“Bookmark Me, Maybe?” – 2012 Song of the Summer/Video Part of the Summer Retrospective
September 30, 2012
Summer 2012 fucking killed it. I skated a bowl, then got hammered on the beach and jumped in the ocean–thus getting wavy in both a literal and figurative sense. I skated the TF in the rain, drank a beer across the street, skated the TF some more, then skated the World Famous Lenox Ledges. All things considered, this might have been the best summer since 1999, aka The Summer of Newport, when a busload of Brazilian girls rolled up on that most late-Nineties of spots as Wenning switch 360 flipped into the rays of the rising sun. The only thing missing was a consensus slam-dunk no-brainer Song of the Summer.
Why, may you ask? Several factors were in play here, such as the residual hangover from “Racks”‘s domination of not only the Summer 2011, but the year itself. Katy Perry’s divorce cast a pall over her 2012 singles, restricting their themes to, like, how tough she is and shit like that.
Without a clear-cut #SOTS, one had to dig deeper, derive those elusive summer #vibes from different sources. Similarly, Summer 2012 lacked a standout Video Part of the Summer. This Summer’s Transworld Video came out in mid-spring, and no blockbuster solo internet video parts hit the internet. To clarify: some may well have, but, like everyone else, I can only recall content that was linked on twitter within past 24 hours. However, I have been bookmarking vids and songs all summer long in preparation for this moment. So here’s the 2012 Song of the Summer x Video Part of the Summer post.
Alien Workshop section in “Cinematographer Project” / Drake & The Wknd “Crew Love”
For the record, I have changed my stance on Drake. He alright. He makes some smooth shit to listen to when I’m driving home from work, or contemplating my relationship. It’s like urban contemporary or smooth jazz for hip-hop folk, or some shit like that. You’re not quite at the point where you listen to classical music in the car, and you had a college radio hip-hop radio show in college or some shit, so you listen to Drake. I have accepted this. At this point in my life, I’d rather listen to this new style of ambient beats/r & b type shit than some punchline rapper. That’s just me though.
It still baffles me, though, why the Jewish community doesn’t back him harder. He reps our shit hard as fuck. Truth be told, if/when I plan my oldest son’s Bar Mitzvah, I will without a doubt use the “HYFR” vid as a reference point, in addition to retaining the DJ services of #NPBS, if possible. Along those lines, I saw on twitter the other day that that dude Action Bronson is also Jewish(!!).
Why he and Drake have yet to collaborate on a Jewish “Best of Both Worlds”-type project is beyond my comprehension.
ANYWAY, a song that utilizes an unconventional structure, or lack thereof, reflects a video part with lots of random shit and an unconventional structure, showcasing two dudes who are fucking killing it. Gilbert skates how he wants to; I have seen him stick completely fucked tech ledge lines on a spur-of-the moment whim, but his current “power skating” motif is tight as shit. Jake continues his trajectory of applying the most esoteric of switch ledge tricks to structures that dictate otherwise. Hopefully in 2013 he will bring back the 360 flip noseslide, via Chapman vid part.* And of course, this site will forever back Dill/AVE schoolyard lines. Every generation has that one montage that encapsulates the moment, with the one crew with whom everyone wants to be down. In the mid-Nineties it was the Menace section in Trilogy. For today’s highwater brown pant/vulc shoe/photography kids, it’s The Workshop (via Dill).
Ronnie Creager Berrics solo video part / “Call Me Maybe”
In his classic tome The Collector’s Guide to Heavy Metal, Martin Popoff relates how the Foreigner song “I Want to Know What Love Is” “seeped into American homes not unlike sewer gas” over the winter of ’84-85. Similarly, in the summer of 2012, “Call Me Maybe” oozed down from Canada like some greenish-blue chemical warfare (via Slayer, natch) type shit, slowly infiltrating every facet of American life–a song tailor-made for a generation that communicates primarily via meme.
Much has been made of the catchiness of said tune. Truth be told, though, this facet may be slightly overrated. For example, there are three or four songs in the Camera Obscura catalog that are at least as catchy as CMM, and I would also contend that “Never Say Never” by that dog.–which fuckin’ powered the summer of ’98–surpasses it in catchiness.
ANYWAY, for a song that has been remixed and memed to death, the metacognitive element of the lyrics remains under-discussed:
The bitch knows she is crazy.
Indeed, few things scream “crazy” like a girl giving a dude her number apropos of nothing. To highlight the differences in social interactions between the Nineties and the 10’s, this phenomenon is the inverse of the song “Steelo” by 702. Whether it less mentally unstable for a chick to just straight-up ask for a dude’s number, as in the latter song, is still up for debate.
