Words by Kevin Duffel, portrait by Skin Phillips.
Out of everyone who had parts in Not Another TransWorld Video (which by the way, went on sale today) Wes Kremer was the only skater to not have a legit interview in the mag. And no, it’s not because he wasn’t skating. It’s just that Wes is so spontaneous, so unpredictably elusive, and so in it for the love and passion of skating, that he doesn’t bother coordinating the session with a photographer 95 percent of the time he’s on his board.
But after casually speaking in length with Wes–who’s currently making his rounds through Europe for another month–it seems as though Mr. Kremer lackadaisically cruises through life as a whole with that exact same carefree approach. His sincere and telling responses in the following conversation are precisely why we’re backing Wes Kremer, perhaps the most down-to-earth skater out there, so hard. Read on and find out for yourself.
You’re out in Europe right now, right?
Yeah, I’m just out in Germany, chilling with the homeys. It’s f–king G so far. It’s tight. All the DC homeys are out here. I’ll be here for another month.
So, speaking of Europe, in his interview, Mike Anderson calls you this generation’s Tom Penny. What do you think of that comparison?
Oh, not even, man. Mike Anderson’s the Tom Penny of this generation. Actually, I guess he’s more of the Gonz of this generation [laughs].
He could be the Gonz, you could be the Penny.
Nah, but he’s the Gonz for sure. He’s ill.
How’d you feel about your part in Not Another TransWorld Video?
Survival, man [laughs]. I’m just hyped I made it through. I was able to come through with a full part.
You pretty much got your whole part in the clutch, huh?
Yeah [laughs]. Pretty much in the last couple weeks, I guess. I don’t even know how it worked out. I just had to do it for Jon [Holland] and Chris [Ray].
What happened to your arm during filming?
I got tore back, homey. I took a deadly slam on the wrist. I got surgery on my right wrist [a while ago], and I fell on my left one. On the slam I hit my head a little bit, and so I was like, “It’s chill. I just fell on the wrist with the screw.” 20 minutes later, it just didn’t feel right, so I was like, “Wait a minute. My right wrist has the screw in it. F–k. I landed on my left one.” After that I knew it was broken and went to the emergency room the next day. I got surgery the next week. I wanted to get the screw in there, just so I wouldn’t re-break it.
How long did that put you out for?
I was out for about a month, then went on a TransWorld filming trip, and that’s basically when I started skating again–like a month after surgery. I gotta tell you, my wrist was definitely pretty tender [laughs]. I took too many unnecessary slams.
Well at least it’s over now. What do you currently have lined up?
I’m gonna be chilling. When I get back from Europe, I’m just gonna meet back up with the Mafia homeys in SD, and get as much as I can with them. They’re trying to get a video.
Out of all three ams who were in NATV, you’re the only one who didn’t go pro after the video premiered. When’s that going to happen?
I couldn’t tell you [laughs].
Has it been talked about?
Yeah, it’s in the works, I guess. Pretty much after I come through with a part for the Mafia video, then we’ll see what happens.
Did you wanna wait for the rest of the homeys on Sk8mafia to go pro with you, rather than do it alone?
Yeah, pretty much. They’re definitely going pro. [Tyler] Surrey’s been murking it. Jimmy [Cao] and Jamie [Palmore] have definitely been holding it down hard as f–k. The homeys are killing it, for sure.
After you go pro, are you finally gonna move out of the parents’ house?
Who knows, probably not [laughs]. I’ve been chilling at the folks’ house for a minute. I’ve got it made there. I’ve gotta say, a full refrigerator, free rent, laundry, home cooked meals, jacuzzi, you can’t beat it.
For sure. You might as well stack that cash, too.
Dude, what cash [laughs]? I’m trying to make some.
Why don’t you get your own pad right now?
I’m gonna be traveling, and my parents fully understand that if I’m gonna be traveling so much, it’s kinda pointless to get a place that you’re not gonna be staying at. I’m gonna be living at the folks’ house for as long as I can–as long as they’re down. I recommend living at home to anyone [laughs].
How many skate photos do you think you have posted to your bedroom wall?
Good question. I stopped putting them up when I was like 14. But any days that I get sick, I just pull up a bunch of pictures I like and put them up, just rifle them out. I wanted to make skate wallpaper. I probably have at least 150 or something. I’ve got a grip.
So the crazy thing is, that dude A.D.O.R. who did that song you skate to in NATV [Let It All Hang Out] hit us up. He went to a premiere in Tampa and said he was psyched you used his song. He said, “Tell Wes Kremer his skating is nice.”
I swear. I’ll forward you the message.
Yeah right. Damn, that’s G. Hell yeah, dude. That’s insane. He definitely kills it on the tracks and makes some really good music. It’s the underground shit. Forward that shit to me; I’d be hyped. I’d be down to hit him up. Dude, let’s do this. Sk8mafia, A.D.O.R. collab.
I heard Sk8mafia tried to give you a check for photo incentive, and you denied them, telling them to give it to someone who needed it more, or reinvest it into the company. Is that true?
Yeah, for sure.
Why do you have so much loyalty?
The Mafia’s the shit, man. It’s like we were just talking about, I’m staying at my parents’ house, saving money, and if Mafia’s struggling at the moment, then it’s all good–just put it back in the company. It’s family. They’re the first board company that ever helped me out, you know?
So you’re down for life, huh?
Hell yeah. You know this [laughs]. We’ve got it made. It’s just straight family. I’m super hyped on the Mafia.
Most people trip out on how shitty your gear always is. It’s always super old and tattered.
Well, f–k, that’s how I learned to skate. I learned with some busted ass shit. But it works. That’s when you feel the most comfortable; you know your setup. It may not have the most pop, it may not make the best sound when you crack an ollie, but hey, if you can make it stay to your feet, it’s chill.
What do you do with all the new gear that gets delivered to your house?
I rock it or just give it to the homeys. I skate boards until they break, or until you can’t really f–k with it anymore.
How do you feel about all those guys who set up new gear every time they skate? Do you think it’s totally unnecessary?
I guess it works for them. They’re getting used to their product. But I’ve got at least 10 homeys I’m flowing, so it’s all G [laughs].
How do you feel about all the contest skating going on right now? You seem like you’re the opposite of that, but now that you’re going pro soon and on DC who backs Street League, are you going to start entering contests?
That shit’s heavy, man. I don’t think so; I don’t plan on skating in it. It’s too much competition. There are too many heavy hitters up in there.
You still backing Wu Tang?
I actually just saw them in Stockholm. That’s crazy you asked [laughs]. All of Wu was there. It was tight. It was the first time I’ve seen them. I was definitely juiced. They were bringing the motherf–king ruckus [laughs].
For the last one, what are the essentials for a happy life?
Good people, good environment. Just don’t take anything too seriously. It’s just life. It’s just skateboarding. Have fun and keep cruising.
Watch Wes’ part in Not Another TransWorld Video, out now.