NEW ZEALAND BROTHER ALI PORTLAND SOTO RAD DAN
snow skate culture
RYAN CRUZE / SILVERTON CO. BACKCOUNTRY TERRY RATZLAFF PHOTO NS Factory Built, Denver CO.
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80 STUPID QUESTIONS
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154 TIME 2 SHINE
150 NUT & BOLT
148 FLYING FOR DUMMIES
128 BROTHER ALI
Matt LadLey | US Snowboard Team Member
Finish your last run right.
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the DL Fall IN CASE YOU HAVEN’T LOOKED AT A CALENDAR lately, winter is closing in. Fall is well upon us and in the skate world, that means pros switching sponsors. P-Rod called up Luan Oliveira and tossed him on Nike SB. Oscar Meza is now rolling with Autobahn wheels and Marc Johnson is teaming up with Ronnie Creager’s Etcetera Project and walking on his signature insoles. Zach Miller is grinding smooth with Thunder Trucks. Matix re-signed Daewon Song, Mike Anderson, and Marc Johnson. Veteran Andy Macdonald dropped his first video part in 12 years with a custom sound track by Mix Master Mike. Real Skateboards just tossed James Kelch a video part for his throwback “Good Times Are Here Again” merch. Zero released a short trailer featuring Chris Cole for the highly anticipated Cold War Video while Girl/Chocolate also dropped a teaser for Pretty Sweet, which celebrates the companies history and is expected to be released November 16th.
In the snow world, resorts nationwide have already seen their first natural snowfall for the season. Early season snow predictions are all over the map and essentially useless so we won’t even speculate at this point. Resorts have made lots of changes over the summer. In the East, Crotched and Cranmore added new chairlifts. Jay Peak owners bought Burke Mountain and look to continue drastic expansion on both in the next few years. Despite filing bankruptcy earlier this year, Greek Peak Resort will be open for the 12-13 winter season. In the West, Breckenridge, reported it will add a peak next year. Meanwhile Deer Valley, Sundance and Snowbird are adding new lifts. Even Monarch and Eldora are expanding terrain. There’s a ton of other news, hop on steezmagazine.com for all the latest. Thanks again to everyone, (especially Narragansett for keepin the beer flowing) for making the Issue 24 Release a huge success. Lastly, on a sad note, snowboard pioneer and legend, Tom Sims, suffered a fatal heart attack at the age of 62. He will be dearly missed, but his memory will be kept alive. -Frankie Lopes
SNOW SKATE CULTURE TWENTY FIVE CHIEF
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FALL 2012 / A NEW SHORT FILM_
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Antony LeProvost, wallride
‘The land of the long white cloud’, or more commonly known as New Zealand, is a pretty sweet place to live. The air is fresh, people are nice (apart from some parts of Auckland), and things are usually pretty chilled. It’s one place you can surf, skate and snowboard all in the same day.
WORDS & PHOTO
c h e c k i n g New Zealand
Elijah Moore, airwalk to fakie
don’t have the large cities that many other countries have, so finding good skate spots usually involves thinking outside of the square—sometimes a little improvisation. New Zealanders are well known for their DIY attitude. Down South, there’s a flourishing skate scene in my hometown of Christchurch, with many of the city’s talent being bred very young. Some of the super keen groms even go to the extent of cementing up mini quarter-pipes down at the local reserve. If these kids can get through the teenage years with the same enthusiasm and not too much of the distractions I was exposed to, Christchurch is going to have some really good skaters emerging. A key reason these guys are getting local exposure are the regular skate events and comps happening about the city’s skateparks. Photographing these events is always great fun, there’s always a wide variety of competitors who are always pushing the limits, looking for new lines and tricks. Skate spots are always changing right now as Christchurch slowly recovers from the 2011 earthquakes — the upside however is there are some pretty unique features. In some areas, parts of the road have been broken away and curved down into natural banks. Big cracks opened up giving us gaps and ledges, and now that the whole CBD is pretty much being pulled down and rebuilt, there’s an abundance of abandoned factories, warehouses and building foundations to skate.
TOP TO BOTTOM
Ben McConnell, switch tre James Kingston, noseslide Dion Schweikl (age 9), ollie
c h e c k i n g New Zealand
Zealand Alex Baker, ollie over the rail
Security can be a little tricky to determine. Some dudes are rad, and used to skate when they were younger so they have a compassionate level, though others enjoy a good power-trip — most skaters here get a little feeling of angst, usually ‘cause they didn’t get quite enough time to land what they wanted. Conflict does occur, but probably not half as much as other places. With the earthquakes came the military as well, there were literally tanks blocking all the main roads into the city center, which was enough to put most people off. There’s really only one other thing slowly killing our skate scene — scooters. I’ve travelled about NZ
and Australia recently, and I’m pretty sure Christchurch has it the worst. They’re like a plague with their ‘bry flips’ or some sh*t they like to call it. The problem is a lot of kids don’t seem to be making the transition to a skateboard at the appropriate age — there’s even a good population of adults on scooters too. It’s a common sight to see about 10 scooters to 1 skateboard down at the parks.
Could be a sign to get craftier on the streets…
Photo Steve Cummings
creative quest W/
On the quest for shred
It’s the simple things that often times can create the greatest amount of fun and most memorable experiences. We had been traveling around the United States on a tour and were 20 days deep into a snowless journey. It was the first time in 7 years we couldn’t simply hop out of the van and strap into our snowboards if we saw something rad to session. We were in the middle of Michigan on a tour stop, and we finally got some snow. It honestly felt like a holiday celebration of sorts, everyone in the crew was charging with tricks they had been waiting to try all season. The energy was great and we were finally able to start stacking some footy! There wasn’t really too much around to shred, the land was really flat and it was a Monday afternoon, so all of the local schools and businesses would definitely be a bust. So, we explored around on some Davy Crockett type journey and stumbled across this gem above. When I walked up to it, it reminded me of a monster, but it certainly was the funkiest shaped electrical box I had ever seen. The structure resembled a pale green monster face coming out of the ground, with a cute nose and almost a train car-like body shape. The little green pale monster became our new best friend and allowed me to share this memory of our session with you today in print. From Michigan with love, or shall I say straight from the mitten… Peace, stay safe, pray for snow and happy travels! //Pat Milbery
Michigan Fun Facts -There is a city called “Hell” and it is one block in length. -Colon is home to the world’s largest manufacturer of magic supplies. -Michigan ranks first in state boat registrations. -Michigan is the only place in the world with a floating post office.
Show & Tell
Jennifer Torant First off, how’s your back feel? My back is feeling fine. I stay limber by taking Zumba classes 4 days a week. Photo Stewart Smith
Would you ever date Hugh Hefner or are you not about the money? Hefner? Never. I’m the misogynous type of girl. Not to mention age difference. Shiver…
Was your boyfriend shocked that his “angel was the centerfold?” Not shocked at all. He is proud of me in what I’ve accomplished as a model. I think he would have been shocked if I didn’t grace the pages where women can show off their sexiness. He loves it. How come there are no good looking women in nudist colonies anymore?
You’ve looked? I don’t think you searched very well, I bet there are! A free sprit is always hot! Say something naughty please. This pose wasn’t your typical pose. It gave me a great idea for later…
A free sprit is always hot!
*Original receipt for purchase required.
Andrew Rebelo Q flash 50mm prime lense.Â
kook fueled kickflip This hill is pretty steep, and on the try right before this one here, Andrew landed the kickflip, slipped out, and his board shot down the hill. Like twenty five minutes later, Andrew walks back up with his board…his board had shot down the hill into some guys yard, through the open sliding glass door and into the patio where this dude was eating dinner. This must have happened before, because the guy grabbed the board and was waiting for Andrew when he came looking for it. At which point, according to Andrew, the guy tried to sell him back his board. Not sure how he got it back without having to pay for it, but he definitely wasn’t laughing about it when he told us the story. I think he channeled the anger, ‘cause he blasted this kickflip so hard you could hear the smack of the catch like a gunshot…kook fueled kickflip! -Karim Ghonem
photographer Chris Faronea pictured left: Pat Milbery top: Mitch Schmidt equipment Canon EOS 50D Lens: Left - Sigma 70-200 f2.8 Right - Canon 17-40L f4 Flash: Left - Elinchrom Ranger RX with one Ranger A-Head Flash Trigger: Elinchrom Skyport EL
When I walk down any street, my imagination actively processes the backgrounds surrounding me. My mind naturally transitions the “what if’s” into the “that would be sick if you did this” mode of thinking. Street art is something we indeed need to respect, but you also have to wonder, with any creation, was this put here for us to re-create and why not? If we don’t destroy the art in any way, I have to wonder, would the artist appreciate the effort we can contribute into the new background that other artist’s imaginations interpret and re-create? We sure hope so… Denver commissioned structure art by Joseph Riche’s “Trade Deficit” was created to represent the history of shipping and commerce of the neighborhood. 33 -Pat Milbery
keep the song moving
I live and work in Detroit and there is an unrelenting beat to this city that makes you hustle. I canâ€™t possibly describe it to you. It wakes you in the morning and sometimes it coldly shakes you in the middle of the night but, you cannot stop moving because everyone is depending on you to keep the song moving along. I am one of those people who constantly wish for more time in the day. I get six hours of sleep, I have a day job that is soul destroying, I am sick all the time, I only get an hour to spend with my girl when I get home and then I paint and draw all night just so that we can get by.
