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Insight From The DJ / Skateboarder – Arbor Skateboards GRADE Video Premier Tour

It’s crazy for me to think that almost ten solid years have elapsed since I first fell in love with the whole culture that is turntablism and music behind it. It’s taken me to some pretty incredible places, introduced me to a world of sonic creative expression I had never thought possible. It has always been my first true love, the soundtrack to my existence. Then there was skateboarding, an evolution from my time spent in the ocean. For me, the next step from the surfboard. A fish learning to walk on land. So you can imagine then, that when there is the opportunity for me to merge the two, I relish the occasion. The specific affair I’m alluding to in this particular instance was the recent Arbor Boards, GRADE video premier tour. A four day series of parties to reign in a new video featuring the downhill skateboarding powerhouse likes of James Kelly, Liam Morgan, Tyler Howell, Brandon Tissen, and Jordan Riachi. More than specifically just a video, or a series of parties for that matter, the tour stood to exist as more of a West Coast call to assembly for the various odds and ends of the incline oriented skate community. A proverbial gathering of the forces for a screening of a film that stands to showcase just how far a few individuals have come in the ongoing exploration of the relationship between high speed and the skateboard.

Arbor Skateboards GRADE Video Trailer (Live Thursday)

Arbor Boards Santa Barbara crowds building.

Arbor Boards Santa Barbara crowds building.

The Shark, and his MP3J rig.

The Shark, and his MP3J rig.

...and what skateboarding related party would be complete without a kegs?

…and what skateboarding related party would be complete without kegs?

Arbor Boards SB, all faces glued to the projection screen.

Arbor Boards SB, all faces glued to the projection screen.

Now, while I missed the Santa Cruz festivity, I was however asked to serenade the swaths skateboard seething attendees with my musical song selection stylings for the cities of Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, and San Diego during the four stop course of the tour. Needless to say, that when you put 150+ skateboarders in a room, with two kegs of alcohol, bumpin’ loud music, and video projections of raging downhill skateboarding from their mutual homies, you have all the necessary ingredients for one hell of a good time. Which, apart from a few Millennium Falcon-like narrow escapes from certain disaster (thank you Han Cory “Little Creek” Solo), the parties all went off exactly like they should have.

A very healthy crowd turnout for Arbor Boards Venice.

A very healthy crowd turnout for Arbor Boards Venice.

Arbor Boards Venice, the DJ booth.

Arbor Boards Venice, the DJ booth.

So now, after three days of people, places, and partying within the California downhill skateboarding sphere, paired with my Disc Jockeying attained foresight, what I’ve ever so humbly gathered is that the incline oriented skateboard scene has reached a very curious juncture in its overall development. How much further can we push this particular envelope? Not just in regards to the skateboarding, but in regards to the scene as a whole. Does downhill skateboarding continue to go mainstream? …Or perhaps does it retreat back to thrive in the realm of the niche? What are the benefits and pitfalls of both domains? As the sport grows, and as we begin to see the emergence more full length videos,  more and more talented skateboarders achieving breakneck feats at incredible speeds, what will be the next phase in this sports continued evolution? Perhaps only time will tell, however, despite these looming questions, it’s good to know that when a video as wonderfully produced as GRADE drops, we can still get together as a community to rally behind its glorious release.

Muirskate Warehouse San Diego, and the final stop on the GRADE video premier tour.

Muirskate Warehouse San Diego, and the final stop on the GRADE video premier tour.

Getting the projector dialed in.

Getting the projector dialed in.

Ramp jammin at the Muirskate warehouse.

Ramp jammin at the Muirskate warehouse.

San Diego, soaking in all the GRADE video glory.

San Diego, soaking in all the GRADE video glory.

Thanks for reading, if you haven’t yet, be sure to check out the Arbor Skateboards “GRADE” video trailer, get stoked for its planned official world wide release (Thursday), and go skate!

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