If there is one issue that stands out to me it's issue number 24. It basically got me a job in the BMX industry, or at least the first steps were made. I showed this very issue to GT Bicycles president Richard Long at a trade show in Germany and asked if he (GT Bicycles) wanted to advertise. When he saw the cover of his team rider Dave Voelker flipping off the camera and not wearing a helmet he was not amuzed.
When Richard Long turned over the page he started reading the contents page. He noted the following: "He hates GT, but still rides 4 'em" and turned to the Jon Peacy interview on page 65.
The discussion was long but he got to hear what was wrong with the GT brand at the time. I felt strong about it because I had spent some serious time with the GT riders over in California.
When I left the meeting GT was advertising in FAT, they provided stickers for the free sticker page, I was offered a new Dyno Slammer and it was okay for me to get a temporay job at GT's headquarters in the USA. I seriously wasn't expecting all that.
The new typewriter is doing its job making it possible to read the text in issue 23 which has Geoff Martin on the cover while doing some flatland riding in front of Hamel's in Mission Beach.
This issue has a lot of USA stuff in it. We visited the first Bicycle Stunt contest in Texas with the GT team, we also made it to the next round in Glendale, Arizona. Sheep Hills looked different in 1991 and we also checked out a Todd Anderson/Eddie Fiola trick show.
Jimbob reports about the East coast of the USA in two stories and we also covered several European events like the King Of Concrete, the Tourcoing France contest from March 1992, and we had a pictorial of the 1991 World's in Denmark.
We were pretty international back then with a Barrow in Furness jam report (UK), Axel Reichertz' roadtrip to Spain, European team championships in Abbeville, France, an international contest in Eindhoven (NL), and a skatehouse report from Essen, Germany.
I wonder how we did it all but somehow it worked out. Mario Schepers, Alan Peterson, Barker Barrett and Effraim Catlow got the interviews. Flip through the pages and check if you got a photo in this issue.
1991 was the year I had to join the army. Everyone had to back in the day and it was my turn. Had my personal UZI 'n shit and made it to the Corporal rank in just one year, whatever that's worth.
The best part of the 12 months in the army was that I managed to pass for my truck drivers licence. I rented a room so I did not have to live on the military base and could ride a bit after "work" and still manage to do the FAT-'zines.
The pace had slown down to only a couple of issues per year but they were stacked with stuff.
Just like issue #22:
-Did a commercial in Gran Canaria for ProSpecs shoes in 1991 -Reported from the Trier contest -Rode the Vogelsang dirt spot in Cologne -Went to Abbeville in France for a contest -Was there a contest in the Jugendpark every 4 months or something? -Mini-FAT-JAM Aarle-Rixtel -Christmas Jam report from Denmark -Muenster Monster Mastership -Skate comp in Erp -ECC report
We've arrived in 1991 with the FAT-issues. #21 has 104 pages and includes all stories from my first trip to the USA. It was the best. For years I'd been reading the american magazines and now I was there, in San fucking Diego!
Before I had put my bike together Vic Murphy called to see if I wanted to go ride some street. Hell yeah! 20 minutes later Knock knock, who's there? Vic Murphy, Pete Augustin and Kaarlo Wik.
Damn, is this for real? I hurried getting the re-welded HARO Master together to hit the streets. Wow, this was good! Places visited were Mission Trails (daily session?), Ron Wilkerson's spine vert ramp, the San Diego Home Ave ditch, Imperial Ditch, backyard pools, rode some flatland at Mission Beach, went to the Nude bowl, the 2-HIp meet the street in Palm Springs, Balboa Park, a ditch in LA, the DirtBros mini, and much more. It was a great time and you can read about it in this issue.
But there's more. Interviews with Alexis Desolneux and Eng San Kho, reports on the FAT-JAM, a trip to Longjumeau France, UK KOV report, KOC report, the Lageja '91 comp and of course free stickers and stuff.
Go back in time, when riding real street was just being developed by the DirtBros.
Let's start this review by a quote from Vic Murphy who was a regular contributor to the FAT-'zines back in the day."I ride to get better. Not to get money. Not to impress anyone. Not to improve the environment. But just to see how good I can get riding from one place to another. Some people don't understand me. Well, I don't understand them. Ride to death." Vic Murphy. D.B.I.
Issue 20 of FAT-'zine came out in the fall of 1990 right after we had finished another FAT-JAM (report in #21). We traveled around in the summer and visited the World Championships in Trier, a few VANS shows in Germany, went to the ECC in Slagharen, and we had a few lakejump sessions when it got really hot.
Interviewed people this time were Jason Jessee, Joop "Sloop" Smulders, Raymond Tabak, Frank Schnuetgen, and Dan Hubbard. We also had reports from the UK King Of Vert, a street jam in Aalborg, Denmark, the 2-Hip comps in the USA, and a full report from the contest in Cologne, Germany.
It's the first issue on the new typewriter so you can actually read the 'zine.
You know what I like about all these FAT-'zines? it gives me a nice timeline of things that happened years ago. I couldn't really remember when we started putting on the extra FAT-JAM to start off the season. Now I know. 22 April 1990. This means we've done a "Mini-FAT-JAM" for 22 years now.
It was dubbed Mini-FAT-JAM as it was a smaller version of the actual FAT-JAM. Mario Schepers seriously messed up his ankle by going Sky Hi after being towed by a moped to get some extra speed.
It was nuts and the pictures show it. We still talk about it every time we hang out at OJA and the pics help remember. What else did we have in this issue?
6 airs by Mat Hoffman on that Coca Cola quarterpipe in Bercy and boy did he go high.
Frans Swinkels got an interview, and we made a photo trip around the world starting in the USA and ending in France.
