Monday, September 28, 2009

The Young Offenders interview.

The Young Offenders are Tim, Dougie, Jason and Pete....they are based in San Francisco and regulars of this blog probably know them and know the music so you already know how good they are, maybe one day they will head over here to play but i have some doubts about that happening too soon so get saving and get to S.F. quick, in the meantime check out this quick interview with Jason and Tim and then listen to some
great tunes at their Myspace page.............

Pic: Mark Murrman

A few questions answered by Jason and Tim......

The Young Offenders are based in San Francisco but like the city itself it’s members are from far away ports…The Young Offenders imagery boasts members from London, Belfast and San Francisco so how did these individuals separated by half the world come together?

Jason: In a bar, of course. I met Tim and Dougie through mutual friends. One night we were drunk in a bar about four years ago and Tim said he and Dougie and some other bloke were playing music and asked if I wanted to play. I hadn't picked up a guitar in five years, but liked these guys enough to say what the hell and give it a try.

Tim: I’m from Cornwall, married a yank. Dougie is from Belfast and we can’t seem to get rid of him!! I’ve been here 8 years and met Jason through mutual friends. Me and Dougie asked Jason to come jam when we were ripped up in a bar, for some reason he agreed. Pete has been a friend of my wife Karen’s family since they were kids, as soon as we met started talking about playing music together. I imagine we will be playing music in some form together forever.

How long has the band been together in this form and are the four members all original? I think there is some history for all the members of the band, what are your musical roots and bands before you became the Young Offenders?

Jason: My musical roots are varied, I grew up in the Los Angeles area listening to lots of punk, new wave, post punk, indie and rock music from the 60s and 70s. I think the other guys in the band have been lifelong lovers of hardcore and punk, but I'd be lying if I claimed to be one myself. I loved Crass, Government Issue, Dead Kennedys and other bands with a political bent, but most punk and hardcore I found to be boring and repetitive, and the scene tired and uninspired. Tim, Dougie and The Ox have introduced me to a ton of music I've never heard that has completely made me change my mind about that. I missed some good bands because I was doing my own thing. That's one of the main reasons I love being in this band, everyone is still listening to music and excited about it. We introduce each other to new stuff all the time.
My only other band was an indie band called Dolores Haze that played in San Francisco in the late 1990s. We released a couple of albums on a friends label.

Tim: Me, Dougie and Pete played together sporadically doing Negative Approach and Jerrys Kids covers. Then we got back together and wrote some tunes, Jason jumped in really brought the last piece to the puzzle. The best thing about this band is that it couldn’t function without all four people. We all bring something different both as people and ‘musicians’ that somehow really works for us. It’s great that some folks dig it too, but the four of us having fun still, and always will, come first. I’ve been in bands since I was a kid (5 Minute Fashion, Totenhaus, Nerves, Stockholm Syndrome)… I’ve done some records and whatnot and all the times with my previous bands have great memories. I grew up in the arse-end of England (Cornwall) on a diet of ACDC, Iron Maiden and Motorhead thanks to an older brother. At around 11 I discovered punk and hardcore and my life changed.
Pete was in the Loudmouths for a long time and has played with tons of other people over the years… too many to mention.
Dougie did stuff in Belfast but this is the first band he has recorded with…

Pic: Mark Murrman

Tim, I know your musical taste is very broad and your knowledge of music is John Peel like in it’s depth so how much of this influences what you do in the Young Offenders? How much input in writing comes from each member, I mean are the lyrics down to one person and the music to another or is it more of a group thing?

Jason: We all write songs, I bring in songs, Dougie brings in songs and Tim brings in stuff depending on how busy we are. No matter who starts it, everyone has input into the final product. I don't think we have a principal “songwriter” … if someone starts a song it definitely changes as everyone adds their own stamp on it.

