Influences

Here are some of the key influences that form the sound of Del Noah:

Link Wray and the subsequent hot rod instrumental music bands, such as the Del Fi groups (Defenders, Deuce Coupes, Darts) and the budget label groups (Winners, Blasters, etc.), culminated in the biker fuzztone of Davie Allan and the Arrows. This is the influence on songs like "Hole Shot," "Blower Explosion" and "Bajavishnu 500."

"Crime jazz": 1950's soundtrack music for film and television crime dramas (as in Del Noah's original song "The Theme from 'The Big Payroll Caper'" and cover of Elmer Bernstein's "The Man with the Golden Shifter (Arm)" is evident in Del Noah's music. Check out Pete Rugolo's "Richard Diamond" soundtrack, Mancini's "Peter Gunn," Stanley Wilson and Count Basie's music for "M Squad," etc.

'Tequila" and "Night Train": It's no coincidence that the titles of both these songs are also the names of booze. Though there were other influential songs, these two had the biggest impact on forging a sub-genre of instrumental music that was subsequently celebrated and captured in compilations like Crypt's "Las Vegas Grind" and "Jungle Exotica" and Romulan's "Frolic Diner" series'. This was distinctly sax driven music instantly synonymous with sleazy bars and strip joints, often played with a jazzy flavor by cats with chops (as opposed to the teenagers who made surf music). "Night Train," originally derived from a Duke Ellington tune, was popularized by Jimmy Forrest and was the highest profile of the greasy stripper tunes. By the mid-50's, this music was being filtered through the R&B wailings of Earl Bostic, Bill Doggett and Big Jay McNeely and transformed into psychotic rave-ups. When "Tequila" hit in '58, it set off a craze of faux bar-bandized latin insturmentals (as well as food and booze tunes) that melded with the over-the-top stripper music, and the then-current exotic craze with nonsense phrases approximating a tribal frenzy (a la "Congawa") added to the mayhem. When James Brown added his funky groove to "Night Train" in '62, it brought a whole new dimension to the sound that meshed perfectly with the twist craze and set people to bumpin', grindin' and twistin' the night away. Del Noah's tunes such as "Re-Satch-a-Go-Go," their re-arrangement of Henry Mancini's "Push the Button Max!" on "Shots in the Dark" and their medley of "Tequila/Too Much Tequila" bear this influence.

Hot rod/surf vocal music: There were two distinct schools of vocalizing during the early 60'surf music era. One was the pristine harmonies of the Beach Boys, Jan and Dean, the Fantastic Baggies, the Rip Chords, etc., and the other was the less-pretty but more intense style of the Midwestern bands like the Trashmen and the Rivieras. Del Noah employs more the style of the later than the former, though harmonies do pop up on tunes like "Del Noah."

"J.D./Hot Rod/Outer Space" movie music: Ronald Stein was an unsung genius. The composer of much theme music for 1950's and 1960's AIP and Allied Artists sci-fi, horror and J.D. films (ATTACK OF THE 50 FOOT WOMAN, SPIDER BABY), had a knack for creating outer-spacey, avante garde soundtrack music (check out the theme from INVASION OF THE SAUCER MEN), but was one of the few of his peers who seemed to understand honking rock and roll and gave it his weird, orchestra touch (check out the soda shop background tunes from ATTACK OF THE 50 FOOT WOMAN). However, the theme from THE GHOST OF DRAGSTRIP HOLLOW (done by Del Noah on "Blower Explosion!") was his masterpiece. He turns one of his typically spacy melodies (conjuring up images of transparent ghosts drifting across the screen) into a riff suitable for a rock and roll honking sax player like Plas Johnson (who is as likely as anyone to have been on the original soundtrack recording), then break into an all-out rock and roll middle break, before going back to weirdness-then segueing into an incessant hot rod riff to accompany the film's first scene-two cool hot-rod chicks dragging in a concrete LA riverbottom.

Hot rod movie vocal music: This is a niche area that includes James Darren's warbling of Bobby Darin's swinging title tune from THE LIVELY SET and faux-beatnik Slick Slavin's belting of the title theme from SPEED CRAZY (both covered by Del Noah).

Garage rock: From the Northwest screaming of the Sonics and Wailers, through the fuzz/farfisa sound that peaked in '66, it has always been a huge influence on the punk rock that followed. Occasionally, Del Noah shows this influence in tunes like "Mormon Cycle Poker Run."

Surf music: is among Del Noah's influences, and we do several songs that could be termed surf instrumental music (i.e. "Danger Island" and "Mafia Staff Woody"). However, in recent times, "surf music" has become the blanket term thrown over all late 50's/early 60's rock and roll instrumental music, inaccurately simplifying the history of instro tuneage. Del Noah does some surf music, but is not a surf music band.