Silas Baxter-Neal 4 W's!

Photos: Dave Chami

Interview: Benjamin Deberdt

Silas Baxter-Neal, griptape job. Tokyo.

Silas Baxter-Neal recent Adidas clip was entirely filmed in Tokyo… Knowing Silas all terrain ability, you already know the skate part of it is up there, but intrigued by the choice of location, we thought we should just ask him directly, and sent him one of our 5W’s questionnaire.
So far, we only received four answers… But they were good enough that we are sharing them with you now. Hell, as far as we know, Silas is either busy being a dad, on some skateboard trip of sort, or lost in the great outdoors, if not all of those mixed in one thing called a day of his life, so let’s hear what he had to say about his relationship with Japan.

What prompted your decision to film a full part there?
Adidas asked me to do a video to go with the release of my apparel line, I didn't want to try and do another rushed sub-par web clip. I travel to Japan a lot with my family and have gotten pretty familiar with the scene out there. I am always inspired by the videos and the spots I see out there, so I decided to try and do a month out there with a filmer.

Why film everything at night? Was it a stylistic decision, or out of necessity?
The idea was that there would be less people and less security but, in reality, there were only less people. I also wanted to keep a consistent look to the footage in order to keep somewhat of a theme.

Silas Baxter-Neal, ollie in.

Ollie all the way to the very last little bank!

Who is your favorite Japanese skateboarder?
There are tons of rad skaters in Japan, there are a lot of dudes that take a very unique approach to skating, in some ways it seems that it is more of an art form in Japan, the way the videos are, and the creativity a lot of the guys come up with.
Takahiro Morita is an inspiring skater who has been around forever, he has produced some great videos that have definitely help shape the way Japanese skaters skate and make videos. He is also a rad skater who is really fun to watch and has his own approach to skating that really shows his unique personality.
Junichi Arahata "145" is a sick skater who has been steady killing it for years in Japan as well as in the States, he’s a homie and he’s super fun to skate with. He has a board company called Lesque and their whole team is sick, and it’s a rad company.
Gou Miyagi, I think, is one of the most exaggerated and best examples of the different approach a lot of Japanese skaters have. He does some amazing things that I would never even think of, the way he skates shows how much fun he is having.
The Osaka Daggers are a group of skaters that also show how fun skating can be by being creative and skilled all in the same very enjoyable skating, the most well known would be Chopper, who rides for Heroin skateboards.
Shin Okada is one of the first Japanese skaters I ever remember seeing in videos, he has ill style and does a lot of cool tricks, fakie backtails are sick!
These are really just a few of the amazing skaters that are in Japan, I hope people will go YouTube crazy and watch a bunch of the great Japanese skate videos out there.

Where is the further from Tokyo you have ever been in Japan, so far?
I am not sure… I have been on some really cool trips to the countryside though. Two winters ago, we went on a trip to this lake at the base of mount Fuji. We stayed at a real nice ryokan, which is a hotel that has hot spring soaking pools. We ended up in a room with a balcony and a private tub on the balcony that overlooked the lake, and had an incredible view of Fuji. I watched the sun rise over the mountain sipping green tea in the hot spring tub. It was an epic moment.

Let’s head back to the streets with Silas recent Tokyo part, before you guys go do your homework on Japanese skateboarding:

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