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In honor of the 60th anniversary of the release of Flashin' Red by The Esquires songseeds records has released a new EP by The Esquires containing all new tracks recorded in the past year.
In 1963 Rick Clingman and Durby Wheeler were transplanted from Ohio into the instrumental surf hotbed of Southern California. Both 14 years old at the time they were instantly mesmerized by the surf bands they heard at the Azusa Teen Club. Within a year they had The Esquires up and running. Rick took up lead guitar and Durby took up Bass Guitar. They recruited a rhythm guitarist and drummer and after a few months of gigging and practice, went into Pal Recording in Cucamonga and laid down the A side Flashin' Red and B side What A Burn.
The Esquires were late to the instrumental surf trend. The week Flashin' Red was nominated as Pick Hit of the Week at some of the local radio stations in S. Cal. The Beatles took the top of the charts and instrumental surf was no longer of interest to most radio music programmers.
In the '90s indie record company Dionysus struck a deal with The Esquires to re-release Flashin' Red and What A Burn and their versions of a number of instrumental surf covers.
Rick: "When Flashin' Red was released radio station KASK in Ontario invited us in to do an in-studio live concert. Part of the deal was that they would record it and give us the tape. That tape provided the cover songs for the '90s release by Dionysus."
Flash forward to 2023. Rick is still at it. Writing songs and recording under the artist name: songseeds.
Rick: "I had always been disappointed that we abandoned instrumental surf so soon. It was the music that inspired me to start playing guitar. The idea of doing a 60th Anniversary remake of the song really got me excited. Then, while working on the new arrangement for Flashin' Red, I discovered a couple of new surf song ideas were floating around inside my brain. Probably the songs I didn't get to write in '63."
In the spirit of the minor trend of covering TV theme songs, Rick put together the idea of doing an instrumental surf version of the theme from the Perry Mason show.
Rick: "I auditioned a lot of TV show themes then searched the internet to see if I could find a good one that hadn't been done in the instrumental surf style. The Perry Mason theme was perfect."
Also on the EP:
Dawn Patrol is a slower mellower surf song that reflects the early morning quest to find the best, uncrowded waves.
King Tide is about surfing the big tides that have been hitting the coasts and the energetic excitement is reflected in the uptempo arrangement.
Though not available to record on the new version of Flashin' Red, Rick recruited Durby to design the EP cover.
Rick: "Durby has been working with graphic design for many years and it was really great to have him do the design and layout for the EP cover."
The EP titled "Flashin' Red Again" is available on all the streaming platforms. Check it out.
RECORDING TECH NOTES
Rick: "When I started the project the first thing I knew I needed was a Fender reverb unit. Found one of the '90s reissue models in great shape.
I used a 2002 American Deluxe Stratocaster on all of the leads and some of the rhythms and a 1980 Les Paul Custom on some of the rhythms.
Although I don't still have the '63 Strat I used on the original Esquires recordings (rats), I do still have my 1966 Fender Precision Bass and that's what I used on all of these tracks.
All of the guitar tracks including bass used the same input chain: Manley DI into an AMS Neve 1073 preamp into an Apogee Symphony audio interface and recorded with Logic Pro on a Mac Studio. No amplifiers or amp sims were used.
For drums I used Logic Pros built-in MIDI Drummer."
Brook Hoover plays guitar in The Surf Zombies, an Iowa based surf/instrumental/garage band. The interview was conducted by David Lilly.
David Lilly: What was it that led you to playing guitar? Do you play other instruments?
Brook Hoover: I received an acoustic guitar for Christmas when I was 14 and took lessons from a local guitar teacher. Sight-reading was going pretty slow, but I found I could match pitch from records, tapes and tv shows and that led to jamming with my friends in the basement and a life-long love of music. I play drums and bass in order to produce demos and song ideas. I also like to sing.
David: Keith Richards strongly encourages starting with acoustic. I understand what you’re saying about sight reading. Once I learned a song on clarinet, I didn’t need sheet music. I’ve rented electric guitar, electric bass and tried harmonica over the years. I’ve never stayed with anything though. I suspect that’s due to not having anyone to jam with. Do you enjoy playing by yourself just for the sake of playing and it being fun for you?
Brook: I live to explore and practice the most basic fundamental aspects of guitar playing. The hardware is pretty interesting too. I am especially fond of Fender amps. Just locating the notes on the fretboard and understanding the patterns is pretty therapeutic for me. I really think it is healing to listen to music as well as play notes. I study more complex excerpts of songs but can't remember much. I live to improvise and write.
David: What kinds of music do you like to play the most? Also, what or who do you like to listen to?
Brook: I love to dig in and play blues chords and try to fashion melodies, riffs and chords to fit chord progressions. Also studying basic jazz chords and progressions. Improvising and creating new music is probably my favorite thing to do. I also enjoy designing lessons for beginning-level students.