Detroit, Michigan to Butte, Montana
Today I get two extra hours and I badly need it; my girlfriend has just lost her mother to cancer and I have to hustle my way to Montana so that I can hold her hand, meet her family and say goodbye to an amazing woman that I sadly was never able to meet. My day starts at Plus Skateboarding and ends - overlooking a copper pit full of acid in Butte, Montana. This day was surreal to say the least. -Mark Penxa 35
...maybe he's just not a very good swimmer
Hasselblad 500 c/m 80mm lens nikon sb28 lumedyne p4xx expired Provia 100
pictured Matty Hunt
Matty Hunt, native son of Pleasant Hill, CA, embarked on a month-long trip down south. All wise proverbs of old recommended that he go west, but he refused to listen. Maybe he's a rebel, or maybe he's just not a very good swimmer, but either way, the man sure likes adventure. The first leg of said journey landed our protagonist in Long Beach, CA where he stayed with long-time friend and filmer extraordinaire, Tim Cisilino. Tim brought us to more than a handful of spots, which consisted primarily of ditches, sewers, trenches, aqueducts; the usual places where you might come across a strapping young lad such as Matty. After a friendly chat with a liquor store owner, whose parking lot we had commandeered for our own purposes, and who showed dangerous levels of stoke for our mission, we embarked on a short hike along the L.A. River to the classic ditch spot pictured here. Passing runners, bikers, BMXers, and other various top-dwelling creatures along the way, I pitied them for they would never descend into the belly of the ditch. The enormity of this place is a testament to human engineering greatness, but to hell with science; it's a unique and beautiful skate spot. Commitment is key here, and after Matty got his trick in mind, he rolled away, toward the sunset and the filthy river, within no more than a couple tries. With one spot down, and many more to go, Matty was well on his way to what would turn out to be a healthy month-long diet of burritos and at least a clip a day. -Daniel Muchnik 37
If you haven’t seen Goonan skate in person, you’re missing out on a lot. No one knows what his secret is, but the dude’s a machine. After a fun session across the street at a nice ledge spot where you‘ll find groups of kids congregating with their boards, we came over here where people had hopes of putting together some good lines. Goonan jumped into it without a problem. He started getting tricks back to
back, just warming up to his final battle. About 10 back lips to front lipslides later, and a handful of other tricks, he started battling for this here. Back lipslide, to front noseblunt. It didn’t take long either, the secret has to be in those long legs of his. An infinite amount of pop, and total control over the board has to work wonders. We had a piece of plywood set up at the top set of stairs, that way you can just pop a tail drop in to
the dudeâ€™s a machine
get the right speed for the first rail. Even a nasty, unexpected slam hanging up on that wood didnâ€™t phase the dude. He got back up, walked it off, went straight back to business and got it. Back lip, to front noseblunt. -Sean Michon
equipment Nikon D5000 18-55mm Lens
24 / SEVEN
WORDS & PHOTO
Shaun is truly a student of skateboarding. With quick feet, and quicker wit, he slays carefully picked spots in and around the SF Bay area with a tactical precision and style to match. More importantly, in all my experiences shooting with him, Shaun has always been the first one ready to skate in the morning, and down to go all day. As if that weren't enough, Shaun's also the first to come up with terrible jokes on the all too common, painfully long car rides to get the whole crew through the cramped ordeal. That sort of reliability, combined with a natural eye for aesthetically interesting spots, quickly
cemented Shaun as one of my favorite people to shoot with, and he's only heating up. Shaun is flow for Real, Thunder and Spitfire, as well as Huf Shoes, and is also the only current rider for the apparel brand, Benny Gold. Some of you may recognize Benny Gold as the designer for Huf, as well as a few other skate brands, and Shaun backs it 100%. With a video part on the way for the East Bay flick, Warm Gravy, Shaun shows no signs of slowing down, and I sure as hell know I can't wait to see more.
21 YEARS OF PROGRESSION AND INNOVATION*
*WE’RE EXPERTS IN SNOWBOARDING AND OUTERWEAR, NOT LIFE CHOICES
aUsTen sWeeTin & special blend, TURninG 21 WiTH sTYle PHOTO peaRe
D R O P P I N G Fall â€˜12
Armourdillo Bullet Belt $30 Commandoâ€™s need a good artillery belt.
KIND Madagascar Vanilla Almond Bar $2ea They taste way better than an MRE, healthier too.
GoPro HD Hero 2 $300 and Wi-Fi Combo Kit $100 Catch all the up-close action from far away with the new remote wi-fi controls. Great for when the heat is too much to handle in person.
Aeroshot $3ea Keepinâ€™ the troops energized all day.
House of Marley Conqueror $100 Block out your fellow soldiers.
43 Lib Tech Phoenix Jamie 157 $540 Magne-Traction for tough battlegrounds.
D R O P P I N G Fall â€˜12
Bamboo Sk8 Musicares Deck $35 Bamboo is stronger than wood and grows at an explosive rate.
Gnu Riderâ€™s Choice 161 $540 Battle tested and proven.
Arnette Up in Smoke Goggle $85 Strap pockets are great for extra cargo.
45 Nope Swallow Limited Edition of 99 Takes a beating and guaranteed for life.
D R O P P I N G Fall ‘12
IS Eyewear Bomber Icon Goggles $155 Keeps battle debris out of your face.
Saavi Design Natty Dread $70 Pressing made easy with these high back attachments. Now that’s worth fighting for!
Rome Artifact 153 $390 After a long day of fighting it’s party time!
Smith Gage Helmet $80 You never know when you might take a rock to the noggin. Donâ€™t leave without it.
Armourdillo Crackle Wallet $25 Great for hiding contraband - and money.
47 Jake OG 151 $450 Blow up the park like Jake OE does.
blot to in t er v ie w
Interviewed by Peter Levandowski / Photo by Blotto
or over 250 days each year, for the past 13 years, Dean Blotto Gray has been documenting the snowboarding life. In doing so, he has become one of the most inexhaustible photographers the young sport has ever seen. At once emotive, artistic and journalistic, his images create a natural bridge between the subject and the viewer. His work has not only elevated and influenced how snowboarding is viewed, but also how it is documented by others in the field.
Tell us about yourself. Where did you grow up? I grew up in Phoenix, Arizona racing BMX and skateboarding. Flagstaff, Arizona for snowboarding. What’s a good childhood memory? Constructing BMX jump ramps out front of my parents house…using whatever materials we could locate around the neighborhood. Any injuries? Lots and lots of stitches… Got away with zero broken bones for many many years. What got you interested in photography? Ever since picking up my first Thrasher Magazine I have been interested in photography. However, picking up a camera didn’t happen for many years until the time came while working for Technine. What did you see yourself doing before you picked up a camera? Being involved in snowboarding in one capacity or another.
So then what influenced you to get into shooting snowboarding? While at Technine, my co-worker Ethan Fortier and I were put in charge of producing images, building catalogs and posting a website. Neither one of us had ever done these duties before so I grabbed the camera, Ethan took the computer and we taught
ourselves everything to make it happen. When I left T9, I gave Ethan a two-day crash course on photography and he’s taken it to a whole other level since. What was your first camera and do you still have it? My first camera was a Canon EOS 530 with two random lenses. Ethan Fortier (E-Stone) has the camera proudly displayed in his SLC home. What do you look for in a picture? I look for the best possible outcome in translating real life into a still image. Do you have a favorite person to shoot and why? A big attraction to shooting snowboarding is the individuality and creativity that every rider brings to the table. It’s a unique experience with every person I work with. It would be impossible to pinpoint one specific personality as my favorite. What’s the last really memorable shoot you did? Southern Hemisphere documenting the Burton High Fives Contest and the catalog shoot immediately after. Given the limited confines of Snowpark, you can see everybody shredding everything. With
Lots and lots of stitchesâ€Ś
got away with zero broken bones
for many many years.
that amount of talent flying around (sponsored or not), it’s the best snowboarding demonstration one could ever hope for. You’ve been on a lot of trips, was there one that was better than the rest? Any snowboarding photo shoot that’s located in Alaska is at the top of the list. Not only are you accessing some of the biggest, and most dangerous mountains in North America, but also you’re getting to experience the Alaskan way of life, geography and nature. It’s one incredible place to visit, I highly recommend it. A couple of summers ago I accompanied a moun-
tain bike crew to the Middle East, to the country of Jordan. The purpose of the mission was to discover terrain suitable to bicycles and make good use of it. Not only did we find great trails and steeps, we were toured through places such as Petra, The Dead Sea and Wadi Rum. Unreal preservation of structures dating back two thousand plus years. If you could pick anything to take pictures of, what would it be? I currently take pictures of what I would choose: snowboarding, bicycles, Mother Nature, travel. Which one of those are you most excited to
take pictures of? Snowboarders continuing to push the boundaries of what’s humanly possible while accessing some far away places. That’s a pleasant situation to be a part of. Are you into action or still shots more? Eighty percent of my job is journalistic photography, going with the flow and documenting along the way. Whether it’s action, travel or portraits, I do prefer that to set-up or studio shots. However, working as a commercial photographer I’m required to do both, which I’m totally fine with given the ratio.
blo t to interview
Instagram @DeanBlottoGray Website blottophotto.com
Every day is your resume
Would you say you prefer photos or movies? With the advent of digital still cameras, this has led to way more time on the computer finishing the captured files. With that said, I couldnâ€™t imagine sitting in the editing cave for months on end dropping motion clips into a timeline. Photo editing time is nothing compared to video editing. Mad respect for movie and video editors. Explain what itâ€™s like to do something you love as a full-time job. I was always told to follow your heart, work hard, honesty is the best policy and be kind to others. I try to remember these words on a daily basis. If you do things for the right reasons, situations seem to fall in place.
How good of a snowboarder do you have to be in order to get to some of the remote places you take photos? My B-grade snowboarding skills allow me to navigate through any given situation in the mountains
or at the resort. Most of the time you donâ€™t have to follow the riders through the gnar, an alternate route is usually available. Are there any photos/photo shoots you regret? Not yet. If you could photograph any person, who would it be? Roberto Clemente. Of all the people you could pick, why Roberto Clemente? Humanitarian, wicked baseball player, pride. Do you have any words of wisdom for young photographers? Every day is your resume. Thanks to: Steez Magazine, Burton Snowboards, Analog, LeZot Camera, Pocket Wizard and every snowboarder, skateboarder and cyclist worldwide.
IF IT WASN’T FOR
SNOWBOARDING FOREST MIGHT CHECK PRICES instead of
“KING OF CONVENIENCE”
Reserved Axxe Jacket / Ltd Destructed Denim Pant
P H O T O
P Sean Michon R John McCoy, sw wallie
P H O T O
60 P Trevor Denman
R Sean Sullivan, massive ollie
P H O T O
P Terry Ratzlaff R Austin Julik-Heine, method
P H O T O
65 P Daniel Muchnik
R Moses Salazar, tailslide
P H O T O
66 P Brian Adams
R Preston Pollard, back 180 to 5-0
P H O T O
P Terry Ratzlaff
P H O T O
P Trevor Denman R Jason Ross, front board
P H O T O
P Daniel Muchnik R Matty Hunt, ollie
P H O T O
P Terry Ratzlaff
P H O T O
P Buddy Bleckley
R Pat Donfro, ollie
The Living Legend
U O Y S D N ATUS— A H E N ARY ST . NO O T D I N N E R G LE YOU EA Cannon is 4,080' of some of the best all-mountain riding in the east— sick trees, Mittersill sidecountry and, thanks to the “Cannon Effect,” localized deep snowfall when other areas get squat. Cannon’s signature Tossup Park is also going BIGer this season with added acreage and snow. This winter, head up to Cannon and earn your hero badge on the living legend.
