The best surf bands

The soundtracks that play while we surf

Surf doesn´t end when we get out of the water. The surf culture extends itself out of the water, the salt and the beach. When a surfer leaves the beach, that surf culture accompanies him in the way he dresses, the car trunk and of course, his music. Today we want to tell you about the best known surf bands and artists.

It may be possible the most well-known group are the Californians called “The Beach Boys”, but we can´t forget about “The Trashmen”, “The Ventures” or “Sublime”. Groups that marked a generation and that today give us smiles every time we hear them. It could be nostalgia or the memory of that era. This genre surged in the 60s and still lasts in the collective memory of all of us.

The Beach Boys best surf bands

The Beach Boys

There are a lot of surf music groups that come to mind, but today we´ll limit the list to 20 of them. Some are oldies, others are more recent… but all of them have energy, have the electric guitar as an important component and will keep you humming the whole day. We hope you give them a try if you don´t know them already.

1. The Beach Boys


Of course, we will start with the Beach Boys. Their catchy and dancy music has accompanied different generations since they started playing in 1961. The Californian band had a lot of success and has consolidated as one of history’s most influential rock and pop bands. Linked to surf culture, some of their songs are real hymns to the style of surf rock, as is the case of the song “Surfin U.S.A.”

2. The Trashmen


The guys from “The Trashmen” got a lot of people to dance also in the 60s. In fact, it´s possible that the 60s was the golden age for surf music lovers. Even though they originated from Minnesota, which has no beach, I´m sure you´ve heard some of their songs like “Surfing Bird”. With this song, the group got into the Top 5 in the American lists.

Here is one of their top hits “Bird Dance Beat”

3. Sublime


From Long Beach, California, come the guys from “Sublime”. A group that is an in between punk, reggae and hip hop, that fit perfectly in the surf culture. The 90s is when people were discovering them. In 1996, after the death of the vocalist, the band dissolved. But their journey has left us great songs like “Santeria” and “Badfish”. Both of these songs are perfect after a good surfing session.

4. Dick Dale & his Del-Tones


Dick Dale is the main driving force of surf music. The American musician that self-proclaimed himself as the king of the guitar and in truth, he was a real success during the 60s. One of his songs “Miserlou” got famous for being part of the soundtrack for the movie “Pulp Fiction”. Without a doubt, this group is a must hear for all the surf-lovers.

5. Midnight Oil


Midnight Oil comes to us in the 70s in Australia. An essential part of surf culture, this is another of the most well-known surfer bands in all of history.

6. The Ventures


The Ventures is a surf rock band that couldn´t be left out of the list. Started in Washington in 1958, they are well known for songs like “Walk Don´t Run” and “Wipe Out”, the main theme for the movie James Bond 007. With more than 100 million sold albums worldwide, the influence a lot of surf and rock groups.

7. The Surfaris


The Surfaris is another mythical band in surf culture. Started in California in 1962, they rose up with “Surfer Joe” and “Wipe Out”. Both of these songs became world successes.

8. The Astronauts


The Astronauts started in 1963 and some of their songs served as inspiration for the one and only Ennio Morrricone for his soundtracks.

9. Jan and Dean


This rock and roll duet was born out of the Californian Surf at the end of the 50s. Adapted to surf music just like the Beach Boys. Some of their songs have passed through each generation.

10. Jack Johnson


With Jack Johnson we jump in time to the year 2001. Year in which this folk rock songwriter, surfer, poet, filmmaker and musician got his major commercial success with his debut album Brushfire Fairytales. One of his most well-known songs is “Break Down”.

If you like surfer music, we invite you to listen to our Surftrip Playlist in Spotify. A playlist with some of the best songs to listen to while traveling and enjoying your surftrip to the max.

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