I listen to Iowa Public Radio (https://www.iowapublicradio.org/ ) for a variety of new and classic music that is under-represented by commercial radio. Also I have many old favorites that are the usual suspects of rock and blues pioneers. Anything from the 20's-current is something I'd listen to. I am fascinated by Jeff Beck. I spent the last few years obsessing over Los Straitjackets and The Damned. A lot of British stuff. Hard rock, Bowie, Iggy Pop and always The Ramones. Obscure local releases by my friends and colleagues in Iowa takes up a good amount of listening time. And then I have to review a lot of my own mixes and demos to try to remember them to finish them or perform them live is probably the bulk of what I listen to. Also IPR.
Zvuki Dedov, meaning Sounds of Grandpas, embraces the beauty of imperfection and the nostalgia of old technology. Inspired by stumbling upon a Tarantino movie OST CD as a child, this Eastern European artist embarked on a 10-year journey to discover the essence of 60s American music. The result is their latest single, "Volna" (The Wave), a revival of the surf rock genre that captures the timeless vibes of the past.
Headbang to the beat on streaming platforms:
Stomp the gas pedal for a post apocalyptic road trip unlike any other! 12 tracks of modern surf mayhem, with another classic Rude Commissions cover art masterpiece.
The visual story that started with an ink sketch on the cover of Hang Zen and a beachside rumble on the cover of Showdown, now explodes into a furious chase across a post-apocalyptic landscape on the cover of Road Trip. Musically, Road Trip blows up the wasteland with a road trip for the ages! Hot rods, motorcycles, and a desperate chase under the bloated sun of a dying world. Will our erstwhile monk escape to peacefully surf again, or will the gang catch up and learn a deadly lesson written in fire, steel and blood?
Buy it now - Link
This is the way.
Katoomba, The Blue Mountains, Australia - July, 2023 -
Kincaid and the Memetics release "Storm Front," our new garage surf-inspired sonic adventure.
It’s a blend of lo-fi and low brow production garage surf with 11-tracks.
Available on major platforms, the album beckons you!
Follow Kincaid and the Memetics on:
New CD Release:
The Return of Buzzy Frets
It’s been a while but for Buzzy Frets’s second record they have turned up the reverb to 11 and devoted an entire album to surf-drenched sounds (minus one rockabilly tune).
Emerging from the depths of the Bay Area music scene in the late 1990s, Buzzy Frets first CD (simply titled Buzzy Frets) was a blend of surf, rockabilly, blues, and funk instrumentals that combined brilliant musicianship with crafty writing skills.
For The Return of Buzzy Frets surf gets front and center. The guys have shuffled between classic surf tunes, such as “Apache” and “Walk Don’t Run” (played with a twist!), and rambunctious originals such as “Hydrofoil" and “El Chupacabra.”
There is a distinct spy/noir feel running throughout the recording with songs like, “The Pink Panther Theme,” “A Shot in the Dark,””Kiss me Deadly,” and “The Third Man Theme.”
Available from: https://petemadsenguitar.com
Just in time for your trip to the sunny July beaches as you catch waves and listen to surf! Our newest 4 song EP From Atlantis with Love engages a slightly heavier, but always reverb soaked melodic sound! Available on Spotify and other digital platforms soon.
Featuring Chloe Mendola on cello (Silver Surfer: Redemption our surf "anthem")
Chuck Sabo on Drums
Jim Colby (Jim & the Sea Dragons) on bass and guitars
Art Svrjcek on guitars
The Indie Surf Band on a clandestine operation to infiltrate the surf music realm and entrap its zealots with their euro-melodic, reverb soaked sound!
Our new EP From Atlantis with Love finds the Agents battling the sinister Kraken and his tube monster minions to save the underwater village of Kitezh which had remained hidden for over two centuries! In the midst of hand to hand combat with the Kraken, Rusalka is able to fire the Octo-sign alerting the Agents of the enemy's position. The Agents surf to her aid, but will they be in time???
LPS ARE A PRESALE. PHYSICAL COPIES ARE EXPECTED IN JULY AND WILL SHIP IMMEDIATELY AFTER RECEIVING THEM FROM THE PRESSING PLANT.
We’re excited to be launching our new record imprint, Tabu Recordings! We’ve gathered a great lineup of artists, including The Tentakills with their debut album Rage Of Aquarius. The LP showcases the band’s original tracks with their unique sound and signature take of surf.
We’re also thrilled to be working with The Madeira - who have paved a path with a unique sound while staying true to surf’s beginnings. They have achieved a cult status and are arguably one of the best modern surf bands, forging their own distinct style. Archipelago: The Best of The Madeira features the band's favorite tracks on one LP.
With their first live performance at the Surfer Joe Summer Festival, we’ve produced a limited number of CDs for the Lords of Atlantis. The vinyl edition is at the pressing plant and will be available later this year, but now you can grab this much-anticipated debut album on compact disc. The much-anticipated band brings together guitarist Ivan Pongracic and drummer Dane Carter of The Madeira, guitarist Jeremy DeHart of The Manakooras and Aqualads, and bassist Jonpaul Balak of Surfer Joe and the Tikiyaki multiverse. With a lineup like that, it would be hard to miss, and the new album is as strong as one would expect from such great players.
The Meteoroids are stoked to offer their first release, P-22/Boss Angeles, an instrumental surf ode to their home base, Los Angeles. Available for digital purchase on bandcamp and streaming through your favorite streaming services. The 7-inch vinyl version will be available this summer.