The great raconteur/author/porn specialist/general miscreant Chris Nieratko sits down for an illuminating chat with Stevie Williams in Philadelphia’s famed Love Park, a sort of ground zero for skating and home base to the skating icon and DGK founder. As fans of Williams know, Love Park was the originating locale for his 90s crew of “Dirty Ghetto Kids” that would add a Philly-tinged flavor to street skating.
The at-times quite forthright interview covers Stevie’s love for his hometown, and what it was like skating Love Park back in the day… which probably meant you were getting jacked for your board if you were a tourist. Let’s just say many skaters in Love Park didn’t have disposable income for hobbies and life-ambitions alike.
Some interesting notes about William’s rise to fame would be his fire for skating and stardom early on. At the age of 14, Stevie hitchhiked from Philly to Frisco with stars in his eyes for that very mission. Eight years later he would find that recognition in Los Angeles. He would then go on to some serious acclaim: ranking #27 in the list of most influential skaters of all time by Transworld Skateboarding and scoring sponsorships by a long list of brands including the likes of Supra, G-Shock, 9five Eyewear, Gold, Grizzly Griptape, Venture, Diamond Supply Co., Beats by Dre, Bones Bearings, and Asphalt Yacht Club (AYC), as well as making appearances in multiple Tony Hawk games.
When asked about the source of the DGK (“Dirty Ghetto Kids”), the name really says it all. As Williams explains: “…a bunch of kids from different neighborhoods in Philly. We was like anti Ricky Oyola, Matt Reason, and all those dudes. At the time, they didn’t really want photographers taking photos of us. Sort of like, ‘Don’t take photos of them. They just dirty ghetto kids.'”
An interesting aside is when pressed for his most important influence in skating, Williams claimed it was Christian Slater in Gleaming the Cube. Back in the day, he claims that was all you really had in terms of skater inspirations in Philly, which makes the tale of his trek across the states toward skate-dom even more compelling. Watch the video below for the whole 12-minute interview.
Stevie’s famed switch frontside bluntside and other pics after the Jump…