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The Maloof Money Cup (only the biggest skateboarding contest, ever) after party was held from July 11th all the way to the 13th at the Sutra Lounge, featuring an appearance by Travis Barker and a performance by crunkster Lil Jon. DJ Andy Rourke of Til along with The Smiths graced Cafe Sevilla in Riverside with their prescence on July 1st. The other Cafe Sevilla (Long Beach) threw its two-year anniversary party on July 18th and July 19th.

Skinnie Entertainment Magazine - July 2008

THE LOWDOWN The Who, The When, The Where, The WTF?
The Maloof Money Cup (only the biggest skateboarding contest, ever) after party was held from July 11th all the way to the 13th at the Sutra Lounge, featuring an appearance by Travis Barker and a performance by crunkster Lil Jon. DJ Andy Rourke of Til along with The Smiths graced Cafe Sevilla in Riverside with their prescence on July 1st. The other Cafe Sevilla (Long Beach) threw its two-year anniversary party on July 18th and July 19th. Heat Ultra Lounge opened its doors on July 11th at the Anaheim Gardenwalk. Friday nights in Hollywood will have a new theme with Audio Erotic, which is held at The Highlands weekly. Joel Madden of Good Charlotte was the DJ at the Good Charlotte after party (big surprise) on July 18th at the Sutra Lounge. Here’s something new, the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood held its first music festival called the Sunset Strip Music Festival June 26th – June 28th featuring celebrities and bands such as Slash, Cheech & Chong and even Larry King. No word yet on how they came up with the name. They Will Surf Again, an event held by the Life Rolls On Foundation on July 19th allowed injured athletes around the world to surf once again or just to join other fellow surfers at Zuma Beach. In other surfing news, it wasn’t too hot for Honda’s US Open of Surfing finals, which ended on July 27th. An “Expression Session” was held on the 26th where quadriplegic surfer Jesse Billauer, founder of the Life Rolls On Foundation, took to the waves. Life Rolls On Foundation also held a golf tournament on July 21st at the Malibu Country Club. Lazarus performed live on July 4th at a private mansion somewhere in Hollywood (ooh, it’s a secret!) for the wrap party of a new movie called Joshua, The Heart of a Warrior. Speaking of warriors, on July 7th Andy Dick’s pitbull bit the bass player of the Muzzys in the face while they were partying in Mr. Dick’s room in the Hard Rock Hotel at Las Vegas. Also, Andy Dick bit a 17 year-old girl in the face in Murrieta, Ca. Not really, but he did cop a feel. He was arrested shortly thereafter, intoxicated and in possession of marijuana and Xanax for which he did not have a prescription. In other celebs misbehaving news, Rampage Jackson went on a … well, a rampage, on July 15th through Costa Mesa and Newport Beach, Ca. He reportedly evaded police, drove over barriers and onto sidewalks all in a lifted truck with a flat tire while talking on his cell phone. Back out in Sin City, Don Cheadle (Crash and Ocean’s 12) was seen with friends drinking cocktails at Nové Italiano in The Palms, Las Vegas on July 1st. Former basketball player Charles Barkley was sharing campfire s’mores with some ladies at the N9NE Steakhouse Bar at The Palms.  Also according to our creepy celebrity-stalker, I mean reporter, Adam Sandler was spotted at the N9NE before going up to the Playboy Club on July 2nd. We’re pretty sure he just went for the blackjack. Yeah, that’s it, blackjack.

Hans Fink
Editor-In-Chief

Download this month's issue of Skinnie Entertainment Magazine in PDF (39mb)

RAINN WILSON - WHITE & CHUNKY: THE ROCKER STAR ROCKS  LIKE A CARTON OF OLD MILK.
words by: Matthew McLaughlin   photos courtesy of: Kevin Estrada

Why would you want to raise your cholesterol? “So I can lower it.” This was the answer given to me during a recent interview with Rainn Wilson. Confused? If you have ever seen Rainn Wilson play the awkward, self-indulgent, smartass nerd, Dwight Schrute, on NBC’s hit comedy The Office, then you would probably already be laughing. Through sheer concentration, the character Dwight can raise and lower his cholesterol at will and thus, finds health care unnecessary and plans to eliminate it from the office. It is this kind of clever humor that makes the character so likeable, even if he is an ass. In real life, Rainn Wilson is even more clever and hilarious and far from the selfish, nerdy, asshole that he plays on television – even if he doesn’t like me personally, but I’ll get to that later. 

Rainn is becoming (excuse my clichéd description) an up-and-coming Hollywood player due to his engaging portrayals of humorously awkward characters. In fact, he believes his first big break came after being cast as Arthur Martin on HBO’s hit, Six Feet Under. “[It was] the first part that put me on the map that made people stand up and take notice. It launched a long and healthy, fruitful career of playing weirdoes.” His character was a weirdo, sure, but then again, can any character be normal on a show centered on a family-run mortuary? Nevertheless, this big break helped Rainn get cast as Dwight Schrute, arguably the fan’s favorite character on The Office as evidenced by his own bobble head doll, personal space on the NBC website, and rising success. With a reportois of memorable characters, however, come the increased odds of being typecast. “Every actor starts getting known by one thing, one character and if they have range, it opens up other doors. I know I have acting range beyond playing freaky weirdoes and playing [the character] Fish in The Rocker is one of those roles that I’m capable of and I hope there are many more to come.” Indeed, he has recently landed other roles including voicing Gallaxhar in the upcoming animated-feature Monsters vs. Aliens, a cameo role in the sequel Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen, and a starring role in this summer’s The Rocker.