We went to Nantes, France for a contest, and the Pingel-Maier duo took care of the Tropica Contest #2. The poster was a fold out promotional piece to wear a helmet. Zonder Helm, Kop Kapot. Some Germans still remember that one as their favorite Dutch.
Lee Reynolds and Dirtbro Jimmy Arrington have an interview, Matt Pingel took care of some pages, we had crosswords again, the Rad vs Lame list and the Believe it, or Not!?-news section.
The free stickers came from RAP X and a NO SMOKING campaign. Flip through it, you'll find a photo and will say: "No shit!"
With 92 pages we were allowed to call this a double issue. Most 'zines at that time did not have more than 48 pages and FAT was establishing a name for itself in the underground BMX media world.
Mat Hoffman made the cover and rightfully so. He had just performed a trick in Bercy that noone had seen before. A backflip on a quarterpipe! And not a low one either. Way out of the top of the Coca Cola quarter pipes. Sick!
We're getting more American stuff in the 'zine so from now on the FAT issues should become more interesting for our American visitors.
Ralf Maier and FrankSchnuetgen did a Cali trip in the winter of '89/'90 and showed what it was like down there (page28 - p33).
Vic Murphy wrote a story about the 2-HIp comp at Trend. Mark and Chris Noble sent some Cali stuff from their trip and we also had an interview with 2 Hip announcer Kevin Martin.
The other interviews in the double issue are with Klaus Dyba, Thomas Fritscher and Patrick van Wolferen. We sat on our asses too long and had collected lots of material for this one.
Divorze posse live, Lageja '90 contest report, a Life's a Beach, Ack 'zine and SKY HI sticker, contest info, 'zine reviews, Stokebros, Mookhoek mini, rad-lame list, Tropica DM, Skatehouse visit, Zoetermeer spot, BMX crosswords, ......
Cover boy Ralf Maier is designing skateparks for a living now. I did a lot of trips with Ralf, some of them are covered in the issues of FAT-'zine. Ralf got an interview in issue 16 and so did Vic Murphy, Mike Golden, Sander Cornelissen and Gerrit Koornwinder.
Back in 1990 you sent a letter to the other side of the world with the questions you had. You were hoping in a few weeks you would see a reply. Vic came through with the answers and I typed them out. He even put some pics in the envelop so I xeroxed them and then sent the pics back to him. Gotta love the e-mail of present time.
Matt Pingel contributed a lot of pages and went sandboarding. We had reports on a skate comp in Valkenswaard, a freestyle contest in Leiden, the Wath Jam, Spanjer's skate comp in Hengelo, and a concert report about the Digital Underground.
The free sticker came from Invert magazine (UK, now RIDE). We checked "The U" which was a crazy dirt spot where you rolled down a huge hill and did a fly-out at the end. We reviewed the following 'zines in issue #16: UHS, RIDE -'zine, RADAzine, Albert 'zine and Mental Chaos. Remember those?
Pages 51-63 show a review of places we visited in 1989. Looks like we were nomads back then already.
It was the late '80-s when issue number 15 came out and these items made it on the RAD side of the RAD-LAME list: Bresie'Z, Robert's graffitied Renault 14, Speedfreaks video, Vla, Divorze Posse's Demo Tape (that's a cassette by the way....), A Full PO Box, Watching Jason Ellis cutting Mike Canning's hair, Prantl's 360 at the Energie hal, English riders visiting the Leiden freestyle contest, DP's Black Medallion, Advertisers, D-signs designs, On Edge Apparel, DJ Kid Sundance, Tye Dye shirts, 'zines, Lambert's Harley, Mini-ramp Hengelo and Double seatpost clamps.
Man, most of these things aren't too hot any longer but back in 1989 they made it on the RAD list. To see what made it on the Lame side, turn to page 17.
We have a Jason Ellis interview in issue 15, a street sk8 comp in Eindhoven, 540 sequence of Albert Moonen, the Circus came to town and brought 2 BMX-ers from England, The Cologne contest Number 2 took place at the Jugendpark, Merijn Bonte got an interview, Free Converse sticker, Divorze Posse live, we had an article about miniramps that were the new thing at the end of the eighties, Matt Pingel had his fair share of contributions in the issue and Martijn Deijkers wrote a scene report on Adelberg, Germany. Andreas Althaus got an interview as well, we had a report on the King Of Concrete, concert report on the Bad Brains and a wrtie up on a demo in Uden.
The first double issue of FAT-'zine. With 88 pages it was also twice the size of most 'zines back in the day. Issue 13+14 featured over 150 photos. The quality was terrible but at least it brought the message across.
The typewriter was still doing its job but the ink ribbon was fading. I loved freshly new ink ribbons as it also had a white line up top that you could use to correct the typos. But more than once the machine got stuck behind a photo and the letter didn't line up correctly and you had to bring out the Tipp-Ex to change things. It was horrible compared to the computers we use today.
FAT-'zine was getting a structure with an editorial, contents page, news section, staff list, RAD-Lame section etc. and the double issue had the following features: Lageja contest, Freestyle contest in wherever, Bart & Martijn Deijkers interview, free VANS sticker, Kees Lemmens interview, Phantasialand report where some American riders were doing shows, Incertitude concert review, 8th Muenster Mastership report, Albert Retey interview, Amsterdam skate trip, Tropica and StokeBros write-ups, Rene Hofman interview, Trier/Kenn freestyle contest (1989) where we stayed in the concrete pipes, second FAT-JAM report where the FIAT 127 got thrashed, Andreas Althaus interview, we went to Spain to do a demo with David Quesada in San Sebastian and the ETA got loose.
Sean Coons did a comic and we already had stuff lined up for the next issue.