Surf Rock, the Classics of the “Surfers” – Artists and History


Surf Rock, the Classics of the "Surfers" – Artists and History

Have you ever imagined that surfing is also present in music?

Well, look how it is, besides all the aspects that have been "invaded" by surfing, music also has a place in this wonderful and exciting sport like surfing.

Surf music, emerged as a branch of the famous rock n`roll of the fifties that had so many fans, followers and figures as emblematic as the legendary Elvis Presley.

Surf rock was born in California during the sixties.

Surf music brought two special characteristics that made it a crowd favourite.

  • It contained an approach in which electric guitars played the instrumental part, thus creating a fluid and very refreshing sound.
  • The music was complemented by vocal choirs, usually with three to four voices.


The best waves in Lanzarote can be found from September to April

¡Come to our surf school in Lanzarote and sign up for our surf courses famara beach!


Surf Camp Lanzarote

Origin of surf rock music

rock surf

Image of the shop "Rock N'Roll Heaven Record Store", Orlando, Florida, USA | Photo by Mick Haupt on Unsplash

Surf rock became one of the most popular musical trends during the early sixties. Dick Dale was the initiator of this musical movement that attracted so many people.

Dale used the word "surf" for this new musical trend because it was his favourite sport and he surfed quite often.

Dick's close friends were not surf fans, but they did follow and enjoyed the music he played; this situation led to the use of surf-related words and idioms to refer to the style of music played by Dick Dale.

That is the reason why this musical style has this name, something curious and strange for some people.

The rock n`roll of the 1950s had a great influence on the emergence, growth and development of surf music.

A special sign of this musical trend was the long guitar solos, which were often heard more than the vocals, adapting rock n`roll vocals and chords; it was often said that the vocals accompanied the guitars and not the other way around.

Dick Dale's "Let's go trippin'" is the official song that marked the beginning of this musical trend and thus consolidated the first great wave of surf rock musicians.

The second wave of surf rock was led by the Beach Boys; these musicians added vocal harmonies, pop sparkles and their lyrics highlighted the charms of the sea, the beach and surfing.

Surf rock has had important moments in musical history at various times and in different places.

The best-known surf rock artists

The most renowned artist of the old school surf rock was its creator Dick Dale, who in the 1960s started this musical trend with the name of his favourite sport coupled with the fashionable music of the time.

Then came the Beach Boys with their beautiful vocal harmonies and lyrics that spoke of beach and surf.

After these pioneers, there were some followers eager to make this exciting music like Reef, The Phantom Surfers or the Messer Chups, coming from Russia.

dick dale surf rock

Cover of the debut album by Dick Dale and his Del-Tones, Surfers Choice was originally released in 1962.

Bandas más representativas del surf rock

– The Beach Boys 

– The Ventures 

– The Go – Go`s 

– Jan & Dean 

– The Trashmen 

 -The Surfaris 

– Davie Allen & The Arrows 

– The Bel – Airs 

– The Astronauts 

Surf rock bands and surf singers

– Al Casey

– Aqua Velvets

– Baymen

– Bob Vaught and The Renegaids

– Corky Carroll

– Dave Myers & The Surftones

– Dick Dale and His Del-Tones

– Digger Revell’s Denvermen

– Donavon Frankenreiter

– Eddie and The Showmen

– Frogmen

– Gary Usher

– The Superstocks

– The Surf Raiders

– The Surfaris

– The Surfers

– The Temptations

– The Tornadoes

– The Ventures

Surf rock videos

For all those who have fond memories of surf rock music and wish to recall the good times they had and also for those who are just getting in touch with this musical style, we can recommend the documentary "Sound Of The Surf", which tells the history and influence of this musical trend, starting in the 50's, in the sunny lands and beaches of California.



¡As we know that times change and this is an understatement, we bring you a playlist with the best surf rock of the new school!

The sea raged, thunder and lightning appeared in the sky… time to take the board and surf !! 

Calima Surf

Calima Surf

Teaching surfing since 1996


Leave a comment

Your e-mail address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *.