2005-05-06 18:32:20 UTC
Musical legend part of beach-music wave of the '60s
By Sara A. Carter
RANCHO CUCAMONGA - Friends, fans and family will gather Monday to pay
homage to a musician who helped define the California surf sound of the
Jim Pash, a founding member of The Surfaris, died of congestive heart
failure at his Yucca Valley home April 29. Pash was awaiting a liver
transplant when he died at age 56.
Pash's band recorded "Wipe Out" and "Surfer Joe" in tiny Pal Recorders,
a $12.50-an-hour studio in what was then Cucamonga in late 1962.
Producer Jim Facey, a friend of Pash's, said the current incarnation of
The Surfaris held a fund-raiser in Los Angeles when Pash's medical
bills began mounting. Facey spoke to Pash a few weeks ago.
"It's like he knew his life was coming to an end," Facey said. "It was
like saying goodbye. Jim Pash is a great guitar legend, and we're all
going to miss him very much."
The Glendora band's single, "Wipe Out," was released in January 1963
and went to No. 2 on the pop charts. The instrumental opened with an
unearthly giggle followed by the phrase "Wipe out!"
Pash, however, did not attend the "Wipe Out" recording session. His
father forced the teenager to work at the family store that night,
The band formed in 1962 to play at a dance for Pomona Catholic Girls
School, according to Kent Crowley, a surf music historian from Rancho
Cucamonga. Crowley helped coordinate three concerts in Rancho Cucamonga
where the regrouped Surfaris played in the early 1990s.
The original five-member band had its ups and downs until finally
breaking up in the mid-1960s. Later, in the mid-1980s, Pash and former
lead guitarist Jim Fuller reformed The Surfaris with new band members,
while holding onto their original beach sound.
Fuller and Pash were the only original members in the new Surfaris.
Guitarist Bob Berryhill has his own version of the Surfaris, bassist
Pat Connolly is retired and drummer Ron Wilson died in 1989.
"In fact, Pash was still with the band until about three months ago
when it was difficult for him to speak and think clearly," Facey said.
Fuller and the five new band members will continue to play in the same
beach style Pash had always believed in, Facey said.
The last album Pash released was "Basic Tracks," in 2003.
"He was a bit of a perfectionist," Facey said, remembering the last
time Pash recorded in the studio. "He had hoped that we would continue
the true Surfari sound through the new band .. and that's what we plan
Pash is survived by his wife, Linda, and his two children.
A memorial service is planned for Monday at Wiefal & Sons Mortuary in