ANYWAY, what CMM has going for it is timelessness. Accounting for production, Pro Tools and all that shit, it would not seem out of place on the radio in 1966, 1986, or on one of the more twee latest Belle & Sebastian lp’s. In the same way, Creager has stayed in the same lane since approximately 1994. Early grab, firecracker, and vulcanized shoes notwithstanding, most of the tricks and gear herein would fit seamlessly into Trilogy or RVD2. Is non-ironic use of Tom Petty** the next big music supervision trend? Also, I relate heavily to the use of yellow legal pad. Yellow legal pads are for winners. And like Mr. Creager, I write a to-do list at work on mine, and cross off each task upon completion. At the end of the work day, this makes me feel like I accomplished something. Maybe someone should tell him about Evernote, though. Shit is tight.
“Money” Mike Fiti Wild Power Part/ E-40 “Function” remix (French Montana’s verse)
Cars and #SOTS were made for each other. Along those lines, this SOTS candidate slid onto my radar screen while driving. High-speed merging at night, I heard Montana’s verse over my satellite radio. This was a pleasant surprise because, as you well know, in the world we live in the remix has the same beat as the original. Even before the remix, though, “Function” served as, for the most part, the only West Coast-centric song of the summer.
That Wild Power vid is on some similar shit. Think of it as an evolutionary Filmbot Files— a legit west coast independent vid with a wide stylistic variety of underrated dudes that rip. If you know this site, though, you know that–with a few exceptions– I back a very specific subgenre of skating: menace_tech, low-impact ledge lines/ schoolyard type shit. Along those lines, Money Mike’s part herein is the most menace_tech part of the year thus far.*** Revisiting that one low-impact ledge spot from Filmbot even, Fiti either bigspins and/or flips and/or 270’s out of 98% of his ledge tricks accompanied by non-ironic MC Ren music supervision. Also, I’m going go out on a limp here and interpret the picnic table 5/0 360 flip out as a 20 shot homage, and Ron Knigge would approve of the f/s halfcab double heel down some stairs. Hopefully this dude will soon escape the Krew/Supra and Kayo flow vortices, but who knows with, like, the industry these days ‘n shit. In addition, the vid as a whole warrants checking out for parts from everyone’s favorite Forrest Edwards, Love Park alum Tony Montgomery, and Sean “Dammit” McNulty.
Brad Johnson “Pier 7 pt 2” internet clip/Meek Mill “Amen”
Hard to believe Fully Flared came out almost five years ago. I went to see M83 with my girlfriend last night, and although the FF intro song was not on the set list, the dude busted out a saxophone at the end of “Midnight City” and performed a non-ironic sax solo. That one line “the city is my church,” subsequently and almost instantaneously turned into a meme by that site Hipster Runoff, reflects a similar theme to one of this summer’s SOTS candidates. In 2012, one of the major contenders conceptualized not the city itself, but The Club within said city as religious ceremony/destination–a place one goes to pay homage, celebrate the important things in life, and reset for the upcoming week. In the same vein, Brad Johnson continues to pay homage to one of the long-dormant cathedrals of North American plaza skating by releasing this series of Pier 7 edits.
Indeed, even at a seemingly non-spot like the TF, there is a quasi-religious feeling upon rolling up to a celebrated spot for the first time. You feel it in three dimensions, sense how rounded-off the ledges are, see how fucked up the ground is. For example, after skating Lenox ledges this summer, Antoine Asseline’s line there in the Real vid fucking blows my mind.
ANYWAY, even though Pier 7 devotees will recognize most of this clip from Chomp On This, Sight Unseen, the 411 Pier 7 Spot Check, or even the ICS promo, the nuances of music supervision add a new dimension. Indeed, it doesn’t get much more #summertime than that moment when the vocals kick in during the “My Name is” part, juxtaposed with the image of Wussler drinking a 24 oz can of Budweiser by the bay–fuck a brown paper bag.
Added #phatstylez note: Johnson skates in Jordan 11’s and a Carolina jersey at 2:30. I think it is safe to assume these were color-coordinated. Truth be told, I have mad respect for those St. Louis dudes. They were just some kids that grew up worshipping World vids like the rest of us, and they went out there and made it happen. #salute
Kyle Nicholson & Jereme Rogers #MiAmor parts / David Guetta (and some other dudes, I guess) “Wild One Two”
DATELINE: IBIZA – FEBRUARY 2012
David Guetta invites LMFAO, Nicki Minaj, FLo-Rida, and Paris Hilton to a weekend retreat at his Ibiza villa/compound.The mission: create the Song of the Summer to end all Songs of the Summer. Aided by various substances, they stay up for 52 hours, eventually producing a rough mix of a single that will eventually soar to number one in 220 countries, reach two billion digital downloads, and most importantly of all, reign as #SOTS.
