An Interview With J.B. Gillet

Intro & Interview by Frozen in Carbonite
Collage by Requiem For A Screen with photos from @scalpfoto + ?

Summer of 1998: I had just moved into a closet on W 124th Street. The only video I had was Rodney vs. Daewon 2. However, I did not own a VCR, so I took the train down the The Wiz across from Union Square, purchased one, and lugged it uptown in a backpack. As I digested the video over the next few days, J.B.’s trick selection, previously-unseen Euro spots, speed and precision with which he attacked everything (e.g. that one nollie frontside 180 flip) [Ed. note: nollie half cab flip*] made it seem as if the dude came from not another continent, but from another planet. Planet EuroTech.™

ANYWAY, here we are twenty years later, checking in with him on the Quartersnacks web site. Circles, bro, life fuckin’ moves in circles.

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Yo, what have you been up to lately?

I’ve been in France, just skating but taking it easy. I’m supposed to film for Hélas with a filmer in Lyon, but it was so hot this summer; we didn’t really do shit. I’m going on holidays…taking a break in Hong Kong and Bali.

Do you have some kind of exercise or health regimen that keeps you skating at a high level?

I’m drinking a Heineken now [laughs]. I try to eat not too crazy, but I’m not too radical about it. With age, there is no secret; you have to stay a little healthy and do a little exercise. I go in at the gym a little bit sometimes. It didn’t matter before, but now I see the difference — so fuck it.

One of your last clips was filmed all in San Francisco. How has the city changed since you lived there?

It was kind of different, eh? There is no more Pier 7 — no more plaza skating, really. There are some new kids, but then you still see the old guys, like Chico is still there, and the guy from FTC, Ando. It’s like the GX guys doing their thing over there. I stayed only one week and it was pretty short, so it’s hard to tell, also.

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Summer of Love

Wavey via Francesco

The good news is we finally switched over to a circa 2018 design that’s mobile compatible, etc. Hopefully it’s not a Crailtap-getting-rid-of-the-iframes shock to the system, because let’s be honest: it basically looks the same, just moderne. We purged a couple spots that have been gone long enough for people to forget about, cleaned up some shit around the pages, etc. If anything seems to not be working properly, feel free to drop us a line.

The bad news is we are still amidst the same general skate internet content slump we have been experiencing all month. Nearly nothing happened last week…

R.I.P. Delancey Curbs.

On the off chance that you didn’t catch it, Jawn Gardner continues his streak of being one of the most contagiously good vibed skaters to watch in 2018, via his DC Streetsweeper raw files. That A/C contraption he made is nuts…

Gunes’ new FTC part is up there with John’s raw files as what got ran back the most at the office last week. Shout out to everyone who looks like they’re having fun while being really good at skateboarding.

Don’t know much about this one, but “Long Shots & Low Odds” is a ~moody~ seven-minute New York video from Canon Hastings featuring all your New York 2018 dietary staples (wallies, .T.F., a pit stop at the Grand Street courts) + a stubborn commitment to skating those red double cellar doors next to Motorino.

There’s a New York section at the ~8:45 mark of this Chicago video entitled Postcard.

Supreme took over the front page of the Post today.

Idk why it felt like Brandon Westgate “left,” but he’s “back.”

Thrasher also uploaded the Streetsweeper raw files from snow ramp architect, John Shanahan. The Battery Park Subway roof arrest bit is still left without context, but maybe everyone be careful if you’re going to climb up on top of that thing?

TWS posted the article from the Theories guys’ trip down to Mexico.

There’s a Bust Crew video coming soon.

“I feel good because I can make money, because I can help my family, but I don’t give a fuck about the Olympics. I don’t care and I don’t want to be there.” Grey has an interview with Olympian and European life enthusiast, Tiago Lemos.

“The big underground music in America is like house and dance stuff, based on what I see in the shop, and that’s what skaters are buying. When I was getting into deep underground hip-hop growing up, the only other kids listening to it were skaters. Like, you guys know Hieroglyphics? Why? ‘Oh, it was on the blah blah blah VHS.'” This link actually has nothing to do with skating, but is an insightful conversation on how people consume music (particularly rap) in 2018, and a reminder that it’s ok to not have an opinion on some stuff!

Quote of the Week: “If you’re having fun, chances are, you’re breaking at least one law.” — Conor

It’s eerie how well this clip has aged. If you sent this to us sans titles as a “hey my friends went to Paris and here’s our clip!” in 2018, it’d probably get a pass…

All Hail Jean-Baptiste

jb french fred

Photo by French Fred via Live

Something that wasn’t shined on enough in yesterday’s post was that the Kingpin “Greatest Plazas” list also included a new “Best Of Hotel De Ville” edit from J.B. Gillet. Anyone who grew up burning holes through the Rodney v.s. Daewon videos has probably spent the past fifteen years dreaming of skating that endless two-level ledge plaza with a hip in the middle. Research reveals that it is far too run down today to resemble what it did in the nineties (more on that later), but it still has to rank as one of the coolest-looking spots ever to grow famous through skate videos.

