Find out who wins Best Rookie (official nominees are Andrew Allen, Andrew Brophy, and Sean Malto) along with the rest of the awards this Friday, June 12th, at the 11th Annual TransWorld SKATEboarding Awards in Hollywood, California.
From our March ’09 issue
Words and photography by Mike O’Meally
There’s something about tall skaters that just makes them so sick. Clocking in around the six-foot-three mark, Andrew Brophy is a beast known to his mates in Australia simply as “Manchild.” At 22 years old, he has a thirst for life and all its adventures that fits a young lad from a faraway corner of the world in Western Australia. Brophy just can’t get enough, and it’s a rare moment that you won’t see him smiling, enjoying everything that’s thrown his way. And what about that ollie?! Brophy has got one off the biggest and best pops in the biz, and he can make even the tallest block look like a knee-high ledge. Recently married and about to turn pro [has since turned pro] for the always-interesting Cliché Skateboards, we pinned Brophy down to find out why his dad dances with a mop.
So the big news is you just got married on the eighth of November. Tell us about the wedding—I heard it was a bender? It was a bit of a bender and we had a good time. We made sure there was enough beer for two and a half days of drinking and we woke up early the day before and started drinking then. But I didn’t get too f—ked up, so I wasn’t hungover for the actual day of the wedding.
Did you wear skate shoes at your wedding? Yeah, DVS made me some special “Congratulations Andrew Brophy” shoes.
Tell us about your dad. I heard he’s a bit of a character. What was he doing at the wedding? It was pissing down rain after the ceremony and we went back and had the speeches and what not. We started dancing in the rain. We had a big marquee and the bottom flap started filling up with water. We thought the roof was gonna collapse so we went and found a mop and pushed the water out and then I don’t know… he adopted the mop as his new dance partner for a solid half an hour and had a great time with it.
Your dad is kinda known as the boss around town in Margaret River. Can you tell us a little bit about where you’re from? He tries to be. He’s good about being around town at the pub. He’s the Augusta Margaret River shire manager. He keeps all of the roads in working order ’cause there’s a lot of logging and trucking so they try to keep the roads really good.
So to someone who really wouldn’t know, your dad is pretty much the quintessential Australian “Aussie” bloke. Could you describe what that means? He’s constantly got a beer in his hand and a fishing rod in the back of the truck. And he normally smells like dead fish. He’s just a hard c—t. That’s pretty much it really. Plus being cool. He likes building sh-t, with wood—he likes building tables and chairs. He gives it a go.
I know you’ve been on tour with certain photographers and other people. What do you say to those people that think you might have gotten married too young? If they ain’t married then they can’t really give me any advice ’cause they don’t know sh-t, and my parents have been married since they were nineteen and they’re still together. They still make me laugh and so are Brogan’s parents so you never know, do ya? You can’t tell ’til you do it, but so far, three weeks and we’re still kickin’.
Good, good answer. Well enough of all that sh-t. So you recently went on a couple of Fourstar tours with all the big guys. Tell us a little bit about that, you being a young skater from Australia, and who’s your favorite skater to hang out with on the trips? First of all, going on a Fourstar trip is pretty scary—just the thought of being there with all those dudes. At least I had Lucas [Puig] ’cause he’s a friend and I kinda know him. So I pretty much shat myself thinking, “I’m hanging out, eating breakfast with Koston, Carroll, and Howard.” At first I thought it was kinda weird, and then I got to know them and they’re all f—king hilarious, great characters and can shred the plank pretty hard. My favorite person to hang out with? There’s a couple—I like Carroll cause he’s a dry bastard, but he cracks me up and he’s fun to party with. Brian [Anderson] ’cause he’s a rad dude all around, and Lucas ’cause I’ve known him since I was a wee tacker. I’ll just say them all. They’re all fun.
You lived in London for a couple of years. How could you describe to people who wouldn’t know what a mash up is? Am I allowed to explain what a mash up is?
Do your best. What does it involve? A day of skateboarding with lots of lads involved, which is the regular—no matter where or what country you’re from. Trying to think up some dirty house party to go to with a pocket full of disco biscuits and various other paraphernalia, if it’s around, and just go there with all your mates and get f—ked up. And there’s normally a house to get back to after that to get more f—ked up. Just consistently keep the bender.
Bluntslide to fakie.
Did you enjoy your time in London? What are some of your favorite memories from living there? I loved it. The Waterloo House, the Palace Waywards with Danny Brady, Lev Tanju, Snowy—Joey Edson probably lived 300 meters away from Southbank, so we’d stay there, skate Southbank everyday, go into London in to the Covent Garden and drink beers on the steps. Just people watch. There were good memories. Southbank, Covent Garden hanging out and skating.
That is kinda the opposite of where you’re from, Margaret River. Can you tell people a little about what that’s like—going from there to big cities like London? Margaret River, when I left at seventeen, there was probably like 3000 people, one main street, one shopping center, and one supermarket. They had a skatepark for two years, but the town’s tiny. It’s a surf and wine town, super hippy and hella quiet. There’s some good sharks if you want to go and get eaten. That’s why I never went surfing—deep water, cold reef, and salmon season. I’m not down for it. I just hung out on the beach. I did body boarding ’cause I’m a puss—which is the equivalent of being a Rollerblader.
All the way to London—that’s a stark contrast, right? Yeah, I think my parents were sick of me, and I was sick of school so they shipped me to London.
Do you feel like that forced you to grow up a little bit? I think so, yeah. A little bit, but not that much.
You ride for Cliché and you’ve definitely been on a bunch of tours with those guys. Do you have any funny stories from the Gypsy tour? How is it being with Fred Gall on a Gypsy tour? The first time I got off the plane in Barcelona—can’t remember where I met them, but we drove for a few hours. We were going to Malaga. They’d already been on the tour for a few days, and I met them afterward. When I first met Fred, I got out of the car to shake his hand and he pulls out a bottle of Jack Daniels from his jacket pocket. He’s all, “I stole this from the hotel.” That was the first moment and I thought, “This dude is f—king sick.” And from that point on he was steadily rockin’ red wine as his beverage of choice. Not much water. I suppose red wine has water in it! He would tie the bottom of his trousers up with his shoelace and walk around the supermarket and fill both his legs up with food and then walk out. He was so good at that.
Maybe we should edit that out—don’t want to incriminate him! You’re about to go pro for Cliché, how do you like riding for them? I love it—the people and the friendship that has accumulated over the last four or five years of knowing everyone. Just the whole direction, the places they go, and what they do. I love the Frenchies.
I hear you’re planning to move to the States next year, is that right? What are your plans once you get here? Yeah, I’m going skateboarding on a regular basis and hanging out at the Girl park ’cause it’s sick. What else am I gonna do?
What about America? What do you think about living in America? It’s big and I have to have a car. Which means I have to get my license. Which means life is sucking right now.
Why can’t you get a driver’s license? I’ve got to do a 100-hour logbook thing and they’ve got a new rule.
You might as well wait and get it over here. Doesn’t Brogan’s dad fix cars and stuff? He builds hot rods.
Well, can’t he give you a few lessons? No, he just tells me to f—kin’ harden up and I’m not ever allowed to drive his hot rods. I’d probably kill myself anyway.
Do you want to give a shout out to anyone? Thanks to my family, my wife Brogan, my wife’s family, Cliché, Boglio and all my Melbourne mates from Prahran, Gourlay, Margo, O’Meally, Gabe from DVS, Sam Smyth from Fourstar and all the Fourstar gremlins.