Interview with Jose Rojo

Where are you from, José?

San Jose, California.

Have you lived there your whole life?

Yeah.

Is that how you got jumped into the Tilt Mode Army–being from San Jose?

I guess, but it's mostly just knowing all the guys, you know? If you know all the guys well enough, it means you're part of the crew.

Is there any sort of initiation?

No, not really. It's all about how long you've chilled with those guys, I guess.

Who do you usually skate with?

Caswell Berry, Ricky Espinoza, and Adam Crew.

Do you guys just roll around San Jose?

Yeah, on weekdays we'll just skate ledge spots and stuff. And then we'll go out on weekends and try to get shit done.

How did you get into skating?

Back in the day, when I was about six or seven, one of my cousins got me my first board. It was a Mark “Gator” Rogowski board, I think. Ever since then, I haven't stopped.

How old are you now?

Nineteen.

Are you going to college?

I know that I'm not going to school this year, but I think I'm gonna enroll next year.

What sort of classes do you want to take? Do you have a specific major in mind?

Nah, not really. I just want to get all my shit done. I'll probably be a computer engineer or something, but I don't know.

That's pretty technical.

Something of that sort would be pretty good.

Well, you live in the right area–Silicon Valley.

Yeah, that's right.

Who are your sponsors?

enjoi skateboards, Savier shoes, Quattro wheels, Venture trucks, Bones bearings, N.C. Board Shop, and Ruca clothing.

How long have you been sponsored?

About a year and a half now.

Did you have to make a sponsor-me video?

No, I got lucky. I'd just skate with Marc (Johnson) every day, and he's the one who called me up one day and told me to ride for enjoi. It's awesome. Those dudes are so cool.

What was the first skate video that got you hyped on skating?

It was actually 411 Issue Number Nine. That was the first one. The thing in that video that made me stoked on skating was that it showed the Santa Clara contest, and I got B.G.Ps in it (laughs). It stoked me out.

Do you think you'll ever turn pro?

I'm not even focused on that right now. I'm just happy that I'm am and getting free stuff. I don't know–maybe later on. But as of now, I'm happy as hell. I'm just happy where I'm at right now. I'm grateful.

If you do turn pro, would you wear your own T-shirts?

No, probably not.

What role do contests and demos play in skateboarding?

I would say the am contests are for up-and-coming kids who are trying to get on companies, you know? Demos play an all right role 'cause the kids want to see what you're all about. But I don't think that stuff really matters.

Is it weird being in those situations?

Yeah, especially in contests, 'cause I freak out so bad. My heart just starts pumpin' super crazy. I kinda like doin' demos sometimes. I think they're pretty fun. I don't really stress out on demos–I'm kinda psyched on them.

How many boards can you ollie?

Man, I don't even know (laughs). Two.

Do you know who Jay Adams is?

Yeah. I see him every now and then. I don't know. Whatever.

He's an old Dogtown skater.

Yeah, yeah. All right.

If you could be a pro skater from any decade, who would you be?

Hmm. This is a tough one. Uh, let me think about this one … Brian Lotti.

Who was the first person to do a kickflip?

Was it Rodney Mullen?

Good answer.

Oh, okay. Cool.

Who are some ams comin' up right now?

Adam Crew, Ricky Espinoza, Paul Rodriguez, Evan Hernandez, Bryan Herman, and Pete Eldridge.

What do you use for injury remedy?

I just chill in bed. I don't really do anything to myself to help it.

What kind of music do you like to listen to?

Some hip-hop, but I also like to listen to some 80s rock to get the mood goin'.

Where do you see yourself five years from now?

I'll definitely still be skating. I don't know–chillin', travelin', and going to school.

Do you want to say thanks to anyone?

Thanks to everyone at enjoi for helping me, Brad Staba and Melissa Murphy at Savier, all my sponsors, Pete Thompson for the photos, my family, my girlfriend, and all my friends.