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The Black Hole of Z-Boydom

If you’re interested in getting sucked in:

Dogtown and Z Boys: A Film About the Birth of the Now is tentatively scheduled for release by Sony Pictures Classics next April, but you can try to sneak a peek at the AFI Film Festival this November. Major goose bumps from a documentary that manages to capture the radical-ness of what was going down in Dogtown, through archival footage, photos and the Z-Boys themselves.

Z-boys.com is the source for all things Z-Boy. It’s full of amazing archival photos by Craig Stecyk and Glen E. Friedman, not to mention links to Stecyk’s original Skateboarder stories that show "the Oz, the guy behind the booth," as Stacy Peralta called him, at work. There are also recent interviews with original Zephyr team members like Shogo Kubo and Wentzle Ruml, and links to just about anything ever written about a Z-Boy.

"The Lords of Dogtown," available at z-boys.com, is the story by Greg Beato, published in the March 1999 issue of Spin, that launched the current revival. It’s a great look at the Z-Boys during their heyday. After publication, Hollywood purchased life rights to key players.

Juxtapoz magazine, issue No. 23, November/December 1999, has a great story about Craig Stecyk that paints the full picture of the guerilla artist as a young man and follows his development into an extremely influential and subversive artist. Do an Internet search on Stecyk, and you’ll be amazed at the places it takes you.

Stecyk’s wonderful, somewhat stream-of-consciousness essay on Pacific Ocean Park, the nexus of Dogtown, can be read online.

Skateboarder magazine, April 2001, an issue dedicated to the most prominent skateboarding crews throughout history.

Fuck You Heroes and Fuck You Too, two collections of Glen E. Friedman’s seminal photography chronicling the history of punk when it was called Dogtown and then punk and then rap. Essential stuff for anyone interested in roots. There’s also a cool interview with Friedman in the Spring 2001 issue of Fader; it can be found online.

The Concrete Wave: The History of Skateboarding, by Michael Brooke, available from Warwick Publishing. A cursory history of skateboarding that will get you up to speed, so to speak.


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