F R A N C O N I A N O TC H S TAT E PA R K , N H
Mike LeBlanc Founder, Holden Outerwear interviewed by: AB photo: Neil DaCosta
LeBlanc means “The White” in French. If you could change your last name to another color, what would it be? Black, because that’s the color that is all colors in one. Did you ever consider logging or shipbuilding as a career? No. But if I had to pick one, it would be logging hours of footage on hill, that’s the best kind of shredding for me. How many artificial knees have you been through? Zero, knock on wood. Do tall snowboarders piss you off? Yes, they make my neck hurt. One of your bio’s describes you as a poet, let’s hear a line? “Steez Mag is asking me for a poem, words are weak, listen to nature, act beyond words and thoughts.” Is it true you’re coming out with a rap album? Maybe.
Are you sick of kids asking for free Holden stuff? No, it’s part of what makes Holden special. What do you have against curling? I have nothing against anyone finding enjoyment, whatever floats your boat. Has Holden considered making any overalls for lobstermen? Yes, we made some for this season, called the, “Whittlake Bib.” They are stench proof by design, and look great with Xtra-TuffsTM. Finish this sentence “How many ducks does it take…” To make a pond party? What’s the ratio of hippies to nonhippies in Portland? They are all hippies in different clothing packages.
JTMR John “The Man” Reeves interviewed by: AB photo: Ryan Zimmerman
Where have you been hiding for the past decade? In my skin! Portlandia! Brooklyn the planet! Tell these kids how you became “The Man”... Tell them kids to watch H-Street’s “Hokus Pokus.” It’s kinda weird to be given the nickname “The Man” at a mere 15 years of age. Do you think Jamie Thomas owes you royalties for beating on him and changing his career path? Hells yeah! I motivated that muthaf***a more than Tony Robbins could have! Hahaha. Nah, peace to Jamie, mad props on the businessman skills and the skating. Does Bodega get a lot of calls of people trying to order sandwiches? Mostly pastrami but sometimes turkey, or turkey and pastrami. There’s a pizza place in Baltimore that named a pizza after me, the “JTMR”, just tomato mozzarella romano, google it!
Did anyone ever party harder than you on tour? NO! I guess not? I thought that partying hard was the norm. Looks like you put on a few pounds since those Invisible days? Years of radical gnarliness. Ha! I haven’t weighed myself in a while, I can still ollie higher than you. How long did it take you to write your new book? From April to September, so about 5-6 months. Not that long, most of the stuff had been in my head for years. I see you write poetry too. Drop us a line Thoreau. “Time is not a handcuff. Time is a gun. You risk it all in the name of freedom” - JTMR Peep my book “Open Through the Mindflow...” Shookup publishing, out now on iTunes. How many fights have you been in throughout your career? Not many, but I’ll never forget the one in Vancouver when I smashed this huge tall Native Indian guy’s face in while Matt Hensley was playing pool. I don’t even know how the fight started, so wasted, but I finished it. Didn’t go to jail either and I skated in Slam City Jam the next day. I love Canada. Peace!
I can still ollie higher than you
Chris Brewster Pro Snowboarder - DWD
Dinosaurs Will Die? Yeah hopefully they f**kin’ will.
interviewed by: Chris Gadomski photo: Ted Borland
Hardon4babes talks mad sh*t; what do you got for your YouTube haters? Hard d*ck and bubble gum.
How many days a week do you wear flannel? Maybe sometimes all, maybe sometimes none.
What’s your adult drink of choice? And you can’t say PBR. Whiskey ginger.
A Snowboarder Mag intern recently dubbed you one of the top ten hottest snowboarders, up there with T. Rice and Torstein Horgmo: how does it feel to be an international sex sensation? I don’t feel like a sex sensation? That thing was just another made-up list.
Alaskan women are… Government Camp women are not… Alaskan women are hard to find, Government Camp women are not existent..
It’s gotta be the haircut; what do you call that thing? The mop?
What’s the hardest part of growing up? Staying young.
How about you sell your bike and cop a sled for this season? Nah, I’d rather hike.
What does your gas station diet consist of? Taquitos from 7-Eleven and mexi colas, candy and ice cream.
What’s Chris Brewster’s signature rail trick? Cough, front blunt, cough? Whatever’s easy, haha. Who’s got your favorite couch to surf? Maybe dfait in Laguna, or Club Boya in SLC, and never not in Anchorage.
Alaskan women are hard to find
Thirty Two and UGG just partnered up, you still with it? Uggghh probably! Sounds pretty dope!
How important are periodic safety meetings? Very important. If your life was a music genre, what would it be? Funk.
Five Mountains, One Pass, No Blackout Dates Abenaki Terrain Park at Bear Peak Shred ‘til 3 a.m. at Crotched’s Midnight Madness Average annual snowfall of 200” at Wildcat Get two Bring-a-Friend discounted lift tickets
Higher Ed Pass also valid at:
WITH A STUDENT ID & LETTER FROM REGISTRAR Purchase online or call 800.272.5228 Price valid through 12/16/12
Bring-a-Friend discounted tickets are $40 each, valid for redemption Mon-Fri, non-holidays, at Attitash, Mount Snow and Wildcat only. See attitash.com or skiwildcat.com for more details and to purchase pass.
Matt Bennett Pro Skater - Toy Machine interviewed by: Bryan “Butch” Wright photo: Brian Hanson
When was your hair cut last? A couple weeks ago. Got that trim. How many pro boards do you think you have? Guessing 20. Did you send in a sponsor me? Nope. Billy Marks put in the good word. Why do you look like you smoke a lot of weed? ‘Cause I used to. Have you ever tag-teamed a chick on tour? Nope. Sounds fun though. How many pairs of shoes do you go through in a month? Three or four.
...I got hooked on them when they used to be buy-one-get-one-free.
Does Johnny Layton eat a lot of cheeseburgers? I don’t think so. What’s the most expensive thing you’ve gotten on tour with the company card? An entire visit to a strip club. But it wasn’t on a company card that I ride for. Do you like when other pros do the Bennett grind? Yeah I’m cool with it. Do you only own Toy Machine socks? How many do you own? No I got other socks. I have an unlimited supply of Toy socks. Have you ever posed naked for Templeton? Nope. Do you think double flips are cool? Only if Billy Marks does ‘em. What kind of cigarettes do you smoke and why? Parliament Lights, ‘cause I got hooked on them when they used to be buy-one-get-one-free.
Mark “Deadlung” Edlund Pro Snowboarder - Smokin interviewed by: Chris Gadomski / photo: Andrew Miller
What keeps you mobile, iPhone or Android? iPhone4s.
Are there any unexploited urban spots left in SLC? Always and forever.
Which is better; old school style, or next level swag? Old school swag with next level style.
What’s the worst new trend in snowboarding? Building giant reverse cheese wedge chiseled landings in the streets.
Rumor has it you’re a connoisseur, what’s your strain of choice? Fire OG or Skywalker OG.
Energy drinks are toxic and cocaine’s expensive; what gets you going in the morning? Coffee with cigs, a bong rip, coconut water, and sometimes a beer if I’m on one.
Describe the perfect wife candidate. Funny, smart, cute, tall, dark hair, big natural tits, round ass, listens to Juicy J, smokes weed, likes to snowboard, gives brain, plays golf and is rich as f**k! You’re headed out with the gang on a Friday night, favorite Biggie track to bang? All of ‘em! Best resort for pro hoes? I wish I knew! Do you tweet? This just reminded me I even have a Twitter @deadestlung, I dunno why I made it, but I f**k with Instagram. @deadlung follow me.
Coffee with cigs, a bong rip, coconut water, and sometimes a beer...
Are we going to see any new Lungie Land episodes this season? Yea probably, I dropped Vol. 40 not too long ago after a year or more hiatus. What’s the funniest show on TV? I don’t watch TV, but I’m guessing the news. So should we expect Mark Edlund to be in contention at Sochi 2014? What’s that? What’s with these Stupid F**king Kids these days? It’s a crew, a gang, a movement, a lifestyle and a brand soon. Expect to see some limited edition tees, hoodies, and accessories in the future. SFK! stpdfcknkds!
portLAND The idea is the same for every trip,
get a bunch of skaters together, go somewhere new and fairly untouched,
Words & Photo by Buddy Bleckley
and bring back the best you can get.
This trip was no different.
The City Portland, Maine The Shape Crew Dave Bachinsky Serge Murphy John Coyne Pat Donfro Brad Miller Matt Fennell Nick Lamarche
Pat has a big conversion van which we loaded to the brim with camera gear, tents, sleeping bags and whatever else we found fit for the 3-day trip. The van itself has an interesting story; the dudes were all able to buy the van just from the profits of “Shape Deuce”, the last video they put out. So, if you want to help them out and see a rad video, shapedeuce.com. Now no trip is complete without its set backs, this time things were going wrong before we even got started. At 8am on the morning we were supposed to leave, I still didn’t have a camera. Mine was back at Nikon for repairs and was a few days late on returning. Panicking on the way to Lowell to meet up with the boys, I was calling every rental house in the area trying to find a replacement. I managed to snag a Nikon D4 for the price of a D3 from LensProToGo in Concord right as they opened up at 9am. Thanks guys, couldn’t have done it without you! Now equipped with a $6000, 10fps, 16 megapixel workhorse, I was ready to go.
just an hour or two behind schedule we got things rolling. first stop was to pick up Maine local, Matt Fennell.
Matt is as Maine as you can get; big old 4x4 pickup, chain saw wielding logger and excellent marksman. Did I mention he is a crooked grinding machine? We made the rest of the trip up to Portland and went to the local skate park. The park is an incredible amount of fun compared to all the prefab parks of Massachusetts. The park is condensed, but still has a moderate amount of flow as well as a nice bowl with 4 ft. and 6 ft. sections, all super smooth
concrete so you never lose speed. After about an hour there, Matt and Dave started to do an overunder on the back quarterpipe. Matt isn’t exactly a short dude, probably right around 6’2”, so the amount of height Dave was getting over him was impressive to say the least. After a few tries and getting the timing right, they were finally able to get one. Everyone was hyped, it was the first one I’ve ever shot and it was a great way to start the day.
opening Matt shooting Brad
second Matt kickflip, Van is all packed
For the rest of the day we drove around and found places we wanted to go for the next 2 days. We found one spot right as it started to get dark, a parking lot to parking lot gap right in the middle of downtown. The boys decided to try to skate it since there werenâ€™t any cars in the way, and would probably be busy during the weekend. Serge and Matt stepped up and got photos right as the sun was going down. With the first day over, we had to decide where to stay. The forecast showed early morning showers, and no one seemed down for camping, so Matt offered us a place to stay about 45 minutes north in his cabin which was more like a mini mansion. We made the trek up to the point where cell phone service was fading in and out, the
sequence Dave gap to tailslide heelflip out
middle of nowhere Maine. We got off the main roads and made our way into the darkness. Matt, who was driving, decided to start turning the headlights on and off to spook us out. It was fun at first, but the last time he turned them on there was a fallen tree right in the middle of the road. If he waited 3 more seconds we would have had an oak tree branch through the windshield. Once at the cabin, the alcohol started flowing, there was a stash of nearly a full bar, and everyone brought their beer of choice. We started up the grill, and Nick brought some fancy ass steaks from the restaurant he works at. We shot BB guns at fragments of tin cans hanging in the trees, and Fennell showed off his skills by shooting cans off peopleâ€™s heads. All in all, a fantastic first day.