In the film The Rocker, Rainn plays Robert “Fish” Fishman, a drummer kicked out of his own ‘80s heavy metal band, Vesuvius, just before the band’s colossal success – similar to Pete Best’s fate with The Beatles. Twenty years later, his nephew’s band asks Fish to play a “one time gig” at the prom. Reliving the glory days of playing live music, Fish convinces the band to stay together despite an embarrassing performance at the high school dance. After an unexpected YouTube clip of the “naked drummer” launches his newly formed band into superstardom, Fish finds himself dealing with his unresolved past, his need to relive the  glory days and a grown up life. The film is rated PG-13 and far from the recent strain of adult comedy hits that most people are expecting. However, Rainn feels the film will have success because, “The Rocker is a nice contrast. There’s a lot of hard edge [movies out there]. Judd Apatow has kind of created a new market for smart, hard-edge, adult sort of sex comedies. I think The Rocker is a sweet kind of throwback to the John Hughes film. [It] has a little bit of that ‘80s feel. It’s fun for the whole family, but it’s still smart and edgy.” You will not be disappointed.

Attempting to play a rockstar in a film can be challenging, however, Rainn does have a musical background. “I was a band geek in high school. I was a bassoonist. I was one of the best bassoonists to ever grace Shorecrest High School in Seattle, WA. Not really.” Okay, so he never played the bassoon, “but, in my senior year of high school, I started a band called Collected Moss. We were just awful, we were the worst. Our second gig was an audition for battle of the bands and we didn’t even make it in.  We were not one of the top six best bands of the high school.” Should his band have succeeded, Rainn claims he would have chosen a life as a rockstar. “Rockstar. Definitely. Rock star trumps every other occupation. There’s no better job than being Eddie Vedder.” Pearl Jam is one thing, but when asked which band he’d rather play for, Vesuvius or The Beatles (alluding to the Pete Best connection mentioned earlier), surprisingly, Rainn would rather play for Vesuvius. “Oh, definitely Vesuvius. Vesuvius kicks the Beatles’ ass. Will Arnett can take on Lennon and McCartney. [Fred] Armison would take on Ringo.  It’s a total ass whupping. I’d like to see that cage match.”

His deadpan joking around aside, as funny and clever as Rainn is, he does use his celebrity for good causes and becomes serious when speaking of The Mona Foundation, a non-profit group dedicated to education. “I got started getting asked to sponsor different kinds of charities and fundraisers and I thought, rather than just spread my ability as a celebrity to kind of do fundraisers and stuff like that to bring out awareness [for many things], I would just focus on one. I really wanted a small charity that was just starting to where I can really make a difference. The Mona Foundation came along and, my dad actually knew one of the founders, and what it does is, it’s just so brilliant and perfect, that I felt I needed to get behind it  What they do is go into communities around the world and they find educational outreach programs, grassroots programs that are already working on their own, but just need more financial resources. They raise the money in the United States for whatever that particular school or program needs. So they go to Tanzania and when a school needs a science lab, we raise 50 thousand and build them a science lab. But we don’t ever go into a country and say ‘here’s what we need next and here’s what we’ll do for you.’” Rainn has been working with this charity for over a year and a half and believes that education, at home and abroad, is important.

Seriousness aside, and always being the ultimate entertainer and comedian, Rainn always had a witty response for all of my questions.  When asked why he frequently appears without clothes – as seen in The Office, MTV Movie Awards, The Rocker, etc. – Rainn simply offers that, “I love it [being naked].  I absolutely love it.  I love it so much, I even shower naked.  I just give them [the people] what they want. It’s what America is clamoring for.  They want some of that big, pale, fleshy, creamy torso and they’re gonna get it.’  As well, when asked if he is as sweaty in real life as he is in the film The Rocker, Rainn explains, “no, but Steve Carell is. He’s like a walrus… I don’t know if walrus’ sweat.” To make him appear sweaty in the film, Rainn says, “You know, even the director urinated on me a couple of times.”

So what’s next for the guy who turned playing nerds and creepy men into fame and fortune? Well, again, another hilarious and trivial response to the question, “I’m trying to get them to pass the idea of calling the city [Philadelphia where he was promoting the film ] ‘Phunadelphia’ with a ‘ph’ but, it doesn’t seem to be catching fire yet, but maybe you can help with a national publication. I’m also trying to start a new slang for the word ‘buttocks’. Thigh caps. I love mushroom caps on top of the thighs.” After telling him I’d brag to friends that I “heard it first” before the slang caught on – and Rainn subsequently telling me he’d spank me in my ‘thigh caps’ – I asked him, “what else?” His response, as expected, was, “world peace.”

