I have had a lot of fun playing in bands over the years, and have been afforded incredible opportunities that many musicians don't often get. For a long time, the idea that I would get to tour Europe one day, or have people ask me to sign their record, or any other rock cliche seemed far out of reach. Despite these amazing experiences, I still think the most outright fun I ever had in a band was playing guitar in a surf rock band.
We did not have lofty ambitions. In fact, the band started when I jokingly said that it'd be cool to be in a surf rock band called Shark Attack. I had no idea that band would actually form, nor did I know that several other Shark Attacks existed and we'd have to later change out name to Spring Break Shark Attack! Nevertheless, my friend Eric took my joke to heart and we started a band, nevermind that I didn't listen to a wide range of surf rock and had never written a surf rock song in my life. I had (and still have) a serious love affair with Man or Astro-man?'s records, and a cursory understanding of early surf rock, so my foundation was a bit shaky. Luckily, the three other members (Peter and Patrick rounded out the group) were supremely talented dudes.
We recorded this demo with Fred Weaver at his studio, Apocalypse the Apocalypse, not long after playing our first handful of shows, I believe. To be honest, those days are really blurry. We once drank so much free PBR at Red Star that the bar ran out. We treated each show (and many practices) like it was the last party on Earth, and we out-partied any band I've ever been associated with by a wide margin.
Our first show was at an open mic night at a bar next to our practice space called the Caterie, a pseudo-fratty haven for cover bands. We showed up in suits with all of our instruments, our drumkit, and about 30 of our friends and proceeded to blow through 20 minutes of music. It was a hit and we had a blast. Many memorable shows ensued; we played everywhere from abandoned apartments to steakhouses to parking lots to roller derby half-time shows (two, actually). Our local scene was super supportive of us, and we played to bigger crowds than any of my more "serious" bands. I guess it didn't hurt that we sometimes had go-go dancers, beach balls, and once even a guy in a shark suit who crowd-surfed.
We never did much more than some regional shows, but pretty much all of them were a total blast.
Our last show was at North Gate Tavern, sometime in 2009. A bunch of friends dressed up like zombie shark victims and a few brought squirt guns (including Bryan, singer of my other band who nailed me right in the eye during a guitar solo). I like to think we went out in style. Honestly, I could write a hundred pages about those days.
Here's our original demo: http://www.mediafire.com/?m83e1gv18tv1vrd