We woke up the next day, got breakfast at a local diner/convenience store, skated a weird wooden skate park, and made the trip back down to Portland.
The first spot we wanted to go to was slightly outside the city but on the way. It is a gap with a slightly curved runway over some rocks, it’s really narrow, and tricky to skate. There were some benches there as well. Donfro filmed a line, and ollied over one of them for the photo, that dude has some major pop. There was also a rail that curved down a set of stairs. Now this rail is tall, steep, round and looks generally impossible to skate. When you roll up to the rail, you only see the bottom of the rail, that’s how high
and steep it is. Brad Miller stepped up and tried to get a 50-50 on it, but got broke off and wanted to move on. Shortly after that, another Maine local ripper, Toebee Parkhurst, showed up. Toebee had a part in Foundation’s “Nervous Breakdown” video but now rides for Hoodlum Skateboards. He was kind enough to give us a tour of the local area and helped significantly in our hunt for skate spots. He showed us a few things, and people looked and moved on. He then brought us to an industrial
above - clockwise Toebee backlip to popout Inside the van Serge getting his deck ready
looking area, where Dave was able to get a few feeble pop-overs on this gate rail right as golden hour was approaching. I have no idea how he was able to fit his front truck between the gate and the way. At the top of the hill next to the last spot was another hidden gem we could have never found out on our own. It is on a highway off-ramp and thereâ€™s a little bump to flat bar spot. Toebee smith grinded and tail slid it right as the sun was setting, and Matt got a crook on it as well. Two days down, one to go.
The second night we planned on camping but no one wanted to deal with the cold temperatures, and wanted to feel fresh and ready to skate the next day. So, we decided to head down south to Mattâ€™s real house and stay there. Once there, the skate videos came on, the beer started flowing, and the good times started rolling. After a few videos and a few too many beers, people went to bed, hyped to skate the next day.
Nicky, bump to 50-50
Once again, we made the drive back into the city and met up with Toebee and a few other local kids. First spot was at the Post Office, which Matt got a photo at before noon, and the good vibes continued along all day. The next spot we went to was a schoolyard with a few ledges, a generally good warm up spot. There’s a series of 3 ledges in a row, you can ollie onto one and then hop to the other and then hop to grind on the last one. Dave quickly got down to business, and filmed a gap to tailslide heelfip out, and then gladly did another one for sequence. John Coyne who was injured for the trip, but came along as team manager, even managed to get a hefty switch heel over one of the blocks. Pat and Nick found some handicapped rails with a death drop on the side. Pat got a 50-50, and Nick tried a front smith for a while, but the rail was too close to the side wall to get into one properly.
This next one was a big one, a big old handrail with a bank on the side. People looked at the rail but it seemed like no one wanted to touch it. Matt got an ollie over the rail into the bank, and we decided to keep moving as we were running out of daylight. We finally went back downtown to see what else we could skate. Donfro got a kickflip over a bump to guardrail, and got a little dirty in the process. The sun was nearly setting so Toebee brought us over to one last spot; a single crusty concrete ledge with a little lip on the side, right on one of the docks. The top was a little recessed, so a backlip pop out seemed like the perfect trick to capture the spot. While we waited for the sky to become the perfect shade, I shot a few photos of some fisherman, two older guys just enjoying their Sunday evening, really nice Mainers. The sky seemed just, Toebee gladly did a couple back lips to finish the trip off.
Another local brought us to a gap next, a simple gap off of a stage over some grass. When we got there, a 3 year old’s birthday was going on. They watched us skate and didn’t really have any problems. People in Maine are so nice, must be all the fresh air. A bunch of tricks went down, Dave got a monster heelflip over the large part, and on the normal sized part, Serge got a nollie flip. Coyne got a nollie heel and switch front bigspin, Fennell got a frontside flip, and Dave got a hardflip. I’m sure there were a few other tricks in there as well. Another spot down, more to go. While driving around, Coyne spotted a bump to rail on the sidewalk. We pulled over, Nick stepped up, took a good slam on the rail and got a nice 50-50 a few tries later. Another spot down, onto the next one.
Tired from a hectic day of hustling to and from spots, we packed everything up and headed home. Everyone killed it on the trip, everyone had a bunch of fun, and I’m sure we will all be back up to Portland to skate some more of their spots. A big thanks to the Shape crew for skating, as well as to Toebee Parkhurst for showing us around and still killing it on a skateboard. Also, special thanks to Matt Fennell for putting us up for two nights and showing us all that good Maine hospitality.
Interviewed by Bryan “Butch” Wright Photo Ely Phillips Johnny Martinez
If you’re into skateboarding as much as myself, you will be psyched on Ben Fisher. He got a Recruit on The Berrics and blew people’s minds. I personally watched the part the day it came out and tried for hours to learn one of the tricks he did. He skates for fun, he works and goes to school, he brings something to skateboarding and he’s not just another manual kid either. Ben isn’t goin away anytime soon. -Butch
FISHER Let’s start off with your name, age and where you’re from? Ben Fisher, 24, Long Beach, California.
Okay. Who’s helping you out? Who sponsors you? What’s going on with that? Yeah, I’m AM for STACKS Skateboards; Sml Wheels, and actually just got on Heel Bruise Clothing.
Cool. Hell, yeah. A lot of people found out about you from … well, I did, personally, from your Berrics Recruit part. Yeah, that was probably the first thing I’ve actually ever done that was ever of like any significance as far as skating or anything like that. Who got you in with that? It was actually through, I guess, a random, fortunate chain of events. I actually went
skating at a spot with the Girl team one day in Long Beach and I ended up like rapping out with Guy Mariano. One thing led to another and we ended up skating a few times. One day, he was like, “Yo, I got this new spot, it’s this new secret indoor park called The Berrics; but, yeah, we could probably take you there”. It was just like a warehouse with couches, ledges and rails. As they started getting more popular, I started filming tricks little by little. After a
“Just because someone’s your favorite skater, It SHOULDN’T make them your favorite person” TOP Backside flip Johnny Martinez 102 RIGHT Ely Phillips
while I asked if we could work on a Recruit, and they were just like, yeah, f**k it, just start working on it, you know, just start working on some sh*t, and if it turns out good, I’m sure they’ll put it out... So that’s what happened. I remember the day one of my buddy’s showed me that, and I was like, f**k! That was sick! There was one trick in there that, really blew my mind, and before I even ask you, what trick do you think it is? I’m gonna say, maybe, nose manual body varial? Nose manual body varial fakie manual, is that what you call it? Yeah. Is that what you’re talking about? Yeah. Yeah, that’s exactly what I’m talking about. That day I saw that, I went and tried to learn it for like an hour. It’s not happening. I think … I think that’s the first one I’ve ever seen. Yeah, I don’t know. I was skating manual pads one day and that sounded like a good idea to try because I’d never seen it... it was something new. Yeah, I ended up doing that on a local manual pad and I was pretty psyched on how it felt; no one’s ever really done that so I might as well give it a shot. Coincidentally, it just happened to be at the time I was filming that part. It all just kind of worked out. Everyone seemed pretty
psyched on that. I was pretty shocked. I was just kind of whatever about it, I don’t know. I didn’t think it would be that big of a deal. No, it was sick. It definitely … it got me on my board trying to learn it, so I’m pretty sure a lot of other skateboarders have tried it because of that part on The Berrics. That’s kind of crazy to hear that, you know? Yeah. You’re on the West Coast; I’m on the East Coast. Yeah, that’s freaky. I don’t know. It’s just
weird to hear. It’s not something you really think about, how you’re like skating manny pads in Southern California and six months from now, someone over on the East Coast is going to be trying to do this trick. That’s pretty crazy, you know? Yeah, no, I was psyched on it. You skated a lot of manuals and stuff. Is there a skater that inspired you to skate like that or did it just come to you, that’s what you liked? Not really. There’s a couple of skaters that I do look up to that do some manuals, but to be
honest, I just used to do them back in the day because that’s all I was good at. I just wasn’t very good at skating, so that was a good foundation for me to just kind of find myself, I guess, as a skater and build from there and then I kind of branch out from that. Sometimes, I feel like I just get trapped or labeled as a manual skater so I try to grow a little and switch things up. I just watched one of your parts where you switch tre’d a gap, I think? Oh, yeah, Cherry… Cherry Park Gap. Yeah, yeah, that was sick. I think it’s going out of what you usually skate, but it’s sick, watching you skate, because you skate everything, realistically. Thanks, man. I try to mix it up, you know, because I don’t want to... I’m not trying to be just a manual skater, or limit myself in any way. Especially, because I feel that you’ve just got to mix it up. That’s where it’s at. Variety. Yeah, I know. I dig that. Who was your favorite skateboarder growing up? Growing up, I went through phases, but for the most part, I was always kind of into the same few dudes, like Jason Dill, Guy Mariano,
Mark Gonzales. Those three dudes have just kind of always been the guys I looked up to and kind of wanted to be, you know? Are you working on anything new now? Any new parts? Kind of, I’m not sure really. I don’t really know what I’ve been doing lately. I’ve just been going to school and skating when I can, and whatever the dudes over at STACKS are trying to put together. STACKS is trying to work on a full-length video so if all goes accordingly, then that will be my next part. Yeah, that’ll be sick. Are they going to plan any trips for you guys or is it strictly California? I don’t know anything about that. I don’t think it’s gotten to that point yet. Everything’s just up in the air right now? Yeah, for the most part. I mean, I try to separate skating from reality. Skating is not really something to focus all of my time and efforts on, so I take it with the punches, just roll with it. You’re going to school and skating. What are you going to school for? Business.
“I try to separate skating from reality.”