Rainn Wilson is, however, working on many things such as the aforementioned movies, as well as currently writing a screenplay for director Jason Reitman (who directed the indie hit, Juno, in which Rainn also appears) entitled Bonsai Shadowhands. “[The story is] about a down and out alcoholic still living in Van Nuys, the San Fernando Valley. If things go well, we’ll see that in ’09.” Look forward to that and, well, Rainn everywhere else. The man is fearless when taking any opportunity to entertain audiences;  a far cry from the early days struggling as an actor. Check out his starring-role in The Rocker or catch him on NBC’s The Office – you will laugh. 

As a last, final word to the readers of Skinnie Magazine, Rainn only had to say that he had nothing to say at all – “Skinnie readers, no.”  However, he did make sure to tell me, after earlier being asked about ever having a “near death experience” and answering with “this interview,” he reminded me again that “this was my near death experience.  I’m done with you.” I told you he didn’t like me.

At A Glance:
+ Boxers or Briefs?   “Thongs.  Always”

+ If you could punch any cast mate of The Office in the face, who would it be? “Wow, that’s a very good question. I’m going to have to go with Jenna Fisher. Because she is so damn purty, I have the biggest crush on her. It’s like when you’re in school and you push the girl that you like.”

+ Although married, which celebrity would you hook up with? “I wouldn’t ever hook up with any celebrity, but I guess the one that I have the biggest hots for is Liv Tyler, and I’m trying to answer this question seriously. Liv Tyler. That’s a celebrity, right? That’s a girl, right? And Zooey Deschanel.”

+ What is your least favorite city? “Oh, I’m gonna make some enemies. Bakersfield’s pretty bad. Fresno’s pretty bad. I like to make fun of Fresno because it has a great sound to it. New England looks pretty bad. Hartford really sucks. Buffalo, I’m not a fan of.”

www.ionlydrumnaked.com

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TIJUANA VACATION - Who Says There’s No Work Across The Border? 
words by: Bobby D. Lux

Recently, I took a little vacation from writing humor here at Skinnie. I took a long-deserved vacation down to Tijuana. It’s harder to stay unemployed down there than it is to just go down on vacation! In fact, I made a ton of money and was very well fed on my sabbatical. Here’s some of the many ways that you too can make a very good living on the streets of Tijuana, Mexico.

Taking Your Medicine – Tijuana gets a bad rap. It’s actually a very healthy city. There’s a pharmacy and Doctor’s office on every corner, kinda like Walgreens is here in the States. The medical professionals in Tijuana have a strict dedication to quality as well. One time, I was out minding my business when I was approached by a doctor who wanted to give me what he called, “A Superman Shot.” A lifelong comic book lover myself, I gladly obliged and got a shot in my buttocks. The doctor stared at me intently for a moment and asked if I was okay, and if I could move my legs. I could. He gave me t10 U.S. bucks and said something about some Padres coming down from San Diego to fill a prescription.

Step Right Up, Fellas – Tijuana has a thriving arts and culture scene that’s on the cutting edge, but without the elite snobbery that typically accompanies such scenes. I was approached about standing on a corner and inviting college aged males to a new production called “Donkey Show,” which happened to star the producer’s sister. I told him that college aged males aren’t interested in live theater, but I was threatened with a pistol whipping, so I shut up and took to the corner. Surprisingly, the show was a huge hit with the guys, who came in droves. I never got to see the first half of the show, but I can tell you that the ending when the masked men with AK-47s burst in the room to steal everyone’s wallet had me in stitches! Interactive theater at its finest. I guess I wasn’t destined for the world of theater as the show closed after a limited 12-hour run. The producer told me that he needed a new theater space and that he couldn’t afford to keep me on the payroll. I understood. Turns out, another theater troupe, The CIA, was going to be taking over the space shortly… or something to that affect. I don’t know. Business isn’t my world.

Where you going, ma’am? – If you speak English, you too can be a Tijuana cab driver. Be careful, as they have strange rules for cabbies in Mexico:

- Don’t take them to the right place.
- Double the price when you do drop them off.
- It’s okay to run red lights.
- You’re encouraged to hit wandering dogs.

I made the mistake of taking a couple to the right hotel and was fast about it too. A cop, who also worked for the cab company it turns out, stopped me and said that if he can’t get his commission from “los gringos” that he would take it out of my “Ben Dayho.” I asked what this had to do with my friend with the funny foot, and the last thing I saw in Mexico was a billy club coming at my face. I woke up and found myself in the parking lot of a Jack in the Box back in the good ‘ol USA.

Ah well… back to writing the humor.

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SURVIVAL 101: COUGAR COUNTRY
How To Survive An Encounter With Nature’s Mature Meat Eater
words by: Donald C. Stefanovich

The cougar, native throughout the United States and Canada, is a cunning creature, built for one purpose: to hunt. With the general population increasing, we inherently find ourselves encroaching on more and more of their natural habitat - jazz cafes, tapas bars and the occasional sports bar or ‘80s nightclub – and in potentially precarious situations. While these majestic creatures are generally harmless when observed from a safe distance, they are wild animals and should be treated with respect and approached with trepidation at all times.  A cougar encounter, while initially exciting, may quickly become frightening, especially if you are unprepared. I was actually inspired to write this because a friend was recently turned on by a feral forty-something. There are a few things you should know if you find yourself in cougar country to ensure you, and the cougar, survive any encounter unharmed.

