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SurfGuitar101 Forums » Best-Of SG101 »

Permalink 9th annual Surf Guitar 101 Convention! Sat. August 13th 12pm to 12am, info for SG101 BBQ on page 11

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That is correct Duke,
And we missed you sat.




I corrected the calendar, thanks.

Site dude - S3 Agent #202
Need help with the site? SG101 FAQ - Send me a private message - Email me

"It starts... when it begins" -- Ralf Kilauea

Thank you Brian


Well now, what to say? I'm blown away! I'm embarrassed I didn't meet and talk to every single person who was there. I wish I could have been in five places at once. I wish I'd taken pictures with every one. Every single moment was wonderful. Do I have a favorite memory? All of them. Do I have a favorite band? Yes, but I loved and enjoyed them all equally. Everyone was super friendly; you just can't find nicer people than surf music people. I wish I could have gotten there sooner and stayed an extra week. And I wish I could have been prepared to play in the members jam Sunday night. Mostly, I wish it never had to end.

Will I be back? Yes! When? As soon as feasible. Will I plan to stay longer? Yes! I'll try very hard to fulfill those wishes.

Thanks to everyone who helped make this a most-memorable trip. And a special thanks to Jeff BTD for being exactly who he is, and caring so much about everyone.

This is Noel. Reverb's at maximum an' I'm givin' 'er all she's got.

Last edited: Aug 16, 2016 14:11:08

I will write more later... and post some photos... I got home late last night and have a MILLION tedious real world things to do before I go back to work, but I just want to say real quickly a big THANK YOU to Jeff and everyone who helped make this such an AMAZING event. Jeff, Ran, Tena, Emilio, Jonpaul, Marie, all the folks who helped at the door (including Tena's daughters), all the folks who helped drive bands and put them up for the night, the folks at the Alpine Village, Bill and Audrey for the pre-party, and all the old dear friends I have met through this site and this event, and all the new ones... THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart... I love you all.

I didn't get a chance to talk to Jeff hardly at all, but when I did on Sunday night he was already scheming about next year... I LOVE THIS MAN!!! Jeff you have really created something that MANY MANY people now consider thee highlight of the year that creates so many memories of a lifetime! Big hugs and high fives... I hope you recover from your cold and can finally get some decent sleep knowing you made so many people happy beyond belief.

Site dude - S3 Agent #202
Need help with the site? SG101 FAQ - Send me a private message - Email me

"It starts... when it begins" -- Ralf Kilauea

Thank you Noel and Brian!
Your posts were very heartfelt and got me a bit choked up.
I am glad that you were able to make it this year Noel,
And that Brian was able to return.


Thanks again to everyone involved, fans, helpers, venue, and of course the bands!

This was my first foray in attempting to give something back to the community in terms of trying to book a show. Have to say I have a new found respect for the effort required. Contacted some places that I thought would be an obvious fit only to be given the cold shoulder (an acquaintance in a non-surf band tells me the huge numbers of bands contacting bars so perhaps it all make sense). Anyway got a gig booked for Messer Chups at a local restaurant that I'm friends with (thank you Branch Street Deli in Arroyo Grande). They routinely have live music, but mostly on Friday and Saturday night, and this was a weeknight. Unfortunately they are also two doors down from city hall and as it turns out the city council was having a meeting that evening and I guess we were a little too loud... Had to halt the action for about 15 minutes and then resumed and had to ask Messer Chups to play quieter which isn't easy for them. Crowd, many of whom had not experienced live surf music before, still said they all enjoyed the show. I know the band was a bit disappointed but made the most of it and of course sounded fantastic. Special thanks to Mary, Ken, & Fritz for bringing Messer Chups down from the bay area and Fritz for loaning his amp & tank. I was worried about my gear working so was happy when I heard he could bring some with him.

