Situational Music

Gudangs froth always. Froth factor high.Gudangs froth always. Froth factor high.

A day of wandering under the grey skies of Torquay, while Round 3 finishes and Round 4 begins at Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach

By Travis Ferré
Photos and Captions by Jimmicane

There are a lot of lulls at ASP events. Like, a lot. And if you're not as lucky as I, you have to face them without VIP beer and slow-motion replay. For that, I'm sorry. Unless you're watching the webcast of course, which, well, you enjoy it however you like. Background gangster rap. Indie rock. The girl's soccer team. I don't judge. It takes something though. You decide. (Go with the girl's soccer team).

TB disects AI.TB disects AI.

For us at the event, however, we face modern Red Hot Chili Peppers albums. Offspring's greatest hits. And we come face to face with the fact that we will never, ever "be your butterfly, sugar baby."

Simpo simply got worked.Simpo simply got worked.

"I don't think I can listen to this stuff ever again," Dane tells me of the Rip Curl Pro background music. I of course agree. Dane speaks the gospel. The dude loses and proceeds to hang out and observe, with zero negativity to speak of. His only post-heat quote: "Someone's gotta lose," which he says with a beaver-tooth chuckle. After losing today (to Roy Powers in a completely fair heat, but let's leave that to the ASP press release) we spent most of the day talking and wandering around the event. Looking for music and entertainment. It took about three heats of wandering before we found a place to house us: The Beer Garden. There we solved many of the problems that exist at an event. The lulls. The music. The bad commentators (I love you Freddy P.). It can all be solved with a little bit of what we like to call "Situational Music."

Bells was sick.Bells was sick.

For those of you who have been to a major sporting event, you're very aware that they rarely let you sit for very long in silence. They know we're there to have a good time watching an event. Even Major League Baseball has some fun, i.e. the 7th inning stretch, a lot of clapping, "we will, we will rock you" etc.

Jordy is legendary.Jordy is legendary.

But as a sport of "self expression" we're starting to think we need DJ's to make this translate. "Wouldn't it be rad if we had situational music?" Dane asked me. "Each surfer picked music to play. Maybe whoever had priority would get their music played. Or whoever was winning. Everyone on tour could pick their own playlist."

Dane shoulda won... if he got good waves.Dane shoulda won… if he got good waves.

Now let's really consider this. Later, after Freddy P (my hero) lost to Adriano, he joined us in the garden for a beer and agreed. The tour needs some energy, some music. "I like it," Freddy said. We then wandered into strategy. He already showed us how he feels about commentators.

Freddy P, always keepin it real.Freddy P, always keepin it real.

"Maybe if you knew your competitor hated Lady Gaga, you could put that one," Dane said. "You would rattle them when they needed a score." He said this with a competitive grin.

Boures not doing a double grab. Thank god.Boures not doing a double grab. Thank god.

Neco could get us all as psyched on his techno. Dusty Payne could spray us all with Pepper jams. Kelly could serenade us with Eddie Vedder. Whatever. A DJ would be on call. Rattle or psyche. It would make me watch. Dane and Fred too.

Tanner shoulda won too.Tanner shoulda won too.

"This was a conversation I had with Kelly," Dane told me later. "So he deserves some credit, but this could help." And we agree. Something needs to happen to get the fans excited. The surfers are now doing their part. Everyone today ripped super hard, every time a wave came in. Every time. The only problem was that the waves didn't come in all that often, and that's a problem we can fix, with Situational Music.

Just a thought, but one you should all consider.

Dusty harnesses his inner Alberga.Dusty harnesses his inner Alberga.

To give you a summary of the day's event (though I'm sure we've established by now that this isn't where you should come for heat by heat recap): Brett Simpson got weird with the judges for some strange scores (deservedly so). Dane lost. Kelly beat Dusty in a heat that was "very weird" to a lot of humans in attendance (Dane and myself in the beer garden, with replay and Toohey's Extra Dry). Kelly allegedly hurt his ankle last night surfing Bells too, which was a big conversation piece at the event. One we didn't have, however — we were talking Situational Music. Check the recap, you'll see what I mean. Tanner Gudauskas again proved he's a serious threat on this tour. Taj showed he's the man to beat. Mick won. Joel won. We're four heats through Round 4 (go watch the heats on demand) and we'll finish the next day there are waves here in Torquay. Until then, we'll be betting on the dogs, killing our idols and rubbing our hands together for the final day to see who wins the 2010 Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach.

Pancho Sullivan and Dylan Slater have been the webcast commentators and have no affiliation to the on-beach commentators, who have been under major scrutiny from the surfers at the event. Pancho Sullivan and Dylan Slater have been the webcast commentators and have no affiliation to the on-beach commentators, who have been under major scrutiny from the surfers at the event.