The Songs of Summer #85-86: Tarantino Surf Special
I look forward to new Quentin Tarantino soundtracks almost as much as the flicks themselves. His 1994 masterpiece Pulp Fiction introduced the world to several mostly-forgotten classic surf tracks, including the two here.
The early sixties, as I believe I’ve noted before, were awash in surf music. The two bands here rode the surf craze wave (I’m sorry for all these water puns, I really am) all the way up the charts, but like the genre itself, had mostly vanished from the pop culture consciousness over the last several decades. But just like Tarantino has rescued many a long-forgotten actor or actress from obscurity, he’s done the same for quite a bit of music.
Up first: Bullwinkle Pt. 2 by The Centurians. A darker, kind of ominous sounding honkin’ sax-filled track from ’62. Used in Pulp Fiction during the infamous scene in the basement of the pawn shop. You know what I’m talking about, don’t act like you don’t. Even though the song will now always bring that scene to mind when I hear it, it’s still a great classic surf tune.
Next up is Surf Rider by The Lively Ones, from 1963 (whose bitchin’ album cover, one of my faves, is pictured up top. “THE ALL-TIME GREAT SURF STOMPERS”) This track was used in Pulp Fiction’s final sequence. Demonstrating the huge popularity of surf music in the early 60’s, The Lively Ones released THREE albums in 1963 alone. One album in ’64, and one more in ’67 and they were done. They live on forever here.