Sunday, September 27, 2009

Amy Cook "Behind-the-Cover"

For two days, in the midst of a Austin Texas heat wave, carrying nothing but a camera and a smile, I captured footage of singer/songwriter Amy Cook hanging out, telling stories and doing what she does best - performing incredible music.

Amy Cook “Behind-the-Cover”, a short film produced by my new company Refueled Films, is the first in a series that will accompany my style+design publication Refueled. The idea to start documenting what goes into producing the cover feature and including it on the magazine’s website seemed like a natural progression. The goal for Refueled is to always stay current, if not on the edge, of what’s happening with online magazines - including video was the next step.

The nine minute short goes behind-the-scenes with Amy Cook while being interviewed for Refueled. Cook performs an special acoustic version of “Down to the River” from her upcoming release “Let the Light In”, talks a little about the making of the song “Saltwater” and spends some quiet time with friends down by the Colorado River in Austin, Teaxs.

A rare glimpse at an amazing artist. Produced & directed by Chris Brown and edited by award-winning editor Darrell Stevens.

You Tube:
Refueled Magazine:

Blaring at the Moment!

You have no idea about Emily Wells. I’m not even sure she’s real. She’s too cool to be real, too talented, too strange. She’s definitely a figment of my imagination, some kind of daydream. She could tour with Andrew Bird and Jay-Z and feel right at home. She plucks violin strings staccato, slides her trembling bow across them legato, plinks tiny pianos, strums ukes, snaps off healthy drum samples as if in her sleep, and loops them all together like some master seamstress. She croons with guile and moxie and something to prove then rides the beat right into an unexpected hip-hop segment. She’s really good. Maybe too good.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


DOCUMENT is a quarterly collection of photographs documenting various bike builders, their work, and their workspaces.

Independently photographed, designed, and published, GODSPEED 45/06 DOCUMENT NO. 1 features Keino Sasaki, White Knights in the House of Kolor, Walt Siegl, and the crew over at Works. It’s 8×10 Inches, 158 Pages and is available is both hard and soft cover versions.

Thanks Ms. Schulke.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

One Fast Move or I’m Gone: Kerouac’s Big Sur

He was called the vibrant new voice of his generation -- the avatar of the Beat movement. In 1957, on the heels of the triumphant debut of his groundbreaking novel, On The Road, Jack Kerouac was a literary rock star, lionized by his fans and devotees. But along with sudden fame and media hype came his unraveling, and, by 1960, Kerouac was a jaded cynic, disaffected from the Beat culture he helped create and tortured by self-doubt, addiction and depression.

Desperate for spiritual salvation and solitude, as well as a place to dry out, he secretly retreats to Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s rustic cabin in the Big Sur woods. But his plan is foiled by his own inner demons, and what ensues that summer becomes the basis for Kerouac’s gritty, yet lyrically told, semi-autobiographical novel, Big Sur.

One Fast Move or I’m Gone: Kerouac’s Big Sur, takes the viewer back to Ferlinghetti’s cabin and to the Beat haunts of San Francisco and New York City for an unflinching, cinematic look at the compelling events the book is based on. The story unfolds in several synchronous ways: through the narrative arc of Kerouac’s prose, told in voice-over by actor and Kerouac interpreter, John Ventimiglia (of HBO’s The Sopranos); through first-hand accounts and recollections of Kerouac’s contemporaries, whom many of the characters in the book are based on such as Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Carolyn Cassady, Joyce Johnson and Michael McClure; by the interpretations and reflections of writers, poets, actors and musicians who have been deeply influenced by

Kerouac’s unique gifts like Tom Waits, Sam Shepard, Robert Hunter, Patti Smith, Aram Saroyan, Donal Logue and S.E. Hinton; and by stunning, High Definition visual imagery set to original music composed and performed by recording artist, Jay Farrar of Son Volt, with additional performance by Benjamin Gibbard of Death Cab for Cutie.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

4th Annual El Cosmico Gathering - Marfa, Texas

4th Annual Trans-Pecos Festival of Music and Love - October 9-11, 2009 - El Cosmico, Marfa, Texas

Music - Two nights of music on solar powered sound stage.
Friday Night: Amy Cook, Ben Kweller Patty Griffin.
Saturday Night: Hotel Brotherhood, Tift Merritt Heartless Bastards.
Music is included in the price of camping. If you aren't camping, $15 for one night or $25 for both. CASH ONLY at the front gate unless you pre-register.

Bring your portable dwelling and sleep on the ground. If you want to bring a trailer or RV, please email about your machine and organizers will see if they can accommodate it. Note there are not RV hookups onsite. Camping (includes musical events) $75 per person for the weekend.

Bring your own provisions for grilling. Barbecue pits will be available on site. Some food will be available at the Get Go and Pueblo markets, or at Farm Stand Marfa on Saturday morning. Jo's coffee will be available in the mornings. Beer and wine will be on sale Friday and Saturday evening until the law allows. Bring cash!

$75 per person to camp for the weekend, $40 for one night (music included). Pre-register here. If you are interested in volunteering for this event in exchange for free camping and music, please send email.


You asked for it, you got it! Choka, a surf term for bitchin', awesome, cool, great etc..., is the title of my new blog that debuts Monday, Sept. 14th. My whole life has evolved around being on top of one type of board or another, so it was only a matter of time before I got around to presenting that vibe in a blog - surf, skate & snow. Check it out guys & gals.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Number 9, number 9, number 9...

