Nassir Roumou Interview

Anyone who knows me knows I’m an unashamed fan of Blast Skates – and in turn a fan of their growing and totally radical team. Nassir Roumou came to my attention through following Blast’s Instagram, and straight away I was a fan of his skateboarding. Wide pool boards, transition tricks where your hands or feet meet the floor, and a proper quick footed level of dexterity all contributed toward me giving this dude a follow. After putting out a phenomenal collection of footage at the beginning of this year in a full part, as well as cameo appearances in Film Trucks’ “Premier Amour”, I thought it was time to get Nassir in for an interview and find out a bit more about him. – Ade

Photos by Joseph Piggott aka Ginge

For anyone who doesn’t know you, can you tell us a bit about yourself?

Although I live in the UK, I was actually born in Atlanta, Georgia. I’m sixteen years old and I’ve only been skating for four and a half years. 

You’re hooked up by Blast Skates, right? How is it riding for them?

I’m beyond stoked to be able to ride for them aha! I got on around this time last year (pretty much at the start of the very first lockdown). I worked pretty hard to get on as I truly loved everything it has to offer as well as what it stands for, so when the opportunity arose, I was more than happy to hop onboard.

Who’s your favourite skater on the Blast team?

Hmm, overall I really admire all of their styles. However, I’d say out of all the riders on the team Ben Koppl and Callum McRobbie are definitely a huge inspiration. Ben’s smooth yet technical approach to skating is really impressive and honestly the videos don’t do him nearly as much justice as seeing him flow around in person. Although I haven’t met Callum yet, I’ve always been a fan of his “Run N’ Gun” – like style, cool car and extremely powerful bag of tricks. (his andrecht 540s, wow..) 

What do you think sets Blast apart from other UK board companies?

I think what sets Blast apart from other UK board companies is that it partially focuses on bringing back that nostalgic feeling skating had in a way. Kinda like an ode to the 80’s, with it’s eye-catching and distinctive yellow mascot that most are probably familiar with by now. Everyone on the team pretty much skates the same thing, but each happens to add their own little unique flair to it. Bromley’s visions for the brand itself have come into fruition nicely over the years and him being so down to put things that would be considered zany or unconventional out there without a moment’s hesitation perfectly epitomises the sheer spontaneity of the brand. As a result, restoring a light-hearted outlook to skating.

What size/shape board do you ride?

All throughout lockdown I was sizing up and down pretty frequently, one minute it’d be on an 8.75, then a 9.25 and so on. But  when it comes down to what I prefer, I ride a 10″, (most commonly) it just works so well for me and is super fun to skate aha.

About 10 years ago, wide boards weren’t in fashion, and everyone was on popsicle shaped boards. Why do you think wide, shaped boards are popular again? 

I guess people seeing more street oriented skaters like Chico Brenes and Max Greronzi skate what would be considered a “cruiser board” at the time. They were flinging themselves down sets and rails and changed people’s standpoint on shapes. Eric Winkowski has also definitely had a major influence on most people (me being one of them) with him proving there isn’t much you couldn’t do on a shape that’d be possible on a normal popsicle.  

If you got your own Blast signature board, what kinda thing would you do? What size/shape would it be?

Ooo.. I’d really like a 10 inch wide deck. Preferably a fishtail and an 80’s inspired graphic sorta to pay homage. But the tail would have to be round enough to still be able to scoop tricks like tre flips (I suck at that trick aha). 

You’re also involved with Film Trucks, and got a few clips in their latest video “Premier Amour” – how is it riding for Film?

It’s pretty cool. I’m a huge fan of Jeremie Daclin’s ideas and the overall direction in which the company is headed. It has an amazing team, filled with great skaters, all of which are very talented and crazy to watch. A quick few being Victor Cascarigny, Dirk Broersen and Enzo. I really appreciate them hooking me up with trucks and stuff, I’m extremely grateful for it. 

