Surfer Girl

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Surfer Girl
Studio album by
ReleasedSeptember 16, 1963
RecordedMay–July 1963
StudioUnited Western Recorders, Hollywood
GenreSurf rock, rock and roll[1]
ProducerBrian Wilson
The Beach Boys chronology
Surfin' U.S.A.
Surfer Girl
Little Deuce Coupe
The Beach Boys UK chronology
Best of The Beach Boys
Surfer Girl
Best of The Beach Boys Vol. 2
Singles from Surfer Girl
  1. "Surfer Girl" / "Little Deuce Coupe"
    Released: July 22, 1963

Surfer Girl is the third studio album by the American rock band the Beach Boys. It was released on September 16, 1963 by Capitol Records. Surfer Girl reached number 7 in the US during a chart stay of 56 weeks. In the UK, the album was released in spring 1967 and reached number 13. This was the first album by the Beach Boys for which Brian Wilson was given full production credit, a position Wilson would maintain for the next few years.

In 2017, Surfer Girl was ranked the 193rd greatest album of the 1960s by Pitchfork.[2]

Album details[edit]

Surfer Girl is the first album on which Brian Wilson is given full production credit. The songs were co-written between Wilson, Mike Love, Gary Usher and Roger Christian. The title track, the ballad "Surfer Girl", was the first song Brian composed, written at the age of 19 using "When You Wish Upon a Star" as his inspiration.[citation needed] The b-side, "Little Deuce Coupe", continued the band's trend of putting a surf-related song on the A-side of singles, and car songs on the B-side.[citation needed] "Catch a Wave" featured Mike Love's sister, Maureen, on harp, while "The Surfer Moon" was the first Beach Boys song to have a string arrangement.[citation needed] The (unreleased) instrumental track for "The Surfer Moon" was recorded (as "The Summer Moon") in early May for an extra-BB act he was recording, Bob & Vikki.[citation needed] Bob was Bob Norberg, Brian's roommate in 1962.[citation needed]

"South Bay Surfer" is co-credited to Al Jardine, who had rejoined the Beach Boys in the summer of 1963 in a limited capacity and does not appear on the album cover.

Front cover artwork[edit]

The front cover of Surfer Girl features (from left to right) Dennis Wilson, David Marks, Carl Wilson, Mike Love and Brian Wilson holding a surfboard from the same 1962 photo shoot that produced the cover of their album debut Surfin' Safari. The picture was taken by Capitol photographer Kenneth Veeder at Paradise Cove, north of Malibu. Beach Boys sport matching blue plaid Pendleton Woolen Mills shirts on the cover of their "Surfer Girl" album. Now called the "board shirt," the style is still a bestseller.


Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic3/5 stars[3]
Blender2/5 stars[4]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music3/5 stars[5]
Rolling Stone4/5 stars[6]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide4/5 stars[7]

Surfer Girl hit number seven in the US (where it went gold) and, later (in 1967) number thirteen in the UK.[citation needed]

Live performances[edit]

Half the album's tracks have been performed live by either the Beach Boys or Brian Wilson as a solo artist with varying frequency.[8]

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No.TitleWriter(s)Lead vocalsLength
1."Surfer Girl"Brian WilsonBrian Wilson2:26
2."Catch a Wave"B. Wilson/Mike LoveMike Love/B. Wilson2:07
3."The Surfer Moon"B. WilsonB. Wilson2:11
4."South Bay Surfer (The Old Folks at Home)"Stephen Foster (music); B. Wilson/Carl Wilson/Al Jardine (lyrics)Love/B. Wilson1:45
5."The Rocking Surfer"trad. arr. B. Wilsoninstrumental2:00
6."Little Deuce Coupe"B. Wilson/Roger ChristianLove1:38
Side two
No.TitleWriter(s)Lead VocalsLength
1."In My Room"B. Wilson/Gary UsherB. Wilson2:11
2."Hawaii"B. Wilson/LoveLove/B. Wilson1:59
3."Surfers Rule"B. Wilson/LoveDennis Wilson/B. Wilson1:54
4."Our Car Club"B. Wilson/LoveLove/B. Wilson2:22
5."Your Summer Dream"B. Wilson/Bob NorbergB. Wilson2:27
6."Boogie Woodie"trad. arr. B. Wilsoninstrumental1:56


The Beach Boys
Additional musicians and production staff

Sales chart positions[edit]

Year Chart Position
1963 US Billboard 200 Albums Chart 7[11]
1967 UK Top 40 Album Chart 13[12]
Year Single Chart Position
1963 "Surfer Girl" US Billboard Hot 100 Singles Chart 7
1963 "Little Deuce Coupe" US Billboard Hot 100 Singles Chart 15
1963 "In My Room" US Billboard Hot 100 Singles Chart 23


  1. ^ "Surfer Girl/Shut Down, Vol. 2 album review". Allmusic. Retrieved 2013-06-23.
  2. ^ "The 200 Best Albums of the 1960s". Pitchfork. August 22, 2017.
  3. ^ Allmusic review
  4. ^ Wolk, Douglas (October 2004). "The Beach Boys Surfer Girl/Shut Down, Volume 2". Blender. Archived from the original on June 30, 2006. Retrieved June 2, 2017.
  5. ^ Larkin, Colin, ed. (2006). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (4th ed.). London: Oxford University Press. p. 479. ISBN 978-0-19-531373-4.
  6. ^ "The Beach Boys: Album Guide | Rolling Stone Music". Archived from the original on 2012-05-16. Retrieved 2012-11-09.
  7. ^ Brackett, Nathan; with Hoard, Christian, eds. (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th ed.). New York, NY: Fireside/Simon & Schuster. p. 46. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  8. ^ "The Beach Boys Tour Statistics". Retrieved 28 October 2013.
  9. ^,24442.msg591261.html#msg591261
  10. ^,23023.0.html
  11. ^ "Surfer Girl - The Beach Boys: Awards". AllMusic.
  12. ^ "UK Top 40 Hit Database". EveryHit.
  • Surfer Girl / Shut Down Volume 2 CD booklet notes, David Leaf, c.1990.
  • The Nearest Faraway Place: Brian Wilson, The Beach Boys and the Southern California Experience, Timothy White, c. 1994.