With Habitat reunited to Alien Workshop and rebuilding on the backs of SOTY Silas Baxter-Neal and SOTY contender Mark Suciu, Freddy found himself relatively out of the spotlight for an extended period of years here. He might have been down, but he certainly wasn’t out. Habitat released boards with his name on them here and there, but he was seemingly being transferred to unspoken ‘Legacy’ status, where the respect is high but the pay is low. “I got bummed out, too, because Habitat, when it got sold and all that shit happened I kinda lost my place, you know what I mean. I was like ‘Fuck, I gotta get a job now.’“
This timeframe found Fred facing more legal difficulties, mourning the loss of Granny, dealing with the IRS, unsuccessfully undertaking rehab, and then having to cope with the untimely death of his Mother. By late 2018, when Bam held his bizarre gathering, Freddy was not looking healthy.
But throughout all this time, even without the spotlight or a specific video project or a sponsor’s travel budget, Fred kept skating. Since there are no official video parts in these years, it’s all just Bonus Fred:
In 2015, Fred talked with Quartersnacks a bit about his day job as a set builder.
Fred Gall went to the CPH Open in Copenhagen in 2016 and, like everyone else, skated high on mushrooms. Jenkem videotaped it.
In 2017, Vice started a little webisode thing called Can You Skate It?. Inevitably, the debut episode featured Freddy; Trespassing and skating an abandoned NJ wind tunnel. That episode has been taken down by Vice (but we still found it over here); Freddy is in a later episode where they “build a skatepark out of mean social media comments”. It is about as enjoyable to watch as it is well conceived… not very well.
Probably the most significant thing that happened in this time period would be Freddy getting a guest board on Fucking Awesome. Dill came through for Freddy (and us) during a time in need and the deck was popular. When prompted, Fred told me, “They paid me really good. I made more off that board than I have from Habitat in fucking five years or something.“
Those boards already sell for nearly 4 times their original value on the collector’s market… I guess people really want to childhood portrait of Fred in a Mets jersey with a shit-eating grin on their wall.
2018 was a busy year for Fred despite the partying and day job. The Habitat connection was kept alive with a couple of tricks in the montage section of the Connector Line video.
He skated Shorty’s Place a bunch during its last hurrah.
He finally got his own beer with Cypress Brewing Company. It was “is a 5% DDH America Pale Ale brewed and dry hopped entirely with Amarillo with notes of tangerine.”
Check out Daniel Mercuro’s compilation of Freddy and Friends iPhone clips from 2018:
Bobshirt did one of his amazing interviews with Fred Gall for a DeckAid show at NJ Skateshop. Like all his interviews, it is just so good and insightful. I absolutely utilized this video heavily when making these All the Gall posts.
This whole era culminates in a strange party over at Bam Margera‘s Castle Bam mansion and skatepark in Pennsylvania. It was bizarre to see this from the outside looking in through instagram; It appeared to be a tornado of drinking, possible drug detox, Andy Roy, Tim O’Conner, Danny Way, some dude in a bandana, a Ghost concert, a head injury, a baby, the possibility of a Meek Mills performance, skating, and then maybe the crowd rips all the ramps apart with their bare hands. Some morning in the middle of this ruckus an impatient Freddy spontaneously bombs Bam’s driveway, which apparently was a NBD. It is fun to hear how pumped Fred and Bam are when he makes it.
The good/terrible times continued into early 2019 until tragedy struck. But from the darkness Fred survives. Tune in next time as we spread hope and speculate on the future of Freddy.