Dave Snaddon interview

Interview and photos by Chris Johnson

Right, what can I say about Dave, I’ve known him for quite a few years now and can definitely tell you that it’s always a pleasure to hang out with him, be it on a skate mission, chilling or having a scratch session on the Turn tables. Dave’s one of those guys who doesn’t take himself too seriously and after a good stress out session, he can always take the piss out of himself for losing it.

His constant high level of skating has earned him well deserved regular Magazine and Video appearances as well as an array of quality sponsors and a pro board with us at Motive.

Dave never likes to be defeated when trying to make a trick and sometimes goes on an emotional rollercoaster in order to triumph, occasionally resulting in some comedy moments as I’m sure he would admit, but all in all shows a great deal of passion, heart and determination towards his skating.

Besides skating Dave also is an amazing DJ and has also been trying his hand at music production over the last few years which has led to his first record release which will be coming out soon, if it’s half as good as his skating it should be well worth a listen. Peace. – Rob Selley.

Dave, you seem to have been around for as long as most people’s memories can remember, for those of us that can’t remember all the relevant details, where are you from, how old are you and where are you living right now?

I am 24 yrs old, I’m originally from Lyme Regis, but I have lived a few places since then. I lived in Nottingham for around 6 months when I was 16, that’s when I shot my Haunts with Horsely for Sidewalk, then I moved to Exeter for a few years which was cool and I have now been living in Bristol for the last 4 years which has been amazing.

How did you first discover skateboarding in a quiet place like Exeter?

Living in Exeter was cool and a good laugh, I met loads of good friends there and skating was real good fun. There’s not much of a street skating scene there just a few nice parks to skate. Flowerpots is the main one we skated, nothing serious just mellow sessions learning new tricks and stuff.

Below: Kickflip Elephant and Castle, London.

When I was a kid one of the older boys took me to watch an Osiris demo in Bristol, I was about 12 and super excited to see Dave Snaddon and who ever else was there anyway he didn’t turn up and I got given a massive t-shirt with his name on the back and a massive Osiris logo on it. After that demo, I ended up getting hooked up by Osiris and I still have Dave’s T shirt hanging up!!! -Dylan Hughes.

What made you make the leap from the sleepy back water to the one of Britain’s heaviest scene?

To get coverage and take photos I needed to mission to places, Bristol was the main place and was amazing to skate. I needed to move somewhere where there was a better scene as it’s super quite in Exeter, there’s no photographers or filmers. I moved to Bristol cuz the scene is amazing and it’s super productive for getting coverage and there’s loads of chillin’ places to skate and just hang out, there are always amazing filmers like Ciaran O’Connor, who I filmed my Savoir Faire and Motive Skateboards’ Dimensions part, and George, Louis, Shicken who are always down for filming.

As for Magazine coverage, Leo Sharp was always on for missions which was amazing. Bristol is an amazing city, I have met so many friends here and skating is amazing. I live 2 mins away from Dean Lane so have chillin’ sessions down there loads, it’s getting done up by Wheelscape in the near future so it’s going to be 10 times as good, can’t wait for that!

What was the transition like for you? Did you go from undiscovered local lad to the dude getting all the coverage and the hook ups?

When I was in school it was a bit like that cuz to get sponsored living in a sea side town doesn’t really happen that often. We used to skate the sea front in Lyme and was an amazing place to grow up and skate but I didn’t expect at all to get sponsored. I can remember when I got my check out in Sidewalk my friend brought a copy into school and I couldn’t believe it.

My parents were always super supportive and gave me lifts to comps and jams, which was a big help. It was so good getting packages sent too, Matt Law is a legend fully appreciate everything he and everyone at projects did for me. At the minute, I’m living in Bristol there’s a lot going on always projects on the go, I live with Nicky ‘Hammer House’ Howells so were always going on missions filming and stuff it’s amazing!!

Below: Backside 5050 to Feeble Grind, West Brompton, London.

Dave ‘Snaddz’ Snaddon is a unique part of UK skateboarding, he brings to the table a style and standard so original it’s super hard to draw a comparison with any other names in Europe. His Epic pop and super human balance is only matched by his over the top sense of humor, undoubtedly the funniest person I’ve ever met. This winning combo of original, natural talent on a skateboard, and a personalty to match, is what makes Dave one of the best, and he’s gonna be here for a long time to come, upping the level of British skateboarding all the way.-Layth Sami.

Apart from the recent Motive DVD and other related trips, what else have up to as far as traveling and filming?

Well Dimensions took quite a while to film and towards the deadline it took some serious effort to get things finished to a standard we were happy with. I had like a week left to film some enders for my part so had to go out with a head on to get some good shit. Since it’s been finished I have been chillin’ for a month or so, just going out skating and having a laugh, nothing serious. We also do some work for Wheelscape skate parks where we go to a new park they have built and skate; make an edit to promote them, which is really good.

