The Beach Boys' third album, and a huge leap forward from what they had done previously. Other than two songs, this was the last time the band would deal with the subject of surfing until they became a nostalgia act - and this was only 1963.
The album, the first to have the credit 'produced by Brian Wilson' is also the first in which it becomes obvious, with songs like In My Room, what a major songwriting force Brian was.
Technically, this album is all Brian Wilson compostions, but in fact Boogie Woodie is based on The Flight Of The Bumblebee, while South Bay Surfer is a rewrite of Stephen Foster's The Swanee River.
  1. Surfer Girl
  2. Catch A Wave
  3. The Surfer Moon
  4. South Bay Surfer
  5. The Rocking Surfer
  6. Little Deuce Coupe
  7. In My Room
  8. Hawaii
  9. Surfers Rule
  10. Our Car Club
  11. Your Summer Dream
  12. Boogie Woodie

The lineup for this album was Brian Wilson, Carl Wilson, Dennis Wilson, Mike Love, Dave Marks and an uncredited Al Jardine, who had returned but would not be credited as a member until Shut Down Vol 2.
The album is currently available on Capitol Records as a twofer with Shut Down Vol 2
Previous album - Surfin' USA
Next album - Little Deuce Coupe

Surfing Jobos, Puerto Rico

Jobos (pronounced "Hobos") is a very unique beach, even for the northwestern coastline of Puerto Rico. The beach faces north and a craggy volcanic outcropping rises at the east end, protecting it from the bulk of the Atlantic wave train and forming a cove that faces west like a giant fishhook. The protected bay formed by the point concentrates the force of the ocean swell at its western end, where the cliff drops away into deeper water, and produces exceptional surfing waves.

Standing in this placid little bay, you can watch the spray from the waves smashing into the cliff and exploding high into the blue sky before descending in a harmless veil onto the brittle lava shelf. The water in the cove is calm and quiet, belying the fact that it's in constant motion. The surge from the masses of water crashing into the point aligns itself beneath the surface to form a very powerful rip current flowing counterclockwise around Jobos. From the point, the current flows to the west, then south into the beach, east along the shore and then finally north, sweeping through the cove and back out to its origin.

For swimmers, these currents can be confusing and dangerous — Jobos is the scene of many rescues and a few tragedies every year — but for surfers they are a dream. Paddling out to the lineup is a breeze because once you put your board in the water at the east end of the cove you are carried swiftly and effortlessly to the takeoff point next to the point. Once there, staying in the right spot takes some diligence because the same current that initially helped you now pulls you tirelessly to the west and then in to the beach. If your timing is good however, you'll pop into the lineup just as a set hammers into the point.

The wave breaks both right and left but, unless it is really huge, the left rolls into shallow water in the cove and peters out quickly while the right lines up and fires down the beach. Depending on the swell size and wind, the ride is 50 to 200 or more meters long with several bowls and walls along the way. A decent mid Atlantic swell brings seven foot faces to Jobos, but the locals say the hurricane surf can drive it twice that high at least before it gets too gnarly to ride. During large swells the rip current is magnified and allows the unsuspecting and overly ambitious to get into serious trouble.

Parking at Jobos can be a problem on weekends as this is a very popular spot for both tourists and locals.  The gregarious puertoriqueños often park three or four cars deep so beware of becoming trapped if you need to leave anytime soon.  There are bathrooms at the Sonia Rican restaurant, but no shower facilities.  

The Wave of the Day

As we sat sipping our Heinekens at the Sonia Rican cantina, we saw the girl walking like a young goddess across the white sand towards us. She was a local girl and had that beautiful tan that the light skinned Puerto Ricqueñas are blessed with, as if they had been cast from an alloy of brass and copper. Her hair was dark brown, bleached to a rich auburn from days in the sun. She wore a white bikini that revealed all the right bumps and curves without being overly suggestive. Her shoulders and legs were powerfully muscled without demeaning their feminine proportions. She carried a white surfboard under one arm, perhaps six feet in length, with a swallowtail and three fins. Behind her a yellow Labrador puppy followed, shuffling along with that happy smile particular to the breed.

She paused for a moment at the water's edge to fasten her surf leash and rub a bit of wax over the surface of her board, then she tossed the board in the water, hopped on top and began paddling towards the point without a backward glance. The current was her friend and she used it expertly, timing her arrival in the lineup between sets and saving her strength in an elegant conservation of energy. She paddled directly into the small pack of surfers on the outside, clearly friends with the local crew and respected by them. 

No sooner had she chatted them up a bit than the set came and they began jockeying for position. She stayed where she was and let the first three waves go by, clearing out the crowd in the process. When the fourth wave came, clearly larger than the rest, she turned her board towards the shore and began to paddle.

She was positioned perfectly, but as sometimes happens, the wave slowed when it encountered the rocky ledge beneath it and the pause was enough to allow it to combine with the wave behind it, causing it to jack up suddenly to almost twice its size. It's hard to estimate wave height from the beach, but I'd guess this one was double overhead easily.

Everyone on the deck where we had been sitting jumped to their feet, but the girl seemed unfazed. She stroked down the face confidently, taking an extra pull or two to make sure she'd really caught the wave, then hopped to her feet as the wave sucked out beneath her.

She was almost freefalling by the time she hit the trough, and she flexed her knees to absorb the shock then set up a powerful bottom turn just ahead of the thick lip of the wave exploding behind her. She carved her turn all the way back up to the shoulder and ricocheted off of it like a skateboarder on a ramp.

A long thin wall loomed in front of her and she found a trimline, grabbed the rail and charged down the line, making section after section. When she came to the inside bowl, she caught some air, nosed her board into a sweet floater across the breaking lip, then dropped in one last time before she lay down on her board and let the roaring foam of the broken wave carry her in toward the shore.

She ended as perfectly as she'd begun, letting the swift and sure Jobos rip current carry her back along the beach where she was greeted by her happy dog and probably a little surprised to see the row of men standing in reverence on the cantina deck.

Tall and tan
And young and lovely
The girl from Ipanema goes walking
And when she passes
each one she passes
goes Ahhh.

- Antonio Carlos Jobim

As she strode from the water and walked without a backward glance toward the parking lot, I felt an involuntary sigh escape my lips.



Directions to Jobos
Take Highway 2 to the intersection with Highway 107, then follow 107 to the north around Punta Borinquen until you pass the two radar domes of the Aeropuerto Rafael Hernandez.  Turn right at the east end of the airport to merge with Highway 110 and follow it until you see the left turn for route 4466 marked Playa de Jobos.  You'll descend to the coastal plain and proceed east along the dunes for a few miles before you spot the Jobos beach parking lot on the left hand side.

Complete Lyrics

Norman Gimbel's original English translation of Carlos Antonio Jobim's The Girl From Ipanema provided below under the Fair Use rules of the E2 Copyright Policy.

Tall and tan and young and lovely
The girl from Ipanema goes walking
And when she passes
Each one she passes
Goes "Ahhh!"

When she walks, she's like a samba
That swings so cool and sways so gentle
That when she passes
Each one she passes
Goes "ooh!"

Ooh But he watches so sadly
How can he tell her he loves her?
Yes he would give his heart gladly

But each day, when she walks to the sea
She looks straight ahead not at he

Tall, and tan, and young, and lovely
The girl from Ipanema goes walking
And when she passes, he smiles
but she doesn't see
doesn't see
She just doesn't see
No, she doesn't see...


This writeup is dedicated to Chiisuta's Mom, who I suspect was the original Girl from Ipanema.

CST Approved

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