- Avoid drinking alone, especially between dusk and dawn when cougars are most active. If you do encounter a cougar and find yourself cornered, call a friend. Do not attempt to leave the bar alone. Remember, safety in numbers.

- Make a lot of noise when drinking so as not to startle an unsuspecting cougar. Never corner one, no matter how confident you are or how domesticated she appears. Those acrylic claws are lethal and can leave devastating scars on your back or chest (large areas, most commonly attacked – it’s believed this is a way of marking their territory) if you survive an encounter.

- Avoid approaching a cougar if you see one in the distance. It may just be curious about you. Most avoid confrontation, so give it an opportunity to slip away. However, be prepared for a possible attack if a nearby cougar is staring at you aggressively from the dance floor or crouching on a barstool. They often appear to be “smiling” but this usually indicates an impending attack.

- While it may be exciting to see one in its natural habitat, offering food or drink or trying to get a picture with it may provoke an attack. If you feel threatened, remain calm. Stand tall, look as big and unattractive as possible – stick out your gut if you have to. This will make you look more like the males of their own pack and less like a meal. If this fails, do not crouch or try to hide. Use any weapons and deterrents available. Wave about cocktail napkins, pictures of your girlfriend, swizzle straws and any ring that may pass for a wedding band.

- If she pounces, you have no choice but to fight back. Try to stay on your feet and be sure to protect your head, neck and genitals. Whatever you do, don’t play dead—this will likely cause the cougar to drag you to a private area and have its way with you. They are capable of carrying off prey in excess of 200 lbs. If you awake disoriented, chances are, you are in the cougar’s den. Don’t panic. Be sure not to leave behind any of your belongings, identification or anything with your scent, and calmly search for the nearest exit. If you happen to encounter any cougar kittens, as cute as they may be, do not attempt to approach or pick them up. You will leave your scent and the cougar may become increasingly aggressive, attempting to use her young as bait to extract from you time and money. If by chance a cougar follows you home, good luck.

Remember kids, a cougar in leopard skin is still a cougar, and if they can see you you’re already prey.

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Mike Vallely Revolution Mother: Pro Skater Leads The Modern Rock ‘N’ Roll Revolution
words by: Ramon Gonzalez   
photos courtesy of: Marcus Sasseville, Universal Pictures

In the seconds before answering a phone call,  who is on the other end of the line is a fact that can really fuck with your psyche. A debt collector, the V.D. clinic, your ex-girlfriend - these are all incoming calls that might get your heart racing. This particular call made me a bit uneasy. As I looked down at my phone it read, “Mike V.”  Despite the fact that I was armed with confidence in my laundry list of questions, I answered the phone and stammered, “He.. Hello?” I expected a harsh voice, a tone that would suggest that everything he said was more of a command than a statement. Instead, I got back a casual, “How’s it going man?” It is insanely easily to mistake the intensity on Vallely’s face for a scowl. Whatever you call it, the fact remains, it is menacing. With a storied career as a pro skater, a promising career as a front man for instantly successful rock bands, and one of the most dynamic personalities in the game, Vallely is no stranger to being misunderstood. Yet, while there are a multitude of opinions ranging from criticism to praise about Mike in our conversation, he makes sure that one thing is very clear, “I don’t believe in down time.”

The Skater
“No one is ever gonna tell me goodbye if I feel I have more left to give. I gave up on the magazines and videos a long time ago and went at it myself. Throughout my skating career it has been the fans that have always been with me.” After having been a pro skater for decades, the rebirth of Vallely as a perennial skater was a result of nothing else but Vallely. After loosing sponsorships and dealing with criticism in the skate world, it would have been easy to hang it up and walk away; If you weren’t Vallely. “You know, if it wasn’t for skating and punk rock music, I wouldn’t know who I am. When I started skating I felt like I was participating in the birth of something.” Dismissed by the critics, Vallely continued to skate for a sizable amount of time without sponsors and continued to implement his old school style in his runs. The persistence resulted in a measure of credibility that Vallely carries to this day. As a member of the Element Skate team and one of the last true active legends of skateboarding, Vallely remains adamant about why his gets on the board. “I don’t skate because I have to, I do it because I want to. I wasn’t going faster or higher than some of the skaters out there but this is who I am, I won’t ever deny that. ”

The Singer
Experiencing his initial success as the namesake for the hardcore punk outfit Mike V and the Rats, the musical growth of Vallely has resonated in the unmistakable force of his latest endeavor Revolution Mother. In a first, Vallely pulled double duty last summer on the notoriously hot, sweaty and unpredictable Vans Warped Tour. Performing two sets daily and then dipping into the skate ramp, Revolution Mother became one of the biggest draws as the tour continued. The popularity grew so much in fact, Revolution Mother was the side stage band most often pulled onto the main stages. Best defined as unapologetic, Revolution Mother is a furious combination of punk rock attitude rooted in good old fashion rock ‘n’ roll. “People mistake my passion and focus for anger. I connect to the material in the music and I was able to do that everyday. Whether we played once, twice or four times, everything I want to say is in the songs, they mean something. That’s what people understood about us. That’s why we connected with the crowd.” Although a recent addition to the tour, the band’s popularity is a testament to the  sincerity of the music. On the strength of the band’s debut record, Glory Bound, the band will once again take to the stage this summer and no doubt do a huge amount of convincing.

