Unexpected: The Dave Wallace Interview

Words by Paddy Pellow           Photos by Luc Lacey

Dave Wallace divides opinion.

There is no question of his talent, tricks like nollie flip nosegrinds make bitter skate nerd’s eyebrows hit the 5 panel peak. However in the current climate of Dickies, N.Y.C. edits, triangles and wallies Dave Wallace is stuck in an early 2000 Red Dragons time warp.

After watching his latest offering ‘Project 13’ I said aloud “I wish I loved anything as much as D. Wallace loves himself”. The massive T- shirts, the middle fingers and the on screen smoking do however hide some intense noseslide combos and sprawling lines that you wished you could do.

This vid is D-Walls first offering since he was the star of an awkward day in the life that spawned an #Unexpected meme, that without doubt made it onto your Instagram feed.

In the below interview the D-Dubs talks us through his mixed feelings on his infamy, something he calls a life diet, and where the fuck can I can get an XXXL white T-shirt.


Dave, it’s Paddy, how are you mate?

I’m good. Feeling pretty tired today. I’ve been packing all day.

Why, where are you going?

I’m going to the south of France on Saturday morning.

Oh, skating?

Kind of a bit of both really, skating, chilling.

Who you going with?

My girlfriend lives down there.

Ah ok. So to start this off, how old are you? Where are you from and who are your sponsors?

I’m 25, from Burgess Hill. My sponsors at the moment are Osiris shoes, Haze wheels, Landing Headwear, Rufus skate shop, Screwheads hardware, Vibe energy chewing gum…

Chewing gum, What!

Yeah, kind of a crazy one. And I’m talking to a few people at the moment.

Oh yeah, who you talking to?

I’m thinking Jart, see what they are saying.

Are you the only guy on Osiris then?

What in the UK?


No they do have a team, but I’m not sure how aware other people are of them. Dan Cates is on, Craig Smedley….

Ok, and then you?

Yeah. And another guy, somehow I can’t remember.

I noticed recently that P-Rod mentioned you in that Full-Clip Friday thing.

Yeah that was pretty crazy.

You were the runner-up?

Yeah I got second in the Full Clip Friday contest. You just had to film one minute thirty at a skatepark, street or whatever and then upload it. He seemed to be diggin’ it.

Did you win money?

Nah, nothing.


Yeah, it’s kinda crazy.

Do you get paid to skate?

No, nope.

You got all these sponsors, you need to get them to hook it up for you…

It’s difficult one isn’t it? How do you go about asking that question?

Who would you ask to pay you then? Osiris must have some money right?

You would think so wouldn’t you?

You need to get on it mate, make the call…

It’s kind of a difficult one. They’ve had some shake-ups in the U.S. Chad Bartie was the TM real briefly I think, like a month or two, then they just let him go.

Yeah I wonder why….So Project 13 came out the other day….

You feelin’ it?

Yes, of course I am! What’s that about then, you just release that yourself?

Yeah, no sponsors, no nothing.

Who edited that for you?

Basically my friend Austin and Curtis Jehsta. We basically sat down in Café Nero, had some coffees and went for it.

Right now this is the thing, you seem to be in every part of yours smoking or drinking coffee, is that your main motivation?

It looks like that I think. I think it stems from Barcelona really. I never really used to like coffee, but then when you go down to Macba there’s a pretty perfect coffee shop righ there on the marble so it’s just a pretty great way to start the day.

Because you had that Day in the Life right, that famous Day in the Life…

Oh my god…yep.

How do you feel about that? You became a skateboarding meme so to speak…

I don’t know. It’s kinda crazy.

I mean you sort of switched up your accent to sound a bit more like your mate and I guess…was that thought out? Or did you not know what to say to the camera?

Basically, the dude who was filming barely spoke English. He was from France.


It was just, if I speak more like him it’ll help out and he’ll understand a bit better. There is no real logic behind it, it just happened.

Oh ok, I thought you moved away and ‘right, I’m gonna get this new accent’…

That would be pretty jokes. I think your accent changes when you are in a place for a certain amount of time. I was there for a couple of years and I was hanging around with quite a few people who weren’t English.

So when you are filming a part, do you make sure you get some smoking footage in there? Like: “I’m gonna have a cigarette, come film this!’

Nah, it just happens. Before the session I’ll have a coffee and a cigarette and then handle business…get to work.

I noticed on your project 13 part you were getting pretty angry at the Ladbroke Grove rail. What were you trying down that?

I was trying switch back lip.

You gonna go back?

I’d like to go back yeah. The rail was pretty great. The floor on the ride up…pretty perfect. And the rail is great, it’s just the ride out is disgusting.

 Yeah because you were getting pretty Hip-Hop there I saw…

(Laughs) Yeah.

So you are from Burgess Hill yeah, but technically you are like a Wigger aren’t you? You only skate to Hip Hop, middle finger in the video part…Where do you buy all you massive T-Shirts?

There is a great website called They are from Germany I think. They make these T-shirts called ‘Urban Classics’ that are super long – because I’m quite a long dude.

