The South Bay has been more than influential in the punk rock scene worldwide since the early 1980's- a legendary scene that has produced fashions, trends, and music that reach far beyond the confines of Southern California and even the U.S. Hermosa Beach itself has churned out legends like Black Flag, The Descendents, The Circle Jerks, and 98 Mute, just to name a few. All of these bands and more make up a pretty impressive chunk of the "Punk Rock alumni."
With all of this amazing history, it was strange that Hermosa Beach banned tattoo shops. It made no sense to the punk rock community that gave this area its voice and culture. More importantly, it made no sense legally to the federal appeals court, who ruled the ban unconstitutional. This in turn opened up the floodgates for a few artists as well as Fletcher Dragge of Pennywise to open up some of Hermosa Beach's first tattoo parlors. Fletcher's 3rd St.Tattoo has become the second shop in the area to open its doors to everyone and anyone looking to get some ink in Hermosa.
Fletcher is big man with a big personality and all of this and more comes through with 3rd St. Tattoo. The place is half tattoo parlor and half museum for fans of Southern California Punk Rock and tattoo culture. The walls are filled with everything from original Black Flag show flyers, beautiful art, tattoo flashes, to a ticket from Pennywise's Key Club show that was recorded and turned into their popular live record. 3rd St. Tattoo in Hermosa is the real deal: a local shop with the best local artists owned by a local Punk Rock veteran. If someone were to follow this crew around with TV cameras you'd get a whole lot more action than most of the melodramatic tattoo reality TV that's on now. You'd most likely get something between Jackass and LA Ink ... basically a show that probably wouldn't be able to air on TLC like the rest of 'em (and that's a good thing).
More photos from Saturday after the break:
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