Stacy Peralta Interview

Stacy Peralta

Finder of valuable treasures.

Even though Stacy Peralta had discovered skateboarding was his all-consuming passion as long ago as 1968, and regardless of the fact that he helped pioneer vert skating as well as the surf style that eventually became the modern skateboard posture, and despite the fact that he was skateboarding’s clean-cut champ by the age of 20, his greatest legacy to skateboarding was as a team manager. As the second half of the powerhouse Powell-Peralta, Stacy engineered the Bones Brigade, made the first modern skateboard video, and discovered the likes of Ray Rodriguez, Steve Caballero, Rodney Mullen, Lance Mountain, Tommy Guerrero, Tony Hawk, Rudy Johnson, and Guy Mariano to name just a few.

Though he distanced himself from skateboarding during its most recent low point in the early 1990s, his impact on the sport he loved in the 1960s is still tangible today … and will continue to be decades from now.

What was your favorite year in skating?

I have so many favorite years, but if I had to choose it would probably be 1976–the early pool sessions with Tony Alva, Jay Adams, Bob Biniak, and Jim Muir. Everything was so new and fresh. Each session something unpredictable and unprecedented would happen. It was a very alive time, and there were lots of fear to overcome. We didn’t know what we were doing, we were just doing it. There was no future to be had in it–we skated because we loved to … had to. And we pushed each other hard. Much was expected.

Who’s been your biggest inspiration?

The doors that life opens unexpectedly. My collection of books. If you want people: Duane Allman, Stecyk, my son and parents, and that mysterious little voice in my head.

What’s the stupidest trend you’ve seen skateboarding go through?

Greed … and little wheels.

What do you consider your biggest contribution to skateboarding?

My love and respect for it.

Describe the current state of skateboarding.

Not enough actual rolling and riding, too much set up, trick, set up, trick. I refuse to give my son a big board; he rides a small board like an old Zephyr. The shape and size of it encourages speed and turning, which he digs. He’s getting his foundation by learning to move rather than pop! He skates like an original Z-Boy and isn’t interested in ollies … yet.

What are your predictions for skateboarding’s future?

It will eventually, way in the future, become more American than baseball. I say that without judgment.