Wednesday, September 9, 2009 (09.09.09) The release of the original Beatles catalogue, which has been digitally re-mastered for the first time, for worldwide CD release. A cool day for fans.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Issue 4

Refueled Magazine. Issue 4. Drops November 1.

Saturday, September 5, 2009


I haven't heard anything this brilliant in a very long time. Seether's remake of Wham's "Careless Whisper" is a complete mix of the way I look at design and fashion.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Surf Filmmakers T. Campbell & A. Lesser

Oceanside pro Julie Cox talks with Tiffany Campbell and Andria Lesser, the ladies of Villa Villa Cola Productions, shortly after the Encinitas premier of their lady surf film Dear & Yonder. Three-years in the making, the project documents all manner of women in the water and is the very first of it’s kind.

Julie Cox: Together you’re known as Villa Villa Cola Productions—what’s the background of the name?

Tiffany Campbell: A big hero of mine as a kid was Pippi Longstocking. She has this really wild, adventurous spirit and she encapsulated our feelings about skateboarding and of being really wild and free, and living on your own terms. The name of her house was Villa Villekulla and I adapted it to make it more American. At first the company was my sister, Nicole, and another girl who skated, and me. We started making zines with random stories, horoscopes and photos of us that we’d pass out, but there was no one to give them to; girls didn’t really skate. So we decided to go across the country. We made a video and made T-shirts, and people were stoked on our idea, but they still didn’t know any girls who skated to give the stuff to. So we came home and started over with a new idea. We decided to focus more on videos and started a little collective with other artists and videographers. We made a few videos but our biggest project was a skate video called Getting Nowhere Faster.

Julie Cox: Andria, how did you get involved?

Andria Lesser: I actually met Tiffany’s sister skateboarding in San Francisco about eleven years ago. I was skating with a bunch of my guy friends from North Carolina and saw Nicole and her friend Rebecca. I was so nervous because I had never met other girls who skated but they asked me to go skate with them and through them I met Tiffany.

Julie: Dear and Yonder is technically a “surf movie,” but it also covers skateboarding, sailing, sewing and shaping. It all feels like a celebration of freedom and it’s really empowering—how did you branch out beyond just showing the actual surfing footage?

Tiffany: All that’s out there is shortboarding movies about women, and I think [shortboarding] is really intimidating. Not many women are going to pursue it if they want to get in the water. There is more than one way to experience the ocean, so we wanted to open up different avenues and show these women who have a very normal side. They’re not superheroes, but at the same time they are extraordinary people, so you can really relate to them. First, we want you to be able to relate to them as people, then, “Wow, they’re doing that and they’re not that different from me! I can be a bodysurfer, or I can sail, or I can be a longboarder or a shortboarder.”

Andria: We wanted girls to see the all the possibilities.

Julie: How did Villa Villa Cola’s focus shift from skate to surf?

Tiffany: It really came about organically. We had tossed the idea of doing a women’s surf movie around, but the impetus for doing it was Liz Clark. We were following her journey sailing around the world and we were frustrated that we couldn’t see more, on video or something. [Tiffany appeals to the sky ‘I want to see this girl!’] Originally we thought we would do something small, but then once Liz was on board we knew it was bigger than that.

Julie: What was the general reaction when you told people you were making a women’s surf film?

Andria: Some people were excited and asked questions, but it didn’t resonate with a lot of others.

Tiffany: The women who are really in the surf scene and have been in it for a while were like “women’s surfing needs this!” It hasn’t been done for women’s surfing yet; delving into the stories, using 16mm film and traveling to amazing places. These women were really excited and hungry for it, and that is what got me really excited—people with all that energy. It is so inspiring, regardless of whether you surf or not. I think anyone who watches the film will see that it is a human story, not just a surfer’s story.

Julie: You have a pretty distinguished cast of surfers in the film—how did you find them? Were there certain stories that you sought out?

Tiffany: Some of the girls, like Ashley Lloyd, we knew from Santa Cruz and we knew she was shaping boards and thought that was fascinating. And Belinda Baggs, we love her surfing and Thomas [Campbell, Tiffany’s husband] is friends with her, so that was an easy choice.

Andria: Judith Sheridan [the bodysurfer in Dear & Yonder] is this Ocean Beach secret legend and I’d never met her but had heard of her and was fascinated. She was so mysterious. We had friends who knew her but she was the one we were most nervous to meet because she is outside of our peer group a little bit (she’s a geophysicist). We were thrilled when she said she would work with us.

Julie: Any advice for aspiring filmmakers?

Tiffany: My advice for filmmakers is to get educated, not necessarily through school, but find a mentor, someone who can teach you a base of knowledge. If that’s your passion, you’re going to find a way.

Andria: This is my first film project. Tiffany had me get into still photography and that was the best recommendation. And it’s cool and okay to take yourself seriously. You’re going to make something awesome. What you’re doing is important.

Julie: How about advice for girls getting into surfing or skating?

Andria: For me, it was great to have a group of girlfriends to do it with and to go out with girls who were better than me so I could watch and learn from them. We just tried to learn as much as we could because we were passionate about it.

Photos: Liz Cockrum, Tiffany Cambell

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


After putting in many hours scratching, etching, burnishing and layering, art director Bill Douglas bailed on this design for issue 14 of Coupe magazine at the 23rd hour. Looking back he wish he hadn't. So do I.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Art by Rick Albano.