The Actor
Aside from the countless skate videos he has made appearances in, Vallely has now made the transition to the big screen. It is important to note, Vallely has been a fixed on the small screen for some time now. Starting as a feature length documentary about skating, Driven, would later become a show revolving around the world of Vallely. On the Fuel Network since 2005, the show has remained an important part of the network, and opened Vallely to another generation of fans. That momentum has propelled him to his latest role. Set to co-star in the Happy Madison Production (yup, that’s Adam Sandler’s company)Paul Blart: Mall Cop alongside King Of Queens star Kevin James. Vallely talked about his time on the set, “You know there has been other sets I have been on where I was actually referred to as the skater guy. ‘Bring the skater guy on.’ This time around the people involved don’t have the same distance. The people working on this film have been nothing but supportive.”

The Legacy
He turned pro at just 17 and went on to skate for the seminal skate-team, Powell Peralta. He was one of the first to compete in the X Games. He has appeared in video games, international exhibitions and continues to skate at 38 years old. He has fronted not one, but two successful rock bands. He has appeared on countless magazine covers, skate videos and his own television show, continues to be one of the most popular skaters among fans and is now starring in major motion pictures. But when you ask Vallely if he considers what his legacy is, the answer is genuinely humble. “Whether it be punk rock, skating, whatever, I think the most important aspect is self discovery. The first time I heard Black Flag, the first time I rode a skateboard, I knew something was alive in me. In the end, that is the only thing you can hope to pass along; that idea of helping self discovery.  I want to be a solid link in the chain.” Dispelling the cynics, Vallely has endured and excelled as so many things because in those things is where he finds his sanity. On the board, in the band, and on the hustle, it’s where Vallely feels at home.     

At A Glance:
+ In 2003 Black Flag performed a reunion show in which Vallely was asked to step in and front the band while they performed the entire My War album, an album Vallely cites as being very influential in his musical career.

+   In 1997 Vallely was the first pro skater to travel to China to and run a skate demo in the often-exclusive country.  

+ It’s no secret that Vallely has earned the reputation for being a bit of a fighter. The countless beatings he has dished out might have been a result of his adamant love of the game of hockey. Working with the NHL and the Anaheim Ducks, Vallely writes a blog for the Ducks and works to promote hockey in Southern California.

+ It is estimated that throughout his decades as a skater, Vallely has broken some 20 of his own bones, and countless bones of others.  

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Timmy Curran - Word of Mouth: From Out Of The Blue And Onto The Stage
words by: Ellen Rumple  
photos courtesy of: Jeff Flindt and David Troyer

Scraggly blond haired Timmy Curran, otherwise known as the infamous pioneer of surfing who completed a full rotation, upside-down in two-foot surf in Hawaii, is just your average down-to-earth guy. That sounds like anything but average. He may have accomplished something that is now known as “the flip” having learned to surf by age five and by 16 he turned pro, but he was holding back on his other hidden talent. What else does this Southern California native have in store for his adoring public? Curran’s hidden passion was not only on water, it was strumming the strings of a guitar and humming his favorite written tune.

“I first tried writing my own songs when I was 16 and it took over 10 years to write a song that I was completely comfortable playing and singing in front of my friends and family.” Three years ago in Japan, Curran wrote a song called “If I Only Had a Way.” When he came home he performed it for the very first time in front of his friends and family. Curran, at first hesitant of sharing his hidden talent asked them, “Do you mind the way I sing it?” and their response was, “No we actually love the way you sing it!” After the positive response from his loved ones he developed the drive he needed to jumpstart his career as a musician. The song he first performed to his family and friends was soon on a compilation album with artists like Jack Johnson.

Shortly after that another one of his songs, “Horses on the Range,” was featured in a documentary. He was then asked to perform on stage and one show turned into dozens. Curran says that performing on stage wasn’t something he intended on doing, it kind of just happened. “It wasn’t something where I wanted to play music and tour but it was something where I got offered one show and then we got offered more shows and then I was like ‘oh no I am not ready for this!’” Ready or not, Curran has put lots of practice into performing so he can ease into the musician lifestyle. Recently his practice paid off and Curran was able to go into a studio where he got to record his first album, Word of Mouth. “I was in there the whole time. I would think that the sound was alright but then Ian Nickus (producer) would make me listen back to the tracks and say, ‘no, look at the difference between this and that.”’

Putting together the album was one thing but creating the look of it was another. Curran was inspired by the artwork for the album on a trip to Italy when he was filming a surf movie with producer Taylor Steel. When the film was finished Dustin Humphrey had an art show before the movie premier. Before the premier Curran took some time to go check out Humphrey’s work, being a fan himself. “I love his work. I walked into the show and I saw the artwork from across the room. I was blown away and I thought there it is, there is the album cover if he will let me.” After not much convincing Humphrey allowed Curran to use his artwork for the album. “It was more like being in the right place at the right time and with an amazing photographer.”

Curran informed us that although the artwork was picked by him most of the work done on the record is a collaborative effort. Curran along with bandmates and friends, Andy Smith, Ryan Gleason and Jesse Carmichael, spent hours working with different professionals in the music industry to put together the album. Currently Curran is on the road promoting his new album, which is available July 22nd. You can catch Timmy Curran performing at surf shops around the United States.