TOP Backside 180 - Ely Phillips
You can get anywhere with that realistically. Yeah, that’s why I’m in school; I need the experience. When I ssaw your stuff last year, you were getting stuff from Alien and Cons, what happened with that? And Krew? Yeah, that’s a whole bunch of stories right there. Which one you want to talk about first? Pick one. Let’s talk about Alien. Talk about Alien? We’re taking it there now? Yepp, DNA. Okay. I was doing some other things for a little while, but one day I randomly hit up the dudes at Alien, and was like, ”Hey, are you guys interested in hookin up a few boards?” Anyways, they were like, ”Yeah, for sure, we’ve meant to hit you up about your Berrics thing, but we never got around to it, like, psyched that you’re down to try out some boards, yada, yada, yada”, so whatever, so a couple of months go by...
LEFT Switch wallie Johnny Martinez
All of these dudes that skate for Workshop live in L.A., and I live in Long Beach. It’s relatively close to where I’m at. I’m just hitting up their TM every month or two like “here’s some footy, here’s some photos; here’s this and that, like, what’s up?” I would ask, “Can I just meet up with these dudes, like skate with them, get to know these guys and be part of it...” You know what I mean? Just trying to get in with the squad. He was like, ”Well, yeah, I don’t know dude, like they just keep saying, they don’t know about you and this and that.” I’m like, “All right, whatever dude”, so I just stick it out because I back Alien Workshop. It came around a couple of times, same run around. Then I finally have a conversation with the T.M. I was like, “yo, so what’s up dude? It’s been a little while, I came out with that part that had the Cherry Gap switch tre, you know, can I at least skate with the team, what’s up?” He was like, “you know, I keep asking the dudes, like, I’m down, but you know, if I’m going to send you on a trip with these guys, the only thing is that when I send you on this trip, you can’t be so openly nice. They don’t like that sh*t. I
think that’s the problem. You’re too openly nice, and these guys aren’t down.” That’s what the team manager of Alien Workshop told me.
No way! Did you just say, f**k that? What sort of happened, is that, I was just kind of taken back. I got off the phone with him, and was talking with my lady, just trying to put things together, like what the f**k does that even mean, you know? I just kind of came to the conclusion of, well, if I go on this trip with these dudes, they aren’t going to change. They’re still going to be f**king dickheads that don’t like
nice people, and I’m just going to eventually turn into one of them, because what am I going to do, change the f**king whole face of Alien Workshop because I’m a nice guy, you know? Yeah. So it was pretty much like, you guys gave me the runaround, all for what, just so I could be too f**cking nice of a dude to kick it with you pricks, you know? That all just f**ked me up, like as far as the industry went, you know? How often are you going to bust your ass for something in life, and then, have your boss
Manual to switch nose manual, half cab flip-out - Johnny Martinez
say “great job, just don’t be so nice, your f**king workers don’t like that” you know? Yeah, that’s messed up. Then you got on STACKS after that? No. That all went down, and then literally two days later, I get a phone call from Kelly Hart and the Exhibition dudes. I’m like, “Oh f**k, you know, what’s up?” Kelly told me, “You know, these dudes are all f**king fired up; they want to hook you up; they’re
down; just stick with it, skate, and bust your ass and eventually everything will work out with us at KAYO.” So I’m like, all right, that’s sick. Exhibition sends me a box.
Five months into hanging out, skating with these guys, goin’ down to SD to film, and sometimes they were coming up here to film as well. They actually filmed some of the tricks in my last Transworld Transmission
BEN FISHER part, and then gave them to me, because they didn’t want them anymore... Anyways, five months into skating with these dudes, they hit me up one day and told me I sent them an e-mail I didn’t send, explaining how I said I deserve money and how I’m better than the whole team. Fully thinking they were talking about a joke sponsor me tape me and a buddy made for them like 2 years prior, I had no idea they were serious. No way. They explained that it’s not going to work out. Yeah, that honestly happened. No joke.
No way. That’s so messed up. Yeah, so first I get, I’m too nice of a guy for Alien Workshop, then I get, oh, you think you’re fu**ing better than our team; we don’t appreciate this e-mail. When I asked to see the e-mail, they said they deleted it. That’s the God-honest truth. I can’t believe it. That’s a whole year of my skating career just like dealing with this bullsh*t, you know? Yeah. Are you finally happy where you’re at right now, with Sml and Heel Bruise and STACKS? Yeah, because it’s a bunch of small companies, and there’s no politics involved. They’re just down to be homies not be on some bullsh*t like that. It’s so inappropriate to have such bullsh*t, high school drama over nothing and ruin someone’s life or career, you know what I mean? Yeah, that’s so bad. I support companies like that; that’s dope. Yeah, it’s sick. They’re all cool, and I don’t have to worry about being nice to a dude on the team or, you know what I mean, I can talk to everybody. Let me interrupt. Since you’re on not huge brands’ distributions and sh*t like that, are you stable where you’re at financially, like are you getting by with going to school
and skating or do you have another job? Yeah. No, I work in a restaurant. Skating is like a side project for me. That’s bad-ass. I dig that. I respect it a lot. If you try to make skateboarding your job you’re going to fu**ing lose your mind and forget a lot of sh*t along the way. You get caught up, dude. Everyone gets caught up. They try to be a part of the hustle. That’s West Coast mentality. I don’t know if it’s the same on the East Coast, but… No, East Coast, it’s just like we only have so many months out of the year to skate, so we’re always working. Yeah, that’s the way I wish it was over here, everyone’s too caught up in the hustle. They try to cut any corner to get one step ahead, f*ck over anyone in their way, and in the end, they’re still flow, or am, or not on payroll as a filmer, you know what I mean? Yeah. It’s just crazy over here. I just kind of put that aside and f**k, if I’m gonna do it and get free product, I’m down. That’s cool with me. If I can make a couple of bucks doing it, then sh*t, let’s hit the bar, first round’s on me. That’s sick. Let’s wrap this up. Do you want to say thanks to anybody? Yeah. I guess I’ll say, thanks to you guys for hitting me up in the first place; that’s super rad, finally get an actual interview going. I never really had an interview. Thanks to my family, girlfriend, homies and sponsors. Also, can I give a little message to all the kids out there?
This is to all the kids.
Just because someone’s your favorite skater, it shouldn’t make them your favorite person. People don’t realize that.
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Rad Dan interview
Interview by Sydney Lindberg Photos Rad Dan
In the land down under, garage artist, Rad Dan, spends time drawing when he’s not skating and traveling the world. Some of his sketches are profane, some are beyond weird, and most of them are hilarious. As part of its Garage Artist Series, Insight 51 held an art show by Rad Dan at its flagship store in Venice, California. The opening night of ‘I Can’t Believe Insight Let Me Do an Art Show’ quickly filled with sweaty bodies drinking PBR and admiring his talent.
After seeing the show for myself, I got up with Rad Dan to learn more about his life and aspirations as an artistic creator.
“Motivation I find, is way more important than inspiration.”
First off, what’s the “raddest” thing you’ve ever done? I’m not sure what the raddest is… but doing nothing at all is super rad. How’d you first get involved in graphic art? I never knew what graphic art actually was; I just drew pictures on sh*t. Like, we made our own video covers for the skate vids friends and I used to make, and drew on our grip tape when we were young. Then I needed to find something to do after school, so I enrolled in a graphic arts course, which one of my mates was already doing. He told me it was super fun and they had a brand new skatepark next door… couldn’t twist my arm anymore. What else have you experimented with? Murals, material cut and pasting? A bit of all things, it’s like most things, you spend a long time using one medium, then it gets stale and old, so you move on.
-Booze, Brownies, Buuck and Buck
Waste life and have a look. rad-dan.tumblr.com/
There’s been video, painting, cut and paste and sculptures. At the moment I’ve moved back to video and a bit of audio, which I suck at, plus have no idea about. If you could be any animal in the world, what would you be? I’d say my mate’s dog. He feeds it 3-course meals with medium rare cooked sirloin steak. That dog has the life! What are your true thoughts on having a Tumblr? I don’t like social media at all and I try to avoid it, as I can cheers a beer with someone without smacking it against my computer screen. But, at the end of the day it doesn’t help me at all ‘not’
having it; just makes me look like a goose. So, as I’m too lazy to have my own website, Tumblr was next in line. Describe what you would do on the perfect Saturday. I’d treat it like a Sunday. What’s one thing you never leave the house without? My house keys. I once caught a guy 3 floors up climbing the building to get into his... I saw these feet hanging past my window and looked out, and this nutcase was scaling the side of the building to get to his balcony. I thought he was going to fall and die. I don’t want to be like him.
It all comes down to laziness. I always get super inspired when someone else is doing something amazing and I get jealous that I’m doing sh*t
-Buy Buy Buy
What inspires your artistic creations? It all comes down to laziness. I always get super inspired when someone else is doing something amazing and I get jealous that I’m doing sh*t. Once I get some paint or a pen in my hand, the creations are the easy part. Motivation I find, is way more important than inspiration.
Everything… I’m never coming to America again, or going to recommend it.
You recently had an art show at the Insight 51 flagship store in Venice, CA. What’s a highlight from that opening night for you? The moment the doorman gave up ‘cause too many people were trying to get in when the place was full. I remember the windows were all fogged up on the inside, looked like a giant glass sweatbox.
Last question, where’s your favorite place to skate? This underground car-park back home in Australia. I grew up skating it, and still love going there now. It’s just smooth concrete and little manual pads. All the shops close there at 8pm so it’s empty every night.
Being an Aussi, what’s your biggest pet peeve about Americans?
Hahaha nah, I love Americans and America. Super great people, and a super fun place. Except you don’t have VB beer or meat pies, but I let that slide.
Jeff Soto Interview
I’ve been a fan of Jeff Soto’s work for quite some time now, so naturally I was pretty stoked to interview the man himself. Sometimes that’s not a good thing because you can get your hopes set too high. Fortunately, that wasn’t the case. We ended up chatting for a long time, more than we could possibly publish (we saved the good stuff for ya anyway). Jeff’s a super down to earth guy so it was easy to keep him on the line even though he’s twice as busy as anyone I know.
IN case you’re not familiar with Jeff Soto, he’s a phenomenal L.A. based artist... who’s blown up in the past decade and has shown his work throughout the world at some of the top galleries and museums near and far. He recently started his own apparel line, you might be wearing one of his shirts, or maybe you’ve ridden one of his skate decks, or gone to one of the concerts he designed a poster for, or… My point being, if you still don’t know Jeff Soto, it’s only a matter of time my friends. Enjoy.
