Past Event

Guitar Legend Dick Dale Returns!



Event photo

From the organizer

Guitar Legend Dick Dale returns to the Uptown!

With The Hot Toddies - an all-girl band from Oakland playing sunny beach pop with indie rock riffs and a dry sense of humor.

Doors at 8pm | Music starts at 9pm | 21+

Dick Dale experimented with reverberation and utilized custom-made Fender amplifiers, including the first-ever 100-watt amp.  Dale is known as The King of the Surf Guitar, having played on many of the surfing music songs that were popular in the early 60's.

Dale, being a surfer himself, wanted his music to reflect the sounds he heard in his mind while surfing.  He thus became one of the first electric guitarists to use rapid scales in his guitar playing.  Dale is credited for introducing the use of reverb and his staccato picking technique became his trademark.  

Dale's style and how he wanted his guitar to sound pushed the industry to make new and better equipment which we now take for granted.  Dale kept blowing up amps until Leo Fender went to one of his shows in Balboa, California.  Fender finally understood what Dale had been asking for and a special 85-watt output transformer was made that peaked at 100 watts.  This in turn necessitated a speaker that could handle that power and now blow up from the sound coming out of Dale's guitar.  Leo went with Dale to the James B. Lansing loudspeaker company.  What came out of that meeting was the 15" JBL D130F loudspeaker.  Dale thus broke through the electronic barriers of his time and could play the music as he wanted it to sound.

Dick's performances during 1961 at the Rendezvous Ballroom in Balboa are credited with the birth of the surf music phenomenon.  The 3,000-seat ballroom was sold out on a regular basis for surfer dances.  

Fender makes a signature guitar for Dale called the Dick Dale Custom Shop Stratocaster, which is fitted with "Custom Shop '54" pickups.  Dale would use a reverb unit which would split the signal between two Fender Dual Showman amps.  Dale continues to play with his original unit dating from the early 1960's.  He also continues to string his left-handed guitar upside down. 

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