Next morning we hit the road for Ran's place in Escondido, but first a stop by Bill's for a bbq. Very gracious of him to host this. We hit more traffic than I expected and were late to the bbq, along with the heavy traffic I felt compelled to rush the band out of there after about an hour, I know everyone would have liked to visit more. We then trudged our way to Escondido. Have to give a shout out here to Ran and his family, excellent hosts, fantastic in-home tiki bar (the Reverb Cavern), great drinks. After too short of an evening trying to relax a bit we loaded up for San Diego. Secret Samurai opened, I've always liked this band and make an effort to see their shows when possible. Big admirer of Ryan's playing and even if they don't play as much as they used to they sounded better than ever. The Phantom Four followed. I first saw them at Surfer Joe in 2011, had no idea who they were then and came away considering them one of the top acts of not just surf but of any genre. Very unique sound and John Blair on rhythm for their songs and then the other way around for John Blair songs made for a great show. The band came off stage a bit disappointed, but actually it sounded amazing back where most of the crowd was and everyone was going crazy with how good they were. Two tough acts for Messer Chups to follow, but they really delivered and I was glad they had a great show! Amazing players, just so much going on there musically (they're great people too). Ended the night back at Ran's learning some of the finer details about rum, BS'ing with the band, it was such fun and didn't get to bed until quite late.

Ran had to get up early to help set up, fortunately he let us sleep in and the band enjoyed the sun and his pool in the morning. We headed out hoping to make it for the start of the event but again hit some traffic. Arrived in the middle of the Crazy Aces. I'd seen them before at an Instro Summit, knew they would be amazing and of course they were. Loved the Jeff Senn guitars and have to say they sound quite good. Saw them taking some beach pictures with the guitars and bass the next day that I bet make it onto some promotional material. Next was Kelp, dressed in lederhosen t-shirts. They played a great set, really need to see them more since they're only a 90 minute drive for me. Tikiyaki 5-0 then took the stage, these guys are so good I always love their shows. Secret Samurai were even better than San Diego, which is saying a lot. I heard a lot of people afterward talking about how impressed they were. Then came the legends, and there were a lot of legends this year. Will Glover of the Pyramids, Paul Johnson, Bob Spickard, Tracy Longstreth, and of course Randy Holden. Randy Holden's set was blistering to say the least. He was followed by George Tomsco, did anyone notice how much fun George was having there? Just a cool guy and a true gentleman, saw him at the pier the next day and he'd go listen to the various bands on stage just like the rest of us. Paul Johnson got to play with him and the whole band was fantastic. This was followed by the Mach IV, never saw them in the old days so I was looking forward to this and of course they delivered. Then the second IV band, the Bradipos IV. Amazing, I really really like these guys. Messer Chups followed, and were equally fantastic, really turning into a favorite. Space Cossacks filled the dance floor and it was like the old Maxell ad with the guy sitting on the chair in front of the speakers just getting blown away. Ended with the Phantom Four / John Blair who tore the place up. Helped load gear, got to the hotel around 2:00 am knowing I'd have to get up early to get to the pier.

This is getting long, I'll just say the pier show was also amazing and makes the perfect counterpoint to the event. Glad at the pier show that I was able to catch what I missed, the Original Surfaris tribute and the entire Crazy Aces set.

The Alpine Village venue was great. Fantastic food, will have to go back sometime and check out the rest of the place, looked interesting. A few hiccups getting my checks for lunch and dinner, but otherwise about perfect. Noticed they had an upstairs, let's fill this place up next time!

Thanks Jeff for all you do to put this on. An amazing effort, especially when you're battling a cold and losing your voice.


one little comment........JONPAUL IS AMAZING.......

...and one of the nicest people I've ever met!

Anyone else feel that the surf music community is like an oasis of kindness and friendliness? I do, and the feeling is reinforced each and every time I get too hang around with anyone who's part of us.

This is Noel. Reverb's at maximum an' I'm givin' 'er all she's got.

What an amazing weekend!
I loved all the bands, everyone sounded and played great.
So many highlights - Outerwave at Don the Beachcomber hosted us on friday and played with class, nuance and an unmatched authenticity.
The Mach IV - what a party! Mel's folding guitar that sounded wonderful..
Oleg's guitar playing and the clear trio sound of Messer Chups - fantastic.
Bradipos IV - trad sound as applied to Italian melodies - perfecto.
The Space Cossacks - it's the Space Cossacks folks, need I say more?

