When I was a little kid, my father was still lifeguarding, so I was around the beach a lot. I started surfing at about 13 and for the next 20 years, lifeguards were little more than another inconvenience between Memorial Day and Labor Day. But the last few years, some of my friends have become lieutenants and even captains of local beach patrols. Here in Ship Bottom, we have a great relationship with the guards.
This summer, I was hired to co-direct a mini-documentary for Red Bull Surf and Rescue. The program sheds a light on the watermen and women of New Jersey - the history and the passion for lifeguarding. This was my first time being so involved in a film project. I learned a ton and sincerely enjoyed doing this. I did, however, see parts of Randy Townsend's upper legs that I can never unsee.
I have to thank my bud Keith Wescott at Red Bull for putting me on the crew, the Funk family, Jenna Parker, and Randy for being so easy to work with, Robbie Beach for nailing such crucial shots, and Chris Immel for teaching me more in a week than I have learned in a really long time.
In early 2014 I was invited by my buds at Jetty to get on a Nicaragua trip to gather marketing content for the coming year. It was non stop laughs the whole time. I also got to spend some real time with team rider, Tim Daley of Brigantine.
Eastern Surf Magazine included Daley in this year's Who Da Guy Issue, #168, August, 2015. I really appreciate surfers like Daley who know a thing or two about hard work in the real world.
"You know that ace on the surf trip? He’s not a pro, but he rips. He’s the good-looking one, but you never catch him in the mirror. He’s got a six-pack and sculpted pecs, but you don’t see him exercising. When the surf is firing, he puts himself into the slot of the day. And when it’s shithouse, he somehow finds the speed in mushy lines to crush crumbly lips. He gets friendly with the boat driver and somehow manages to nab a Spanish mackerel on the way back in. He never gets sunburned or spends a night barfing/shitting out some third world bacteria. Between his grasp of the language and natural disposition, he hits it off with the local ladies or some Euro backpackers. He knows exactly what to order at the bar in any country, but always holds his drink. And by the end of the night, he’s teaching a local Bad Religion chords on guitar, entertaining everyone in the room.
You want to hate him and his mustache, but in this case, you have to love him.
That guy is Brigantine’s Tim Daley."
I have always loved writing about food. This recent feature that appears in the Food and Drink Issue of the Beachcomber, edited by my friend Victoria Ford, (out now) was particularly fun.
"In the mid 2000’s, they became all the culinary rage with celebrity chefs, foodies and bloggers gushing about them. They could be found up and down the Jersey Shore. It only took another decade for them to reach LBI… sometimes we’re a little slow to catch on."
Joe Sib is the co-founder of Side One Dummy Records, the guys who have put out record by 7 Seconds, the Gaslight Anthem, Flogging Molly, the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, the Casualties, and Title Fight, and are still releasing amazing work from Pup, Restorations, and Chuck Ragan.
Sib is still running the day to day ops at Side One Dummy, but in addition to the day job, he's got a little stand up comedy career. A lot of his material is based on his experiences in the punk scene. Some folks in independent culture take themselves too seriously, so he's really refreshing. Of course, our conversations were funny as hell and we both had stories of being grown men and saving important emails from Ian MacKaye. Read the full profile I wrote for Huck Magazine.
For the last 18 years of my life, few things have influenced me as much as Hot Water Music and the solo folk career of Chuck Ragan I've been fortunate enough to hang out with him on several occasions and also interview him. The most recent was before a Red Bull Sound Select Show in New Brunswick last fall with Cory Branan, Jared Hart of the Scandals, and Matt Pryor of the Get Up Kids.
We put away a massive amount of sushi while we talked about punk, travel, fishing, and Chuck's past. When this guy tells stories about angling excursions while on tour and bringing fresh catch into a restaurant in a random city and asking them to cook it, it's priceless. He also relayed a chapter of this youth that I had never heard. He took incarceration in a juvenile detention center and turned it into something inspiring and positive.
We walked back to the Court Tavern and Chuck proceeded to blow our minds until the early hours. I reconnected with Chuck and his entire band, The Camaraderie, in Atlantic City in early December where my friend Bryan Derballa took some amazing portrait shots.