How would you describe your style? Style is tricky. Even though you get some people today that can see a continuation of what I’ve been doing for the last decade, but to me, it feels like I jump around a lot. I guess my work is pretty well rendered. There’s a little bit of my background in there. But it’s also mixed in with other themes like electronic books, skateboard graphics, some of the things I’ve seen that inspired me to get into art. Book covers, horror books, science fiction book covers, that sort of thing, Heavy Metal Magazine. I don’t know how to define my style but I think it’s just a combination of all the different things that I grew up with and things that inspired me. How did you get started selling your work or as an independent artist in general? It goes back to when I was in high school, which was quite a while ago. I graduated from high school in 1993. At the time, I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life. I was looking at a lot of art magazines and I wanted to do a little bit of everything. I wanted to keep doing the graffiti I was doing and I wanted to do illustrations for magazines and book covers and all that stuff in a really kicked back way. I also wanted to do the fine arts. Instead of choosing a side and only doing stuff in the fine art realm or going full-on with illustration, at some point I decided, I’m going to try to do all this stuff and see if I can make a go of it. That’s always been my philosophy from 20 years ago, pretty much.
I just kept going for it, trying to get into art shows. 120
Sending my work to gallery shows and I got rejected over and over. I sent my work to magazines and I got the little letter that said, “We really enjoyed your work, it’s not appropriate for our magazine.” I got a lot of rejection notices, things like that. I just kept at it and that’s pretty much
the story of where I’m at now. I think college helped out a lot, at least for me it did. I think college is not for everyone but, in my case, I went to the Art Center and that’s how I met the right people and I worked my ass off. Some people might think maybe I was lucky or I was at the right place at the right time, but I feel like maybe I made my own look and I went after it. Definitely, nothing was handed to me over the last 20 years. It’s just been a lot of hard work and blood, sweat and tears and still is. Hopefully, you and I are doing an interview 20 years from now and we’re still doing our thing.
- Grave of Forgotten
121 Have you ever finished a big piece or something really time consuming and just absolutely hated it? I have but then I go back and maybe keep working on it. The way I paint
“Maybe popularity is different than quality in my eyes.”
is… sometimes, I know the painting is done and it’s done, it looks good. Sometimes, I don’t really have a plan for it and especially with the big ones, I don’t necessarily have a plan for it. I’ll just keep working on it until it looks good, until it’s up to my standards. There’s been times when I’m like, okay I think that painting is done. I’m going to sleep on it. I’ll check it out in the morning. Then morning comes around, and I see what’s wrong with it. I’m like, it needs more order, it needs more color, this area is bad. I change it. I try to only release work that I feel really good about. How did you get started working with all these bands like Pearl Jam, Blink 182, Primus and The Black Keys? All through the 90s, I was really interested in doing gig posters. I saw the stuff Frank Kozik was doing and even some of the local artists, here around Riverside. I’m like how do I get into that, man? It seemed like they were just doing any art they wanted. It wasn’t directed at all. They were just having fun and throwing something cool up there. It was always something I wanted to do. I used to draw fake ones, sample ones to send down. None of that worked. It came about a few years ago because my good friend Maxx worked for a merchandise company that made t-shirts and coasters for some of those bands. They do Pearl Jam, Eddie Vedder, and Blink 182. This guy asked Maxx, “Do you know any other artists?” Maxx being a good friend, he said, “Yeah, I know this guy, my friend, Jeff. He might be interested in doing something.” So they contacted me. I said, yeah, I’ll totally do a gig poster, that would be great. It opened up the doors. I did one for Soundgarden, I’m starting to do some stuff for The Black Keys and, I don’t know, there’s other bands that I’m going to start doing some posters for. It’s a lot of fun. It’s very open. The bands don’t necessarily art direct that much. If you got a good idea for a poster, they’re usually pretty receptive to it.
What’s your studio like? It’s a collaborative studio. I work in a pretty big building with a few other artists. Maxx, he goes by Maxx242. We’ve been friends since… maybe like 21 or 22 years down here, graffiti pals. He’s upstairs, I’m downstairs. We have a good friend of ours, Jason Gallo, who has an office and a studio in the back. We have kind of like a big warehouse space that I use to paint and a bunch of flat files back there. The people here are really nice and we have fun. We play baseball in the back, we do batting practice with wiffle balls and plastic bats and we have fun. I usually get here probably around like nine and I work until about six or seven o’clock every night. The other guys are on different schedules so we kind of overlap and hangout and we’re all on our own. It’s a good mix, it’s a real good mix. You’ve done a skate deck independently and some in collaboration with Real. Do you have any plans for more? Yeah, we’ve been talking to Real to do some more things in the skate deck category. It’s in the works. We talked to them like seven or eight months ago. They’re like, yeah let’s do something. We’re like, okay let’s do something and they haven’t done anything, we haven’t done anything. We’ve been so busy with other things.
- Jeff, working on an installation.
That’s cool though. The opportunity is there. Now, do you know when you finish a piece that it’s just going to be a big hit, hands down? Can you just feel it? Sometimes, you can, I don’t know, you can feel that it’s going to be pretty badass as it’s coming along. I really don’t worry about it too much. If it wasn’t good to me, I wouldn’t put it out there. A lot of times I’m surprised at what people are excited about. Sometimes it’ll feel like one of the lesser pieces to me and it’s what everyone wants to make a print of. I don’t know if the artist is always the best judge of works. Maybe popularity is different than quality in my eyes. It’s a populist approach to being… there’s always going to be things that are really popular, but for me, they aren’t necessarily the best paintings that I do, but people love them. In 2008 you had an artist block that lasted about a year. How did you survive that, spiritually and financially? Financially, it was a pretty good time in the United States and I know a lot of people would be willing to blame... like 2006 and 2007 were excellent years and I had plenty of money in the bank so I think that might have been part of it. I didn’t feel a need to work so hard. I had enough money to live off of for a year with my family. I said no to a lot of people. I lost myself, I think. I was trying to figure out what the next step was. I was probably depressed about things and I was totally going through artist’s block. I didn’t feel that drive because there was so much money there, it was just like, “Well, no. I’m just going to do what I want to do.” I felt terrible at doing these things. What got me out of it was, I knew I had to start working. I had a show, I think in the beginning of 2008. I had almost the whole year to do a big show. It was at the Art Museum in town. I think it felt different because I wasn’t making artwork to be sold in a gallery scene. It was a museum show.
I started thinking I could do anything I want in there. I can do something I would never do because I’m not concerned in the least that any of this stuff sells. Stylistically, I was trying new things and I was lost. The thing that really got me out of that funk was I started doing watercolor paintings with my daughter. She was probably like two or three at the time. It was so humbling to paint something, draw something that I handed over to her and she would slop paint all over it and totally destroy it, eradicate my little painting. Then I would take it back and I’d paint something on it and it was a real collaborative process. It taught me not to hold the work as being so precious and it started letting me experiment and try new things and play.
I think what was going on was I was stuck in this whole idea like, “Okay, I got to paint something
someone could afford, and IT has to have the right elements.” I was getting to the point where there was also a formula. I knew if I painted a robot on something with a certain type of background with sunflowers, I knew I could sell it. Coming from my background, I was poor. I didn’t have a car growing up, I was a bus guy for like a decade. All of a sudden to have money and to have success, it was very intoxicating and I think I was afraid to change it up. I had this fear that if I veered too far over from what I was doing, then I was going to lose all the buyers. When I look back at the first four or five years of my career, there’s a lot of good pieces, but there’s also pieces that I see that I’m like, okay, I know I painted that just to sell. I knew painting that butterfly or whatever, it was like a $800 painting and that thing is going to move and then I get half of that. Being with my daughter, it really broke me out of that funk and I just started trying new things. Since then, I go through my little funks but I know now that the supporters, people who like my work, they’re going to still be there. I think they enjoy that I jump around. I think I realized at some point I just gotta be me and just create the artwork that needs to be made and not worry about anything else.
You recently came out with your own apparel line, Stormcloudz. How’s that going? Let me tell you how it got going. My friend Maxx, he used to be the art director at Famous Stars and Straps. He’d been telling me for probably a decade, you should put some of your work on shirts. When we moved in here together to this new shop it really interested me seeing him work on different apparel lines. Then he brought it up again. He’s like, “Hey, we should do a line for you.” It just seemed like the timing was right for a change and I was into it. Just seeing what he does, seeing what you could make on a computer and how the industry worked, it was pretty exciting to me. I was like, let’s jump in and do something. Right now, we have some women’s out. We’re working on the
men’s line. I started designing some of the stuff and I’m working on apparel specific designs and it’s pretty fun, it’s just very time consuming. That leads into my next question. You’ve got your hands in a lot of different projects and you’ve put out a variety of products. Are there any dream projects or collaborations or products that you haven’t done but you’d love to do? I think right now my dream project, and it’s just one that I need to take a lot of time on and I’ve actually started is, I’ve been working on a couple different stories for possibly cartoons or movies or maybe even comic books. I don’t know, but I think it’d be more a cartoon or a movie. Those are kind of like the big projects that I work on a little bit and then I put off for a year. I’m hoping 2013 is going to be the year that I can actually get things worked on and maybe get something going in that realm. I feel like I have a lot of stories in me and I feel like I have a lot of really interesting, different visuals that I could do something cool with. I guess that’s kind of an ultimate project in my mind, doing something with TV. If TV’s even around...
- Skull Rita RIGHT
- Skull Kathryn
It’s also like, it’s really risky and it’s a lot of work, it’s a lot of work and time and money to put that kind of thing together. I think we all love movies and there’s something about movies with the visuals and acting and the music, it can really bring a lot of emotion. A really good movie can make you cry, it can make you feel so happy or so pissed off. You can’t really do the same thing with paintings, maybe with some people. I’ve seen some paintings which I’m actually pretty emotional about but I don’t think it’s in the same realm as a really sad part of a Steven Spielberg movie or something. It’s just a realm that I want to jump into. Oh yeah, totally. What are some of your other hobbies? I guess making art isn’t really a hobby, it’s what I do as a profession but it feels like a hobby in a way. There’s two things that I’ve really been interested in the last year. The first is gardening. We had this really nice garden all summer. It’s starting to collapse. No new tomatoes anymore, there’s no cucumbers. All the pumpkins are getting big, but the pumpkin plants are dying down. We had a really nice garden going, with a ton of vegetables. It’s just very rewarding growing food from seeds now. It was pretty awesome and powerful and pretty neat.
