Bang! A whole wheel is darting along the center divider of the 5 North just outside Bakersfield sending everything in its path up in flames. The vehicle I am riding in is pulling to the shoulder of the highway, which can only mean two things… That is our wheel and this is going to be one hell of a trip.
The plan was to head up to beautiful San Francisco, for what was supposed to be a routine business trip/awesome weekend spent attending the Thread apparel show and the first ever Cannabis Cup and the Epic Daze concert sponsored by High Times magazine & BC Northern Lights. This trip however, was anything but routine. After our little 3 hour set back of losing our wheel and catching the highway on fire we proceeded to head to San Francisco. Twelve hours from the time we left Los Angeles we arrived at our hotel, by now the mix up with the rooms had little impact on the group. We just wanted to get to sleep and start our first day in San Francisco.
“Oh Shit!” I remember hearing Rosie say as I snaped to attention from a hazy sleep. She had overslept and needed to call the front desk to work out the situation with our rooms. After a cup or two of complimentary crap roast coffee, I felt alive enough to grab my skateboard and meet up with my friend to skate Potrero and make my rounds through the local skate shops. While skating at Potrero I met a few characters that were also in town for the same events (surprise surprise). Graham was a stencil artist and was going to be live painting one of the BC Northern Lights boxes during the Epic Daze show. We skated through the day cracking jokes and exchanging contacts. I started heading back to the room stopping along the way to grab the bare necessity, a burrito from Taqueria Can Cun, so pumped! I got back to the room finished my burrito and hopped in the shower, now it was time to get some rest for the Thread show and the concert.
Bing! Just like clockwork my circadian rhythm strikes again to pull me from a much needed sleep at 6:15 am. “Now what the hell do I do?” I asked myself. “I don’t have to be awake for another 2 hours at least!” As in all of our minds who are pure skateboarders my immediate thought was “Go Skate” and I did. Stepping out into the city that morning was a change to say the least. I’d been spoiled by the warm Southern California rays and was now facing classic San Francisco frigid wind and fog. The silver lining was I had the park all to myself, every line mine for the taking, mine for making and mine for slamming. After I decided I had taken enough abuse for the day, I met up with the Nature’s Mistake and Railcar crew for the Thread show. Nature’s Mistake and Railcar had it right with live screen printing, live sewing, and live painting. The show was great, there were so many brands that made it out and the day was set off by the fashion show held in the middle of the exhibition center. Once my portion of the painting was finished I made my rounds and said my goodbyes. I was off to Epic Daze!
Things were looking positive for the evening, the skate from Thread was only about a mile to where Epic Daze was being held, which was ironically located only a block from where I previously lived in SF 5 years ago. The venue was tucked in off 6th street just below Market in the Soma district. From the very instant I arrived I was treated with the most friendly attitude, my contacts and the BC Northern Lights crew made sure I had everything I needed, including extra VIP and backstage passes. While navigating the labyrinth of rooms and hallways backstage I tried to imagine what the night might be like; I had no clue what I was in for. As the doors opened a steady flow of people was quickly filling up the Mezzanine, I made my way down stairs and out back to find my new friend Graham starting his painting on the BCNL box, and live glass blowing from Good Stash! The line up for the bands to play the event was great, Eagles of Death Metal, Lyrics Born, Dj Ras MG (of Sublime), Johnny Kaplin and the Lazy Stars, Ila Mawana, and Stand Down. With every set that passed the energy in the Mezzanine grew to new heights until there wasn’t enough room to hold it in any longer. There wasn’t a bad vibe for miles, for a short time there it really seemed like the Summer of Love was back, and for those that attended Epic Daze it was back. Somehow the spirit of San Francisco combined with the mood of the concert resurrected the sights, sounds and even the scents that were 1969. Writing this I found myself day dreaming I was back among the good tunes, good people, and good times that is Epic Daze.
Many thanks to Tarren Wolfe, owner of BC Northern Lights, for presenting a fun filled event that was enjoyed by so many. We look forward to seeing what you have in store for the future! For more photos from Epic Daze visit here. More to be posted soon. – CARSON “GNARSON” CORNETT