Billy Jackson Interview

billy jackson interview

Photos- Russell Monore & Andrew Arellano

When did you start skating, and why?

I started skating at a young age, but I was not aware, I had a little board when I was two or three years old but I really started at about eight or nine years old. I saw some kids in the neighborhood doing it so I begged my mum to buy me a board. Just went from there, met kids who were my age who would skate with me.

You do a lot of crazy tricks. Where do you get the inspiration to try them?

This may sound like a lie, but most of the time it is by mistake. Such as I slip up trying a particular trick and it ends up being another trick, so I end up trying that one until I get it. Also the people I skate with know I do tricks that I pull out of nowhere, so they started calling out random trick combinations for me to attempt, and from there I started doing a lot of random tricks. Also, I do as many tricks as I can on anything that I am skating, and when I draw blank I ask them to give something to try. Mike Paek is the leading cause of my tricks, I don’t know where he gets the trick combinations from, maybe he is watching a ton of skating, but the tricks he throws out there seem so impossible until I try them, and they are for the most part doable. So really everybody around me influences my skating.

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fakie tailslide – filming Lets Go Skate 49

You're one of the main guys in the 'Lets Go Skate' series. What's it like to have guys and gals watching you all over the world?

It is one thing I will never get used to, YouTube comments, the tweets, the Tumblr asks, Facebook messages, Instagram comments they will always feel weird to me. But it is an incredible feeling having people take time out of their own lives to contact me. Topics ranging from saying I am their inspiration to how I do tricks, to asking what product I ride because they want to ride it. I am just a regular dude, so its crazy they give me this much love. It really is motivation to keep pushing myself further in my skating.

Have you been recognized by anyone yet?

Another thing that will always feel weird, I have been recognized many times now. It is, different. They seem shocked to meet me and hyped about it. I mean its cool. But I find it weird; I am just a normal dude who is trying to skate just like them. Sometimes they ask for help, the younger kids that is, and that’s cool to me. They are the future so I want to teach them so they can kill it one day.

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50-50 late front shuv

What's it like to skate with Drewsdays?

It sucks. Fool is so lame. Stupid beard. Gets no bitches. Takes dick in the butt. But all trolling aside, I do not know how to word it without sounding corny. Its dope, to put it simplistically. He is good at reading what type of mood people are in, and if it’s a bad mood; he lightens up the atmosphere. He is literally crazy “hashtag trust”. My skating wouldn’t be where it is at today with out him. From him giving me random tricks to try, to taking me to some of the best spots I’ve ever skated. Its hard to find somebody in skating who doesn’t fluke on you, I had the problem for many years so I didn’t really progress. Drew is pretty consistent at not flaking, and if he does cancel, you know he is really busy so it is understandable. He understands how I function as a person, on and off of a board. He is very passionate about the work he does, yet at the same time, he still enjoys it and haves fun. I am starting to sound corny, next question.

What was it like to skate The Berrics?

The first time there was cool, but really packed because it was during a pizza party, with Billy Marks I believe. So it was hard to really skate. Well, when they had the best trick on the stairs I had some space, so I was hyped. I honestly don’t remember what we did after everybody left that pizza party. It was a blur because I was so hyped up to be there, I did not really take in everything.

Second time had to be one of the greatest moments ever. I believe the day started off as a Skullcandy headphones photo-shoot, Koston, Theotis and Berra were there, don’t recall seeing Malto at all. Well after all of that cleared out, Berra left the park to us, like he literally left, it was Drew, Russell Monroe, a few little kids and myself. It was crazy he left his building with complete strangers, so we got to skate a bit more with nobody was fun. We went and got some tea afterwards, Berra and I both ordered and iced chai, great minds think alike? Kidding, but anyways, we had tea at a little coffee shop then ended up going to the new Berrics, but it was just a skeleton of what you see in the videos today. Just an empty building with a flat football and some sledgehammers lying around. We got to go upstairs with Yoon, Dwayne (Steezus Christ), and Berra. We all sledgehammered the walls down. We did that for a while. It was crazy ! I never thought I would experience that. I was hyped to be given the privilege of being in the new building before the public knew about it.

Oh and another story I am sure not many people know. Berra was doing his fakie flips and wanted to do a “For The Record” segment. Well Drew actually filmed that. It was cool actually seeing something for the Berrics being filmed, especially by one of your friends. A week or two later the video went up. Man I was so hyped ! 

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50-50 to boardslide – filming a Lets Go Skate (episode yet to be determined) 

Do you have a favorite skateboarder?

 Almost everytime someone asks, it changes, and honestly right now it is Marc Johnson. He is absolutely insane. His Pretty Sweet part was flawless to me. I wish I could skate that amazing at some point in my life. Other than that it changes, Guy Mariano, Louie Barletta, Cory Kennedy, Daewon. Pretty much, dudes who throw together insane tricks without even trying, or are creative with the obstacles that face them. Correction to a previous statement, of course they try but it seems so easy. They appear to enjoy what they are doing, and I like that. Oh, and MIKE PAEK dude is incredible on a board. I am not sure how he does the things he does. It is always a show whenever I skate with him.

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Noseblunt early grab

Are you sponsored?

Only company I am sponsored by is a new clothing company called Condign Alive. Most clothing companies that are starting up just make stickers, or show designs of shirts and hop on social sites talking big game about their brand. But actually seeing this brand and the clothes is what I like about them, they actually have product to speak for itself instead of saying they are making moves. I’m hyped about it and glad to be on the team.

Are you still trying to get on Gatorade?

Til the day I die. Honestly I think the whole thing started as a joke, but it would be an honor to be sponsored by them, chances are it will not happen so I am not worried about it. I will drink Cool Blue regardless. It would be dope if companies gave sponsorship to everyday people though, not just celebrities or athletes.

HD or VX1000?

Honestly I am more of a Showmaster 822 T type of guy, that super 8 film is killing the game. Totally making a come back. That’s honest, no troll; super 8 footage has always been the coolest to me, I love the old look. But to answer this question as it should be answered, I am 100% HD. But that is just my opinion. I understand people still love VX footage, and that is fine. That is their preference so I will let them cook. But I think HD is the way to go, I have gone back and watched old skate videos shot with a VX and it has been difficult to get into them because the video quality is blurry. But hey, to each his own.