Posts Tagged ‘the Firm’

Summertime Mixtape Vol. 10 – Ray Barbee, ‘Can’t Stop’

July 4, 2022

In between getting ripped off by multiple generations of Chocolate team members, Ray Barbee played a cigar-chomping card sharp in the Firm’s big 2003 video that turned into a swan song for the ex-Bones Brigadier¬†brand that brought up Rodrigo TX and Frank Gerwer, among others. Ray Barbee was a vet a few times over at this point but there he was, hitting the Barcelona spots like Sants that were starting to bubble and running through the current LA schoolyards, parking lot gaps and sidewalk bumps with that impossible-to-replicate smoothness, fully decking tricks in the deep end and plunging down big banks.¬†

Video Days Skate Solutions

October 16, 2017

Skateboarding’s different. But that’s why you still do it. Think back — how many of your high school crew still skate? College? Forget about it. Lance Mountain and Ray Barbee called it — some people can’t stop, even though injuries linger for longer, tricks trickle away, and life in general bogs you down.

Sound familiar? The spirit’s more than willing — can’t sprain that. The flesh, properly stretched and foam-rolled, is as ready as it can be. But the day-to-day grind of a 48-hour workweek, delivering kids to soccer games and holding down a household makes linking with any of your remaining crew like solving a Rubik’s Cube — you’re lucky to line it up a couple times a summer. Even when your tricks are there, it can all feel fleeting.

Like TK said — get there while you can. You’ve picked up a new trick or two in the last few years that some of the homies still haven’t seen (and maybe don’t believe). There’s a few spots around town you’ve yet to bless with your go-tos. Maybe even a couple minutes of footage left in your feet. Too bad none of your squad is free during the hour or two you got free in a typical week. And when they are, who wants to tote the camera?

Or you could hit us up. We’ll meet you at the spot, the ramp, the park or DIY — you pick the place and time. Our filmers can help figure the best angle for your trick or line, whether it’s a switch 360 flip or a straight ollie, and get into the trenches with you if it turns into a battle. A fisheye’s a beautiful thing — take that curb up a foot or two. Come up in the 1990s? We tote VXs and can capture the clips for you. Want HD? We shoot that too, if you’ve got the cloud space. Super 8, VHS? Hit us up and see what we’ve got available in your area.

Filming isn’t all we do. If you’re long on trick ideas but short on spots, we keep pins*. Rack up a summer’s worth of clips and don’t feel like stringing them together? We edit too. Think you got a good photo or two in you? Our guys shoot stills. Bail shots aren’t identified; we keep it discrete.

We can skate on your schedule. Our hourly rate covers one-off sessions with a swipe of the plastic, or if you’d rather keep it consistent, set up regular, recurring sessions with direct deposit. Got an hour or two suddenly free at lunch and feel like getting busy? Pull up our app to see if any of our filmers are free and nearby. Check our rates page for all the options.

Maybe you’ll roll another ten years — maybe fifteen. But if you want to capture tricks while you’ve still got them down, we’re out here. It’s not about sponsors — check out our kids’ division about gathering footage for a come-up — this is about catching the best times on your board while they’re still going down.

*All tickets and associated legal fees are on you, the client.

The Incomparable Rodrigo TX

June 26, 2016


The annals of skate history are littered with x-rays, unpaid medical bills, jail sentences and as-yet undiagnosed cases of chronic traumatic encephalopathy that would argue against the timeworn slogan that skateboarding is a youthful fountain worthy of Juan Ponce de Leon’s most brutal fantasies. And then, there are those who seem to truly defy age’s gravitational yankings, such as Daewon Song, Louie Barletta and, in the dirtier, ghettoier and kidlike column, Rodrigo Teixeira.

Renowned under his AP Stylebook-friendly acronymical abbreviator, Rodrigo TX is that unlikely child prodigy whose career has achieved not just a second act but a third and now perhaps fourth, as his immaculately curated flippery augurs for the pinnacle, or one of them, in Adidas’ overstuffed tongue of a full-length ‘Away Days.’ Some of these dudes in a few years’ time will rightly be regarded as swishy pant bandwagoners and then there are others, such as TX and Great Yarmouth whirlwind Chewy Cannon, who look born into them, and rarer still is the type of finesse that allows TX to crib ‘Menikmati’-era moves like the nollie flip noseslide and make them look not just crazy good but a welcome alternative to a tenement city’s worth of wallies.

While former roommate Mark Appleyard opted to take years off before repositioning himself in skating’s orbit like he never floated away, Rodrigo TX seems to have redoubled efforts year to year, cranking out video parts while honing his tricks to finely shaped points, such that his fakie flip for Adidas not long ago merited hushed discussion among the alltime greats. Draped in monochromatic stripeyness Rodrigo TX’s ‘Away Days’ clips like the fakie frontside boardslide, the frontside tailslide kickflip out and the one where he does Mikey Taylor’s DVS ender switch bedazzle the watcher in a video chockablock with hyper-clean ledge skating, and then comes with rubbernecker-friendly fare like the nollie inward heelflip backside 180 to make sure everybody’s paying attention. TX’s Muni frontside heelflip rivals Lucas Puig’s for best in the vid and that last backside flip needs to go into a time capsule.

