So we played the Fun, Fun, Fundraiser Beach Party
last Saturday, March 3, 2007, and helped raise a
couple tens of hundreds of dollars for music
scholarships for the Dunellen NJ High School Band
Parents Association. I see our performance as a
cautionary tale for all the yooot's out there. Learn
how to read and understand music or else you will
wind-up in your 40's playing in a surf rock
band performing for charities that sponsor music
scholarships. Kinda cyclical as they point to us and
say "this could be your children if they don't get a
formal music education". I got my musical
instruction in a smokey, alcohol-soaked garage and
look how far I've gone.
We played pretty well once we got past the usual
start-of-the-gig nerves. There were two sets which
had only a few originals but because this was mostly
Dunellen townies, we played more cover/popular
stuff. There is something special about the song
"In My Room" (aka "Get A Room") and people start
dancing. We can play the fastest, meanest ripping
tremolo and the slow pop of Brian Wilson wins them
all the time. After the lap steel version of The
Beach Boys we had a few more dancing interludes by
the crowd especially to "Sleepwalk" "Margarittaville"
and "Wipeout". Thank you Brian W.
The takeaway messages (aside from the phone number this woman slipped
in my back pocket) were this:
- Ordinary civilians, aka people who don't know surf
rock exist want to hear familiar songs and react to
them. In that case you can't go wrong with a instro
Beach Boys song.
- You can play the best originals and if its not a
surf/instro crowd they will pass it off as just
another old 1960's obscure song.
- 2 smaller sets of 20-30 minutes instead of one
long 45 minute/1 hour might be better for the
uninitiated so that everything doesn't sound the
-The more booze you drink, the better we sound.
- Geez, it felt great to know that our efforts
helped raise some dough to help some local kids.
I recorded most of the gig with two SM58 mics and a
4-track. The extremely live version of, yes, an
original song song "Surfin' at Sunset" was posted in
the Demo section of Surfguitar101 if anyone is