Out of all the songs he has performed so far the one that gets the most reaction is “Blue Eyes.” Curran explains that “Blue Eyes” is a personal story about him and his wife. “I got dumped and got her back thankfully. I was being young and dating - it was before we got married. I remember she was like, ‘Alright well I want to break up with you.’ I knew I was just being a dumb guy. But I worked really hard and did whatever it took to get her back.” So far there have been no weepers when he performs this song on stage but depending on the version of the song it stirs mixed reactions. “I think the acoustic version is a little bit sad but the album version is happier,” says Curran. “The song is just about somebody you love bringing out the best in you and causing you to work hard at trying to be better. It is a happy song and it’s about getting your girl back.”

Word of Mouth is a mixture of dark, serious and up-beat tunes; since its availability online Word of Mouth has only received a positive response from the public. Curran knows it is a good album and doesn’t seem to be that nervous about the album doing well. “The only thing I have been nervous about is putting it out there like when it’s legit and for sale. It is what it is and I am happy and thankful for the opportunity. I would have never dreamed about putting together an album, and playing music in front of my friends and them not all running away.”

At A Glance:
+ The craziest thing so far that has happened to Timmy Curran onstage is forgetting the entire verse to a song and forgetting to tune his guitar before a show because he was so nervous. “The shows have been pretty mellow, so it has mostly been me creating some funny stuff to laugh about after the show.”

+ Between all the tracks Timmy Curran enjoys playing “Slow” the most. “I just feel that is the song that I would hope describes the album’s direction. I feel it is the most unique song on the album and I also enjoy playing ‘Slow’ the most live.”

+ Timmy Curran believes in the Christian faith so one of his preparations before a show is praying. “My preparations before I go on stage consist of doing prayer for quick memory and peace. Prayer for safety for everyone who took time to come to the show, that it will be a fun night and that I am thankful for this out of the blue opportunity that I would have never dreamed would be happening right now.”

+ When Timmy Curran is not surfing or Jamming, he plays Golf. “If I am not hanging out with my wife and friends I am golfing with my father and brothers.”

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Rick Thorne - Good Guys In Black: From BMX Dirt to Warped Stages
words by: Jeffrey Easton   
photos courtesy of: Rick Thorne & Pals

Rick Thorne: pro BMX rider, TV show host, actor, voiceovers for movies, video games etc. What has he not done you ask? Up until now he has not fronted a band with recorded material. Like I said, up until now. Let me introduce the Good Guys in Black, the crossover act fronted by Thorne along with some outstanding musicians that support his steadfast vision of turning the thoughts in his head into stuff to piss your parents off.  “I try to do as much as I can do. I want to be diverse and the band is the result of my dream for the last 20 years to have a band,” Rick relates. “There is a lot more left to do so I just keep grinding everyday just to explore new stuff. In the sports and entertainment industry you have to strike while the iron is hot and do your thing because I am not going back to bussing tables.” It takes a different person to convey feelings through music with a band and Rick is no exception. “I have been exhausted riding before but I cannot tell you how many rehearsals have ended with me being emotionally drained, a lot different than riding.”

Rick Thorne has ridden BMX for a long time. Consequently, one might contend that he is simply starting a band simply just because. This is not the case. “I have wanted to be in a band for a long time and I reached a point in my life where I think it was due, I just wanted a different way to express myself,” confides Rick. “I want to take all of these experiences in my life and just open myself up to what I have been through and with music I am giving back some positivity and maybe someone can pick up on it.” The songs that are posted on their MySpace page are quite diverse, ranging from Beastie Boys mannerisms to straight up guitar driven anthemic sounds with deeply personal lyrics. Rick has seen a lot if things so the origin of the lyrics is a sacred place for him. “My music comes from the stages of life, if I sing from the gut that is how it is going to come out. My influences come from life experiences.” Rick went on to state that, “[the song] ‘Something More Than You’ is about the haters in my industry. They need to stop the hate, quit pointing fingers and work on themselves.”

Good Guys In Black is an understatement; they certainly live up to their moniker in terms of personal dress and style. Furthermore, the name is a great way to carry a band and make a statement but where did it come from for? An obvious play on Thorne’s reputation as the rider in black, or something more? “Good Guys In black stems from being misrepresented your whole life and standing up for who you are if your intentions are good no matter what you look like,” Rick says. “I always feel safe in black which is why I have worn it for years and maybe people feel threatened because the color black comes off as aggressive. I feel more threatened by men that wear pink if you ask me.” The music comes off as a mix of old school punk and hip hop, like the aforementioned Beastie Boys mixed with Black Flag or Minor Threat.  That might sound like an off the wall combination. “I have been a big fan of punk and rap since I was a kid. It went with us playing sports and riding bikes and it fit my anger and it seemed like the most rebellious things in my life,” states Rick.

