Flipping channels one night last week I came to a screeching halt on the skateboarding documentary Dogtown and the Z-Boys. When this movie came out in the theaters I initially turned my nose up at it. I was never a skateboarder or had any interest in related “extreme sports.” That stuff always ran counter to my interest in team sports. My younger brother, however, has always run with that X crowd, and I do have a lot of interest in him and try to get my head around what he cares about. He loved the movie, so a few years ago I finally broke down and rented it. It was great! From now on, I’ll stop flipping channels whenever I come across that documentary, and I’ve since watched a few other documentaries on skateboarding and surfing.
My oldest son thinks I’m trying to relive my youth, but I tell him I’m not. I’m really trying to better understand my younger brother and prepare for the road I can see my younger son taking. Watching Dogtown and the Z-Boys again the other night I was struck by the marriage of music and extreme sports. What other sports have ever been so closely related to a form of music? I guess some extreme sports lean more toward metal than punk, but I’m not yet sure when one X Games competition requires the cueing of speed metal rather than hardcore punk. I know nothing about NASCAR. Are NASCAR docs fueled by some special country or Southern Rock mix of music? Is there any other equivalent to skate punk? Wait, what am I saying – skate punk is the direct descendant of surf rock, both in terms of the sport and, to some extent, the music.
OK, are there any equivalents to skate punk and surf rock? And whatever particular X Games sport is closely identified with speed metal…
Getting my head around the SoCal skater/surfer scenes has recently had the added effect of helping me tune into the music related to those scenes. I can hear how the music relates to the motion of the sport. I wonder if there’s a rhythm to the sport I love most, baseball.