Wednesday, March 4, 2015

LBC's Finest

Scott Kane was a heavy force in skateboarding in the early 2000's. His skill level on a board was uncanny and I'm sure when his Bootleg 3000 part dropped there was a collective "oh shit" being said by many professional skateboarders all across the US. I know as a young skateboarder I was blown away, especially since Scott Kane was pretty close in age to myself. I saw Scott a few times back then in Philly filming with the Bootleg crew and their TM Mark Brandstetter (Plain). I remember one specific time skating William Penn High in North Philly and Scott, Brian Machaud, and Plain showed up. They Warmed up on the ledges and the 3 block, but that was not their intent. They obviously came to skate one of the bigger and more life-threatening spots at the school. I watched Scott skate the corner-pocket rail and right away I couldn't believe my eyes. I watched him front blunt and front blunt shuv-it that thing; both of which were done first try. I was in disbelief that someone could step to that rail so easily and with so much confidence to do tricks like those on the first go. I'll never forget watching that and thinking, "that was unreal, that dude is one of the best". He went on to have a shared promodel shoe in two different versions (vulc and cup) with the one and only Steve Caballero. Shit, If you got Steve Cab vouching for you then you know you did something right in the world a skateboarding. Scott laid low for many years and he shares some of the things that have happened to him in the following interview. He has recently popped up on the radar again with a part last year in collaboration with Hellaclips and The Brovas. I felt that it was quite fitting to have Scott Kane do a guest wheel project, because he really did push skating forward and he is yet another example of how Long Beach has produced very influential and talented skaters. He held it down for his scene like no other. Read on and find out what he's been doing and if you can, you should search out any Scott Kane footage or photos from back in the day. Put that stuff in context with the time period and you will quickly learn that Scott Kane was on a whole different level than most during his reign at the top.
-Pusher Rob

R- Scott, I just want to say thanks for letting us do this interview with you and for letting us do a guest wheel graphic for you as well. It means a lot dude.

S- What up Rob! Thank you for considering me to do a guest wheel for Pusher. I've always backed the Philly scene and what you guys at Pusher Wheels do as well. Thanks for asking me to be apart of it.


R- You feelin’ the Port of Long Beach reference?

S- I was stoked when I saw the graphic referring to the Port of LB. We have the biggest seaport in North America and now Long Beach has also become one of the biggest hubs for skateboarders over the past few years.


R- You have been living and skating in Long Beach for a long time. How has skating changed there over the years? What made you want to start skating when you were a kid?

S- LB has, and will always be my home. I wouldn't say it has changed too much over the years except that the multitude of skateboarders has grown immensely. More and more skaters from all types of backgrounds are moving here which makes it a pretty dope diversity of shredders.  


R- Cherry Park seems like a major hub for the scene there, do you like it better now or back in the day with the stage and the tables?

S- Cherry is definitely the place I go if I have no one to skate with. I can always count on running into someone to cruise with. I am a bigger fan of the stage and tables back in the day though. It's where I met a lot of people who helped me come up and there's just something nostalgic about it. But I don't dislike it now; it’s a good spot. It's dope to still be able to go there and skate and see all the homies. It's still the same old meet-up spot like it was back in the day. 


R- Who is your favorite skater to ever come out of LBC?

S- That's a tough one. There are so many good skaters to come out of LB, but when I think of skateboarding in Long Beach the first people that come to mind are Danny Montoya and Rob Gonzalez. I would guess that people from my generation would say the same thing. Those two were like our idols. Them and the rest of the 508 crew. Also, I have a tremendous amount of respect for Justin Reynolds. He was the first person to ever kick me down boards to skate. I am forever grateful for that. 


R- During your time on Bootleg you came to Philly to film. Did you like Philly for skating? What other East Coast cities have you skated?

S- I've been to plenty of East Coast cities to skate, but Philly is by far my favorite. I've always secretly wanted to move there. It always felt like home every time I was there. Maybe because that was the first East Coast place I went too or because a lot of my friends are from the area. Either way I'm down for Philly!


R- Do handrails scare you? Did they when you were younger? I merely ask, because your footage over the years suggests you mastered them quite well.

S- Fuck... I wouldn't say they scare me. I am more afraid of the thought of hurting my ankle. After rolling my ankle an uncountable amount of times I have developed a mental block from going for shit like I used to. When I was younger I sucked at flip tricks and for some reason rails came more natural to me. Like honestly, I suck at kickflips, but kickflipping into a handrail trick seemed a lot easier. It just worked better for some reason. I never really thought about getting on to the rail; I was always thinking about rolling away. I guess that helped me land some dumb stuff over the years. 


R- Bootleg was such a dope company and it amazed all those people who loved it that it came to an end out of nowhere. At the time everyone thought it was doing really well; at least from the outside looking in. Any insight as to why it seemed to close up shop out of nowhere?

