Sunday, July 20, 2014


I'm a twin, an identical twin. The reason why I bring that up is because I can't listen to the soundtrack to The Endless Summer without a big smile invading my face.  (Skip to the bottom of the post if you can't be bothered with personal blabbing, funny as it might be.) Back in the nineties, the original soundtrack had been out of print for some time. I knew the album well because I had a thoroughly thrashed-from-use vinyl copy and longed for a replacement.  One day I was driving home from work, past a surf shop a few blocks away, and had to pull over. They had an Endless Summer poster in the window, advertising the album, which had recently been released on cassette and CD. I didn't even have to think. I went into the shop to buy it. I was all kinds of stoked, muttering to the guy behind the counter how long it had been since I heard a clean copy, and more of that nonsense that no one needs to know but when you're jazzed you start spilling. For some reason the guy behind the counter was giving be all sorts of weird looks throughout the transaction, more so than would normally be given an over enthusiastic customer. I mean, this guy was keeping his distance, as if I was going to rob him, like I was nuts. I sloughed it off, and headed home.

When I got home, I had to call my brother before I even listened to it, because the LP was also a favorite of his, so I knew he'd want to know. When I told him that the shop had it, he said that he knew, and asked if I'd listened to it. I told him I hadn't and he said that he had, and that it wasn't the original version. All of the songs had been rerecorded by the band, the Sandals, probably taking advantage of the fact that there was a demand and the original was out of print. He said that it was too clean, that it lacked the vibe of the original version, so much so that, after hearing the copy he had just picked up, he brought it to the local record store and asked if they could reseal it for him. He then went back to the same surf shop to return it. Keep in mind that this was just hours before I was in the shop. When he tried to return it, the guy behind the counter said that he couldn't take it back because it had been resealed. Well, my brother pitched a fit, got in the guy's face and all of that. He pointed out to the guy that there was nothing on the outside packaging that indicated that they were not the original recordings. The counter guy finally relented. The same counter guy that looked at me as if I was nuts. We laughed about it, and I thought about returning my still sealed copy. We decided that the guy had already been through enough for one day. We'd fuck with him later. We howled about that one.

The soundtrack, in its original form, is a tier two surf classic. It has a less frantic pace than you're used to in surf music, making it a prime soundtrack for an after-beach barbeque, replete with a sunburned back and water still dripping from your nose. Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban posed the complete LP about a year ago, and if you didn't get it then, here's your reminder.

The Sandals - The Endless Summer mp3 at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban
The Sandals -  6 Pack mp3  at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban
The Sandals - Decoy mp3  at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban
The Sandals - Nine more songs at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban
The Endless Summer radio spot mp3 at Rock 'n' Soul Ichiban
Endless Summer clips at YouTube
The Sandals and Bruce Brown at Vimeo Dialogue at the end. Semi current.
Bruce Brown Films
Bruce Brown at Wikipedia
The Endless Summer at Wikipedia
The Sandals at Wikipedia
The Endless Summer collection at Surf Classics The original iconic poster design was by John Van Hammersveld who later did the cover of Exile on Main St.

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