Thursday, May 21, 2015


Oh yeah baby, this weekend is Memorial Day weekend, three days off with plenty of time to get in the water, roast weenies, and toss back some cool ones. You will, of course, need a soundtrack, and what better soundtrack than surf music? Many surfers would poo poo the idea that reverb drenched guitar instrumentals are what real surfers listen to, but I don't care, because Dick Dale invented the genre and he surfed. And I don't care what his skills were in the water, he's good with a guitar and he's a nice guy. I know, I've met him and had a pretty lengthy conversation with him. The man is unguarded and genuine. Check this video. This was years after my encounter, and he's every bit as generous with his time as he was decades earlier. Someone asks him if he has any advice for up and coming musicians. He lays it all out, barely coming up for air, as if he'd given the same advice many times before. You might know it as Punk Rock Distribution 101, or the SST business model. Nearly two decades earlier, there was Deltone Records. The man knows of what he speaks. And that is why the system hates Dick Dale.

Even if he sucked as a musician, that short clip would be worth viewing. But he doesn't suck. And anyone who might think of disputing his rightful ownership of his self invented title, King of the Surf Guitar, is not worth arguing with. I know a guy who dismissed him outright because he didn't like his voice. Yes, I know how it is. Raquel Welch's knees turn my stomach too.

A dripping wet tip of the hat to Adam over at Diddy Wah for posting "Night Rider", the flip side of "The Wedge". That's what prompted me to re-post that video and reaffirm my utmost respect. Say what you want. In this house, Dick Dale is king.

Dick Dale and His Del-Tones - The Wedge mp3 at Internet Archive 1963
Dick Dale and His Del-Tones - Night Rider mp3 at Diddy Wah Go there to get it 
Dick Dale and His Del-Tones - Surf Beat mp3 at Beware of the Blog 1962
Dick Dale and His Del-Tones - Mr. Eliminator mp3
at Hell's Belles 1964

Dick Dale and His Del-Tones - Peter Gunn mp3 at (?) 1975 
Dick Dale and His Del-Tones - Deltone Rock mp3 at Review Stalker 1961


Devil Dick said...

I hung with Dick and his wife once. His wife stole of bottle of booze from the club we were at and said come back and hang out and get drunk. Dick was telling "stories" of making LOVE TO DOLPHINS back in the day! (I swear he said this) They were awesome. We sort of became friends and actually invited me to come and hang out at his "compound". I never made it.... how stupid of me!

Tom G. said...

Dick, my brother had a similar story, and he did hang at the Dale house for an entire day. He had an assignment to shoot photos of him and ended up becoming, like you, "sort of" friends with him. When he found out my brother was in a surf band (the Evasions) Dick treated him like a son, took him out on his boat and played guitar for him. (Unfortunately, he didn't get to hear the dolphin story!) He's one musician who has my total respect for his character and being so generous with his time.