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100 Greatest Surf Rock Songs

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Criteria: - This list strives to give the best representation of the Surf Rock sound, by consideration of impact, influence, popularity, originality and adherence to the original surf rock guitar & harmony sound. (Note: Many 'Surf Rock' artists recorded tunes of various subject matter popular with young people in the early '60s, such as 'Girls', 'Hot Rods', 'Dances', 'School', and the new 'Space Race' regarding the first satellites such as 'Telstar'. This list focuses only on songs relating to 'Surfing'.)

Edited By:
List Begun: 03-05-2007

100 Greatest Surf Rock Songs
  1. Surfin' U.S.A. - The Beach Boys
  2. Wipe Out - The Surfaris
  3. Pipeline - The Chantays
  4. Misirlou - Dick Dale & the Del-Tones
  5. Surfer Girl - The Beach Boys
  6. Surf City - Jan & Dean
  7. Let's Go Trippin' - Dick Dale & the Del-Tones
  8. Surfin' Safari - The Beach Boys
  9. Walk-Don't Run '64 - The Ventures
10. Penetration - The Pyramids
11. Ride The Wild Surf - Jan & Dean
12. The Lonely Surfer - Jack Nitzsche
13. Surfer Joe - The Surfaris
14. Honolulu Lulu - Jan & Dean
15. Baja - The Astronauts
16. Catch A Wave - The Beach Boys
17. Surfer's Stomp - The Marketts
18. California Sun - The Rivieras
19. Moon Dawg - The Gamblers
20. Mr. Moto - Bel Airs
21. Surf Beat - Dick Dale & the Del-Tones
22. Surfin' Bird - The Trashmen
23. Bombora - The Atlantics
24. Diamond Head - The Ventures
25. Lonely Sea - The Beach Boys
26. Bustin' Surfboards - The Tornadoes
27. Point Panic - The Surfaris
28. Perfidia - The Ventures
29. Soul Surfer - Johnny Fortune
30. Stoked - The Beach Boys
31. Noble Surfer - The Beach Boys
32. Surf Rider - The Lively Ones
33. Mr. Rebel - Eddie & The Showmen
34. Tell 'Em I'm Surfin' - Fantastic Baggys
35. New York's a Lonely Town - Trade Winds
36. Beyond the Surf - Jack Nitzsche
37. Let's Go! - The Routers
38. Surfin' - The Beach Boys
39. Shake N' Stomp - The Surfaris
40. King Of The Surf Guitar (vocal version) - Dick Dale & the Del-Tones
41. My Big Gun Board - The Rip Chords
42. Kame-Kaze - The Challengers
43. Tidal Wave - Dick Dale & the Del-Tones
44. Surf Jam - The Beach Boys
45. Pipeline - Dick Dale with Stevie Ray Vaughan (1987)
46. Mar Gaya - Fender IV
47. Surf Sacrifice - The Eliminators
48. Surfer's Delight - Bruce Johnston
49. Banzai Washout - Dick Dale & the Del-Tones
50. Surf-Ari - The Challengers
51. The Inebriated Surfer - The Tornadoes
52. Surf-A-Nova - Bruce Johnston
53. Surf Man - Richie Allen & The Pacific Surfers
54. Surfers' Slide - Richie Allen & The Pacific Surfers
55. He's My Blonde Headed Stompie-Wompie Real Gone Surfer Boy - Little Pattie
56. In-Liner (Surf Beat '97) - Dick Dale
57. Balboa Blue - The Marketts
58. Surfin' And Spyin' - The Ventures
59. Big Wednesday - The Rip Chords
60. Surfin' 'Round The World - Bruce Johnston
61. K-39 - The Challengers
62. Fiberglass Jungle - The Crossfires
63. Toes On The Nose - Eddie & The Showmen
64. Santa Cruz - The Ventures
65. Surf Trek - Davie Allan & Dick Dale
66. Gone Surfin' - Gary Hoey
67. Save Your Sundays For Surfin' - Fantastic Baggys
68. Surfer Dan - The Turtles
69. The Sweet Ride - The Supertones
70. I Live For the Sun - The Sunrays
71. Malibu Run - Fender IV
72. Surfin's Here To Stay - Bruce Johnston
73. Black Surf - Surf Guitar Villains
74. Surfer's Life - The Blue Stingrays
75. Shootin' The Pier - The Lively Ones
76. Summer Means Fun - Bruce and Terry
77. Two On The Beach - The Ventures
78. Surfin' Tragedy - The Sentinals
79. Surfin' Natasha - The Mel-Tones
80. Surfin' Time Again - Little Pattie
81. The Perfect Wave - Neil Norman
82. Surfin' School - The Del-Tinos
83. Surf Party - The Blue Stingrays
84. Shangai Surf - The Supertones
85. Pray For Surf - The Essex
86. Curl Rider Stomp - The Mel-Tones
87. The Ninth Wave - The Bomboras
88. Caught in the Undertow - The Retroliners
89. Surfmania - The Aqua Velvets
90. King Of The Surf - The Trashmen
91. Parafin Jungle - The Eliminators
92. You'll Never Surf In This Town Again - The Mel-Tones
93. Sex Wax - Surf Nation
94. Sultans of Surf - Surf Guitar Villains
95. Return Of The Surfin' Headhunters - The Mel-Tones
96. Surf Blaster - The Vara-Tones
97. Surf Nouveau - The Aqua Velvets
98. Curl Rider - Surf Nation
99. Ghost Wave - The Verbtones
100. Little Miss Red Riding Hood Surfer Queen Of Hollywood - Jim Pewter
honerable mentions
  Theme from The Endless Summer - The Sandals (1964)
  Theme from The Endless Summer - Gary Hoey (from The Endless Summer II) (1994)

The Beach Boys
The Beach Boys

wipeout/surfer joe album

The Surfaris
The Surfaris

Dick Dale
Dick Dale

jan and dean

The Ventures
The Ventures

The Chantays
The Chantays

Definition: 'Surf Rock' originated in Southern California in the early '60s where the sport of surfing and the young people who followed the trend became a sub-culture of their own. Dick Dale, a surfer himself, originated the sound on 1961s instrumental "Let's Go Trippin", using a generous amount of 'reverb', fast staccato picking, and use of the 'whammy bar' to to generate the excitement of rushing down a crashing wave. Other Instrumental bands followed the 'surf' sound including 'The Ventures', The Surfaris, The Chantays, and The Tornadoes. In '62 & '63 the Beach Boys and Jan & Dean recorded harmony-filled songs and ballads with the surfing theme. After its peak year of 1963, the instrumental surf-rock style gradually faded from prominence, while the vocal-oriented surf-rock style began to shift towards 'hot-rod' music, which consequently had the potential for even broader national appeal. In the 1990s, the popularity of the soundtrack from the movie "Pulp Fiction" (1994) brought about a whole new generation of instrumental Surf Rock bands, such as 'The Blue Stingrays', 'The Aqua Velvets', 'The Mel-Tones', & 'The Bomboras'. Today there are hundreds of 'Surf Rock' bands from around the world keeping the original sound alive.

Disclaimer: There is nothing 'Official' about these lists. They are compiled by the 'editor' using the
stated criteria, and revised considering the competent suggestions of visitors to this website only.

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