- Nest RIGHT
- Skull Mary
The other thing I’ve really been interested in, really in the last five years but I’ve gotten into it a little more over the last year is researching my ancestry. I’ve got a subscription to ancestry.com and I’ve been building the Soto family tree and finding out some pretty interesting things. That’s been pretty much my two hobbies that I’ve had the last year or two.
Just out of curiosity, what nationality is Soto? I’m still working on it, but from what I can tell, the Soto name came from Portugal in I believe the 1850s or 1860s. My great, great-grandfather, Frank had come over with, I think his mom but maybe his brothers and sisters. I’m still researching a lot of it but, it’s Portuguese. I’ve got two girls and I want them to have an idea of where they came from and their family history. Also, overall, I’ve lost several of my grandparents and it’s a bummer because I talked to them a little bit about their past and what they remember but I feel like I didn’t take that whole week that I could have spent with them and asked them all kinds of questions. It’s really been on my mind to research them and how they grew up, what they did as kids and what their parents did. It might be boring to some people but to me it’s really fascinating.
I’m the same way. I love that stuff. Well, that’s about it. Is there anything you���d like to say or anyone you’d like to thank? I’d like to thank my kids. (laughter) My kids keep me grounded and they’re so much fun to hang out with. I’ve been thinking about them a lot today. I don’t know why, but I think they keep me and my wife young and I don’t know, maybe they’ll read this someday and go, “Wow, our daddy was pretty cool.”
Interviewed by Pat Milbery Photo Chris Faronea
now playing Brother Ali
Where did you grow up, any specific neighborhood? I moved around a lot when I was a kid, when I was 14, I moved to North Minneapolis, and that’s been my home ever since. Right now my house is in South Minneapolis, but North Minneapolis is the place where people have known me for longest, so that is my home. That’s the home of some of hip hops best, or current best. Could you elaborate on that at all, as far as a lot of the artists that are living currently in Minneapolis? Yeah, I mean it’s a really supportive art scene, which makes for a good opportunity you know, to be an independent artist, because people really support what we do. Also we have such amazing leaders and mentors in Atmosphere that made it possible, and made everyone else know it was possible. Their enormous success has made so many of us feel like we should take what we’re doing seriously and so we’re doing it. There’s a lot of people that really put a lot of thought and time and energy into their work because they know that there is the possibility that their work could be heard and celebrated, so it’s a really great place to be in terms of creativity and stuff like that.
Seems like there is a lack of a lot of cities, metropolitan cities, that have a driving force that Slug’s provided, like the twin cities community? Yeah, I mean that leadership is so important, and unfortunately some of the younger kids that are coming up take Atmosphere for granted. You know they do not realize, they think the scene that Atmosphere created has always been there, and that Atmosphere is being greedy by being on top of it; they don’t realize that they created it. So, there are some kids that take it for granted, all the way to the extent of being disrespectful, and that’s unfortunate, but that’s kind of the nature of leadership and being a leader. It’s that you’re going in a direction that not everybody else is going in,
that’s leadership, you know? This is kind of steering away from the questions I have but, I guess it dates back to a lot of memories of you hosting a lot of shows. Whether it be First Avenue, or a lot of Rhymesayers’ events, there always seemed to be that code of respect you followed when you hosted an event involving other hip hop artists. Would you care to elaborate on that at all? Yeah, well you know people say that hip hop is a culture, but a lot of people that say that aren’t connected to the original culture of hip hop. They think, ‘well yeah I can b-boy and I can do graff and that means I’m connected to the culture, there is no culture of hip hop as oppressed people, and that right to passage that you go through being in that type of environment and community. That’s what the “real” is, when we talk about real hip hop, well that’s what real hip hop is, being part of that community you know? That respect comes from there, when we were kids. Even people that were in gangs and stuff like that knew there was a code that you followed. That’s something I’ve always believed in and that’s something that we’ve always carried, it’s who we are. I can see that man, it’s an incredible quality to have that. I’ve always picked that up from your stage presence. Also, I just stay away from people I don’t respect. If I don’t have a lot of respect for somebody I just stay away from them. I’m around people and work with people that I really respect, you know what I mean? How did you first get involved with making music? I don’t know, I was so young, I started when I was 7 years old. My first show was when I was 8 years old, it’s just always what I’ve done. There wasn’t a moment when I started doing music, it’s just always who I’ve been.
My first show I rapped, I beat boxed, and I did stand up comedy. Thatâ€™s when I was eight.
now playing Brother Ali
…you’re going in a direction that not everybody else is going in, that’s leadership, you know? Did you sing a lot as a little kid? I did everything, yeah I sang. You play any instruments? I tried. I played around on them. I can do some stuff, but I did a lot of speaking and preaching, and stand up comedy. All of that kind of stuff, like that’s always been my thing. Stand up comedy, that’s fresh. My first show I rapped, I beat boxed, and I did stand up comedy. That’s when I was eight.
Really, haha, eight years old? Where did you generate your jokes? Well, I’ve always been a fan of comedy, but um, it was actually at a church. My favorite comedian is Richard Prior, but I knew I couldn’t do Richard Prior jokes, so I was doing like, Bill Cosby jokes.
Still got Bill Cosby cassettes to this day? Yeah, I used to have a big collection of stand up comedy tapes when I was a kid. One of my favorite things to do was listen to Bill Cosby tapes in the car with my parents so I didn’t have to listen to their music. You’ve been involved with the building process of the Rhymesayers Entertainment record label for quite a few years now. How has the journey been with the success and awareness you guys have built on a global level? It’s really cool, you know it’s good people, that’s the main thing. The people at the core that actually make that label happen are really great people, they are all family to me at this point. You know we’ve been working together since ‘98-’99, and officially since 2000. It’s been really dope. I’m sure the consistency over the years feels
good though, you know in terms of building, developing that trust with the people around you, and having that support group around you? Yeah it’s been incredible, that’s everything, without Slug and Siddiq I wouldn’t be able to do this. One question that I’ve always been interested in asking you is, originally, what made you first want to be involved with the Rhymesayers on that level? Were you ever initially looking at, as I think any artist would, a record label deal? Well, I started out as a fan of mainly Atmosphere, Musab, and Eyedea and Abilities. I was really blown away by them. Everybody else on the label was dope too, but those three I didn’t necessarily see as peers, I looked up to those guys you know what I mean? Then I became good friends with the guy who actually handles the business side of the label, Siddiq. That’s when I knew I wanted to be a part of that, he really opened the door for me. Can you tell me what you enjoy most about touring? It depends, you know obviously the part on stage is great most of the time, but when you’re touring with people that you really care about, that’s really the best part. It’s the camaraderie of being around them. It depends though, you gotta be touring with the right people. Have you had any sour tours? Yeah, I’ve toured with some people that I really strongly dislike. I’ve toured with people that I started off liking, then I ended up disliking. I’ve toured with some people that I wasn’t sure about, and I came away knowing I don’t need to get any closer to them. Then you know there’s my DJ that I’ve toured with forever, Blueprint, Murs, and Slug, The Reminders. A lot of people, a lot of real dear friends, Toki Wright, I Self Devine. Yeah, I’ve had a lot of people become really close friends, Evidence, Freeway. Who has provided the greatest amount of sup-
port for your career as an artist? You know, we’ve talked a lot about Rhymesayers obviously, it’s mostly them, mostly Slug and Siddiq. A lot of other people that work with the label too, but those are the three main ones. Outside of the label, Chuck D, he’s been the most supportive and helpful. Did you ever expect someone like him to support your music? It’s weird, but yeah kind of, that’s the vein of music, that’s the legacy of music that I’ve always believed in, and tried to carry on. I didn’t know he would be as cool and down to earth as he is. He truly doesn’t have any kind of ego at all, he’s really just a regular dude, who is also amazing and one of the greatest to ever do it. He is super helpful and really treats me as a peer and equal. He asks me questions and listens the same way I listen to him when he talks. How did your name Brother Ali come about? If you wouldn’t mind, is there any specific meaning or purpose? Well my name is Ali, when I became Muslim they gave me the name Ali. That’s my first name, and so in the religious community people call each other ‘brother so and so’ or ‘sister so and so.’ So, brother is sort of like a title, it’s like being in the army and calling people Sergeant Jones. In our community we have Sister Sharon, Brother Elijah, Brother Ali, Brother Abdullah, Sister Kadijah, you know that’s the way it works. It was actually a little kid that I was asking, I was teaching a class at the mosque and I was gonna start doing shows again. I had taken time off to get a job, and I was like I’m gonna start doing shows again, what should my rap name be? One of the little girls was like what do you mean Brother Ali? I was like, that’s perfect. Do you currently have a favorite project you’ve worked on to date? I love them all for different reasons. They are kinda like your kids, you love them all and then they each have different unique things that you love about them. The one that’s about to come out, ‘Mourning in America and Dreaming in Color’ is my favorite
now playing Brother Ali
right now because I got to say things that I wanted to say for a long time and didn’t know how to do it. But, I figured out how to do it on this one and that feels really good. I had lot of fun making ‘Shadows on the Sun’, that was the most fun I ever had making an album, just because there was no pressure. My only pressure was to convince Ant that it was worthwhile to work with me, because at that time he had been working with Slug and Musab, and he had been working with them for a long long time. He had these amazing beats that neither one of them were rapping on, so it made sense. He eventually made me his main focus for the time that we made that album; Atmosphere wasn’t making music at that time. We had a blast making that album in particular, it was the most fun. It’s weird though because my life was horrible at that time; strange and struggling really hard, but also having a lot of fun.
Do you have a favorite East Coast city? Philly. 134
Do you enjoy the East Coast mentality? Yeah I do, they are very straightforward, very direct you know what I mean? They’re not passive, which means they aren’t passive aggressive. They might
be a little too rigid sometimes, and I feel like at times it’s hard for them to think outside the box. For the most part I love the East Coast, and the West Coast too. I love the East Coast better because it’s easier for me to get around; you know I’m legally blind so I can’t drive. When you don’t drive it’s hard to get around the West Coast. Except for Oakland and San Francisco you can take BART, but I like the East Coast ‘cause I can get around, it’s easier for me to see, makes more sense to me for some reason. Could you paint us a picture with words about your year coming up? Well, this new album is going to be the theme of my year. So, I’m going to put the album out, tour it a lot. Then, I’m also going to be speaking. I’ve got a lot of speaking invitations so I’m going to do more of those. I’ve become really active in the Occupy Homes movement in Minneapolis, which means a lot to me. So, in my free time I’ll be doing that. I want to balance it out more. When my last album came out I was touring 10 months out of the year. It’s not productive after a while, it feels like you’re doing a lot, but it’s quantity and not necessarily quality. Whereas now I want to flip it and make more of a balance where I’m doing the right things, instead of everything.
