Kyle Smith – Juice Magazine State of Skate Interview

Name: Kyle Smith
Hometown: Kaneohe, Hawaii
Age: 24
Sponsors: Arbor, Caliber, 808 Skate, Bones (flow), Cons (flow), Stance (flow), Electric (flow).

What set-up are you riding right now?
Arbor 8.25 Whiskey Project deck, Caliber 8.5 trucks, Bones 56 SPF’s, Super Reds bearings, Mob Grip, Bones hardware.

What’s the most fun DIY, skater-built or renegade spot that you’ve skated lately?
Marginal Way in Seattle.

Have you ever built something to skate?
I’ve built mini ramps and we built a cement quarter pipe at the top of a big ditch bank called Uluwatus.

Who do you like to skate with these days?
Lately, it’s been Brian Johnson, Malakai Montes, or the 808 Skate dudes, but I’ve also been going on a lot of trips with the Arbor and Caliber boys and those are always the most fun.

Best skate graphic you have seen lately?
I like Max Schaaf’s Real boards he did with his Motorcycle company 4Q. I’m super into bike culture.

Best thing you’ve ever skated in a skatepark and what skatepark was it?
The big bank wall at Eugene in Oregon.

Favorite skateboarders of all time?
Lance Mountain, Grant Taylor and Ronnie Sandoval.

Is there anything that hasn’t been built to skate yet that you’d like to see built?
Maybe a rail down an 8 stair that has tranny on both sides all the way down, so like a 3-ft spine that goes down stairs.

Best road trip you ever took?
I feel like the last one you went on always feels like the most fun, so my answer would be the Northwest trip I just did with the Arbor and Caliber dudes.

Are there any skate-related charities that you support?
I haven’t gotten a chance to work with any of the charities, but I teach kids how to skate on Oahu with Skatecare Hawaii as a side job and that’s pretty rewarding to see their progression.

What music have you been listening to?
Classic rock, punk and Tribe Called Quest because that’s all my girlfriend ever wants to listen to.

What do you consider the responsibilities of a professional skateboarder?
It’s definitely one of those “you get out what you put in” kind of jobs. Obviously, filming and getting photos is important, but I think the most important aspect is being a good face of the brand and being nice to kids and fans. I remember growing up, if I met a pro and he was a super nice guy, I’d end up liking his skating so much more.

Which skate shops do you support?
I work and ride for 808 Skate, so I’m there a lot.

Favorite skate photo of all time?
There’s an old photo of Eric Dressen from the ‘80s just doing a front slasher in the deep end of a pool that always really stuck with me. That and any photo of Ronnie Sandoval doing a front invert.

What is your take on girls skateboarding?
I love it. The more people you have to call up and skate with the better. I’ve been trying to get my girlfriend more into it so we can spend “quality time” at the park. Haha.

What skateboarding memorabilia do you have that means the most to you?
A signed Lance Mountain deck and a photo of me and my brother with him.

Who contributes the most to your local skate scene?
The guys behind The Association of Skateboarders in Hawaii do four contests a year, so that’s always pretty rad. Other than that, it’s pretty much all on the local shops. We’ve been getting a good amount of pros rolling through lately, so that’s been really sick.

Top three favorite skate tricks?
Front pivots, front and back tailslides and noseblunts

Do you think skateboarding should be in the Olympics?
I wouldn’t mind seeing Mega Ramp and vert in the Olympics.

What is your proudest moment in skateboarding so far?
Having my sponsor me tape actually work.




When we started Juice Magazine 22 years ago, you could count the number of skateparks on one hand and grindable pool coping was mostly a distant memory. Now there are thousands of skateparks all over the world, along with a vast quantity of DIY spots built to skate. In 1993, the majority of skateboarders listened to punk rock or hip hop exclusively. Now skateboarders listen to almost every kind of sound created. Two decades ago, skateboarding related charities were non-existent. Today, there are numerous non-profits giving back to skateboarding in many ways. One of the most important differences between now and then is that, 22 years ago, there was a clear division between old school and new school skateboarding. Now that wall of separation has followed the same path as the Berlin Wall, allowing for an unprecedented unification of skateboarders all over the globe. Great strides have been made for girls that skate as well as the acceptance of skate history and long overdue recognition for skateboarding’s pioneers and its artifacts. At the same time, the current generation of skateboarders is taking skateboarding to new heights, previously unimaginable. As the landscape of the skateboarding industry changes on a daily basis, and the topic of skateboarding in the Olympics rears its head once again, along with the disturbing subject of who controls skateboarding being tossed about by corporate entities, we decided it was time to take a good look at the State of Skate. We asked 20 questions to 100 skateboarders, ages 8 to 58, and found that skateboarding is as diverse as the skateboarders that are addicted to it, no one controls skateboarding except skateboarders, and the State of Skate is savage and strong. Now get out there and skate tough!

JUICE MAGAZINE STATE OF SKATE features interviews with 100 skateboarders including: Tony Alva, Dave Hackett, Chris Strople, Duane Peters, Steve Olson, Dave Duncan, Steve Alba, Tony Magnusson, Pat Black, Jesse Martinez, Bill Danforth, Jim Murphy, Ric Widenor, Lester Kasai, Glen Charnoski, Bryan Pennington, Peter Furnee, Jeremiah Risk, Ryan Smith, Jason Jessee, Omar Hassan, Cam Dowse, Jen O’Brien, Depth Leviathan Dweller, Brett Roper, Travis Beattie, Chris Gentry, CW Dunn, Chris Albright, Charlie Wilkins, Cairo Foster, Pierre-Luc Gagnon, BJ Morrill, Dr. Lenore L.A. Sparks, Sid Melvin, Jesse Irish, Packy Fancher, Greg Lutzka, Jimmy Larsen, Adam Dyet, Luis Tolentino, Greg Harbour, Frank Faria, Ryan DeCenzo, Dave Bachinsky, Johnny Turgesen, Casey Meyer, Edward Sanchez, David Gravette, Ben Hatchell, Brian Geib, Felipe Gouveia, Eric Santos, Kyle Smith, Cameron Revier, Josh Stafford, Justin Grubbs, Etienne Eden Archila, Sanzio Piacentini, Josh Elder, Eddie “Mighty” Moreno, Kevin Kowalski, Otto Pflanz, Jeremy Smith, Adam Wiggins, Jimmy Wilkins, Danny Gordon, Jake Hilbish, Corey Blanchette, Adam Legassie, Nick Santos, Trey Rounds, Curren Caples, Justyce Tabor, Andy Anderson, Sarah Thompson, Coral Guerrero, Collin Graham, Derek Scott, Ace Pelka, Sonny Rodriguez, Jarren Duke, Mikayla Sheppard, CJ Titus, Noah Schott, Emily Earring, Julian Torres, Wyatt Wisenbaker, Josh Forsberg, Nathan Midgette, Roman Pabich, Yago Dominguez, Jack Winburn, Jonas Carlsson, Kiko Francisco, Bryce Ava Wettstein, Desmond Shepherd, Matty Jessee and Luke Kahler.


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Juice is an interview magazine featuring skateboarding, surfing, art and music. Since 1993, Juice has been independently owned and dedicated to the core. Juice Magazine specializes in coverage of core skateboarders, surfers, musicians, skatepark builders, artists, photographers, rock n roll, metal, hardcore, pools, pipes & punk rock. Keep Skateboarding A Crime.
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