The Pier - We played the Pier!

Catching up with friends - Noel, Chad, Bob Jamie, Sue Ellen, Carol - I know that for years you in particular have been suggesting the Crazy Aces to Jeff for the convention so for this and your unmatched friendship we are forever thankful.

As amazing as the music was I would have to say the true highlight was getting to meet so many people face to face, shake hands, hug...putting faces to names or even SG101 names was just the best and to all that came up and introduced yourself, Ferenc, Danny, Brian, Hunter (we had to travel that far to meet in person? LOL) Bill and Audrey, and anyone else that made it easy for me by saying hello I (and our band) extend a huge thank you.

To Jeff, Tiki Tena, Jonpaul, Marie, Ran and everyone else that made this happen - Thank you for all your hard work and inviting us to take part this year. A memory to behold.


We had an absolute blast and were so honored to be a part of such an incredible lineup of bands. Thank you Jeff so much for asking us to be a part of this year's convention!

Highlights of the day for me:
- Reconnecting with people and meeting new folks.
- Randy Holden's jaw dropping appearance. What a historic moment that was. He has such a muscular tone that you can feel in your chest.
- Seeing Messer Chups again. I'm very late to the Messer Chups fanbase, but I've become a big fan of Oleg's approach to the guitar and his absolutely perfect tone.
- My son really dug Crazy Aces (as did I) and he even bought a CD and was able to get one autograph on it!

- Because the show was running quite a bit behind schedule, I had to leave earlier than I wanted because my son was fading fast. Fortunately I was able to see the Phantom Four the night before in San Diego. Phantom Frank is the greatest front man in surf, hands down!
- I had to bug out to check into my hotel room and grab some food so I missed all or much of several bands' sets that I really wished I could have seen.

All in all, this was the best convention I have been to. I've missed two of them so far. Here's to the continuing growth of such a great event! Hats off to Jeff and his crew for producing the premier US Instro Surf Fest!!

The Secret Samurai Website
The Secret Samurai on Facebook

Ruhar wrote:

  • My son really dug Crazy Aces (as did I) and he even bought a CD and was able to get one autograph on it!

Ryan, Thanks! Kids seems to dig our music more than anyone which is cool with us. If you PM me your address we'd be happy to send a fully autographed CD package to your son. The guys can be a little shy about autographs, kind of a "who me? Why would you want MY autograph" sort of thing but we'd be happy to oblige if you think your son would dig it.


I had a total blast at this event! Great seeing all the wonderful bands! I am looking forward to the 2017 show already.

Thanks, Jeff, for an outstanding show once again. The venue was a perfect choice, although I did have a "wee" bit much of their delicious porter by the end of the night Smile



Hi, I'm Gellert, guitarist for The Fintastics.

Great pic, but I really have to concentrate on standing straighter. Big Grin

This is Noel. Reverb's at maximum an' I'm givin' 'er all she's got.

Nice photobomb by Jim Bacchi (Tikiyaki 5-0)!!!

Bill S._______

HELLDIVER on Facebook

Hunter (we had to travel that far to meet in person? LOL)

Ha! Seriously! Tennessee is my favorite road trip state though, and I'm looooong overdue for one and I've never visited Nashville. It's gonna happen.

I really wish I'd met more of y'all... I should have studied up on faces before I came! My wife planned a big huge day of activities for Friday that I wouldn't have traded for anything, but I wish I somehow could have been to some of the other things too. There will definitely be a next time with a lot more handshaking.

Storm Surge of Reverb: Surf & Instro Radio

Last edited: Aug 17, 2016 15:56:18

HallmarkSweptWinger wrote:

What about Kelp?
Has someone seen them??
Pics, stage reports, videos, interviews?

No one realized it was us - we wore lederhosen t-shirts and told the crowd we were The Kelpaueas. Very Happy

Ooooooof! Who's bright idea was it to book all of these pre and post convention shows? I'm running on empty.


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