By Andrew Lapham Fersch
Paleface The Yin & the Yang of the Party
Photo Staton Carter and Chris Hunt
For those people who’ve tried to live the title of Paleface’s newest album, ‘One Big Party’, eventually it proves difficult to maintain that sort of lifestyle before things start to go awry, and before you know it, things are out of control, then again, that’s the whole meaning behind the decision to name the album this in the first place. 136
now playing Paleface
“It’s yin and yang - the title,” Paleface says, “At our shows we like people to let go and have a good time, dance around and feel good. But the title track is about this woman I met at the laundromat with a cast on her arm. She said she had been beaten by her crackhead boyfriend and was waiting for her daughter to pick her up. She was slugging malt liquor out of a paper bag at 2 o’clock in the afternoon. I started calling her one big party. I would see her there periodically
sleeping on the benches or drinking. It’s what can happen if the party goes on too long.” Luckily, this is a lesson that Paleface learned before it was too late. And these days, while touring relentlessly with his girlfriend and drummer “Mo” Samalot, there’s a lot more good than bad, a lot more party than irony. For Paleface, it’s all about the experience. “I like
it when I write something that someone says they really enjoyed or that was their ‘favorite’ song. Also, shows where people really get into it are always satisfying especially if we really get into it too.” “I feel rewarded when I see people smiling and having a good time at shows,” Mo adds, “It reminds me of the reasons why I left my career as an architect in order to become a drummer...At that moment I forget about any
She was slugging malt liquor out of a paper bag at 2 o’clock in the afternoon. I started calling her one big party.
now playing Paleface
sacrifices and life struggles and I can really enjoy the moment.” It’s the same experience that challenges independent bands and independent people of any profession. Mo says that, “Being an indie touring musician comes at a very high price. There are so many hours of work towards each show (writing, rehearsing, traveling, promoting, etc.), and yes,
sometimes you catch a flu and you’re away from home, and you just can’t rest and it can become extremely stressful to our minds and bodies. These sacrifices that sometimes go unnoticed are the main challenges for most musicians, but in the end it’s all worth it for us...because we are living from the heart, doing what we love, and following our dreams.” If following dreams isn’t what the world of sports and arts are all about, what are they?
Interviewed by Chris Gadomski / Photo Emmanuel Santana
A product of inner city Boston’s Roxbury neighborhood, Moufy, also known as, Jeffrey Fortunato, is taking the Beantown rap scene by storm. Prep school educated, and still just twenty years old, Moufy’s diverse musical repertoire has rapidly gained notoriety in a city not generally regarded for it’s hip hop. Releasing his very first project ‘City Dreamin’ less than two years ago, Moufy turned down college acceptances and is making music his top priority as he prepares for big things to come. Our own Chris Gadomski sat down with the man himself for the 142
down low on all things Moufy;
now playing Moufy
You’re just 20 years old; what has inspired you to make this rap game a career? Being broke, and my team. My team really. We have a story to tell and I’m the voice to tell that story. You dropped your first project ‘City Dreamin’ in February of 2011; tell me about how that was received? It was received well. People really appreciated the rawness, and the truth of what I was saying in those songs. I was just getting on people’s beats and smashing ‘em, people love that. How’d the name Moufy come about? When I was younger the older guys started calling me Mouf because I always had something to say. Then my boy Ty started calling me Moufy, added the “y” for some reason. I thought it clicked, so I went with it.
It’s the notion
Tell me about Star Gang; Who’s in it? You speak a lot about Star Gang Affiliates… Star Gang is a group of kids trying to reach for the stars. My fans really gravitated to that, we call them Star Gang Affiliates. We have snowboarders, basketball players, we have athletes on our brand, it’s not just music. It’s the notion of having a dream and going and getting it. You’ve opened for Mac Miller, I know you’re working or have worked with J. Cole; any other prominent artists you’ve worked with? I opened up for Tyga, KRS-One. You’ve been paying your dues by releasing your freshman, sophomore and junior mixtapes for free. Is the goal to eventually sell a record? Our next project is gonna be an EP, that’s ‘Humble Season’. Gonna drop that in the Fall, release it online and sell it in select stores.
You released ‘The Preparation’ mixtape at the end of May, and I must say, compliments to the chef, I was really stoked on it. What are your plans for the summer and the rest of 2012? Currently I’m working on ‘Humble Season’, but also
working on videos for ‘The Preparation’. I’m also working on remixes and features, I’m juggling. Tell me about the Star Gang Shirt Tour. It’s just our way of interacting with our fans, and that interaction is priceless. They become part of your team in a sense. That’s how we do meet and greets. I know that on your new track “Skyline” off ‘The Preparation’ mixtape you state, “Moufy ain’t signing sh*t, had to set the record straight.” Have labels approached you and is
of having a dream and going and getting it.
your intent to stay independent? My only thing right now is to get fans, and make good music. Many of your songs, including most recently “Don’t Blow My High,” “Blunt Burn,” and “Eyes Low” are marijuana themed or contain references; what’s Moufy smoking on? Recently, I just had that Headband, some Cali. Blue Dream is what I’m currently smoking on. If I like a bud, I’ll stay on it, but lately I’ve just been switching it up.
About a year ago you released a short film titled, “Miss Newton” with Filmatic and Woodsum Music Group which now has over 230,000 views on You Tube; can you tell me about how that project came to be? “Miss Newton” was just a story I wrote about things that I’d heard when I was in high school. It was a well done project and it really hit home for people, it was something they could relate to. “Miss Newton,” the project we just spoke about really shows a more poetic side of your
now playing Moufy
talents; how would you generalize your music, or describe it to someone who hasn’t previously heard it? It’s human, it’s really human music. Some days you’re happy, some days you’re angry, my music really resonates with that reality. We take the hook seriously, we take the bridge seriously, we take the melody seriously. We make full songs. Who’s Moufy voting in for President in November? I like Obama, that’s just my personal preference. 146 Anything you want to add? Moufy.tv, go there. Buy apparel, download ‘The Preparation’ mixtape.
Go ahead and give a shout out to your people. What up Star Gang Affiliates? Fans, thank you for everything. Shout out to Steez Mag for holding us down, and Star Gang reppin’. Moufy’s music is great; but don’t take my word for it or even trust my opinion. Take a listen and I’m sure you’ll be nothing short of impressed. His verses speak wise beyond his years and his music is artfully crafted. I’m proud to have a rapper of Moufy’s caliber claim Boston. All of Moufy’s releases are available online FO FREE! Search Moufy, the kid is everywhere. Stay tuned for his upcoming EP ‘Humble Season’ and check him out at a venue near you.
Leave your fake can of Barbasol at home
Airports for Dummies Words Peter Levandowski
Everyone who travels by air goes through airport security checkpoints, and hates them. The checkpoints are to make sure terrorists canNOT bring anything aboard a plane that would enable them to take over the plane or destroy it. That part we like… Too bad we’re all treated like terrorists until proven innocent. What clothing to wear: Although any type of clothing may be worn, try to avoid that gangster, oversized look. This look will guarantee you a closer screening by security. Do NOT wear anything with metal on it. That big country western belt buckle may look cool but it also looks like you’re hiding something behind it. Ladies, under-wire bras will also set off the metal detector, bra less it is! If you have body piercings, make sure you’re ready for a full on body pat down; they like to get all touchy-feely.
the risk out of it, DUH! Do not make jokes about bombs, bad idea and majorly uncool. Shooting guns: hunting, targets, whatever you shoot, do not do it the day of a flight. The scanner will pick up the residue, then come the hand swabs, and a full interrogation. Save yourself the hassle, when you arrive at your destination, start your trip with a bang! Sometimes packing a lot of the same items, magazines, stickers, camera equipment will also cause a hassle. Apparently these security officers never hustled?
What passengers need: Everyone gets aggravated at the person not ready to go through security. As if they did not know they needed their ticket and ID ready for a pre-screen. The process is relatively simple. Have a valid ID ready to go, i.e. driver’s license, passport, medical marijuana card, anything with a photo. Coats and shoes must be off. Many things can be hidden in a jacket, especially any jacket from a snowboard company that contains 14 too many pockets. Send it through the scanner. Wear the shoes that are the easiest to take off and put on. This will also pay dividends once in the air and you can take ‘em off again. Don’t bother stashing anything in those pockets either, they’ll find it!
Random tid-bits: Once past security, any item purchased in the secure area may be brought onto the plane. Liquid lunch may be the way to go, to avoid that unpleasant feeling of being crammed into a bathroom that the disgusting old man just came out of. Gross. Also be aware some airlines now only accept cash for drinks once aboard and some only credit cards. Sometimes you can buy discount drink vouchers online before the flight that’s smart shopping! This will ensure a comfortable ride into the mountains, cocktail in hand! For those who are nervous of flying, definitely resort to the liquid lunch.
148 What not to do: Leave that fake can of Barbasol that hides your pot at home. They will find that too. Travel somewhere that it is available; take
These tips will ease the process of going through an airport and help you feel like your freedoms DON’T go “flying” out the door. PS - Your board bag will always be searched. EVERY AIRPORT. EVERY TIME.
NUT & BOLT
It takes 3,000 cows to supply the NFL with enough leather for a year’s supply of footballs.
Men can read smaller print than women can; women can hear better.
The electric chair was invented by a dentist.
If you keep a Goldfish in a dark room, it will eventually turn white.
Everyday more money is printed for Monopoly than the US Treasury.
The first couple to be shown in bed together on prime time TV was Fred and Wilma Flintstone.
You share your birthday with at least 9 million people.
Two-thirds of the world’s eggplant is grown in New Jersey.
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INFO 119 Sader Drive Suite 6 Inwood, WV 25428 888-714-5553 time2shinebmx.com
1.5 Time 2 Shine Time 2 Shine Skate & BMX Pro Shop opened about 1.5 years ago in Inwood, WV, about 1 hour west of Washington DC, and 1 hour south of Baltimore, MD. Matt is the bossman over at Time 2 Shine, hailing from Camden, NJ. He moved out of Camden when he was 20 years old to the WV area. When he arrived, he real-
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M-F: 12 - 7 SAT: 10 - 7 SUN: 12 - 6 ized there was absolutely no skate or BMX shops in the area that were any good. So, he opened Time 2 Shine to give the kids something to ride for! Providing the area with everything kids need to go out and shred, Time 2 Shine carries just about every brand in skating, from boards, trucks, wheels, bearings, footwear and apparel.