Sunday, December 28, 2014

ODDS & ENDS Vol. 6


It was inevitable that sooner or later our series would touch on the genre known to many as surf music, or surfing music. What many may not know is that surf music didn’t start out as a genre known as surfing music but instead was and is music that surfers listen to, hence the name. Now we know that this will undoubtedly raise the hackles of the academicists in our community but we have decided to step bravely forward into memory lane and present to you, the listener, what it was like to sit in a living room just blocks from the beach in 1962, watching homemade 8mm surfing movies and spinning 45s of the latest surf tunes. The Fireballs, from Raton, New Mexico, were and are favorites and their landlocked geography might fool one into thinking they would not be able to convey the feeling of catching a wave and turning on to its fullest extent. But one listen to their tune “Bulldog” will be sure to disabuse one of that theory. And Ray Charles with his great two-part “What’d I Say”? Of course it’s surfing music. Ditto “Take Five,” “Harlem Nocturne,” and “Desafinado.”

We hope you enjoy listening to it, before, during, and after your next trip to the shore.
—Melvin “Kukai” Cowznofski

The Fireballs • Vaquero (Cowboy) • 1960

Photo copyright © 2014 by Brad Barrett. Used by permission.

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