Immortalized by high-school marching bands following its release on this day in 1963, wave-chaser of a bass-drum and jangly guitar chase “Wipe Out” by Cali beach-bums, The Surfaris, was one of those rare cheeky cult classics from the get-go, a malt-shop table banger to saltwater-kissed coastal radio cruiser that didn’t quit.
What everyone likes to forget though is that it’s not quite an instrumental. The eponymous “wipe out” cackle at the beginning, that is integral to the ethos of the song — that beautiful sadistic moment when a dude or dudette wipes-the-bleep-out on a gnarly wave, destroying board and ego in one full swoop. The band even threw in a crunching sound-effect to emphasize it.
The best part, though: that cackle belonged to then-manager, Dale Smalin. Here’s to you Dale, and The Surfaris, and all that dig the cackle before the table-bang-along: