WALL TO WALL - THE BIRTH OF THE BMX FREESTYLE MOVEMENT

THE FIRST EDITION - 2017 - 244 PAGES.

In 2016, I researched, designed, and delivered the 'Wall To Wall' BMX Freestyle history project. The centerpiece of the effort was the creation of a culturally inspired history book, Titled; The Birth of the Freestyle Movement. The format of the book is that of an oral history with editorial content that centers on the spoken-word recollections of a group of over sixty individual contributors. This iconic community of ex-professional athletes, industry advocates, journalists, and photographers, was identified and assembled based on thorough research. Nine chronological chapters navigate the critical leaves-on-the-vine of Freestyle's early growth and development in the late 1970s and 80s and combine to project this forty-year-old story of youthful innovation back onto the agenda. 

What started as a distraction among a group of reluctant BMX racers - kids that were more creatively inclined, than competitively driven - erupted out of the melting pot of SoCal culture in the late 70s and evolved to become a global, youth phenomenon, drawing cultural influences and parallels with skateboarding, surfing, and punk rock music.

And who were the leaders of this movement? The teenage riders who rose to fame and reinvented the creative and technical limits of Freestyle riding, while propelling the sport through the wide-open door of opportunity. The young contest promoters that facilitated a competitive infrastructure for the new sport in the skateparks and parking lots of the Inland Empire, and at cultural epicenters within the Californian beach cities. The entrepreneurs and brand leaders with a vision for the future of Freestyle - they founded new enterprises, designed and developed innovative technology, and collectively built a thriving new category within the bicycle industry. The teenage journalists and photographers that rose out of the neighborhood crew’s to create a compelling reportage for a new sport while developing a cult following of advocates in countries all around the world. This is the community that moved the needle of progress forward. Their collective vision and unconditional commitment to the future of this new creative entity laid the foundations for a modern action sport. 

With sixty-two individual contributors, including BMX Action Magazine founder and publisher; Bob Osborn, pioneering Freestyle innovators; Bob Haro, and RL Osborn, Hollywood movie directors; Spike Jonze and Jeff Tremaine, King of the Skatepark champions; Mike Dominguez and Eddie Fiola, the book is content rich and illustrated with professionally shot photography from previously unpublished, archives.

A sponsored "Brand Community" section delivers individual chapters tracking the development of six iconic Action Sports brands on their journey as “start-ups” in the early BMX scene. Original staff members - including Oakley’s inspirational Factory Pilot Program Manager; Dana Duke, and Vans first Skate and BMX Team Manager; Everett Rosecrans, recall the contests, the stand-out riders and the development of their most successful product’s. GT Bicycles founder, Gary Turner, recalls designing and building a bicycle frame for his son Craig in the garage of his home in Orange County in the early 1970s. Turner also speaks to the prolific growth of GT on its path to becoming a force and leader leader in a variety of industry categories. The management team and athletes behind the iconic Skyway Recreation wheel company provide background on the design and product development of their iconic mag-spoked, urethane wheel. And recollections from members of the celebrated 80's Haro Freestyle Team, including Bob Haro, Ron Wilkerson, Mike Dominguez, and Brian Blyther, provide personal insights into an era when teenagers on bikes commanded six-figure salaries and became the leaders, and icons, of Generation F.

 

THE SECOND EDITION - FALL 2018 - WHAT TO EXPECT

Expanded to a SPECTACULAR 300 pages AND featuring New ChapterS, NARRATIVE FROM Thirty new contributors, and hundreds of previously un-published images.

WHAT'S NEW

A Parallel Universe - Let's talk about NorCal - 38 additional pages focusing on the the skate park pioneers, The Golden Gate Park epicenter, The Curb Dogs, The NorCal, 2Hip, and Gork Trick Teams, the legendary street-riding spots, the Ramp Jams,the local brands, and the unique regional culture that put this scene on the map. Insights and new photography from twenty new contributors.

Where do we go from here? - A dedicated chapter that delves deep into the activities and motivations of The Dirt Bros. The motivations, the epic street and dirt sessions, the counter-culture movement, and the belief system that defined the legacy of San Diego's iconic and influential street, and dirt riding crew.

CHAPTER UPDATES

"Out of the Ether" with insights from Tinker Juarez and a deeper look at the early skatepark and swimming pool scenes across the US West coast..

"No Contest" - New photography and insights from the King of the Skate Parks and AFA contest community.

"No Permit" - Expanded narrative and additional imagery from the archives of Spike Jonze.

The Brand Community - Tour sections added to the Haro, Vans, and GT Chapters, Unseen imagery and stories from the road.

 

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