history / skateboarding / Travel / video

Tent City

Last year Anti Hero’s Tent City was released on I-tunes to celebrate the ten year anniversary of its original release, and now it has been uploaded in equally high quality for you to view for free as part of the companies online box set.

I had already been skateboarding for some years when this video was first released, and I had heard nothing but admiration from the older skaters around me about the company who’s raw “just get out and do it” ethos was well respected.

I first found a copy of the Two Songs promo at some skate shop by the gallery of modern art in Glasgow, I think it was called boardwalk or something, but its long gone now. I still remember the guy behind the counter who when I told him I was looking to buy a video asked how much money I had, and when I told him “ten pound”, he told me that the only one I could afford was this 15 min promo. I will never know if he knew at the time that the cassette was in North American format and would not play in the UK. I bet he did the specky prick (the same guy convinced my little brother to spend all of his birthday money on a pair of red and black Circa JT301’s, so yeah…).

After about a three month struggle of plugging multiple VCRs together and re-recording versions of the tape my friends and I now had a watchable copy of this elusive tape, and I watched it over, and over, and over again. I clung to every clip for contextual clues as to what it was I was watching, trying to decode the bigger picture of what had been captured on this tape. I was transported with every viewing far away from my small town on the southwest Scottish coast.

And then I began to hear rumblings of another Antihero video in the works, a tour video made by vidiographers and super 8 aficionados Rick Charnoski and Buddy Nichols (“cash money vagrant” passed us by at the time) and needless to say it was an event when it finally came I was on the first train north, cash in hand.

I called up my friends from the payphone in central station to let them know I had it and what train I would be coming back on. They jumped on board at their various stops along the line and when we arrived back in Ayr we hightailed it to my dads house which was closest to the station.Teas were brewed as a few of us poured over the accompanying booklet salivating at the prospect of what lay ahead.

To say that this video changed my life may be overstating it a little, but what I saw in those 35 minuets on screed had a deep and profound impact on me without a doubt. The whole aesthetic of what was being presented appealed to me, from the grainy super 8 footage to the awkward voice overs that made you empathize with just how difficult it is to put into words that which you already know they are trying to say and have an inherent understanding of. I knew that I would never be satisfied unless i went out on my own to seek the same kind of adventure in my own life, to at least try to reach past my surrounding horizons. Now I find myself living half way across the world exploring a new vastness laid out in front of me, a little further from my front door every day.


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