Rodney Millican

Rodney was a really good friend of mine that I surfed with and played music with. This story is about our Jacobs surfboard that we donated to the California Surf Museum in Oceanside, California.

When I was growing up I had a best friend named Rodney. We were surf buddies and both played music. I bought a new Jacobs surfboard and Rodney bought one too. We both had them custom made to our specs and they had creative applications of the Jacobs logo for decoration. They both had three redwood stringers. Rod’s was a nose rider with a slightly concave nose.

I sold my Jacob eventually as I had moved from California and wasn’t surfing anymore. Then one day I moved back to Oceanside, California. Rod still had his Jacobs and sold it to me as he wasn’t surfing any more.

I road Rod’s board now and then until I moved to Montana, when I donated the board to the California Surf Museum in Oceanside, California. They were delighted to get it as it had become a classic and was in good condition. It also featured a rare surf license sticker on the underside that was once required by law in Newport Beach. You can see it in the photo of Rod next to the board. It’s the gray colored sticker just above the fin (which by the way is a fixed glassed fin).

Dig this… you had to buy the annual surf pass and put the sticker on the bottom of your board. Then, when the lifeguards came by in their jeeps the would use their load speaker and require us to turn over our boards and show them our stickers. And if you didn’t have one, they would have you paddle in and give you a fine. Oh boy! Us surfers where not happy, and needless to say it didn’t last long thank goodness!

One day Rod strolled into the Surf Museum and was surprised to find his Jacob on display since I add neglected to tell him about it. We had fun chatting about it and all the good memories of our days riding our Jacobs longboards.  Those where the days!.

I had taken a bunch of photos when I  donated the board, and Rod sent me some photos they took of him at the Museum. I put together this short video just for fun. The soundtrack features the Smoking Wood Peckers live at one of the Blue Jam Festivals, recorded and mixed by Eric Schwartz, second guitarist in the band.

You’ve heard of how musicians sometimes have moments when everything comes together and the magic happens. This was one of those moments when the band, Herb French, Eric Schwartz, David Klatt, Paul Holcomb and me were in sync and Paul locked in his drumming with me on lead guitar and we riffed back and forth together. I will never forget it! It was a special moment for me.

Paul was a dear friend, an excellent drummer, a beautiful soul, and a really good surfer too!

California Surf Museum and Rodney’s Jacobs surfboard video.