Smooth/Radical: The Keith Paull Story
In his first book, So You Wanna Be a Surfer, Chris 'Swag' Gudenswager bound together a range of surf stories largely involving the early surf industry and his Gold Coast peers. It was a boisterous and lighthearted read; a bunch of beer garden conversations rolled into a book.
For his second effort, Swag has sharpened his focus, honing in on just one surfer and chronicling his life story.
The popular image of Keith Paull is as a victim of 1970s chemical excesses, often told as a cautionary tale against LSD use. Yet his demise overshadowed his achievements. Prior to the fall, Keith Paull pursued a very different surfing life to that which he's remembered by. He was mentioned in the same breath as Nat, Midget, and McTavish, was a premier stylist who travelled widely including early sessions in Europe, dominant trips to Hawaii, and he became the first surfer to ride Supertubes at Jeffreys Bay, all while chasing contest dreams.
In fact, it was today 50 years ago that Keith Paull won the Australian Open surfing title, finally splitting the Nat/Midget duopoly. Being such an auspicious date, Swag has today decided to launch presales for Smooth/Radical: The Keith Paull Story.
While writing Smooth/Radical, Swag interviewed many of Keith Paull's peers including Nat, Wayne Lynch, Jack McCoy, Albe Falzon, Bob Mac, and he also spoke to the surfers Paull directly influenced such as Rabbit and Peter Townend.
At 440 pages long, 35 chapters, with 170 photos, Swag expands far beyond the notion of Keith Paull as victim to show a life in full - albeit a life cut short.
Visit Swag Books to order your copy. Smooth/Radical: The Keith Paull Story will be released in August