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13.  Dick Dale

We at NIHOF were pleasantly surprised by the recent induction of the Ventures to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Although we were happy for them, we couldn’t help but feel that someone else who represented the Surf sound should have gotten in there first.

In the 1990’s Dick Dale was virtually unknown to the general public until they heard his blazing guitars in the film, Pulp Fiction. It is a shame that the man labeled the “King of the Surf Guitar” could be so far out of the public eye for so long. Dale gets credit for inventing the blistering and exotic surf guitar sound which was influenced by his own upbringing listening to Middle Eastern and Eastern European music. Dale pushed the limits through his equipment and was responsible for many of the advancements of amplifiers. Dale remained the most gifted guitar player of his genre regardless of how many guitarists tried to take that mantle away from him. As a certified pioneer in music history and the unarguable creator of a subgenre, he should have a decent shot.

Dick Dale



Should Dick Dale be in the Hall of Fame?

Definitely put him in! - 87%
Maybe, but others deserve it first. - 4.5%
Probably not, but it wouldn't be the end of the world. - 4%
No opinion. - 1%
No way! - 3.5%

The Bullet Points

  • Previous Rank: 2010: #31
    2012: #21
    2013: #20
    2014: #17
    2015: #15
    2016: #16
  • Eligible Since: Thursday, 01 January 1987
  • Country of Origin: U.S.A. (Los Angeles, CA)
  • Why they will get in: If the Hall is truly about influence an originator of a sound can’t be ignored.
  • Why they won't get in: He is perceived by some as too one dimensional.
  • Essential Albums: Surfer’s Choice, 1962
    King of the Surf Guitar, 1963
    Checkered Flag, 1963
    Tribal Thunder, 1993
  • Our Five Favorite Songs as Chosen by Each Member of the NIHOF Committee: Let’s Go Trippin’ (From Surfer’s Choice, 1962)
    Surfing Drums (From Surfer’s Choice, 1962)
    Jungle Fever (Single, 1962)
    Misrilou (Single, 1962)
    Dick Dale Stomp (From, King of the Surf Guitar, 1963)

Should Dick Dale be in the Hall of Fame?

Definitely put him in! - 87%
Maybe, but others deserve it first. - 4.5%
Probably not, but it wouldn't be the end of the world. - 4%
No opinion. - 1%
No way! - 3.5%
Last modified on Monday, 04 February 2019 17:37
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+7 #9 Wade Baker 2016-05-28 17:41
Dick Dale and the Moody Blues are not in the hall of fame. The Beastie Boys are.

+7 #8 Committee Chairman 2014-10-10 20:18
Agreed. The constant lack of respect for Dale baffles us.
+8 #7 TommyV 2014-10-10 15:10
Dick basically invented metal guitar.

Jimi Hendrix said that Dick Dale inspired him to take up playing guitar.

Tremendously wide-ranging influence.
+4 #6 The Dude 2014-08-10 18:15
Like he needs the "Hall of Shame"...... .... :zzz
I would be embarrassed to be inducted
+7 #5 Gael MacGregor 2014-06-23 09:57
It's a travesty that the man who created the sound that The Ventures co-opted is still on the outside looking in.

Dick is a true original. He's like no one else. His showmanship is striking, and his musicianship undeniable.

Okay, so maybe I'm a little prejudiced in his favor... I sang with him for over three years, including on his 1980s album, "The Tiger's Loose" -- but really... how can the HOF overlook the man who created the roaring sounds of the waves and the power of the ocean, creating a new form of rock?

These folks need to really rethink how the nomination process is handled. :o
+11 #4 Brad 2013-11-24 11:56
Two questions:

1. Can you think of another artist who single-hande dly invented a genre?

2. What would Leo say?
+6 #3 biograph 2013-05-12 08:44
He's a shoo-in, but it's a mystery it hasn't happened yet.
+10 #2 Chris in Scottsdale 2012-07-16 20:05
Dick Dale should have been in a long time ago, and should have been in well before many other "one dimensional" acts. He pioneered an entire genre of rock, and his technique is essentially a precursor to a lot of metal. With his constant cancer battles I hope the HOF figures it out sooner rather than later.
+7 #1 Sean -0001-11-30 00:00
The Hall loves to put unexpected '60s acts on the ballot after long absences (like The Ventures a few years ago). He'll be nominated some year and get right in.

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