El Skate Shop - The Wildest Skateboard Shop in the West
El Skate Shop began in 2002 as online shop AND brick and mortar shop in Huntington Beach, CA. At 177 square feet we were fairly certain we owned the title of "Smallest Skate Shop in The World".
We also went by the slogan of "The Almost Non-Profit Skate Shop" where we priced our inventory very low in order to make easier for people to keep skating. You could buy blank decks from $16 to $20. Grip was $3.
As of 2021, elskateshop.com is mostly an archival site. However, we still do sell grip tape, wax and hardware and may one day get back into the business of selling skate goods.
Past team riders included Dallas Rockvam, Aaron Babila, Chris Treiber, Chris Hernandez, Mike Davidson, Matt Bublitz, Amber Moffatt, Darrell Noran, Eric Ricks and Ryan Fitch.
The legendary old schooler. Old schoolers get mad props since they had the balls to do gnarly shit and not get any money for it.
Brad Bowman skating Marina Del Rey skatepark 1979
That video shows Brad skating the famous Marina Del Rey skatepark. That was like the Mecca for skateboarding in the late 1970s and early 1980s. You can see that he’s wearing a “Dog Bowl Pro” contest garment. I’m sure Dog Bowl refers to the bowl he’s skating in and since it’s next to Venice, CA (a.k.a Dogtown) – that’s probably where the contest name originates from.
The amazing thing about these old bowl / pool skaters is that many of them are still at it to this day! I guess concrete is more forgiving than I thought :).
If you have ever seen the Bob Burnquist “Double B” deck, I think it originally came from a Brad Bowman deck.
The man, the myth, the legend. He 50/50-ed the El Toro 20 stair rail.
Ben Gilley vs. the El Toro 20
Ben rode for Black Label Skateboards back in the early to mid 2000s. In the video above he also 5-0s that monster rail and I think blows threw another few tricks – totally owning it. Our former team member, Matt Bublitz also board slid it in 2004. He was just a little dude then.
Anyway, as you can see, Ben was a total powerhouse. One of the classic hammersmiths from that golden age of street skating.
I first saw this guy on the Emerica video I think. I strange to think that you would first hear about a skater in the Emerica video.
Aaron Suski’s part from Emerica This is Skateboarding
Aaron Suski – Satori Stories
Hell on Wheels: Aaron Suski
Aaron’s is the godfather of the millennial style: he’s got tranny down, speed, and a killer street steez. And of course he gets the extra cool cred of being East Coast raw. NOTE: Being from somewhere other than California can be a huge boost to your skating career 🙂 (assuming you’re a sick skater to begin with).
If you’re looking for a great example of a salad grind – watch the videos above. That’s a great style to emulate. It’s clean, powerful, has it all tweaked out in a noticeable angle. I was watching Steve Caballero do salad grinds in a trick tip video – and even Cab doesn’t get them as tweaked out as Aaron does.
“Brian Sumner is the nicest pro you will ever meet. But if you take advantage of this fact I will personally kick your ass.”
Brian’s part from Adio’s One Step Beyond
Brian Sumner – Comeback Skateboard Part Birdhouse – The Beginning
Yep that’s right. Brian Sumner knows karate. And he is not afraid to use it. There was a story going around that Brian had a hard time with getting into fights. It’s weird because he seems like such a refined English Gentlemen. We use to see him drive around town in a Mini Copper with the British Flag painted on top. He also has a little Chihuahua companion that rides shotgun. It’s kind of awesome when you think about it. Here is this completely non-aggressive looking guy with a toy dog that can kick your ass.
Brian is a really good skateboarder. Unfortunately it seems that he has had very little opportunities to display his skating. The only two videos I can think of that he was in Adio’s One Step Beyond and Birdhouse’s The End. Those videos are approaching ten years of age. Hopefully we’ll see some more parts from Brian in the near future.
Ok we have this thing for Bastien Salabanzi. He used to skate in front of our operation all the time because we were next to the Flip Filmer’s headquarters. To us he was totally insane. Possibly the world’s best skateboarder.
Bastien Salabanzi: The Lost Part
Bastien Salabanzi’s “Not So Sorry” Part
Bastien Salabanzi’s “Sorry Era” Retrospective Video
Bastien Salabanzi | The Nine Club With Chris Roberts – Episode 109
Bastien Salabanzi – Stop And Chat | The Nine Club With Chris Roberts
Jart Skateboards – All you need – Bastien Salabanzi
We heard through the grapevine he may have had a slight attitude problem, but whatever – who doesn’t right? He had an amazing part in Sorry, started winning tons of contests, maybe even got a shoe contract. Then he completely disappeared. Totally disappeared off the face of the earth. Well here he is killing it again.
So this is what I don’t get: Is he just doing the underground thing? Kind of like what Tom Penny did back in the late 1990s. Just hiding out? But then he pops out at contests and takes home winnings. Why doesn’t Plan B or Element try to pick him up? Is it because he has lost all his notoriety and none of the younger skater generation knows who he is? I’m sure with 4 weeks of magazine publicity and some Youtube effort he could be back on top.
Then there is the dark dark possibility of being blacklisted. This does happen to pro skaters every once in a while. If certain industry heads or the industry as a whole doesn’t like you, then you’re totally screwed. I’m pretty sure this happened to Chad Fernandez, Andy Macdonald, Gershon Mosely and Benji Galloway.
The story of Bastien is an odd one. He started off as a young kid on Flip. They found him in France and threw him on the team. His part in Sorry was incredible for the time. The next year after Sorry he won every street contest and became a poster child for Quiksilver. Then in 2004 he completely fell off the face of the planet. The word around the street was that he had a “bad attitude”. But when you are the good, you usually shake off the attitude issue and come back at some point. Bastien was a machine, he was a total natural at skateboarding. You don’t just disappear like that. The interesting thing is there was a pro for Flip in 1999 that followed a similar legacy. Spooky.
Bam Margera is one of those skaters you either love or hate. How did Bam Margera rise to such popularity? Well I guess it all started when Bam met Mike Maldonado in Pennsylvania. Mike met Bam Margera at a skatepark and got Bam Margera to start skating street. As time went on, Bam Margera got sponsored. In a wise move, Bam Margera decided to quit school and move to California to pursue skateboarding (even though this is rarely a wise move). This was probably during the mid 1990s. Continue reading →
Lot’s of San Francisco hill bombing and tranny skating. Pretty typical video for a mid-90s skate vid. Very home video style. The opening scene is pretty crazy – long-ass hill bomb in the rain. Continue reading →
This article was written for skateboarders and hopefully you will figure out that elskateshop.com is a skateboard shop. After speaking with skateboarders and receiving thousands of sponsor me tapes we figured this topic needed to be addressed. Continue reading →
This is from that weird era when there were two companies: Baker and Bootleg. They had the same font in their logos. Both teams kind of had the same demeanor. It was almost like Girl and Chocolate – but it wasn’t. They were two completely different companies ran out of two different distributions.