We're passionate about one thing... Preserving the Surf Music History

For the first time, “Sound Of The Surf” tells the true story behind this cultural and commercial phenomenon, as told by those who were living California’s early beach culture and the musicians who brought Surf Music to the ears and hearts of millions.

Meet the Crew: Some of the people who tell their story in Sound of the Surf.

John Blair (Executive-Producer)
Writer, producer, and guitarist who made significant contributions to surf music and is credited with single handedly starting Surf Music’s ‘second wave’ when he formed Jon & The Nightriders in 1979.
John also authored "The Illustrated Discography of Surf Music" now in it's 4th Edition.

Dick Dale
Dale was crowned "King of the Surf Guitar" by local surfers in 1961 when he played the Rendezvous Ballroom in Balboa California. His loud and thundering guitar became an instant attraction for thousands of teenagers who came to dance the "Surfer's Stomp" on the wooden floor. “Dick's original, unique style and innovative equipment galvanized the movement and became the standard for Sound of the Surf Music.”

Paul Johnson

Prominent and widely respected surf guitarist. He founded The Belairs in 1961 and is responsible for igniting the South Bay Surf Music scene in L.A. He wrote the seminal “Mr. Moto,” covered by many later surf bands and considered a Surf Music staple. In recent years, Johnson has performed and recorded as one-half of The Duotones, and as lead guitarist for Jim Fuller’s Surfaris (“Wipe Out”).

Eddie Bertrand

A legendary guitarist and Surf Music pioneer, Bertrand co-founded The Belairs with Paul Johnson in 1961. He later formed the successful band Eddie & The Showmen, performing regularly at the Retail Clerks Union Hall in Buena Park. Well respected within the global Surf Music community, his band’s recording of “Squad Car” remains a fan favorite.

Flo & Eddie
As Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman, they were members of the South Bay surf band The Crossfires before they helped form the hit-making group The Turtles in the late 60s (“Happy Together”). A later career move found them changing their name to Flo & Eddie and joining Frank Zappa’s Mothers of Invention.

David Marks
As an early member of The Beach Boys, Marks played on the first four Beach Boys’ albums for Capitol Records. After leaving that band, he formed The Marksmen in 1964, touring with Eddie & The Showmen and Kathy Marshall. Returning to The Beach Boys from 1997 to 1999, Marks recorded and toured with the band, rejoining them for their 50th Anniversary Tour in 2012. In 2007, he authored “The Lost Beach Boy.”

Lloyd Thaxton
Writer, producer, and host of the syndicated 1960’s television program The Lloyd Thaxton Show. A pioneer of live television, Thaxton earned five Emmy awards and fifteen Emmy nominations over his lengthy career.

Bill Medley
Singer, songwriter, and founding member of The Righteous Brothers (inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2003). Hit records included “You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling,” “Ebb Tide,” and “Unchained Melody.”

Richard Delvy
Drummer and original founding member of The Belairs in 1961. He later formed the very popular Southern California surf band, The Challengers. That band made many local TV appearances and backed dozens of hit solo artists for local concerts. Delvy later became a hugely successful music producer and publisher.

Jello Biafra
From 1979 to 1986, Biafra (his stage name) was the lead singer for the San Francisco punk rock band, The Dead Kennedys. He continues performing today in collaborations with various musicians, mainly as a spoken word artist. He’s also a serious record collector of 50’s and 60’s music. As such, and given his background in punk rock music, Biafra brings to “Sound of The Surf” a different perspective to the reaction of audiences to surf instrumental music during the 1980s.

Will Glover
Glover was a founding member of The Pyramids (“Penetration”) in 1962. The record reached the Top 20 in Billboard (early 1964) just as The Beatles were beginning their takeover of popular music, causing most surf bands to fold. The Pyramids, however, shaved their heads and began wearing Beatle wigs on stage to attract attention. The band appeared on television’s American Bandstand, the Lloyd Thaxton Show, Shebang, and Hullabaloo as well as appearing in the film “Bikini Beach.”

Daddy-O Grande
Daddy-O Grande is the stage name of Danny Amis, best-known as the founder of the well-known guitar instrumental combo, Los Straitjackets. He formed his first band, The Overtones, in 1980 but found better success with The Raybeats a year later. He created Los Straitjackets in 1995, an all-instrumental band donning Mexican wrestling masks. After well over 20 CDs, a Grammy nomination, world tours, and numerous television appearances (including several on the Conan O’Brien Show), Los Straitjackets has a world-wide following today.

