Apr 30, 2012 11:50 AM CDT
Lil Wayne’s New Found Love For The Ride
The Hip-hop superstar has an addiciton to skateboarding that goes deeper than you might think.
Skateboarding and hip-hop have been crossing paths for decades, but only recently have high profile rappers taken a serious interest in the actual act of skateboarding itself. Lil Wayne, for one, is legitimately down for skateboarding—spending hours riding his private mini ramp at his home in Miami, to shredding local skate parks when he’s out on tour. CCS took a quick time-out with Weezy during the photoshoot for the May issue magalog cover to get the details behind his skate career, his favorite pros, his new skate-inspired apparel brand and everything else in between. Here’s some of what he had to say.
Everyone is wondering what sparked your interest in skateboarding. Were you exposed to skating as a kid growing up?
I was never exposed to skating as a youngster. I got into skating simply from watching television. There was a special on little Alex Midler—that little young beau that be skatin’. After watching that I wanted to go outside and try it. It looked cool and I wanted to do it so I had my homie Jason who builds ramps for the Skate Park of Tampa come through and build me a ramp. I learned on that. Once I learned how to drop in and do fakie rocks, everything else just happened and I never got off my deck since that moment.
What’s up with your skateboarding these days? Do you feel like you’re improving? Are you learning any new tricks?
I’m pretty dope on my mini at home. I got a bag of tricks on my ramp. I got 50-50s, 270 Smith stalls, I got frontside crook stalls and I got pivot to rocks—things like that. I’m still working every day though just trying to get my mini game up. I just put in a street course at home. I got a little three stair, I got a rail and I got a manny pad. I’m trying to get my street game up right now, too. I ain’t there yet with the street, but on the mini I’m alright.
Is it cool to be able to skate with the CCS team knowing that they’re some of the best dudes out, but also huge fans of your music? Especially guys like Torey Pudwill who’s first pro board graphic has your face on it.
I have Torey’s board at home on my wall. It’s so cool to skate with them. Just to be allowed to be in their circle, let alone to skate with them. Just to be allowed to kick it with them is cool cause they them dudes—Torey Pudwill, Theotis, Paul Rodriguez, Shane O’Neill—dudes like that you got to look at it and be like, c’mon, if I can skate with these dudes I can skate with anybody.
What’s the story with your new apparel brand? Where did the name Trukfit come from?
The name comes from back when I was younger in my city of New Orleans. There was all these new clothes that would come out from Polo, Tommy Hill, Jordan and whatever, but the prices were a little too steep for our liking. There were these guys that would go around and steal these brands and they had guys in all the neighborhoods that would come around in a truck and sell them for cheaper.
Was that back in the Magnolia Projects in New Orleans?
I’m not from Magnolia. I’m from Hollygrove [Projects], but yea, it was like that. If you were known to be wearing one of those outfits bought off the truck it was called a Trukfit. It wasn’t good to be wearing a Trukfit because obviously you got the same thing everyone else has on, but you didn’t pay the same thing. It was like wearing a knockoff that wasn’t a knockoff. So I took it back to my roots and called the brand Trukfit.
What’s the inspiration and the culture behind Trukfit?
Trukfit means gear for whatever—ready for whatever—prepared for whatever. You got your money, you got your girls, you got your homies—you’re Trukfit—you’re ready. The culture is rebellious. It’s not rebellious against anything positive to be negative, it’s just rebellious against the things in life that get us pissed off and rebellious against all the things that get us negative. Misfits, skate of mind, skate or die, simple and plain—**** your style. That’s my motto. **** your style. Don’t worry about what the other man do on his deck, you get on your deck and you do what the hell you can do and you love it and you do it to the best of your abilities and at the end of that trick you take a look at yourself and you tell that dude around you or to the side of you and you tell the world, “**** your style”, Trukfit.
Are you going to put together a Trukfit skate team? Can we expect to see some pros put on in the future?
I want to put on people who want to be a part of it. I want it to be more than a business relationship. I want it to be a friendship. We can do so much to help the skate community and my team can help with stuff in my rap world. Of course I’m going to put people on, but it’s going to be the right people.
There’s a lot of footage of you out there skating at all kinds of different skate parks and spots. What have been some of your favorite places to skate?
All of them. I skated with my man Mike at The Berrics. I skated Skate Park of Tampa. At the Thrasher park I skated with my man Omar Salazar. We went ham at Thrasher. Then we went out to Kansas and skated with my man Sean Malto. I’ve been around, man. In Atlanta, I’m real cool with my man Stevie Williams. Stevie and Marcus McBride- those are my dudes. They were on tour with me and everything. Shout out to 5boro, too, and my man Adam Ziegler from 5boro. He’s the person who taught me almost everything I know, other than my man Jason who built my ramps. He taught me how to drop in and fakie rock. He would come to my house every night and we’d have sessions. Then Adam stepped in and toured with me. We went to skate parks every night when I was on tour. I would go on stage and then after the stage we would eat dinner and then go to the skatepark. Same routine. No matter how hurt I got, or whatever I ****ed up at the skatepark, I’d have to get up on stage the next day. If I bust my face open and get nine stitches I got to get back up on stage the next day.
Damn, you did that skating while out on tour?
Yea. I couldn't just cancel the show cause I busted my **** skateboarding. I could get sued for that type of ****. I’ve got to get there. So, like I said, 5Boro, that’s my family. They took me in. Also, my man Danny Fuenzalida. That’s my man as well. He skates for Think. He was on tour with me, too. Adam and Danny go everywhere with me. They both live in Miami so that’s who I skate with everyday.
Aside from 5boro, what are some of your favorite skate brands?
I like Girl. I remember when I first started skating I really wanted a Girl board. I had to have one. Then I started liking Plan B. I don’t really get into the graphics too much cause I skate a regular ass board with nothing on the bottom. But as far as quality of boards, I really like Girl.