This never happened, but it should have. However, as far as #euro vibes go, “Wild One” was pretty tight; it’s the song that was stuck in my head the most while I vibed out at the Outer Banks a couple months ago, waiting to take skimboard runs as groups of girls strolled by. As far as #euro skate vibes go, the old standby of the “Euro Tour Vid” has fallen by the wayside with the advent of China, but Jereme Rogers. Kyle Nicholson and them brought it back this summer with #MiAmor–a vid that intentionally or unintentionally, captures those #summer
First, some background. After repeated attempts to obtain a physical copy or download a digital copy through Google Play™ (does anyone else use this shit?) I finally installed iTunes™ on my Windows™ computer. The only thing in my iTunes™ library, however, is the Selfish vid. All my other media streaming needs are served by Google Play™, such as streaming music through my miniscule phone speaker while skating mini by myself like a mental patient. I gotta tell ya though, I am not too psyched on whatever code they put in iTunes™ content that prevents one from, say, putting the vid on a flash drive and playing it with VLC Media Player. Information needs to be free, bro.
ANYWAY, the Selfish vid is tight because it is 100% post-irony. They strived to create the best vid they could. There are no #vhs / #tracking / #meta layers of meaning here. The wind noises and groovy instrumental keyboard music are what they are. If anything, #MiAmor reminds me of Two Industry Men or some shit like that; a time when every video was, to a certain extent, a tour video. This unorganized, weed-infused, low-concept bro-cam #vibe defines #summer.
Kyle Nicholson’s whole approach fucking kills it. By all accounts, he should have gone full am for Habitat like six years ago. I guess he couldn’t be bothered to learn analog photography or the acoustic guitar, because that never happened. Indeed, subscribing to the same South NJ/Philly/Eastern PA mindset as “skuh”-era Gall, Nicholson appears to give a shit about nothing other than ripping. In addition, he apparently wears the same all-black kit and high-top cupsoles the whole trip, encrusted with varying amounts of dirt. Has anyone else ever flipped out of a tailslide over a whole ‘nother block?
Which brings us to Jereme.
Once–just once in my lifetime–I want to attend one of those dinner parties that Jereme describes on Twitter. You know the ones. The intimate affairs with just him, one other dude, and like ten models. I imagine they would be something like this full-length extrapolation of the Jesse Pinkman/Omar/Puffy Ciroc commercial.
I dig that “international man of leisure” type shit that Jereme is on these days. He still rocks 2006-era XL t-shirts. Furthermore, truth be told, I have always thought that Jereme’s skating was some cool shit–specifically, the Skate More part, A Time to Shine, and this Plan B intro part, the song for which Danny Way probably hand-picked. He has also cleaned up his style of late, chilling out on the signature “what? who, me?” landings.He leads off this latest offering with a noseslide, the building block of modern skateboarding.
I believe that this is 100% intentional and extremely significant.
Indeed, the noseslide serves as the basis for his entire repertoire. This is the main thing he has going for him in 2012. Shit is relatable; it’s still the first trick I do in any session. Dude also does a lot of switch tailslides, which are, of course, an inverted mirror-image way of getting into a noseslide. And whether you are switch inward heelflipping into one or f/s switch bigspin kickflipping (or some shit like that) out of one, a noseslide is still a noseslide. His ender even incorporates two different noseslides into a three-trick ledge combo that the editors of Transworld probably hate. More importantly, as we have seen in the recent Gino x McEnroe internet video clip, noseslides are highly relevant in 2012 because most people can do them, but few can do them well. Like pilot light said regarding f/s halfcab noseslide shove-it outs, if you see a dude execute a noseslide with speed, nollieing out of that shit like a man, there’s a pretty good chance he knows what he’s doing.
But does Jereme have any kind of path or direction in the infinitely more controversial facet of his career–the #rapgame? Although this type of seemingly delusional endeavor is an easy target, the standard argument of “You suck at rapping, bro! give it up!” holds no weight, because some of the most successful rappers out there qualitatively suck at rapping. Sounding cool, though, is still super important; it’s still “mostly the voice” like my man said. Jereme still sounds like a ninth grader.
Holistically, though, rapping effectively is probably the least important criterion for success in rap. Take a look at Riff Raff, for example. He has funny tattoos, tweets funny #rapgame tweets, gets profiled in the New York Times, and says cool shit like “Sarasota baking soda.” But is Jereme really _that_ much worse at rapping than he is?
Riff Raff excels because he is more self-aware, leverages social media more effectively, and manipulates pop culture elements (i.e. MTV/BET tattoos) to add value to his brand. However, Jereme’s doubleset b/s flip attempt to kickaway hints at potential for a new, more nuanced direction. Is this bail a metaphorical statement about the industry? About the human experience? Is this whole post-retirement adventure some kind of Joaquin Phoenix-esque sociological media experiment? This remains to be seen. As the dude wisely reminds us in the intro to his part, “Just ’cause I could don’t mean I would.”
Or would he?
HONORABLE MENTION: Manolo Jovantae mixtape/ “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together”
*in conversation for best trick @ pyramid ledges
**someone should totally skate to this song tho
***Sammy Baptista’s Skate Sauce part is up there, tho. #mnc_tech back?
ps. hit me on that twitter @carbonite1994 and on that insta @frozenincarbonite