chrome ball incident #611: finesse

Figured I'd start the week off right with a little Lord Pep.

The mid-90's were a bit dull in comparison to the explosion of innovation and weirdness the beginning of the decade brought. Fortunately, the rise of East Coast spots like Pulaski and Love made things a bit more interesting. The Funky Technician was always right there in the mix.

And this still gets me hyped.

Video links courtesy of Quartersnacks.

Special thanks to Damon over at Deluxe. Good things are on the way.


SKM said...


but anyone can explain me how did Pepe died?


Jacob said...

It was a brain aneurysm if I'm remembering correctly.

Also, dude had the best switch backside flips.

Olof said...

One of the best styles ever for sure and the main reason for me wanting to get a goldfront and learn switch backside flips.
Nice reference to one the Wild Pitch OGs by the way, now I have to put on Yes You May.

DIGZ said...

I had the good fortune to know Pepe for many years and was around to witness his skills on the stuntwood for countless hours. It's unfortunate that his skating was not as documented as it would have been in todays world.

The tricks he would just attempt for the first time looked like he had worked on them for days. And he could do really hard tricks fast and with solid pop.

And as great as he was on the skateboard, he was just as good at being a friend. One of the best guys to have as your billiards partner too.

We used to have a pretty solid crew that would stay out all night sk8ing underground garages in the winter that would usually be Chris Hall, Andy Stone, Eben Jahnke, Jimmy Pelletier, Pepe, Jim Gordy, Brian Connolly, Chris Hollister, Randy Bobbitt, and myself.

That Element ad of the fakie 5-0 on the curb was from one of the garages we would hit up at 2 am during the bone chilling DC winters.

In the summer we could stay out all night at Pulaski skating the ledges or just drinking and smoking blunts or sometimes enjoy a little psychedelic mushroom session.

I love this blog, and I visit it often, and I love the interviews. If I had an interview wish list it would include Julien Stranger, Andy Howell, Matt Hensley, Kris Markovich, Reese Forbes, and Mark Gonzales to name just a few. Not sure how doable these are, but these are some of my favorites that probably have lots of interesting memories to recount. Oh yeah, I'll add Barker Barrett and Derek Rinaldi too.

Thanx, Late.

Anonymous said...


I always appreciated Pepe but he lacked coverage. Maybe because he didn't live in California.

Sad that we can't enjoy more of him in this dimension.

Jeremy M. Lange said...

Without a doubt one of the most underrated skateboarders. He and some of the other DC heads came through NC years ago and he just killed everything. There is still a flat rail downtown, around 3 ft high, that I have only see people ollie once or twice. Pep NOLLIED it first try.This was around 1993 or 1994. And he was just a nice guy to boot. Thanks for the memories.

Keith said...

I thought the well of Pepe ads had dried up. Nice that there was enough to do another post.

One of my favourites all time... good pop, good style and with power.

matthew said...

One of the illest moves i've seen pep do down a set of stairs at pulaski was an ollie backside shifty to late frontside shove-it. That was pep. While everyone else was struggling to do the new hot move, he was taking it to the next level with effortless style. He was riding for planet earth, which gives you an idea how long ago it really was. rest in peace.

chops said...

SKM, I believe he passed from injuries involving a non-skating related fall down some steps.


Thanks DIGZ. And your wishlist largely reflects my wishlist too.

Thanks guys.

Anonymous said...

dude, pep didnt give a flying fuck about what people expected of him, how he was percieved to strangers, or if he would ever shine again... that dude shined everyfuckingday of his life...hed shoot the shit with ANYBODY, was fresher than EVERYBODY, and skated like NOBODY... they dont make niggas like pepe no more... dude was the living truth, 100% skater even after everything fell apart. plus he knew his destiny making his journey damn near biblical. respect

Anonymous said...

another thing about pep -- when he had been laying low for so long, and then out of nowhere came out with that sequence of the boardslide-to-fakie-5-0 and popping out in the middle at pulaski...no comparisons. THE first guy to bring back the combo, and with such a legitimate and eye-pleasing one, was killer.

also, that pic of him doing the popped switch kickflip b/s tailslide on that san diego out ledge reminds me of smolik, and how fucking hard he killed that spot in his kind of forgotten tsa part. among others, switch flip b/s 5-0 AND f/s 50-50 backside 180 in the same part in '96??

joshua said...

RIP pepe

Love this dudes skating, nice post chops.

Dewey N. Fox said...

As an early/mid-90s Maryland skate rat, Pep was the living end, the guy we absolutely worshiped. I think everyone in my crew had his CCS cover taped up on his wall, where he's doing the switch-flip b/s tailslide. We watched his Fine Artists part hundreds of times. We wore the brown Airwalks that he had, then we tried to hunt down pairs of Nike Bruins when we saw him wearing them in the 411 Metrospective. It was so rad knowing there was a guy out here who was just as good as any of the West Coast heads.
I never got to see him skate in person though, which bums me out. Capital did a demo at Kelly's Skatepark in Baltimore County, but Pep was on the sidelines with (I think) a blown-out ankle. On the occasions I managed to get down to Pulaski, he wasn't around (I did see Sean Mullendore there, which was mind-blowing. He was probably the most powerful skater I've ever seen in real life).