Tim: When I was a kid I was going to bed listening to John Peel on the radio playing Ripcord and Heresy but also the Bhundu Boys, Orbital and the Wedding Present. It took a while to sink in but because of that I appreciate all kinds of music. Having Dougie living with me opened my eyes and ears to all kinds of shit. I am much more vocal about my music loves (and hates), but it is definitely Dougie who has the greatest breath and knowledge of music of anyone I know. He can go from Cat Stevens to Infest without breaking stride. When we are out together we are as likely to be at the front of a Never Healed show as on the floor throwing spins at a Northern soul night or getting down to Detroit Techno. Once I realized that there are merits to all kinds of music I just started soaking everything up. I’m an obsessive whether it’s music, bikes or whatever… I do it 100% - I’ve been collecting records for a long time… and loooooove them!! Theres plenty of stuff I don’t like… but more that I do, from African psych to folk….black metal to powerpop. My heart will always be with punk rock though…it’s what I know best!
We all like different music and the fact that we had no real boundries when we started the band it kind of let’s us do whatever we want. Because of that I think our sound is kinda unique… On the way to a show we are probably talking about the new Malcolm Middleton LP !! we all fire each other up about new bands too… of all genres. Our ‘writing style’ is pretty organic. We all write songs together. Usually Dougie or Jason come up with the main riffs and then we all jump in and tear it apart. I’m usually the one that says ‘shorter…faster…’!

Pic: Mark Murrman

Your discography is getting longer and with an album in the pipeline too, give me a rough list of releases so far…..

Demo (tape and cd…long gone)
7” on Art Of the Underground (sold out)
7” EP On Parts Unknown
7” on Deranged a couple of reviews
split 12” on 625 with Giant Haystacks.

Later this year we are going to record for another 12” for Deranged and Dirtnap is going to be putting out an LP/CD of our 7”s. After that? Who knows.

Looks from here you have plenty going on with a ton of gigs coming up, how regular are you playing in San Francisco? I saw you played twice at a festival in Texas, that must have been a hectic weekend what with all the other amazing bands that played, looked like it ran from Wednesday to Sunday at multiple venues, did you get to see much of the rest of it? Playing at home or playing away?? Do you prefer playing to your friends who know all the songs or a fresh crowd out of town who know none of it?

Jason: Texas was amazing. I saw a ton of bands, none of which I'd seen before. Bands I was blown away by at Chaos in Tejas: Pierced Arrows, Hex Dispensers, XYX, Strange Boys, Destino Final, Manikin and Cock Sparrer.

Tim: We seldom play SF… just for an occasion, the last time was a benefit for MRR and a new all ages show space. We usually just play when our friends bands are on tour. Chaos In Tejas was amazing…. 65 bands over 4 days… insane. We were lucky to get asked cos we are friends with Timmy Hefner who does the whole fucking thing. I had the most fun just hanging with my friends… I missed a lot of bands, but that’s ok, I had a great time. Band highlights? Hex Dispensers, Destino Final, Cock Sparrer, Judgement, Amebix, No Tolerance, Pierced Arrows, Skitkids and Sacred Shock at 4am in a warehouse. I like playing parties at home and I love been away for a few days with the crew. We are about to head down to San Diego for the North Park Awesome Fast which is 3 days – 60 bands,,, insane. Toys That Kill, Tiltwheel, Grabbass Charlestons…. Too many to mention… should be a blast!!! We have been lucky to play with some of my favorite bands and have become friends with some amazing people thanks to the band.

How does the band tie in with everything else you do? I guess you are all busy so does the band come way down the list? Is a tour on the cards. How do you manage to fit in everything else; family man, work, cycling, maximum rnr, listening to music and reading, all time consuming on their own, I’m amazed whatever the answer is??

Jason: Tim and Pete have two kids each, and I can't believe they do it. I work a fulltime job and have a wife, but other than that it's pretty easy for me to work it in.

Tim: The band is one of the most important things that I do. I have 2 kids and work a lot so we don’t have much time to do it, but when we do its really fun. I see it as a necessary break from my normal life – it givesd me a chance to unwind and hang out with my best friends…and jam some tunes while we are at it! The best thing about the band is that we are all busy and old so we just do what we can do…no stress. We won’t tour, we neither have time nor inclination. I am more of a sprinter than marathon runner so a crazy weekend away suits me fine. I’m sure we’ll do a couple of road trips a year. We are planning on Texas again, not to play the main fest, but a party with the Hex Dispensers. My wife is very forgiving and these days I spent very little time just sitting in the pub (tho I’d like to)…I realize I have limited time so I try and get as much done as I can. I’m taking my bike to San Diego…so I can rage, play and ride all in one weekend!!

