In 2014, Tom Schnabel, host of US station KCRW’s world music and jazz-focused Rhythm Planet, wrote of his two of his great loves: jazz improvisation and surfing: “Just as no two jazz solos are alike, neither are two waves ever identical, and good surfers or jazz musicians find renewal and inspiration in the spirit of improvisation, trying new things, sometimes succeeding brilliantly, sometimes not. Both great surfers and jazz artists take years of practice to hone their athleticism and perfect their artistry, each with their own brilliance and personal style. They ‘surf the changes’, creating their own, unique way of riding the changing face of a wave or chord changes.”

Schnabel’s weaving of these two types of in-the-moment artistry strikes an immediate chord with Australian keyboardist and recreational surfer Freyja Garbett.

“The physical sensation when you’re surfing is so like when you’re playing. They challenge you in a similar way. You have put yourself into that zone where you can just allow things to take place and adapt to whatever is going on.”

“When you are surfing, every wave is different, you can’t plan your reaction,” Garbett tells Limelight. “Music can be like that, too.”