If you went to Hardcore Punk shows in the 80s, it went without saying that there would be a few Skateboards rolling around outside. Both hardcore Skating and hardcore Punk had gone through the same transition around the same time so it isn't a surprise that both hitched a ride with the other. They not only shared a birthday but location. Evolving out of the Suburbs and cities of Southern California. It is safe to say that they share the same aggressive gene and roots. As many of the early Hardcore Punks came from a surfing and skating background. It's not surprising that both weren't infected with the other, blending into a completely different style that would be defined as Skate Punk or Skaterock. Also especially the Dogtown Z-Boys were a huge influence on both this new underground skating movement and Hardcore Punk. The Z-Boys didn't even know it but they were so against the grain of what was considered Skating at the time, they would be the mold of the generation of Skaters that came after and out of all of them no one represented this new form more than Jay Adams. Who while his fellow teams mates began stacking up the bills, he head straight into the fledging LA punk scene and skated only for the joy of it. One could say that his life could be an example of self destruction and miss opportunity but can't help not being inspired by someone that lived his life on his own terms and followed his heart.
The fact was that if you were a skater even as late as 86, you were an outcast, odd ball and a bit of a freak. Even the largest contests only drew crowds of a few hundred and were usually more loose nit gatherings than out and out sporting events. You had to be in the know to be there and it was full on DIY. Much in the same way that Punk shows were in the day. There was no consideration for sanctioned national events or liability insurance. The only national coverage you could hope for was a few small publications like Thrasher and even finding those involved a search. There was no thought of million dollar contracts or TV coverage. It was all about the purity of the act. The thought that you just do something for the joy of doing it. Which is something else that Punk shared with Skating. Not everyone was invited and there weren't no new letter. Finding a good skate spot or a good show involved work and dedication and thus both tended to be rather protective of their territory and tribe.
As both movements spilled out of Southern California they evolved in each new foothold as each adapted to it's new environment. One of the biggest would be bank riding and street skating. Since for most the only example of tricks was photographs, different approaches and styles were developed. Since there were no skateparks or in most cases ramps, Skaters began to mimic what they saw on vert on banks, curbs, and whatever was available. Music took the same route, weather it be where the shows were or what musical styles they drew on. Fashion was greatly effected in the same way.
So it's not surprising that the first time I heard the Sex Pistols was while I was skating. Though I had found Agent Orange long before that, my first exposure to bands like JFA, the Faction, The Cramps, Fear and countless others would come from skating. The current monthly bible of Skating was Thrasher and their music columns exposed countless kids to Hardcore. Also their Skate Rock Comps help to define a sub section of the Hardcore Movement and bands to gain exposure.
You see if you skated in the 80s, You smelled bad, were a minor outlaw, knew what it felt like to get chased by the cops, been in a number of fights, had been told by just about everyone you knew that you were wasting your time. couldn't get a date, knew how to climb a fence, didn't have a job, could build a 8 foot high ramp but couldn't frame a house, found pain funny, wanted a car mainly to get to more skating spots and in most cases listened to Punk Rock.
I've included a few newer songs and songs by bands that weren't really skate punk bands but I feel were listened to by every skater I knew.
Sections of the Site