Bob Spickard
Original founding member of The Chantays from Santa Ana, California. Spickard wrote the band’s hit song and Surf Music staple, “Pipeline,” in late 1962. One of the few national Surf Music hit records, “Pipeline” has been used in countless movies, TV shows, and commercials. The Chantays was the only teen rock and roll band to have appeared on The Lawrence Welk TV show.

Kathy Marshall
Legendary ‘60s Southern California female surf guitarist. Performed with Eddie and The Showmen, the Blazers, and others. Became known as “The Queen of Surf Guitar.”

Bob Berryhill
Original founding member of The Surfaris. He co-wrote the band’s huge Top 40 hit, “Wipe Out.” Berryhill, together with his wife and sons, continues to record and perform as The Surfaris.

Jim Fuller
Together with Bob Berryhill, Fuller was an original founding member of The Surfaris and co-writer of the band’s hit record, “Wipe Out.” He continued to periodically tour and perform up until his death in 2017.

Nick O'Malley
Guitarist and founding member of Dick Dale’s band, The Deltones, in 1960. O’Malley played in the Deltones for several years, leaving the band to attend law school. He practiced law in Orange County for 45 years. He retired in 2014 and briefly played in a Dick Dale/Deltones’ tribute band until his untimely passing in 2015.


Art Munson
Along with Nick O’Malley, Munson was a guitarist and founding member of Dick Dale’s Deltones. After leaving the band in 1964, he recorded and performed with The Righteous Brothers, Nancy Sinatra, Glen Campbell, John Lennon, and many others. Munson has had a successful music career as a songwriter and producer. He’s written material for numerous TV shows, jingles, and films, and has had his songs recorded by various artists such as Bill Medley and Paul Williams.

Steve Pezman
Publisher of “Surfer Magazine” from 1971 to 1991. He began publishing “Surfer’s Journal” in 1992. From 1998 to 2001, Pezman executive-produced “The Surfer’s Journal” TV series for the Outdoor Life network.

Tom Morey
Pioneer surfer and innovator, best know known for inventing the Morey Boogie Board. As a drummer, Morey has worked professionally with musicians such as Dizzy Gillespie, Stew Williamson, Bud Shank, and Conti Condoli.

Kathy “Gidget” Kohner-Zuckerman
The original “Gidget.” As a teenager, she wrote her experiences in her diary, which her father, Frederick Kohner, used as inspiration for the novel “Gidget.” The novel was developed into a screenplay for the popular theatrical film of the same name in 1959, which greatly helped to expose California surfing culture to the rest of the world.

Terry "Tubesteak" Tracy
Legendary Malibu surfer nicknamed “The Mayor of Malibu.” It was Tracy who gave Kathy Kohner her “Gidget” nickname. Tracy is responsible for constructing the grass shack on the beach at Malibu in the late 1950s, noted in West Coast surfing culture as a central meeting and socializing point for local area surfers at the time.

Robert J. Dalley
Writer, producer, and guitarist for The Surf Raiders in the late 1970s. From Azusa, CA, Dalley is better known as author of the book, “Surfin’ Guitars: Instrumental Surf Bands of The Sixties,” currently in its third edition.

Domenic Priore
Author and surf culture historian. Author of “Beatsville” (2003), “Smile: The Story of Brian Wilson’s Lost Masterpiece” (2005), and “Riot On Sunset Strip: Rock ‘n’ Roll’s Last Stand in Hollywood” (2007). Founder/editor of Dumb Angel magazine, a publication dedicated to the early recording projects of Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys. In 2008, he co-authored the book, “Pop Surf Culture” with Brian Chidester.

Dick Dale “King of the Surf Guitar”

Known worldwide as “The King of Surf Guitar”, Dick Dale’s sound reigns supreme among genre purists. While groups like the Beach Boys and Jan and Dean are often pegged as surf music, Dale’s instrumentals hold a strict line compared to his vocal-heavy peers.


The Rendezvous Ballroom

The Rendezvous Ballroom was a large dance hall built in 1928, located on the beach of Balboa Peninsula in Orange County, Southern California, between Los Angeles and San Diego. The 1920s were the beginning of the heyday of public dancing to the music of popular bands and orchestras, and large ballrooms were built in most urban areas, and even on Catalina Island, 26 miles off the California coast.