Book Review: ‘The Illustrated Discography of Surf Music’ Covers the Waterfront


Though clearly not for everyone, The Illustrated Discography of Surf Music, 1959–1965 offers a survey of a wonderful and largely defunct musical genre. The book, which John Blair edited, should delight fans whose interest extends beyond the obvious Beach Boys and Jan and Dean tunes.

In addition to a thoughtful introduction and many illustrations, the book offers a mindbogglingly lengthy listing of surf-music songs, including info on flip sides, record labels, and release dates. If you want to know who recorded such obscurities as “Mother, Mother, Can I Go Surfin'” and “He’s My Surfin’ Guy,” this is the best—and perhaps only—place to go.

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