Tuesday, April 5, 2016


All it took was one photo and it became Dick Dale oddball night. Randy Nauert posted the photo below on Facebook today. Nauert was the former bass player for the Challengers, one of the biggest of the first wave of surf bands back in the early sixties. He knows of what he speaks/posts. He was also a life long friend of Rick Griffin. But that's another story. Anyways, he posts a lot of cool shit on Facebook.

When I saw the photo, I looked for a similar high resolution uncropped copy of the photo, so I could link to it (the one on Facebook can't be linked). I couldn't find one, but it lead to a succession of Dick Dale oddballs, so there you have it.

The first thing to check below are the videos, very cool footage, and surprisingly good quality, of a very early performance in a club in Anaheim. It's a packed house, a lot of bodies moving. The odd thing is that there's no footage of him playing guitar, only drums, sax, and in the second video just singing. Go figure. But it is notable, particularly because the crowd continues to bee bop their heads off, during during his "Look Ma, I'm Gene Krupa" portion of the song. Then, an 6:31, the birth of pogo dancing. The second video has him singing "Greenback Dollar", again without a guitar, and again, the crowd keeps going. Those kids are nuts.

Check the photo above. The lean, the one foot in the air, the look on his face, the collarless jacket, the drum head, the well lit room, the checkered floor..., does that not epitomize that era of surf music? (Large version here.) Nevermind the fact that Dale actually did get wet (see the photo at the top of the post).

The other stuff down there is just random crap that I ran across. A couple are lesser known songs. "Taboo" is exotica noir, spooky sounding or just chill, depending on your predilection. "Death of a Gremmie" sounds like some prankster swapped out Link Wray's distortion and plugged him into a reverb. (Hate to be that guy.) It's Dale trying his best in the baddass game. Maybe his picking hand was fatigued after all that staccato picking 'n' shit.

Dick Dale and the Deltones - Taboo mp3 at Internet Archive
Dick Dale and the Deltones - Death of a Gremmie mp3
at Internet Archive
Dick Dale and the Deltones - Surf Beat mp3 at Internet Archive
Dick Dale and the Deltones - Mr. Eliminator mp3
at Internet Archive
Dick Dale and the Deltones - Teen Beat/All Night Long
at YouTube Pogoing commences at 6:31
Dick Dale and the Deltones - Greenback Dollar
at YouTube
Dick Dale and the Birth of Surf Rock
at NPR 13 minutes, from Fresh Air 

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