The guys supporting Rick are great musicians and share a different point of view which translates well into the way it sounds. “I met Alan Vega (guitar) and Nick Stagnaro (Bass) on the Warped Tour a few years ago and they were also in 8 Fingers Down.  The drummer is Frank Zummo from Street Drum Corps and I met him on the Warped tour as well,” recalls Rick. “I called Alan up last December and told him I wanted to write ‘Roll With The Punches’ and when I went to see him he had the entire song done with the hook and after that the rest of the guys fell into place.” For one final insight into why Rick wanted a band, he offered this. “I was ready to do a band because I had too much to say. There is a certain level of freedom being in a band, I can say what I want and you can take it if you want and if you don’t you can leave it.” Rick may be known for riding right now but after a stint on the Warped Tour this summer this might change .

The Famous Last Words of RICK THORNE
The last CD: 
The new CD by Pennywise, Reason To Believe.
The last book:  
Monster, an autobiography of one of the first CRIP gang members.
The last show hosted:  
Hot Import Nights for Boost Mobile.
The last injury:
Got a hernia from screaming so much MCing the Tony Hawk tour.
The last trading card he was on: 
A Fleer card
The last energy drink: 
Monster, of course.  He has 30 cases at his house.

++TOP
Punked at the Pump
The Electric Demise of the Internal Combustion Engine 
words by: Jasen T. Davis

At the heart of American business lies the concept of the free market economy. The idea is that market competition will balance out any problems that might arise as we all try to work, make money and buy what we have to buy to live, drive and survive. If one product raises their price too high, we all go without or buy the other product, and the whole equation gets balanced. When a corporation is the only group that sells the product, it’s called a monopoly. That group then can raise the price as high as they want and rip us off with an inferior product. When a corporation is so powerful it can influence the government to hamper potential rivals and artificially influence the market, the system stops working and you and I get ripped off. Enter the major oil and automotive manufacturers of the US; only in this instance instead of a single corporation monopolizing the market, it’s an entire industry taking advantage of the American people by deliberately hindering development of efficient transportation alternatives.

When Henry Ford designed his first Model T Ford in 1908, he hung a pair of brass bull testicles from the rear bumper, put a “DEEZ NUTZ” sticker on the rearview window and tore through the city at 45 mph, with no fear of getting pulled over since the police didn’t have cars and Model T Fords scared the bejeezus out of horses. Once he got that out of his system, he proceeded to mass-produce that bad boy and put all of us in the driver’s seat. It’s a little-known footnote that he actually collaborated with Thomas Edison to construct an electric car, but the idea was thrown overboard because oil was cheap, gas was plentiful and the combustion engine was more efficient and reliable than any electric counterpart at the time. Incidentally, the Model T Ford, in 1908, got 18 miles to the gallon. Your car probably gets 25, if you are lucky.  Talk about progress.

So far, for the last 100 years, this is how it’s been. Gigantic automobile manufacturers make cars that run on gasoline from gigantic oil companies and we all drive them to survive.  As we all know, at this point in time public transportation is remarkably useless for the average person. Distances are too long for walking or taking a cab, and the buses and Metro don’t always go to the places you need to go at the times you need. If your car runs on gas, though, you are getting your ass kicked at the pump, unless you are fortunate enough to own an oil company. It can safely be said that they have a monopoly.
 
Oil companies and automobile manufacturers don’t want you to use anything else but an engine that relies on oil.  But one century later oil is running out and gas is mighty expensive, unless you live in Kuwait. Oil comes from countries where women are beaten for getting raped and it’s okay to kill your neighbor because the Invisible Man in the Sky promised you 72 virgins if you obliterate yourself with C-4. Gasoline is $4.57 a gallon and rising and we’d all give a pinky finger if it dropped down to $3.00, even though we bitched when it got to that price years ago.

The hybrid engine is the latest in a long series of con jobs the oil companies have pulled on the American public for years. Sure, while your average combustible engine gets 25 miles per gallon and the hybrid engine gets up to 50 miles per gallon the end result is the same: you still have to buy gasoline. When the price of gas goes up to $10 in five years it won’t matter if you’re driving a hybrid. You’ll still be paying high prices at the pump. The oil companies will win because we’ll all still be using their outdated product. Automobile manufacturers will win because when upgrading to a hybrid is necessary to live they’ll make a killing as desperate car owners trade in their old for the new. The public at large will fall for it when they think the jump to hybrids was a massive leap forward when better alternatives exist and in fact have existed for decades. So, what other choices are there? Can we use something that doesn’t rely on oil?

We could, but for decades the oil industry and automobile manufacturers have prevented other technologies from being utilized by influencing government regulation, buying out patents that would threaten their combustible engine monopoly, and working together to drive out small business owners that would otherwise invent and market an automobile that would set us free from the yoke of oil. They’ve had half a century to perfect their techniques and, as you can see from the amount of money you are paying for a gallon of gas, their strategies have worked.

In the 2006 documentary Who Killed the Electric Car? it is revealed that in 1990, the California Air Resources Board passed a law that required automobile manufacturers to sell 3% of their stock as zero emission, electric-powered vehicles. GM and oil companies like Exxon and Chevron teamed up, lobbying to change the law with million-dollar donations to politicians, all the while leasing the EV-1 (their electric car) and refusing to sell them to the general public. Meanwhile, GM and the oil companies went on a rampage, buying every conceivable patent for the battery technology that would make the electric car feasible. In fact, many alternative engine patents are owned by these same companies to this day. After the law was changed, the cars were taken back. Many of the owners were arrested and nearly all of the EV-1’s were destroyed (pretty funny, when you consider that it’s still possible to find the Ford Pinto on the road).