So what is that influence from? Who is your favourite skater?

It’s hard to pinpoint one I reckon.

If you had to pick one…and video part you always watched…

We’ll go with three. Paul Rodriguez in In Bloom, and any Wade DeSarmo part and Mark Appleyard.

Yeah? Bit of an odd list no? I always thought you dressed like….you remember the Red Dragons? You have that kind of steez about you…

I was speaking to this guy about Red Dragons, but they don’t have a distributor in the UK.

Oh yeah? You trying to get on them?

I don’t know, it would be pretty dope. I’m going over to the States in January.

Where do you find all the money to do this if no one is paying you to skate?

Gotta get your hustle on…

You got rich parents then?

Not even. I’m struggling to survive…

Rich girlfriend?

No, that would be great though. You can live, you just got to decide on the place. I went for a life diet.

What’s a life diet?

Strict living. No spending really, saving everything.

Yeah but you buy cigarettes and they are expensive mate!

Nah, roll my own tobacco. £3.35 a box!

And how often do you go through a box?

Every three and a half days I think.

So do you mix any contraband material in with your baccy?

Nope, just straight baccy.

You don’t smoke weed?

Maybe in Barca here and there.

Because you dress like a drug dealer so you need to step your game up…

(Laughs) No, I don’t really know, it’s just not really great in the UK. It’s like sitting under a cold lamp at a council park trying to bun up doesn’t really sound inviting.

Yeah I guess you are right…

On a perfect marble block in the sun in Barca it’s more appetising.

Perfect Blues…So what is it with you and noseslides… It seems to be your fav trick… you seem to do a noseslide all the time… the style of skating you’ve chosen to do is kind of early 2000, what made you stick in that era?

It was a lot better then, wasn’t it?

A lot of people look into the nineties for inspiration, you seem to be very early DGK videos type steez

I grew up watching those things… I was like damn that there is dope I wanna try that.

The clothes you wear, has that ever helped you to bang chicks, or meet women? Or is it just the comfort and sick steez that you like? Where did you meet your current girlfriend?

She did a uni project on me.

What was that?

She does fashion design so she was looking at skate culture and skate clothing so yeah, maybe it did help in that aspect.

So your Hip Hop style has bagged you this girlfriend…


So judging from your sponsor list, you obviously want to get some new sponsors. What’s one company you want to ride for? You want a board sponsor right? If it wasn’t gonna be Jart what would board company would you ride for?

Expedition one is pretty dope.

Oh yeah? You sent any sponsor videos to them?

I was speaking to Chany Jeanguenin. They said to speak to a distributor in the UK.

Oh yeah? Maybe that will come about for you

That would be amazing!

You seem to be quite anti-trend. Currently everyone is wearing Dickies, Palace T-shirts, Nikes… and you seem to be a bit less on that. So that’s ultimately gonna make you less marketable isn’t it?

Yeah, or more marketable because I’m a blank canvas so I can be created in any way.

Do you think?

Maybe… Do you reckon I should start rocking the Janoski’s and a Palace tee?

Well its up to you mate, I’m not here to tell you how to dress.

…not sure about the bucket hat, I’m a white dude, I’m not sure.

Oh come on, you might as well be black. Your probably the blackest guy in Burgess Hill right?

(laughs) possibility

So you could rock the bucket… What’s your issue with the bucket hat?

I dunno. Unless you’re a white man goin’ fishing, or a dude that smokes weed…

Then you shouldn’t be wearing one?

Yeah I don’t think so… I’m not sure about it… I don’t think I’m down with rocking one.

What’s your favourite item of clothing?

Fresh white tees.

How many X’s in there? Triple XL?

Between 3 and 6.

Three and Six!?

That’s right.

You have a 6XL tee?

Dude, I’m wearing a 6XL fresh white, right now.

Switch back lip

Have you ever done a wallride?

Oh my god… No I don’t think… Well obviously I’ve done them, but documented? Maybe not.

Would you ever put one in a part? Like a Wallie…

Erm… maybe like a gangster no-comply in the middle of a run. That might be dope.

Because you know those types of tricks are becoming more popular now… You think they’re stinking?

No I wouldn’t say stinking… they can be done good… Pole jams… I dunno they are kinda scary though I reckon.

You do some quite gnarly shit. I’ve been watching some of your parts… Truth Hurts, is that one of your first parts?

It was a little while ago. That was pretty much offcuts though. It was just thrown together really.

So when you go out and film, is it just to film?

We just go on missions… fun stuff.

So its never for a company?

Not really… No.

But you’ll be sending it in to the companies?


What’s the name of the skate shop you ride for again?

Err.. Rufus.

Where’s that?

In Barcelona. It’s pretty much on Macba plaza.

How come you got on that team? Did you ask them, or did they ask you?

Well I used to ride for Klan back in the day but they closed down. It’s like Jart’s sister company. Wainwright had something to do with it… so yeah and I was just living in Barca at the time, and then everyone was going there… the person who runs it is real dope so it was just the next move really.

That was the next move?