S- Bootleg was such a rad company to skate for. I still consider everybody that was involved with Bootleg family. I don't think Bootleg was doing bad, I just think there were some politics that were involved that I didn't care to ask about. I felt that it wasn't any of my business and I respect the decisions that were made to shut it down. All I cared about back then was skating not the business side. Nowadays I wish Bootleg was still around. Strickland is an extraordinary artist and had a dope vision and direction for Bootleg. It feels good to look back and remember how dope it was to skate for such a good company. It was 100% skateboarding. You never know, it could come back. I know a lot of people would back it still to this day.


R- After Bootleg came to an end what did you do? Who were you skating for after that as far as a board sponsor? There were a couple years there where we didn't see as much coverage of your skating.

S- Around the same time Bootleg ended was about the same time I got surgery on my ankle. That set me back about a year or so. Most of my footage was used up. The companies that I still skated for at that time began to basically give up on me, because I was not able to skate. I did what I could to keep up, but even after surgery my ankles were mush. I remember the doctor telling me when I was 18 that I had 60 year old ankles, haha! Skateboarding can be pretty cruel; it got very depressing and I would get mad anxiety and have gnarly panic attacks. All I knew was skating, so when I wasn't able to do it I would literally freak out. 


R- You also got a chance to skate for one of the best shoe companies around, Vans. What was it like skating for Vans during that time? Do you think this new full-length Vans video is actually going to come out or is it a myth? If it does I hope they include a section of all the guys that skated for them in the past.

S- Vans during that time was dope; a rad crew of skaters for sure. I hope that they eventually come out with a video but who knows? If it does I doubt every rider will have parts. That would be sick to include all the past riders, but that list is probably a mile long. 


R- Vans gave you the chance to redesign the best skate shoe of all time; the Half Cab. It was called the Low Cab and I guess it was beefed up a little for the needs of that time. It was a shared pro-model for you and Steve Caballero. How did that come about and why did they stop making that shoe? That shoe and the No-Skool with the same sole were two of my favorites.

S- When they came to me and said Cab and I would share a shoe I was stoked! I've skated half cabs since I was like 5 years old. To make the Low Cab was a dream come true. Not sure how it came about internally at Vans, but I was stoked none-the-less. I still have quite a few of them in the closet actually.


R- Also during this time you lived in one of the most infamous LBC skate houses of all time with Darrell Stanton. Both of you skated for Vans at the same time. What were those years with Darrell like and what is he up to now?

S- Darrell and I grew up together. We skated together everyday until he moved to Texas when were 13 or 14 years old. When he moved back a few years later we ended up getting our first apartment together. He was 17 and I was 18 so his Mom co-signed for him. We got evicted in the first 6 months, but those were great times. Darrell and I would push each other to other levels when we would skate together. It was almost like a competition between us, but a very friendly and motivating competition. I think we both felt no limits to innovation at that time. Those are still some of the best days of my life. I always say I wish I could go back to that time. No worries at all, just skating and doing whatever the fuck we wanted. I still talk to him and skate with him every now and then. Dude can still drop bangers. I don't think he'll ever lose his talent (Darrell just put out new footage in the Gold video). 


R- I think it is important for kids to understand the reality of what we do on our boards. As we all get older and continue to skate we face injuries. We all have and we all will; both young and old. I know you have had some over the years. How have they affected your skating and your outlook on skating or your outlook on life?

S- Injuries can fuck up your ability to skate if not taken care of properly. I was so addicted to skating that I would still skate with a sprained ankle and other injuries. I rarely did rehabilitation. I remember once doing a kickflip back tail on this ledge with a full cast on my front foot; I couldn't stay off my board. I wish now that I would have taken better care of my injuries. I just thought I was invincible, which I clearly was not. My outlook on skating is still the same. It's fun as hell, but I know my limits now. 



R- The recent part that you and Plain did for The Brovas was sick man. I liked that it was a lot of lines; relateable skating with a few really hard creative ledge tricks that are rarely ever done by anyone. There were some spots in there that looked relatively new or not skated much. In particular the ledge spots with the long curving ledges. Cali is known for ledge spots to be blown out like crazy, but those looked pretty good and kind of new. Was it all filmed on Long Beach spots? 

S- Thanks man! It was fun to go out and film for that. It must have been 4-5 years since I've gone out and actually tried to film. I wasn't really planning on it, but it all kinda worked out. I reconnected with Plain (OG Bootleg TM) when he moved out here and we kinda just started skating and filming again. I had a lot of free time so it became almost a daily thing. Kalis saw some of the footy and asked if I wanted to do a HellaClips project with it. I was stoked he was down to do that. The curvy ledge spot is really close to LB, it’s right on the beach. It's been there for awhile, but it was a big bust for a long time. Now it seems to be more skateable. Most of the footy was either in LB or LA. A lot of ditches and ledges. 


