“The public have an insatiable curiosity to know everything, except what is worth knowing.” —Oscar Wilde
Sonic Youth never had a gold record. And never needed one to validate what they were making. Thurston Moore told us this himself. And I now have a pretty good idea why.
It’s the same reason Ozzie Wright and Noa Deane will never need to win a heat. Why so many skateboarders can’t stand Street League. Why Dane Reynolds hasn’t posted a Web clip in a few weeks. And why judges will never be able to correctly or properly validate what John John Florence does on a surfboard for me, no matter how many 9s they throw him. Because you can’t box everything up. Some shit is too radical for containers. Too good for Vimeo. For boxes. For spreadsheets. Or jerseys.
We inhaled a lot of valuable knowledge and made some interesting observations the past few weeks. We met and hung out with a vast spectrum of creators, musicians, skaters, artists, surfers and writers, hoping to be imbued with a new outlook—to add wisdom, experience, enthusiasm, grit and knowledge to our lives. And we had even higher hopes of applying it to our own weird existence that somehow or another started with a surfboard. I’m pretty overwhelmed and floored by what we’ve gathered. One of our missions has always been to collaborate and collide with the counterculture. Whatever that may be. And we’re really excited for you to dig through it.
It’s all pretty strange for me at this point, sitting here, peeling the label off my green bottle of beer, thinking about the variety of people who helped create the guts of this particular book. Some surf. Some don’t. But a psychedelic member of MGMT selected a list of albums he dubbed “comedown music.” Thurston Moore told us he thought surfing was a creative pursuit. Legendary photographer Frank Ockenfels told us to throw our lenses in the pool to see what happens. Arto Saari took us into his very busy world for 30 straight days. Surfer and television writer Chris Carter (he wrote The X Files) told us to really marinate on the word artisans. Because they will likely be the key to the next decade. And we like that. We like that a lot. Because we like specialists. People who appreciate details and subtlety. Who do things for them to be good. Not “liked.” But good.
We’re living in a time where professional curating comes from who we thought were our most respected sources and creators. Where social media interns run the show and click-bait is the new textbook. And we’re going to need artisans to save us. People who are too radical for Instagram. Too focused on making something better to regularly “post” every day. The patient ones. The mad ones. The ones who make 22 great records instead of one hit. The ones who run like Neal Cassady but obsess like pilots. Those ones. We need more of those ones. —Travis Ferré