Emerging from the darkness in early 2019 with the support of his friends, Fred Gall successfully completed rehab and good things started to happen immediately.
In spring of that year, Alien Workshop reissued (although neither Fred nor AWS seemed to promote) a vintage Fred Gall graphic.
In June 2019, photographer Matt Price released Golden Hour #2, a photo book dedicated to Freddy shot over a dozen years touring, skating, and hanging out. (Get your copy, 50% of the proceeds go into Freddy’s pocket.)
Also that summer, Freddy began work on a backyard ramp at Granny’s house, which he now occupied. This would eventually, along with a concrete bowl, the curb he brought there 3 decades earlier, and possibly more obstacles, become Freddy’s skate Compound, a DIY spot that, despite a falling tree’s efforts, won’t be destroyed like all the others.
Fred demonstrates his five favorite mini-ramp tricks in the Transworld quickie.
Freddy’s Compound, along with a close group of friends and filmers like Fat Bill understudy Paul Gar and wine-rack artisan NJ Scum Petillo, might not just lead to the resurrection of Gall but old-time Philly head Sergei Trudnowski and 2000 SOTY Brian Anderson as well. Somebody get Ricky in this mix.
I see that, even though his name is not very prominent, Freddy does have a new deck presently available through Habitat as well as a guest board on Matt Rodriguez’s Es La Boom.
And even as I was publishing the first of these All the Gall articles, NJ Skateshop’s Freddy and Friends video, featuring tons of Northeast skate celebrities shredding the latest in defunct New Jersey DIY spots, Hebrew Hideout, dropped on Thrasher.
Things continue to look up; It appears like you can once again wear a shoe with the Gall name on it as State Footwear has confirmed the rumor that there is a Freddy shoe available now. Whether this is just a short-term Habitat collab situation or the start of a something lasting will be told with time, but in the meanwhile get yours while you can.
In addition to all this, Freddy has been perpetually giving us the gift of slowly logging every barely skateable piece of crust in the East Coast with his Instagram Spot Checks. Dig in and be inspired to scour every cranny of your neighborhood cause you no longer have any excuse for not trying to hit that bank-to-wall.
I asked Fred about his thinking behind the spot checks on the ‘gram and he told me, “If I go to Philly I’ll get 5 photos, I’ll slowly put them out. And the sometimes if I don’t have a photo that’s new I’ll dig up an old one. But for the most part it like I’m going to the spots and I’m posting ‘em. Some of them are a joke, if you’ve noticed. I’ll post a curb or something. If I film tricks at a spot I won’t post it. Any old spots that have already been seen I don’t care, but for the most part anything I’m trying to keep private to myself I won’t post.“
Which brings us to the big question we that has lurked underneath this entire exploration… Will there be another full-on Fred Gall skate part?
“I’m filming a video part. I have so much footage right now. My main part is going to Thrasher. And then whatever I have doubles of or leftovers is going to Transworld. And then I have a whole DIY part going to Jenkem. I worked really hard on this part. And I’ve been sober the whole time filming it. A completely different approach. So this ones gonna be real good I think. Dude, I’m coming in HOT on this one for sure.“
And so we end this odyssey on a happy note. Freddy is out there getting clips and skating in the backyard with friends (often with a broken arm). Sobriety has been good to Freddy over the last year plus. But, in typically Freddy fashion, he doesn’t seem at all ashamed of his past nor concerned in any way with what folks think about him. As I’ve said repeatedly throughout this series of blog posts, Fred’s endurance and popularity is rooted in his authenticity.
In a constantly filmed social media world of people trying way too hard and forever needing affirmations, Fred Gall is who he is and skates how he skates.
The same day this post was published, Jenkem releases a video of the pals buying and delivering Freddy a new mattress. This whole thing happening in Jersey right now is very endearing.
I really don’t want to think about what the old mattress was like, though.
Just, one more episode of All the Gall remains where I try to wrap it all up.
So tune in next time here in the Warm Up Zone.
Til then, get out and there and skate.