Yeah so it was just like, they had boards, I didn’t.

So what’s your favourite Osiris shoe?

(Laughs) Oh my god, erm…

What’s the matter?

They’ve definitely got a range of different models… some of them are more heavy tech than others.

Have you skated in the D3?

I have actually, back in the day.

More than one pair?

Nah, just the one. That was enough.


The Caswell vulcanized I reckon. Pretty thin. Not many crazy colours, nothing like that. Black and gum, keeping it G… Alright well black and white sole.

How long have you been on Osiris then?

Damn… five years maybe? Four years? Yeah probably about four years.

Whats next for you?

Well I’m gonna the south of France this Saturday. So I’m gonna be filming and just chillin’ over there. And then I go to the states in January.

So your gonna be in the south of France until January?

I’ll be there until Christmas Eve. And I come back to the UK for three weeks.

How long are you out in the US for?

Two months.

Who you going over there with?

No one… I’ve got a few homies over there. Like some filmers, some skaters.

Where abouts in the US?

I fly into San Diego then I’ll head up to L.A.

So your gonna try and really push your career forward?

Yeah I’m just gonna see what happens.

Is that the ultimate dream? In the next five years you wanna be pro? For Expedition One?

That would be the one. That would be pretty great. But you know, it’s fun travelling, it’s fun meeting people. Just fun skating different parts all over the world… I’d rather be doing that than in an office or whatever.

So what do you do for money then, do you have a job?

I used to be a manager at a skate shop in Burgess.

What was that skate shop called?

(laughs) I’m not even gonna say it. It was just a skate shop in Burgess.

Really? Come on you’ve gotta tell me now.

Dude, I don’t even… I don’t wanna be a link or anything towards it.

Why? Is it going under?

It’s already gone.

What was the name?

I’m not saying… it’s like a skateboarding/juggling shop.

It was a skateboard juggling shop?

Yeah a mixture of random bullshit.

But they used to sell legit boards?

Element, Plan-B, got some Jart in there.


Ah dude, your doing your research.

(Laughs) Yes! I can see it now. There’s a unicycle in the window.

Yeah, there it is. Ah. Yeah they closed down.

Because it was part of the skate park? You got to skate there a lot?

Yeah, like I was the manager so I just used to go there, go for a skate down the park.

Did you have to deal with any unicycle guys?

Nah, no one actually asked. It was only about for a year. People would come in and look it like: ‘Hey yeah that’s cool’ – no one actually bought it.

Really? Sick.

The scene is pretty bleak in Burgess.

Really? You don’t have a hometown crew?

Everyone’s like either gone to uni or got jobs or peace’d out.

Really? Quit skating?


Were they all pretty similar to you and your way of skating? You know, noseslides and big t-shirts… Rap. Or was there different types of guys in the crew?

Nah. It was like a big mix.

So you’ll skate with anyone?

Yeah for sure!

Have you always been on this type of tick? Very Hip Hop. Has that been since day one?

Pretty much, I dunno. I listen to all sorts of music like…


Yeah Deathmetal’s good…

Yeah? You like some Deathmetal?

Ah, whats the name of this song… ‘Over the Hills and Far Away’ by Nightwish. That’s pretty out there. I wouldn’t just segregate to Hip Hop at all… In all aspects of everything there are good parts throughout.

Do you want to say anything else about your day in the life? You know there’s a ‘Perfect Blues’ sticker that came out. Did you feel like everyone was making fun of you?

Obviously there were elements of… pointing fun and stuff.

Did that upset you?

No not really.

Because I guess it didn’t have any impact on the parts that you brought out since.

Yeah, you don’t see their perfect blues stickers… No it didn’t really… People are gonna say stuff what ever you do aren’t they?

I guess the reason is because you’re so far removed from what a lot of people are doing now in skateboarding that you became that target. As I said, a lot of people now are a certain way… About clothes and ‘this is cool’, ‘this isn’t cool’…

Are they doing that? Or are they not just trying to fit in?

You could think of it that way, totally. You came out as something different and I guess you became the poster boy for that Hip Hop Wigger guy. So you got picked on, that’s a shame… Shed any tears?

No it was alright.

You didn’t go on Facebook or Instagram telling people to fuck off?


You just took it?

I didn’t tell no one to do one. But then again, they didn’t say it to my face. Yeah people said stuff but they would do it on a sly one. They wouldn’t be like, ‘Hey Dave, that day in the life’s gay or whatever.’ They would just do it behind your back on a sly one.

Well this is your chance to say something to them. You wanna tell them all to fuck off? Do you wanna fight anyone?

Nah, my name is in their brain and in their mouth. That’s all that needs to be said isn’t it?

Yeah, your name is in their brain and in their mouth… You are in their mouth.

(Laughs) Yup

Ok Dave. Is there anyone you want to thank?

Thanks to my sponsors, my family, my friends, anybody who watched the day in the life, any one who’s feeling Project 13. And thanks to you guys for doing this.

Don’t forget to thank your girlfriend.

Yep. Thanks to my girlfriend.


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