R-Speaking of The Brovas, give the world some details on the company...

S- The Brovas is more a movement then a company. Plain and I have a lot of good ideas for it, but for now it's more of a homies thing. We make stuff here and there. I think all we have at the moment are some beanies and tees. If anybody wants to check em’ out you can go to or @thebrovas. Eventually we will make more moves with it. The Brovas will be coming along slowly but surely. Definitely be on the lookout for that. 


R- Real estate is your new daytime gig; why the move to that? Have you always dabbled in other things outside the realm of skating?

S- I've always been interested in Real Estate. I bought a house when I was like 19. At the time my Mom was a realtor and actually sold me my house and then eventually sold it for me. I was fascinated with the process and read a lot of real estate books about investing and management. I got my Real Estate license about 8 months ago. Crazy how things work out, because now I work with a bunch of skaters/realtors. I get to work with one of my childhood idols Danny Montoya and the legend Richard Mulder. It's also an awesome feeling to be able to help people with their real estate goals. It's most likely the biggest purchase or sale of their life. I'm always hyped to help. 


R- Are you currently working on anything for next year as far as filming or photos go?

S- I will be working on some more filming. It's a little harder now doing real estate full time, but skateboarding is my only escape ya’ know? Why not go film some shit when I can? You never know what it will turn into.


R- As a guy that has been on all sides of skateboarding and had quite the memorable carrier, how does skating feel to you now? Do you feel pressure to pay attention to all the stuff happening nowadays? Did you feel pressure in the past in any sort of way?

S- Skating is the same. I usually try to learn something new when I go out just like when I was a kid. It just hurts a lot more now. Honestly, I've rarely ever paid attention to skateboarding media and all that. I've been skating since I was 5 and didn't see my first video till I was like 12 or 13. It was 411 issue #13. When I was 10 years old I told my Mom that I was going to be the first pro skater ever. I had no clue there was such a thing or that there were already a lot of pros. That shows how much I've paid attention over the years. It's not that I don't care, but I'd rather just skate and stay in my zone.


R- Social media, love it or hate it?

S- I'm on some social media. Instagram and shit like that (@scottkane). I love that I can see some cool stuff sometimes, but hate that I can get stuck on it. I try and limit it and not get caught up in it.


R- Top five favorite skate shoes of all time?

S- Reynolds One, Reynolds Two, Marc Johnson One (Emerica), Half Cab, and Rowley Ones. 


R- Best skate trip you ever went on?

S- Probably this 30 day Bootleg tour driving from LB to Miami. I brought two of my homies and it was a super grimey. We skated probably about 30 demos in 30 days plus every spot along the way and then some. Rad group of people on that trip (Strickland, Plain, Eldridge, Little B, Elissa, Trapasso, John R, Berry, Maldonado, Strickland’s dog JoJo). It was hi-jinx the whole way out and back. I wish I could go on something like that right now haha! 


R- Picnic tables or granite ledges?

S- Concrete ledges with hardly any wax. I hate wax. Push through that shit. 


R- And lastly, if there is one skate spot you could de-knob and make legal what would it be and why?

S- They just tore down the OG Belmont pool ledges. I wish they would have re-made them and made it skate friendly. One of my favorite spots ever; that and Love Park. That is such a sick spot. I'm so stoked to look back and know that I was able to film a line there. 


R- Thanks for doing this interview Scott. You are a true Sultan of Shred my brotha. Any thanks before this thing goes to print?

S- I am honored you asked me to be a part of this, thank you. Thanks to all my family and homies everywhere, and thank you skateboarding. I'd be nothing without it. Honestly, I want to also give thanks to all the people that still show love. It's crazy to hear the things that people still tell me and how much they enjoyed my skating. It's almost bitter sweet, and I get upset that I haven't given them more. If it wasn't for these people I would have given up on skateboarding forever. Thank you to all of you guys. They are the people that remind me that skating is special and that I impacted skateboarding; even if it was just a little bit. I hate to be cliche, but that was literally my dream. When I finally saw an actual skate video and watched Marc Johnson skating, innovating, and pushing himself with dope style, it made me want to create and motivate other skaters to do the same. The only person I've ever been in competition with is myself, my own head, and trying to create the things I thought possible. I encourage others to be themselves and don't let anybody tell you that you can't do something. If they do, let it fuel your fire, but don’t be a dick about it. You're the only person that can tell you that you can't make it. If you can have full clarity of what your goals are than nothing can stop you. Contrast creates clarity. If you can think it, you can do it and I’m not talking just in regards to skateboarding. Act on all intuitions.


One of my best friends from childhood till now once told me... "In order to achieve something you've never achieved before you have to become someone you've never been before." -Nissay Sao 


Go out there and get it homies! Thanks for all the love and support!

Check out classic Kane footy below: