Chantays – Pipeline

The Chantays, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Dick Dale, Anthrax, and Lawrence Welk. We will tie all of these artists together by the end of the post. 

I thought I might as well continue the surf music theme that was started Thursday and ride the wave into the weekend. 

This is one cool classic instrumental. Pipeline was originally the B side and the A side was a song called Move It. As with a few other singles through history…the B side took off and the A side became a trivial question.

Dick Dale also recorded this song with no other than Stevie Ray Vaughan in 1987. They really rocked up Pipeline for the movie Back to the Beach. You want variety? This song was covered by Lawrence Welk and Anthrax (video below). I would be willing to bet not many songs would be in that rare club.

I always wondered what “pipeline” meant…being a Tennessee guy I would not know that first hand. The title “Pipeline” refers to a term in surfing slang, in which a wave closes over your head while you ride it horizontally, so it looks like you’re in a rolling pipe made of water. This maneuver is also sometimes called “shooting the tube.”

Some odd trivia about the Chantays…they were the only rock and roll band to perform on The Lawrence Welk Show (something tells me Anthrax would not have been invited if they would have been around then). The Chantays were also honored on April 12, 1996, by Hollywood’s Rock Walk ,that was founded to honor individuals and bands that have made lasting and important contributions to music.

The song peaked at #4 in Billboard 100, #11 on the R&B Charts, and #16 in the UK in 1963.

From Songfacts

This was surf-rock group The Chantay’s only charting Billboard Top-40 hit. However, it is considered today one of the staples of the surf-rock genre. It was actually the B-side of a single; the A-side, “Move It,” never charted.

The unique sound of this track is partly due to its composition, which is inverted from standard practice. The bass and rhythm guitars are at the fore, while the lead guitar, keyboard, and drums are in the background. Also it was recorded in stereo even though it was going to be released in mono as the typical 45-RPM single record of the day.

Perhaps you’ve noticed that surf-rock tends to have a lot of instrumental work? That’s because it started out as strictly an instrumental form, where speed and precision playing was highly valued. In a way, it fathered the speed metal genre. We have The Beach Boys to thank for bringing vocal harmonies to surf music.

Dick Dale, who earned the title “King of the Surf Guitar,” recorded a new version of “Pipeline” with Stevie Ray Vaughan for the 1987 movie Back To The Beach. The movie reunited Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello 24 years after they starred in one of the first beach movies, Beach Party, which featured Dick Dale’s music.

Dick Dale with SRV


Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

39 thoughts on “Chantays – Pipeline”

  1. I’ve missed a few posts this past week, but I’m glad to catch this one. This music is so iconic. I love the SRV-Dick Dale version as much as the original, and their video is hilarious. Anthrax, not so much, but I’m glad they gave it a try.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. When I saw that Anthrax covered it…I couldn’t pass it up…what a variety. . Since the Beach Boys I’ve kept it surfing songs. I forgot how much I like this song.
      love the SRV and Dick Dale version.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You definitely had to include the Anthrax version. It’s well done for their genre, imo. And kudos to them for introducing that song to their listeners. But after hearing the SRV version, nothing else was going to top that for me.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yes that did it…I had no clue they collaborated. Oh by the way I hope you saw my reply to our post on the Don’t Worry Baby post…I stupidly didn’t click reply and off I went! I have another surf song tomorrow. I’m getting obsessed again lol.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m sure I will…I was really impressed by Mason Ruffner….I have him in my draft folder waiting to be finished.
        I don’t want to comment you to death so I’ll let you be…I think you will like my next draft pick…a hint…instrumental from the 50s…not upbeat but great.


      2. I loved that groove he had in Gypsy Blood… Yea its a song that sounds like a dream set to music.
        Rock Therapy…the only therapy that works.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. In Tennessee in the middle of the sticks like you lol. Completely country…a dirt road and woods all around. We had pine and oak trees.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh I thought it was cool to have an orange tree in your yard. We had nothing like that..although later on we had a cherry tree.
        They both hung out on the beach and later got into trouble so maybe I was better where I was at lol.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. My old man was an avid gardener so apart from being surrounded by bush we had a gardens everywhere around the house itself. While he was gardening I remember him putting the shovel through the middle of snakes
    that would disrupt things haha.

    They got into drugs? Your cousins?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh man…snakes…I remember going to the creek everyday and one day I picked up a rock and a cottonmouth snake was there…I’ve been afraid of them ever since.

      Yes they did…they ended up alright when they got older…hell there was nothing to get into where I grew up.


      1. I’m glad that cottonmouth didn’t sink his venemous fangs in. I don’t blame you for being being fearful of them.

        I like to read that good ending re. your cousins. My brother and I also had a very innocent upbringing about not getting into anything untoward. Things changed since I started my career. I think I’m at 7 lives of a cat’s 9. I am a lucky devil.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. To me there is a dual sound to these surfing songs. One is surfing and the other is spaghetti western. I liked you posting 3 versions of it. I like the original best but the SRV one isn’t bad and has a fun video with it. I even liked the drumming in the Anthrax one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. All of them I like…the story I liked also…this music is so much fun…I do see what you are talking about…those westerns have that twangy rubber band sound.
      I feel like I”m a senior again…I love the fun of these songs. One more tomorrow

      Liked by 1 person

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