J.B. was the original cool French skater before Lucas Puig became a fashion-foward adult. Always thought of him as a French Kalis — great hip-hop white guy style, chill switch mongo push, amazing flip tricks, all the right ledge tricks, and an ability to be associated with one particular plaza throughout the duration of his career (yeah, Kalis might be associated with two at this point.)

Any remnant of associating a sizable portion of one guy’s footage with a single spot is in Europe. Even then, a lot of the “A-list” guys just seem like they travel around a lot e.g. there’s no real “Lucas spot” to the extent that there is a “J.B. spot.” For us Americans, the “single spot part” in 2014 is a rarity and pretty much impossible unless you’re Bobby Worrest turning in the year’s best. (Sorta interesting to know if Europeans who have never visited the States / don’t routinely get chased by cops for skating a ledge *got* how wild the “Hometown Turf Killer” part was.)

“I spent about, uh, 15 million hours here.”

The above was from 2011. French Fred, via Live in 2013: “So, HDV, as the young generation calls it now, is a sad state… To a point where it just gets worst every over week. For the locals that are used to it, it’s usable, but for people visiting Lyon, it’s a great disillusion. They freak out, and find it just unskatable. From the beginning, you had those lateral grooves that are part of the design, and that already was never easy to adapt to, but add hundreds of cracks all over, and it’s a mine field! Then again, Mark Suciu came, observed, then skated, and according to Flo Mirtain, did the craziest line ever done there, so everything is still possible! For the latest Go Skateboarding Day, Jérémie Daclin put some metal angles on the ledges that were in Beirut mode, totally unusable, and that gave a little boost to the spot.”

Mark Suciu seems like a horrible barometer by which to judge the average person’s ability to skate the spot. It’s probably best to scratch skating H.D.V. off the bucket list. The Lyon scene still seems like it’s going well though, no matter how dilapidated the “dream spot” may have gotten.

Previously: The Quietly Incredible Year For Euro Skaters Over 30

Now That’s What You Call A Good Morning

carroll emb

It may be back to 25 degrees on Thursday, but at least it gets dark at 7!

When was the last time there was something as unanimously loved by skateboarders from all walks of life as Bobby Worrest’s all-Pulaski part? Has there even been a part predominantly (only?) filmed at a single plaza spot since Stevie in The Reason? Also, here’s Boil the Ocean theorizing on the correlation between the economic downturn and the ability for these sorts of parts to exist. Or something?

Probably listened to DJ Khaled’s McDonald’s commercials 40 times last week. Looks like these guys are equally big fans. (Are they better than Flex’s Western Beef commercials though?) “It’s a recession out there and I love food that’s only for $1!”

Brandon Westgate remixed via #Tumblr-as-an-aesthetic.

A VHS cam throwaway reel from the LurkNYC dudes. There are some cool photos of that crew over here as well.

Mudo Zine interviewed Neil Macdonald of Science Versus Life (which, for those who don’t know, could be considered the Chromeball of exclusively British skateboard magazines) about how skate coverage has changed, but also sorta stayed the same, i.e. energy drink ads have been around since before you started skating.

The perils of posting about Osiris D3s on your website: People Earth’s last remaining population of Gravers will hit you up offering $200 for a pair after a cursory Google search leads them your way.

Skateboarders are a confused bunch, so Kingpin took notice and compiled a #listicle of its most outrageous style switch-ups. Should we do a New York edition?

Transworld interviewed Joeface about working in the skate industry, and posted a bunch of his photos. (ICYMI: Joeface’s Tony Durao “Best of” remix.)

Really enjoyed this Lyon bro cam / party cam clip by French guys who love rap, ledges and beer. (J.B. Gillet cameos included.) Also really wish that Travis Scott beat got given to a better rapper.

R.I.P. Delancey Popeye’s :'(

QS Sports Desk Play of the Week: Russell Westbrook had a triple double in twenty minutes of play last week, but then the Thunder lost to the Lakers on national television due to a career game from…Jodie Meeks.

Quote of the Week:
Inquisitive Supreme Employee: “Matt, why aren’t you in school right now?”
19-Year-Old High School Sophomore: “It’s a half day.”
Inquisitive Supreme Employee: “It’s 10:30.”

Can this shit pls end? Thx. (BTW new gear available this week.)