Andrew Moore's 2006 documentary No More Heroes tells a story of a kind that rarely features in cultural histories. It's the story of the New Zealand skateboarding craze of the late 1970s, when California's skate boom set off a brief, brilliant era on wheels in an isolated country in the South Pacific.
New Zealand even had its own world-class skate park. The massive Skatopia facility in South Auckland was built from the same plans as its famous California namesake, opened by Rob Muldoon in 1978 -- and bulldozed just four years later. It embodies the story of the boom. Meanwhile, skating was being shaped in another way on Auckland's North Shore by the expansion of new suburbs, with their perfect downhill terrain:
Andy, as the national junior champion in 1979 and effectively a semi-pro skater while he was still at primary school, was right in the centre of it all. Much later, he spent five years finding long-forgotten film and photographs to build into a documentary that told the story.
Ant Timpson gave No More Heroes a shot in the 2006 film festivals, where it sold out its showings in several centres and was celebrated by people who were there at the time, and people who hadn't yet been born. It even made the news:
And that's where it ended. It was characteristic of Andy to want to have the music of the era to support the story, and the film is packed with (mostly) New Zealand music, from Bored Games' 'Joe 90' to Golden Harvest's 'I Need Your Love'. He even got Graham Brazier to narrate it. The music is inseparable from the film.
But although he was able to get a licence for the use of the music in the film for its festival showings, there was never the budget to clear it for general release. A couple of deals to clear the songs for DVD release haven't come to pass and, short of the odd copy being handed around, this is a cultural history that has been locked away.
Well, hopefully, that's about to change. Andy has had the film accepted for the Arts Foundation's Boosted crowdfunding scheme, which launched a round yesterday. He needs $25,000 to completely clear the music. Here he is explaining the case:
You can do your bit on his Boosted page here. Go on.
Splore is on for 2014, again at Tapapakanga regional park. No acts announced yet, but I'm sure the earlybird tickets will be snapped up anyway.
Over at TheAudience, One Waka are making roots-reo-dub that isn't weighed down by the usual Aotearoa-roots trappings. This is really cool:
See also The Future's Bright, who set themselves a challenge of producing a single in every month of 2013. This one's quirky:
And this is the final week of voting on TheAudience for this month's's wild-card Making Tracks grant winner. I won't beat about the bush -- I'd really like it to be Christoph El Truento. The guy's done so much off his own bat that it'd be nice to see him get the support to make a video. Here's his track again:
You can click through for a download of 'Galaxy' and/or to vote for it.
Nice edit of Malcolm McLaren's 'Double Dutch' as a chunky WAV download:
And another Karim edit:
And while Ladi6 is in Detroit putting the finishing touches on her next album, we can keep ourselves sated with this really great, fun remix by Basement Tapes:
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