Dick Dale

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Dick Dale

Dick Dale is an American surf rock guitarist born to Lebanese parents. Dale was born in Boston, but he and his family moved to Orange County, California, where he learned to surf and became very interested in music. With this important factor of surfing, he became known as “The King of the Surf Guitar.” In addition, his Lebanese heritage also had a very important influence in his music. He had a strong interest in Arabic music, which greatly influenced his development of surf rock music. Dale is considered the creator of surf rock music, as well as one of the first electric guitarists to employ fast scales in his playing. As a surfer, Dick wanted his music to reflect the sounds he heard in his mind while surfing, so he introduced the use of guitar reverb, which is a special effect applied to an audio signal to make it sound as if it is being emitted in a tunnel, with some depth and a bit of echo. This guitar reverb gave the guitar what they call a “wet” sound, which became a staple of surf music. Dick Dale met Leo Fender, and together they began to work on building custom amplifiers. Since Dale always focused on creating certain specific sounds, he pushed the limits of equipment. Fender would give Dale amplifiers, but he kept blowing them up. Because of this interaction, Leo Fender was led to develop many types of amplifiers and other equipment that would survive Dick’s style, as well as adapt to many types of sounds. Eventually, Fender developed a fifteen inch loudspeaker with certain specifications, which became the famous “15” JBL D130F model.” This unit became the complete package for Dick to play with, and allowed him to become the first person on earth to jump from the guitar volume scale of 4 to blasting it to 10. Right after, and because of this, Dale became “The Father of Heavy Metal,” because he broke through the electronic barrier limitations of the era. Aside from being associated with many Fender amplifiers, Dale is associated with the...
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