Ben Raemers RIP – tribute videos

Ben Raemers – Xmas Jam winner 2008

It’s with a heavy heart that we, like you, are having to deal with the news of Ben Raemers‘ death. The news only broke 36 hrs ago but already tributes are pouring over the web from those who met him, skated with him and vibed off his wonderful presence.

We are pretty blown away to wake up to video tributes already.

Rob Mathieson and friends worked tirelessly to complete this incredible tribute at Victoria Park where Ben conquered the cradle gap.

Isle Skateboards’ tribute on IG is also particularly moving…

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We love you Ben. ❤️

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Ben was filmed in so many countries over the years that there will be absolutely loads of footage out there dating back to when he was a tiny Essex lad destined for success at the highest levels.

It’s too early to delve into why he has left us but when the time is right, it’s worth discussing to help others, but for now take in another video tribute that popped up in our feed today and cast your mind back to how much this guy brought to skateboarding.

Rest in Peace, Ben. You are sorely missed already. x

Special Brew and Pink Speedos – Lemmy RIP

Illustration: Word Repeats

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Lemmy touched a staggering amount of people’s lives in his 70 rock n’roll years on Planet Earth and almost all of these experiences were positive and genuine. Sure, he could be a cantankerous bastard and equally told as many people to fuck off – but they probably deserved it. He was a man of rare integrity, conviction and passion and he compromised for no one.
 
When news broke of his death the outpouring of affection was vast and overwhelming. Everyone had a story to tell, a memory to share. From punks to rockers to every aspect of alternative culture, to the mainstream who held him high as a figurehead of rock, his influence is far-reaching. But the stories keep coming back to what a gentleman he was. He always had time for people and didn’t fall into the rock star ego trap. His manager Todd Singerman recently stated: “He was one of the kindest men I’ve ever met. The proof would be to go ask his fans. He never denied someone an autograph, he bought the fans drinks instead of them buying him drinks”.

I first met Lemmy when I was ten years old at a charity football event that my father took me to. I’m pretty certain that Motörhead’s legendary frontman wasn’t kicking a ball around but he was there, I got his autograph and he patted my head. I thought he was cool as fuck. Then in my early twenties I interviewed him for Metal Hammer magazine around the time of the release of their ‘1916’ album. He turned up at the offices at 10.30am with a four pack of Special Brew, sat by my desk, drank the lot and churned out pearls of wisdom after wisdom. I was in total awe of him. I had to do the ‘single’s reviews’ and played some of the latest rock releases on a turntable by my desk for him to comment on, one of which was ‘Sliver’ by Nirvana which I was raving about. “ Yeah, I like that one”, he said. “It’s really interesting and they’re having a go at something by themselves and not just copying someone else. Good one.” It’s fair to say that drinking Special Brew and spinning vinyl with Lemmy on a week day morning is a memory I’ll cherish.

Ph: “Despite my appearance, believe me, I am a gentleman”

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My wife has a fantastic Lemmy story that I want to share. Her and a friend were nearing the end of a US road trip in the early 90s, ending up in LA. They were staying at a rough motel at the wrong end of Sunset Boulevard and a gang had tried to break into their room the previous night, so they were scared to return. They were at The Rainbow and started drinking with Lemmy who was famously a regular, and told him their story. He showed concern at two young vulnerable girls with little money and invited them back to his apartment rather than return to the motel late at night. They agreed with some trepidation given Lemmy’s reputation with the ladies, but his behaviour was entirely chivalrous. They spent a fun-filled 2 days hanging out in his apartment, drinking endless bourbon and cokes being regaled with debauched stories from a life of hell-raising. He played them new tracks which were to feature on ‘Bastards’, the album he was working on at the time, allowed them to nose through his collection of Nazi memorabilia whilst he sunbathed in bright pink speedos, and (at their direction) posed for some hilariously inappropriate souvenir polaroids. 
 
The stories go on and on. It’s been heartbreaking over the last year to see Lemmy looking so frail and ill. We all wanted him to live forever. If Lemmy is around still, then all is well with the world. When they played Hyde Park in 2014 with Black Sabbath, Lemmy really struggled and they weren’t on good form. It was so sad to witness. But then a few months later Motorhead played at Wembley Arena with The Damned and they were back to full power and awesome again. That night they were incredible. The greatest rock n’roll band of all time, one more time.

Ph: Rummaging through Lemmy’s dressing-up box



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Slash declared “People who live, sleep and breathe rock n’roll, the lifestyle and the attitude. There’s only a handful of guys who are still alive who represent that. And Lemmy represents that to me.”
 And now he’s gone, taking the loudest band in the world with him. My absolute hero. A benchmark in integrity and passion, principled, opinionated and unapologetic, “I don’t regret much. Fuck ’em.” We will never see his like again. A true rock n’roll warrior. Rest in noise Lemmy.

