As the summer slop gives way to autumn swell, thoughts in the North Atlantic are now turning to a therapeutic road trip to wash away those zero surf blues. Mentally, you’re ticking off a checklist in anticipation of being well-bloodied as you kick off another surf year: When? Where? With whom? All equally important boxes to be ticked.
Then there’s the essentials: board(s), at least two wetsuits, 3mm boots, plenty of wax, car, insurance, and a GoPro if you’re lucky enough to have one. Darn it, don’t forget the kitchen sink while you’re at it! In all the excitement, it’s more than possible that you’ll have forgotten one thing, which has the potential to turn this much-needed jaunt into the surf trip of a lifetime: music. But not just any music. Music that will provide a soundtrack to your travels and caters for the surfing highs and lows, the pumping surprise, the flat disappointment, elation, frustration, and inevitable boredom. These are some tunes that will soothe your soul and warm your cockles. On a practical level, of course, it might also fill those awkward gaps in conversation in the van with your travel companions while also confirming your new-found bonafides as a musical aficionado.
So how does one go about compiling this veritable buffet of aural delights? You could take the easy option and turn to the Google box for the “hippest tunes for a successful surfari” (try it and prepare to be underwhelmed). Or you could invite your surfer friends, far and wide, at home and abroad, to suggest a kick ass collective, stuff of legend, the ultimate mix tape. I did the latter and this is it in no particular order of awesomeness.
1. Everybody Makes it Through (In the Light), CODA (Remaster), Led Zeppelin
2. Jesus, etc. Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, Wilco
3. Yellow Ledbetter, Rearview Mirror, Pearl Jam
4. Caravan, It’s Too Late To Stop Now, Van Morrison
5. Dani California, Stadium Arcadium, Red Hot Chili Peppers
6. Dojo Rising, Dream Cave, Cloud Control
7. Midnight in a Perfect World (Extended Mix), Fluctuations, DJ Shadow
8. Gimme Shelter, Let It Bleed, The Rolling Stones
9. Lump, TPUSA, The Presidents of the United States of America
10. 10000, Folk Art and the Death of Electric Jesus, The Bonevilles
11. Roadhouse Blues, The Doors, The Doors
12. Hours, Dive, Tycho
13. Superstylin’, Goodbye Country (Hello Nightclub), Groove Armada
14. It’s alright, it’s OK, More Light, Primal Scream
15. Pressure Drop, Sweet and Dandy, Toots and The Maytals
So there you have it, folks. Compliments of the Lahinch Surf City Crew: 15 standout tunes that will have them croonin’ in the aisles and rockin’ in the lineup in no time. Just don’t forget to check the swell forecast, Daddy-o!