Media Condition: VG+
Sleeve Condition: VG+
Genre: Rock, Surf
Notes: Ocean Records 1988 reissue. A wonderful copy. Vinyl is incredibly clean–close to NM.
If you like: the classic surf sounds of The Sentinals, The Beach Boys, or Dick Dale, this one is a necessary addition to your collection.
About: A cult hero with an eclectic body of work, Merrell Fankhauser is a guitarist and songwriter whose repertoire embraces surf music, folk-rock, psychedelia, and several stops in between. Fankhauser was born on December 23, 1943, in Louisville, Kentucky. At the age of 11, he was given a ukulele by his father, who taught him how to play. When he was 14 years old, Fankhauser’s family moved to San Luis Obispo, California, and he took a job picking strawberries to earn enough money to buy an electric guitar. Fankhauser begin practicing with a high-school pal, Bill Dodd, and in 1961 they played a talent show as a duo, where they took first place over a surf group called The Impacts. The Impacts wasted no time asking Fankhauser to join them, and in 1962 they cut an album for Del-Fi Records titled Wipe Out! (no relation to the 1963 hit by the Surfaris). The album sold well in California, though the experience left a bitter taste with the bandmembers after they discovered they had signed away their royalties and publishing. *via Mark Deming
Why it’s worth your time: Before (one of my all time favorite records) The Maui Album, came Merrell Fankahuser’s release with The Impacts, Wipe Out!–a strong and masterfully executed surf album that deserves to be much more widely known than it is today. A solid collection of instrumentals, it’s easy to listen to and an instant classic.
A favorite track: Sea Horse