Words: James Sherry

NOTE: It’s well known that Lemmy collected Nazi regalia but essentially he was more an anarchist than a fascist. Worth noting that both women in these polaroid photos do not support Nazi fantasies.

Lewis Marnell RIP

lewismarnellrip This weekend has left most skateboarders in shock following the news of Lewis Marnell leaving us. He was one of the nicest skateboarders you will ever meet and cut his trade on a deck with much grace and style.

Riding for Almost Skateboards, Lewis made a lot of friends due to his incredible character and will be sorely missed by many. Skateboarding has lost one of the best. Our thoughts go out to all of his family and friends worldwide.

He came by the Crossfire office unplanned to say hello back in 2008 whilst on a tour. You can read his words here.

Lewis Marnell RIP.

Heavy Artillery Crew’s graf tribute to Adam Yauch

Following the awful news of Adam Yauch aka MCA from the Beastie Boys passing this month, MSK / Heavy Artillery Crew‘s Aroe from Brighton has recreated the 1986 “Licensed to Ill” album cover as a fitting Rest In Peace tribute. The piece is 12ft high, 64ft long and ‘kin amazing. Take it in.

Speaking to people who knew him well this week within the music industry, Yauch was known as the Beastie Boy who would always ask if you were OK, would always enquire if you needed anything and would always include you in his plans. We almost convinced the band to play a secret show at Bay 66 Skatepark around the launch of the “To The 5 Boroughs” album but they chose to play the ICA instead. With all the wishes in the world behind our proposals it didn’t happen but it was a pleasure to have just appreciated what this band have delivered us over the years and that’s enough for me.

MCA will be sorely missed by us all here at Crossfire. Our love goes out to all family and friends. RIP.

Photo: AVK/Datachump

Listen to this tribute mixtape by Eclectic Method.

Jackass star Ryan Dunn killed in car crash

ryan_dunn_jackassTributes from Jackass fans and skateboarders are flooding the internet following the death of Ryan Dunn today. The Jackass star reportedly crashed his black Porsche 911 GT3 just after 2:30am when it veered off the road, flipped railings, and tumbled into woods before erupting in flames. The impact of the crash has been reported to have killed Dunn and a passenger.

Many tributes via twitter and facebook are being posted online tonight including messages from the Dirty Sanchez lads. Lee Dainton tweeted: “sad news, RIP Ryan Dunn… thoughts going out to his family friends and fans around the world…” and partner in crime Matt Pritchard who says, “Terrible news on the death of Ryan Dunn, so sad. Thoughts go out to family friends and @jackassworld crew.”

Reacting to the loss of his good friend, Johnny Knoxville also posted on twitter. “Today I lost my brother Ryan Dunn. My heart goes out to his family and his beloved Angie. RIP Ryan , I love you buddy.” Bam Margera is yet to comment on his account although this afternoon his Mum was quoted on local radio station that “it was like losing a son.”

Our thoughts go out to Ryan Dunn’s family and friends. RIP.

Element – Ray Barbee Tribute 8″

Getting excited about reissues really shows one’s age, but the truth of matter is, anything that gets another shelf life opportunity usually means it was the dog’s testicles the first time round and therefore deserves this well overdue encore!

Element recently added Ray to their team of super humans and when they announced the re-release of the famous “stitchhead” graphic, Ray’s first ever pro board released in 1989 (artwork by Sean Cliver), not only did I shit myself with excitement about the graphic, I also came unannounced and endlessly when I learnt it would be pressed on a featherlight construction deck in my favourite shape (*14) and size, 8 x 31.75! The only downside to this was that ultimately, it meant I had to take it out the wrapper and skate it, but this was after all the initial intent of the original, so I guess mounting it on my wall was never an option.

This board cannot be faulted in any way, it’s flawless! The size, the press, the shape, the weight and obviously this ltd graphic is the best combination of plies I’ve ever had the privilege of kicking around and I cannot share my excitement enough, I love it. Element have introduced a number system for choosing the shape that suits your riding style best, this is by far the coolest thing introduced into skateboarding as far as I’m concerned, there’s nothing quite like finding familiarity under your feet when hitting a fresh pool, rail or ledge. Ray’s board is pressed in *14, check out Element’s site to find the shape that works for you.

Have I mentioned this is the best board I’ve ever ridden? Sorry, have I not? Well, it’s true, this board caters for my needs on every level possible, bowls, parks and street, this deck is the perfect all rounder. It’s super light too, which makes it snappy and responsive. Skateboarding…it’s a beautiful thing.

2P