Michael Edward Love (born March 15, 1941) is an American singer and songwriter who co-founded the Beach Boys. Characterized by his nasal and sometimes baritone singing, Love has been one of the bands vocalists and lyricists for their entire career, contributing to each of their studio albums and serving as their frontman for live performances. He is the cousin of bandmates Brian, Carl and Dennis Wilson, and is often regarded as a malign figure in the groups history, a reputation he acknowledges: For those who believe that Brian walks on water, I will always be the Antichrist.Love was one of Wilsons collaborators during the Beach Boys peak in the 1960s. Among the bands US Top 10 hits were the Wilson–Love songs Fun, Fun, Fun (1964), California Girls (1965), and Good Vibrations (1966). Loves lyrics primarily reflected the youth culture of surfing, cars, and romance, which helped fashion pop cultures perception of the California Dream. Starting in 1968, Love was a student of Transcendental Meditation (TM) under Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, and became a TM teacher in 1971. The experience influenced his lyrics to take on themes of astrology, meditation, politics and ecology. In the late 1970s, Love began working on solo albums, releasing his first in 1981: Looking Back with Love. In 1988, Love was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, along with the other founding members of the Beach Boys. In the same year, the song Kokomo, co-written by Love, reached number one in the US and was nominated for a Grammy.
Many of Loves contributions to the groups hits were not officially recognized until the 1990s, when he successfully sued for writing credits on 35 songs. He remains uncredited for another 44 Beach Boys songs he alleged to have co-written. In 1998, following the death of Carl Wilson, Love was given an exclusive license to tour as the Beach Boys with Bruce Johnston while their surviving bandmates embarked on solo endeavors. They have since reunited once, for the bands 50th anniversary.