What happened at the video shoot and when is that going to surface, looked like fun in the boxcar, how did all that come about? What song was it for?

Jason: Our friend Jon liked our song “Big Cities” and decided to spend time and money making a video. I still can't believe he did that. Thanks Jon.

Tim: Jon asked. We said yes. He delivered. The video is done… check vimeo or youtube. Jon did an amazing job…

How does skating fit in these days? How about Pete and his skating?

Jason:I can't skate, but surf regularly. Falling on water is much better than concrete when yer 38.

Tim: I pretty much hung up my board, but have been rolling around a bit recently now that my boy is starting to skate. Pete ‘the Ox’ Colpitts still rips when he can, he’s been hurt a bit recently but still blows minds. He is sponoserd by Felem in Japan and goes over there to skate each year. Watching Pete skate still makes my jaw drop. Dude is a stone cold legend.

Any side projects either in making music, playing it, putting on gigs, label, radio??

Tim: Well, me and Dougie write for MRR, I put on the odd show for friends. I edit bike films for some friends here in SF and do a blog. I’d love to do more music but just don’t have time. I’ve been talking with Jon (who did the vid) about making some music with him but so far I have been lagging…..!!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

ione sleeps through her first gig.......
The Groundnuts and Independents at the West Cross ramp jam on Sunday.

The Groundnuts and Independents from Jono on Vimeo.

Groundnuts and the independents myspace
Ally told me about this band, been around for years and skating for years too...finally got to see them in the park at the end of the loved it!!!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Boardroom in Leicester had a jam too, looks like the bowl is still getting sessioned, Vaughn Baker ruling as usual......Nando's?? strange turn of events that in a very roundabout way battery chicken farming is paying for skateboarding in a bowl i had a hand in building, is there blood seeping through those sheets of ply....people love the Peri Peri, it's all about the flags, it's all about the chilli eating contest...these things are a badge of toughness...line em up suckers, it's a gun show.
Nevertheless the Boardroom saved the Edge from extinction and breathed new life into it, i mean look at the footage, the place looks awesome, it's stronger than ever and packed to the rafters....nice one.

More lestaonlock Skateboarding >>
A bit of a contest and jam happened on Sunday down at the miniramp at the end of our's a few clips of what went down.......

West Cross mini ramp jam from Jono on Vimeo.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Rich requested this clip....Pivot fakie on a wet metal ramp by Tom!!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

First of all learn this trick....seems easy!

Then do them like this.....

Photo taken from Thrasher mag

Then enter the Thrasher mayday contest, alternatively just enjoy the fact that you can do an amazing looking trick, for my next trick i will do a pivot fakie!!.....if it's the last thing i do.

Rich does the slickest pivot fakies i have ever seen

Styley took this at the Gernika bowl when we went in 2006.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

This years Thrasher skateboarder of the year???? Should be!!!!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Rad!!! Shame the company that made these things stopped making them last year....

I collected as much of the masters, bulbs and inks as i could get my hands on and afford before the end of production in Japan so i have a little life left in my Gocco...nice one Styley for finding my PG11 and sending it over.....

Cool video that comes with the Gocco unit!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Claus Grabke post updated......

Monday, September 07, 2009

Styley sent a link to this video....nice!!!

Friday, September 04, 2009

Gorilla vs cyclists.....myth or monster?

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

How much deep fat frying would you need to do to end up powering your car with the left over oil?? Thats a lot of chips/spring rolls......

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Ever wondered what happened to Claus Grabke? Why all his board graphics had clocks in them? Ask no more.....have a look at this exhibition of every Grabke board at the Skateboardfieber museum in Germany.....
"Without doubt Claus Grabke is the european Skateboard legend ! No other German Skater had ever such a commanding position as Claus had in the 80ies and 90ies. From Titus Skates (1983) he went to Powell Peralta (1985),to Madrid (1986) and later in the same year to Santa Cruz Skateboards. "

Other skaters are interested in time and time travel too.....shame the Clause Grabke tribute section of This n That isn't on this clip....