It’s Saturday, January 27, 2018, 8 a.m. While most are still asleep (or haven’t stopped partying yet) and can only dream about a skatepark session in the late afternoon, Martin’s workout app already yells twelve different exercises in 30-second intervals at him. After jumping jack and co. are done, he takes care of his two Persian cats with the finest food and is already on his way. It’s 2 °C [35 °F, editor’s note] outside and the desire to be back in the warm bed next to his girlfriend Vicky seems reasonable. But Martin is still going for it, as usual. Ten hours, 200 kilometers, and a front board on a rail later, he’s sitting in his kitchen with his homies Patrick Wenz and Robert Christ for this interview while Vicky is preparing sausages, mashed beetroot, and black salsify.
It doesn’t happen too often, but it happens. Photographer Davy van Laere sent some photos from an Antiz trip. I mean, getting photos from an Antiz trip happens often cause they’re touring the whole time, but there were photos of a guy we haven’t seen before and he skated really unique and looked really interesting. That’s what’s rarely happening. That you get surprised by a new face and are instantly fascinated by his skating and the vibe that he brings along with him. We had to know more about this tattooed youngster from Italy, talked to some other photographers, and it turned out that he had collected some heavy hitters. From there on, it was a no-brainer that we had to get him into the mag. And, luckily, a good friend of ours, Davide Martinazzo, knows Pepe pretty well and was able to do the interview. The best things in life are those that just come together naturally.
When the Blobys first appeared a few years ago, they brought something completely new to the table. Those Parisian youngsters had their own vibe and the most unique of them all was Kevin Rodrigues. You could easily see that he was one of a kind and so it didn’t take long till Pontus Alv took him under his wing, put him on Polar, and gave him a pro board. But for a while now there were rumors that he had left his board sponsor and went with another legend – Jason Dill – who was also fascinated by his talent. Benjamin Deberdt sat down with Kevin for a coffee to talk about what’s going on in his life right now.
It might sound a bit exaggerated talking about a global skateboarding family, but you can see this bond by how shocked everybody is when something tragic happens. Sadly, it wasn’t the first time we lost one of our loved ones when Preston Maigetter, better known as P-Stone, died in a car crash on August 30, 2017. His death was first and foremost a terrible tragedy for his wife and two kids, but he also had this big family of skateboarders around the planet that still miss him every day. One of them is Jacopo Carozzi, who was traveling a lot with P-Stone in the last years.
When we started Solo, we actually established a dogma to not waste pages on tour articles anymore. We didn’t want to sacrifice the trees for yet another trip repeating the same monotonous stories at the same spots in Barcelona, Cyprus, or Mallorca. By now, we kind of take it easy since Lars von Trier (yes, the one who invented Dogma 95) isn’t a member of the editorial board. We realized that a tour article can be fairly entertaining, especially when a photographer like Marcel Veldman (yes, the one with the party pics), hits the street with a wild bunch like Skate Mental (yes, the ones with the crazy boss) and we are able to collect some quotes by Giorgi Balkhamishvili (yes, the one with the Instagram account) to top it off. This way, the result doesn’t add up to another boring travel report but rather captures the tour vibe in a perfect mix of text and image. So, basically, this isn’t actually a tour article but rather a meta tour story (well, maybe Lars von Trier found a way to sneak into our office after all).