You’ve got a load of variety in your skateboarding: doing handplants and super old school tricks on transition, and then hitting street spots with super quick footed ledge tricks and flips. Who influenced your style early on?

Well, up until two years ago I wasn’t really as engrossed in transition skating as I am now. I was extremely captivated by late 80’s – early 90’s street skating. I was mesmerized by video parts, some of which including Jovontae Turner’s part from “Love Child”, Lavar McBride’s part in “Trilogy” and Ray Barbee’s “Ban This” part. However, an all time favourite of mine has been Antwuan Dixon, he’s just got it like that… 

What do you prefer skating? Street or park?

I prefer park skating, it just feels really nice to spot your lines and even when it’s not a park you’re familiar with it’s a lot of fun to improvise. Also, gives you a reason/chance to get creative and try new things. 

What kind of street spots do you like skating the most? 

I like any street transition. It’s super cool to skate, just not very easy to find. Oh! Maybe even ledges too? At least sometimes haha. 

What’s the gnarliest Street spot you’ve ever skated? 

I don’t really even have a gnarly street spot per se… I guess one of the craziest places I’ve skated is this vert ramp called “Backwoods”, which was pretty sketchy at the time. Just had a very narrow and make-shift deck and honestly feels like it’s in the middle of nowhere. Felt like the kids in “Stand By Me” trying to get there, was definitely an adventure. To know people like Raemers (Rest in peace), Dave Allen and Sam Beckett have skated there was cool to me.

Who are some of your favourite pro skaters at the minute?

So hard to narrow it down.. I’d have to say some of my favourite pro skaters to watch (at least at the moment) would have to be Dane Brady, Jordan Thackeray and Bobby De Keyzer. 

What’s your favourite local park?

Haha, Wandle park. It’s not the best park out there, but that’s what makes it fun. Stockwell also has a special spot in my heart although I don’t live close to there anymore. The “Beach” (Brixton) is where I started skating

I always see clips of you shredding all the spots in London and the surrounding areas. How do you find the skate scene down south?

The skate scene in the south is relatively chill despite what people may say about it, a bunch of sound and amazing skaters rolling around spot hunting which is sweet to see. Due to it being pretty small and tight-nit, you’ll almost always run into someone well known, I love it. 

Do you get to travel out of London much, or do you tend to stay fairly local?

I tend to stay fairly local because of the convenience factor, but I’d really like to start travelling around more and it looks really cool to explore new places. Hopefully, the opportunity of travelling arises soon enough. I’d like to see what the world has to offer for a change, skate spots and all. 

You’re involved with Three Amigos skate shop – how did you get hooked up by them?

I would film clips for a friend of mine (Daniel) who was on the team at the time. He’d tag me pretty frequently, and I guess out of curiosity they must’ve wondered who’s actually behind the camera, stumbled upon my instagram and thought the stuff I was doing then was decent enough to put me on aha. Very grateful for them taking me in though, really appreciate the support. 

You put out a sick collection of footage from the past year a few months back – do you have any new parts in the works?

Not at the moment, I’d definitely like to put something out for real some day. Didn’t even really expect to have that part haha. My friend Ginge just threw a few clips I got over three days of going out to film during the lockdown together. Honestly, surprised at how well it was received. 

Who do you usually film with?

I usually go out and film with Ginge (Joseph Piggott). I enjoy skating with him. The coolest dude, truly never a dull moment around him.

Before we finish the interview… The internet needs to know. Who gets the Nassir Roumou seal of approval for the best handplant in skateboarding?

That’s definitely a hard one… Uhh, If i had to choose I’d say Jeff Kendall, he had some of the wildest variations on lock. But an honourable mention would have to be Owen Neider’s Andrecht in Santa Cruz’s “Speed Freaks” video. Rest in Peace, legend.

Anyone you want to thank? 

I’d like to thank Three Amigos Skateshop, Bromley and the guys over at Gnosis, Jeremie Daclin, P.I.T.M., Baot Crew, my family and anyone that’s supported me thus far, I appreciate you all ❤ 

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