To a certain extent, early designs for an electric car deserved to die. They didn’t go very far on a full charge. It was hard to find a place to charge up the vehicle. They were also horribly, malignantly gross to look upon. Ford Mustangs, for all of their unreliability, sell because they look freakin’ cool.

The situation is changing, though. There are now many start-up companies that are working on electric cars with the intent of ending our reliance on oil. While some of these vehicles are still so expensive as to be unobtainable by the general public (the Tesla Electric Roadster will cost you $100,000) many overseas vehicle manufacturers are moving forward, selling affordable, efficient electronic automobiles and leaving the U.S. behind. Even Chevy is getting in on the potential profit with its new Volt. Let’s all hope the car is affordable. Sure, most of them are expensive but new technology always is when it first hits the market. Remember how expensive the cell phone was? Now they practically give them away at the mall.

Can’t wait? Fine, create your own. One inventor at this website, www.metricmind.com, provides plans for you to build your own. Download it while you can… this guy might end up in a parking lot somewhere, dead of “natural causes” (cue “Twilight Zone” theme). While the future is unknown, at least it’s electric. But I see a point in time where revolutionaries will modify their own cars, in their own garages, to run on something other than oil, just like they are pimping their automobiles for aesthetic purposes right now. My prediction is that as long as our politicians are in the pockets of major automobile and oil companies the government will declare these home grown technologies to be illegal, fine these owners and tow their vehicles away to be destroyed.

In a few years if a cop pulls you over and inspects your vehicle to make sure it runs on gasoline, don’t be too surprised… the oil companies will have spent a lot of money to ensure that those laws exist and government agencies scurry to enforce them.
But demand is high and politics have turned away from the oil companies. Automobile manufacturers are now seeing a business opportunity as competition comes from other countries as overseas competitors create their own gas-free vehicles. With so many manufacturers competing, maybe the free market economy will save us, after all.

FAILED ATTEMPTS:
Martyrs of Alternative Transportation
______________________________
+ Joseph R. Zubris of Boston, Massachusetts built an electric car in 1969, converting the engine of his 1961 Mercury. Zubris refused to sell the patent to oil interests but was never able to market his idea to automobile manufacturers.

+ In 1972 Rory Johnson, an inventor from Elgin, Illinois, created an electromagnetic motor that could propel a car 10,000 miles on a single charge. While in negotiations with the Greyhound Bus Company the US Department of Energy placed a restraining order on his device that prohibited Johnson from selling it. He later died of a brain aneurysm and all of his notes, engines and schematics disappeared.

+ Edward LaForce of Vermont invented a redesigned combustible engine in 1974 that doubled the gas mileage of a conventional automobile. After great difficulty in patenting his creation, the United States EPA outlawed the engine, despite protests from US Senators and local press.

+ In 1974 William Bolon of Rialto, California designed an advanced steam engine motor vehicle that he claimed could get 50 miles out of a gallon of water. After refusing to sell the patent, his factory was fire bombed and all of his research notes and vehicles were destroyed. He later sold his design to a company from Indonesia.

+ B. Von Platen of Sweden developed a vehicle that also ran on electricity. He sold the patent to Volvo in 1975. Volvo then proceeded to do nothing with their acquisition.

+ In 1996 Stanley Meyer replaced the engine of his Volkswagon dune buggy with an engine that ran on tap water. He was later sued by investors and mysteriously died of a brain aneurysm. After his death, his car, his notes and all of his equipment were stolen from his home and remain missing to this day.

+ In 2007 M. Degeuss of North Carolina designed a self-powering battery that could be used to power the engine of an electric car. After showing the design to interested parties in Europe he was found dead of a brain aneurysm in a North Carolina airport parking lot. Yes, his designs were stolen and are missing to this day.

Tesla Roadster
_____________________
Power: Electric
Max Speed: 125 mph
Charge Time: 3.5 hours
Distance: 220 miles per charge
Available: Via waiting list
Price: $100,000

Phoenix Motorcars
_____________________
Based in Ontario, CA
Power: Electric
Max Speed: 110 mph
Charge Time: 7 hours
Distance: 250 miles per charge
Available: 2010
Price: $45,000

Chevy Volt
_____________________
Power: Electric and Combustion
Max Speed: unspecified
Charge Time: 6.5 hours
Distance: 640 (combined electric charge with fuel tank)
Available: 2010
Price: $48,000

The REVA
_____________________
Based in India
Power: Electric
Max Speed: 50 mph
Charge Time: 6 hours
Distance per Charge: 70 miles
Available: currently in production
Price: $10,000

Genepax
_____________________
Based in Japan
Power: Water
Max Speed: 110 mph
Charge Time: 7 hours
Distance: 50 miles per liter of water
Available: does not seem to be in production, but website provides info on how to convert an existing vehicle to run on water.
Price: $45,000

The ZENN
_____________________
Based in Canada
Power: Electric
Max Speed: 25 mph
Charge Time: 8 hours
Distance: 35 miles per charge
Available: currently in production
Price: $16,000

 
 
   
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