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The Origins of Thrasher and the History Of Rock & Roll

Joe Fong Rip Rides Under The Infamous Thrasher Gutter

I was extremely fortunate to have an empty pool up the street from my house right at the start of my skateboard journey, I believe it was emptied it in 1976 or 77? While the Dogtown boys get credit for being pool pioneers us Nor Cal heads were at the forefront as well, we just didn’t have a mag yet to show the world our skills. That’s kinda why I bring this up, Ironically the pool was located in a spot by the name of Thrasher Park, this was way before the magazine but that’s not the most interesting part. Quite often a crew would take the short BART ride from the city that included Bryce Kanights, Joe Fong, Tommy and Tony Guerrero as well as other (future) SF legends. On occasion one of the OG's of the mag Kevin Thatcher would make the trip to get some runs as well. Now i’m not saying this cement pond was the namesake for Thrasher mag but it would be impossible to think it wasn’t at least in the back of Thatcher’s mind when the task of naming the rag was underway. Was Thatcher even there for the naming? If not that would be a weird coincidence then and maybe this story doesn’t even matter? Well i'll answer that question straight away, it still matters because the naming of the mag isn’t the only part of our little history lesson involving Thrasher Pool.

"The Pool Was Located In A Spot By The Name Of Thrasher Park"

Eric Capers @ Thrasher Park in Skateboard World Magazine Around 1977. Photo By Hugh Holland

The story goes a little something like this

There was a crew in the Bay Area during this era by the name of team Alotaflex featuring the absolute cream of the crop Nor Cal had to offer. The team included the founders Paco Prieto, Jeff Sand, Chris Fisher, Dave Fisher and in the not so distant future Tommy Guerrero, Tony Guerrero and most important to our tale (and the most talented of them all), Tim Marting. tim was a bona fide legend in San Leandro and our local hero at Thrasher Pool. For the first 3 months of riding the pool I would always seem to miss Tim when he was there but always heard about the next-level shredding that went down by the other locals the next day. Keep in mind what I mean by shredding is a very rudimentary form of skateboarding compared not only to now but compared to the next generation of the 80’s. If you could put yourself in a time capsule and go back to this ancient time in our young history you would soon realize that we were hardly further along than the dinosaur age of the 60’s and at the very beginning of skateboarding’s trick book. BTW I’m not talking about freestyle, I’m talking about transition skating exclusively: there were cess slides, front and back grinds, 1-2-3 slides….. for god’s sake carving was a trick back then. You could count the number of tricks on 2 hands and have leftover digits to throw a peace sign…. It was that fucking raw. No matter the quantity of moves though, our young hero Tim was the king during this raw moment in time.