“I just want to thank Frankie Hill for showing us the way.” – Pat Duffy
Interview + photos by Jon Steele.
What’s your favorite trick?
My favorite trick is the 360 flip double flip.
W ho inspired you most at an early age?
It’s hard to say. I get influenced by most skaters these days, anyone pushing the limits.
Who inspires you most now?
I am influenced by anyone pushing skating forward these days .
Were you aware you were changing the game of Skateboarding when you were at your prime?
I had no clue I was changing the game. When I was at my prime I was just trying to stay at the top of innovation at the time, I saw many skaters doing amazing tricks and wanted to add something of my own to skating at the time .
What has been the best thing about skateboarding you have experienced?
The best thing I have experienced has been the drive and commitment it takes to make tricks, when it takes everything you have to make a difficult trick, and you just don’t give up, this lesson has shown me anything in this world is possible as long as you don’t give up.
Favorite people to skate with?
My favorite people I like to skate with are skaters with raw talent, skating with robots isn’t fun for me, Brandon Chapmen , Jake Bradley, Kit Ericson (rip). These days I skate by myself. I only have limited time to skate making it near impossible to cordinate time to skate with other skaters these days .
Most out of hand story?
Most out of hand story was when me and Stacy Peralta went to UCSB to film for the “Ban This” video. I jumped to board slide down a fourteen stair rail, on one of my attempts my foot got caught on the rail and flipped my feet up over my head, and Stacy was filming at the bottom he yelled “we’re done! we’re done!” and started to walk up the stairs. I ran back up the stairs and yelled down to him, “no“, and he kept on walking up the stairs. So I just ran and jumped on the rail, he raised the camera and caught the slide , that’s the make in the video. I knew if i didnt seize the moment I would lose a great opertunity for a big trick in the video .
Tell me something about Frank Hill that no one might know..
I am super competitive. When my knee blew up I would pray to die in my sleep every night for two years. The thought of not being able to push myself in skating was too much for me to handle at the time, I run on passion, when I have non left I feel like I’m already dead.
If you could go back and do it again/differently, would you? and what would you change??
I wouldn’t do it differently because many people told me to slow down, but pushing skating and tricks is what I like most about skating. Taking my foot off the gas would have changed my feeling towards skating, even if I could have the chance to do things different I don’t think I could. I only have one speed, I don’t think I could have done things different even if given the chance. But doing things differently I think I would of taken Gonz up on the chance to skate for Blind. Skating with the Blind team back then would have been a dream come true.
Well you don’t have to be the most talented skater around or the smartest person in your school to become great, challenges eyes this to me is pure victory, sometimes victory isn’t clean and smooth, sometimes it’s dirty and bloody, but the result is the same, Victiory is victory and the feeling you get from acomplishing a major goal is the same, it’s the best feeling in the world.
Favorite board graphic of yours?
I like the Bulldog graphics, my and my team manager went to Amsterdam on vacation and the bulldog coffee shop had the best weed, so I said how about a bulldog for my graphics and there the concept was born .
How is your body feeling now a days?
My left knee has no cartilage left so it’s bone on bone, can’t do the big jumps anymore, but the rest of my body feels good, if I could I would break every piece of my body ’til there was nothing left if I could.
Do you skate everyday?
I don’t skate everyday. I try to skate once a week on the weekends, I would like to skate more but I need to work the day job to pay the bills.
Do you practice Yoga or stretching / body work?
I don’t practice yoga or body work, in a perfect world i would live a different life. I wake up at six a.m. commute to work, one hour work, seven hours commute back, one hour get food, pass out do it again , doesn’t leave much time for much else .
What do you do when you’re not skating?
I like to renovate my property – I’m building studio condos on my property. It’s fun to see the work pay off when I see the final product, in a perfect world I would rather walk and do light exercises to strengthen my body, but time is definitely an issue.
Favorite place to travel?
I liked Tazmaina – a little island off of Australia, it had great scenery and Guinness beer – the best in the world. In closing I would like to say that in life no matter how bad things get, try to be positive. When you give everything to something and when it ends it’s hard to see past it, but the most important thing in your life is you, never give up, and you can never be defeated. Frankie Hill – the battle continues.
Frankie Hill “Ban This”
Frankie Hill – “Propaganda”
Frankie Hill Documentary – part 1
Frankie Hill Documentary – part 2
Frankie Hill Documentary – part 3
Really nice interview and great videos.
This makes me want to get back out there and skate.
Frankie Hill will always rule. Anytime I went out to sk8 massive gaps… I would throw in Frankie’s Propaganda part to get me motivated. Thanks to Frankie for life!
It is actually Tasmania, not Tazmania and it isn’t a small island – it is a state of Australia.
Frankie’s section in Ban This absolutely blew me away. I had never seen anything like it. My mind began racing after watching that, just thinking off all of the possibilities. I remember being so bummed when I heard about him blowing his knee out. Duffy’s quote says it all. It’s truly unbelievable how Frankie’s name doesn’t come up in the same context as Natas, Gonz and Duffy.
Frankie is such a badass. He was doing street tricks, jumps and gaps in the mid 80s most people couldn’t even imagine…and on a 10-ply brick of a board. I don’t know how he can skate with a “bone on bone” knee. A year ago, I had 15% of my meniscus removed and I also have a small defect on the mirroring femur cartilage (bike crash). If I even think about walking in anything other than a straight line, they rub against each other and it hurts like hell…skating is completely out of the question.