 on Stateside Records and credited to Dennis Wilson and Rhumbo (w/Darryl Dragon of Captain and Tenniel fame). At this time he begins work on his first proposed solo album with Darryl Dragon.
1971(Spring) - Puts hand through plate glass window, severing nerves, and putting a temporary end to his drumming, resulting in the hiring of South African Ricky Fataar of Flame as touring drummer and official member of the band. Dennis states in interview that the last song he played drums on before the accident is Student Demonstration Time, on the Surf's Up album. Due to a possible disagreement with Carl, 4th of July and Carry Me Home are not included on the album. Films 2-Lane Blacktop w/ James Taylor and Warren Oats.
BBs move families to Holland, Dennis moves to Canary Islands and commutes for recording. Marilyn and Diane release "Fallin in Love" (Dennis's "Lady") under the name American Spring (produced by Brian). "Cuddle Up" recorded, (originally called "Old Movie".) Carl Benton Wilson born 12/72
1973 6/4/73 Murry dies. Dennis and Brian do not attend funeral. Dennis starts his "Streaker" act during several concerts.
1974 BBs summer tour with Chicago, nicknamed "Beachago". Sings backup on recording of "Wishing You Were Here" on Chicago VII. Endless Summer released, signaling a paradigm shift in the artistic vision of the group -- more emphises on oldies in concert, less on the process of recording original material. Dennis returns as BB concert drummer full-time. Early in the year buys custom Porsche with full-race engine, license plate D LOVER. Divorces Barbara 8/74.
1975 - Buys and rehabs the "Harmony", a twin-masted, 50 foot Ketch rebuilt from scratch w/ a couple of Yugoslavian guys.
1976 5/21/76 - Marries Barbara Karen Perk Lamm, former wife of keyboardist Robert Lamm of "Chicago". Jeoffry Ballet in San Francisco includes the song "Forever" in a performance called Deuce Coupe II.
1977 - Summer, first solo album, Pacific Ocean Blue (original working title, "Freckles") released. Songs begun for the project but not completed include: 10,000 Years, School Girl, Tug of Love, Taking Off, Time for Bed, Holy Man and Slow Booze. Work begins immediatly on Bamboo (second solo album) w/ Carly Munoz. Divorces Karen 9/19/77, moves from Broad Beach Rd. home to Venice.
1978 - Fired from the band due to substance abuse (1979? After Universal Amphitheater show in LA). Remarries Karen Lamm 7/78, files for divorce 2 weeks later. Splits with Karen Lamm.
1979 - Begins relationship w/ Christine McVie of Fleetwood Mac. (He moves into her house in Clear Water Canyon.) 2/13/79 "Baby Blue" is released as B side of the disco single "Here Comes The Night". Dennis is devastated. Travels off and on with Fleetwood Mac until 1981. L.A. album released, "Love Surrounds Me" is the last DW composition released on a new Beach Boys album.
1980 - Dennis rejoins the band. BBs appear on Mike Douglas Show in Hawaii. Dennis remarks that it's the FIRST time they ever played on the beach. 12/30/80 BBs get a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (located at 1500 Vine St.), Dennis does not appear at ceremony. Divorce from Karen final 6/80.
1981 - Breaks up w/ Christine McVie. Participates in sessions at villiage recorders w/ Brian, recording such tunes as "Oh Lord" and "Night Blooming" (sometimes referred to as the notorious "hamburger sessions", a reference to the reward strategy employed by Dennis to motivate Brian's songwriting activity.) Begins work on compositions to be used in a new musical for the stage.
1982 - Harmony repossessed. Begins relationship with Shawn Love (alleged illegitimate daughter of Mike Love). Dennis & Shawn live in Venice on Wavecrest. Final attempt to finish second solo album (Bamboo). Gage Dennis Wilson born 9/3/82.
1983 Marries Shawn Marie Love 7/28/83. Mutual restraining orders filed between Mike and Dennis. Tours intermittantly with band, visits the White House with the Beach Boys. Final concert appearance Sept. 3,
1983. Dies on December 28 while diving off friend's boat. (last dive 4:25 pm, pronounced dead at 5:55 pm)
1984 - Jan 4, official burial at sea off the coast of California.
1985 "The Beach Boys" released, dedication - "This album is dedicated to the memory of our beloved brother, cousin and friend."
2001 - Brian Wilson includes the song "Forever" in his tour setlist, dedicating it to Dennis Wilson.