Does Rodrigo TX’s Adidas sponsorship, similar to Bobby Worrest’s Nike deal, rank as one of those rare cases that makes perfect sense for all involved given dues paid, legacy ‘skate’ industry bridges apparently left standing and peak on-board performance capacity still somehow yet ahead? Is it possible to say that somebody else did that backside kickflip or is such a statement impossibly untrue? Are Carlos Iqui and Tiago Lemos together the new Rodrigo TX or is Rodrigo TX the new Rodrigo TX (and also the Rodrigo TX of the Flip years)? What if somebody told you there was a video with Rodrigo TX, Silas Baxter Neal, Nyjah Huston, Bobby Worrest, Rick McCrank and PJ Ladd?

Prodigal Spaniard

December 5, 2011

If anybody needed proof of the youtube-era truism that every kid these days can do every trick, the Sk8Mafia video does the job, where you’ll find a kids in freely rippling tee shirts mapping flip tricks out of nosegrinds and other once-unspeakable combos now rendered ABD in and around San Diego. All that puts a bigger premium on the curveball pickup of Javier Sarmiento, a dude who for this site’s phantom adbucks stood at the pinnacle of streetstyle about a decade back, probably peaking near the time of the still-quality Can’t Stop part and even today you don’t see that many folks nollie flipping out of f/s noseblunt slides (present company excluded).

Sarmiento’s hiring by Peter Smolik to endorse Sk8Mafia brand goods serves the planet by plucking the dude from the type of obscurity only achieved by a European pro whose link to the US hardgood media markets goes out in classic whimper fashion. But it’s a little bit topsy turvy also, like Howard Roark going to work for Peter Keating or lending your dad money to secure a boat loan. Perhaps Smolik’s greatest attribute is that he has never apologized for his role as the nucleus of “The Storm.” Sarmiento back then was working in refinements but in the years since “YeS” it seems like he’s clicked on maybe too few Pappalardo links and too many posted by, er, Sk8Mafia. Like nollie bigspin flipping or nollie kickflip 360’ing (?) out of crooked grinds, tricks that don’t seem worth the effort when you look at the way he can still crack a frontside flip over a bench, switch b/s tailslide backside flip out, edge off a frontside crooked grind in the middle of a ledge, or (have the vision to include a clip of Rodrigo TX blasting) a switch hardflip off a whoop-de-whoop in camouflage pants. It’s all mostly quibbling though with the main point that Javier Sarmiento’s still skating and still getting support after Es went into the can — Sk8Mafia’s posted the whole vid for free on their website.

Lance Mountain and Bob Burnquist Are the Runaway Jury

October 20, 2009

In a theater near you

Back in, uh, 1998, vertical pioneer Tony Hawk and snowboard movie-man Jamie Mosberg unveiled “The End,” a statement of purpose that laid the groundwork for Tony Hawk’s rise to sport celebrity, solidified years of cartoon graphic deck sales and set the bar impossibly for future incarnations of the Birdhouse team. As you can imagine it was a pivotal moment for the culture and Tony Hawk mentioned at one point or another that one of the highest pieces of praises he received was somebody telling him “The End” was like one of the old Bones Brigade videos, which you can definitely see, and which is certainly no left-handed compliment despite the cheese factor spread over pretty much everything in the 80s.

There’s not a lot about the “Extremely Sorry” video itself that translates to easy comparisons with the classic Powell Peralta productions – it will take someone far bolder than I to hold up Louie Lopez et al alongside the Guy/Paulo/Rudy contingent – with the obvious exception of Lance Mountain, the Bones Brigade’s Ringo, and Bob Burnquist, sometimes known as the Bob Burnquist of mega-ramp skating.

And what about Bob? He makes for an easy target, what with his dramatic contest tears, recreational base jumps, TV stunts focused on geologic wonders and so on. It would be folly to dismiss shit like that switch feeble grind on the mega-bar or that heelflip frontside 540 spin that’s in the new Thrasher or all those tricks into (i.e. from the deck, into the transition of) the mega-quarter-pipe*. Or the switch backside tailslide, or those tricks at the beginning that remind you how he used to skate for Julien Stranger and those dudes. In some ways Bob Burnquist’s mega-complex is an extension of Tony Hawk’s bullring loop, but different, because it’s hard to shake the feeling that there’s something sort of fundamentally artificial about the whole mega pursuit… the idea of donning body armor (or not, I guess) and zipping to and fro on a golf cart to ride off a ski jump on a longboard. Like an underwater motorcycle race, or skyboarding. Quibbles aside, Bob B does for sure deserve a heaping helping of credit for filming a video part of this stuff, rather than dribbling it out from X-game to Dew Tour in a bid to rack up contest purses, which I guess he could do anyway.

On the other end of the spectrum one finds Lance Mountain and his personal backyard BBQ, throwing back to any number of previous video parts – Bones Brigade and otherwise in what struck me at one point as being a more wholesome version of Chet Childress’ Burnside odyssey in the Black Label vid a couple months back. Watching Lance Mountain crunch around the coping is all types of awesome with that ridiculous smith grind, the even more ridiculous feeble grind, those inverts, incorporation of various swimming implements – the late invert! – tied up with a loose weekendish theme that a 10-year-old kid could relate to, at the same time he’s bugging out off a hippie jump over the deep end ladder. I think I felt 10 years younger watching this part, which makes me wonder how Lance Mountain felt making it (broken bones notwithstanding)

*holy fuck by the way