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.
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