As far as filming goes haven’t really filmed much in the last month, there is some DC stuff coming up which I’m filming for soon and in the new year I’ll get back out with Ciaran, Rye, George, Lui, Shicken to film some new stuff. I have some footage in the Bristol’s Finest DVD but only a few tricks I think, that video just came out this week and is sick with new stuff from hammer house Howells and some awesome stuff of Flynn! I just got back from Barca, went there for a few days skating, just chillin’ though which was nice, no pressure to film, just did loads of Ollie’s and 5050’s ha ha!

Right: Switch Frontside Flip, Dublin.

Obviously Bristol is known for its music and D’n’B culture, how did you discover and get into making music and what’s the deal with the record you’ve got out on release?

I got into music when I was quite young. I always listened to Hip Hop, Reggae and stuff when I was younger. As far as mixing and producing…. I started mixing about 8 yreas ago and started producing about 4 years ago.

I used to play out a lot when I lived in Exeter playing Dn’B which was cool but there’s a lot more happening music and skating wise in Bristol.

I play out a bit in Bristol but I’m trying to get my head down and get some good tracks on the go before I push the music stuff. I have a track called ATTACK which I did with Interface which is out round about now on Chronic Records, Bryan G’s label, getting played by quite a few DJ’s on Radio 1 Extraand DNBTV etc stoked out with that.

Now Snaddz is on another level of comedy stress far far beyond the rest of us. Hockey Temper Kerry Getz & Anthony Van Engelen might be able to chop down a sign post with the edge of the board or smash a deck clean in two with a well aimed cricket-style fast bowl, but Snaddz is a true innovator with the despair of filming…It seems he sucks up all of the world’s anguish and focuses it through himself in one outburst, with my personal favorite was the solemn delivery of “I just can’t express how angry I am” before burying his face in his hands. -Ciaran O Connor.

Do you get as obsessed when making music as you do while skating? And, can you draw parallels between the two creative forces?

I am obsessed with both skating and making music and they both take up a lot of time, but the way it goes is skate in the day, eve, and make tunes at night till early morning or all day when its raining. I love mixing and scratchin’ to so I’m always doing something, don’t really watch much telly unless it’s The Inbetweeners or Family Guy haha! Both are well creative but nothing can beat going skating!

What are doing as far as getting money to pay the bills? Does skating alone sort this out or do you, like most, work a job on the side?

As far as getting money I get some help through sponsors which is amazing and I’m fully lucky to have that, in the summer I didn’t work just got by but meant I could do whatever which was amazing especially as Ciaran was about loads so just went filming everyday, but now it’s winter and raining all the time I’m working to try get some money, got bills coming out my arse though so got to be done.

Below: Nollie Flip Backside Tailslide, Meanwhile 2, London.

Dave Snaddon has serious pop, facial expressions and beauty of a tash! He’s a cool fellow team rider of Motive Skateboards and DC shoes with bags of talent, a wicked sarcastic sense of humor and who is a joy to skate with. Big up the Snaddz! -Leo Smith

Like most of us, it’s been the best part of a decade (or more in some cases) since you left school and the majority of your class mates are deep in career and ‘family’ land. How different do you think your life would be if you’d never discovered skateboarding and are you always conscious of the unique opportunities for travel and experience that it continuously offers?

Yeah I look on Facebook sometimes at people in my year from school and they have full on careers and a family and stuff which is cool, but I still feel like I just left school so not up for that stuff. Skateboarding defo took me on a different path, I have seen so many places because of it, and traveling filming doing productive stuff is the best. I have had the best times looking back now traveling about with a crew, my first trip abroad with Osiris with Matt Law, Stu Graham, Gibsy and stuff. I couldn’t believe i was out there for free just skating and since then been so many places so its definitely unique.

What are your plans for the future as far as Music and Skating are concerned? Are you looking to move more heavily into the music world or try and balance the two?

My plans for the future are to get back on the filming photo missions next year filming for the next Motive DVD, Sidewalk DVD and DC stuff. Get to all the comps and jams and stuff as they’re always a laugh, and keep skating learning new tricks. Dean Lane is getting re-vamped next year so going to have a perfect block and manny pad to session which is gonna be amazing. Music stuff I’m going to keep pushing it and hopefully next year I’ll have some more stuff out, get my name out there and start playing out more, keep learning more production. I’m gonna put a mix tape out next year I think so I’ll work on that. Get my Darts up to scratch as haven’t played for a while ha ha!

Below: Backside Flip Fakie Nosegrind, Dublin.

What about your geographic location?

Bristol is sick so gonna stay here, I would like to go traveling for a bit but see what happens.

Cool, well that about finishes us off then Dave. Who would you like to thank and give a heads up to?

Heads up to all at Motive, DC, Shiner and stuff. My family, My girlfriend Lizz, everyone i skate with, all the Bristol crew, Big Up!!!

Snaddz is a cod but he’s fucking savage at skating! -Nicky Howells.

David Jasseppi Torgatelli slurpin meatball suckin’ Southerner. You don’t get a much crazier combo than that! If ever you’re lucky enough to be in the presence of him when he’s on one, you’ll quickly realise, with tears streamin’ down your face, that he’s the funniest guy on the planet. -Dan Wileman

Watch Dave’s section in the brand new Dimensions DVD from Motive Skateboards here and follow your nose on YouTube for the rest of the film.