Bill Keaggy is known around the zine world of the 90’s for his ACC zine. I always enjoyed Atomic Circle of Chaos’ layouts, the quality content and great mix of riding, music and lifestyle. To me this was one of THE zines to read. Everyone in the zine world was down to help out other fellow zine makers and keeping that tradition alive Bill was our very first backer in this project. Thanks Bill! Now let’s hear from the man himself. And enjoy the old photos of Bill riding!
You were the first person to back our Kickstarter project, thanks by the way. What made you want to something like that, ha?
Why would I do something like that? I remember when the business side of freestyle …uh, I mean BMX… went dark and riders totally stepped up. They started companies, organized comps, designed products, and published magazines. I’d always felt like BMX was the best indie thing I’d ever experienced, and the most positive and inspiring thing I could’ve hoped to find. So when I think of Brindley & Buddendeck I think of independence and startups and when I think of Leigh I think of pink flying V guitars and sheer balls — and I just have to support that kind of stuff.
Bill doing a Band-Aid…jumping from the back pegs to the bars.
Which shirt did you vote for and why?
I voted for Meatloaf because I like meatloaf, and I never owned the Meatloaf shirt, and I like the non sequiturness of it. Also because I am too damn old to wear the “For Men with 20 Inchers” shirt (actually, I think I still have that one).
I know you from your ‘zine, ACC and was a big fan of it. Did doing a ‘zine influence what you are doing now? And what is it like when you look back at them?
Thanks! The ‘zine is exactly why I do what I do. In high school I hurt my hand and couldn’t ride for a couple months (in the summer!) so my friends and I started a ‘zine. Pretty quickly I knew I wanted to be a designer. So because I met a guy on the school bus who had a Haro and saved up my money to buy a GT and rode with a great group of friends everyday for years is why I’ve designed magazines, newspapers, web sites, books, interfaces, iPhone apps, videos, blah blah blah. Sometimes I’ve felt bad that I stopped riding, but then I remember that it’s still taking me places.
I haven’t really looked back through them, but I did pay a college kid to scan them in just so they can live on. I’m a little afraid to read them and find out that the ‘zine I’m so proud of actually is full of terrible writing and a profound naiveté about the world.
Do you still ride?
Technically, yes. Frequently, no. I ride bikes all the time but usually not a 20 incher. I love to ride around the city on an old Tomasso with flat bars. But I do have a tank of an S&M and have been taking my 9YO son to the ramp park in St. Louis. It still feels completely natural to be on a bike but of course I can’t pull what I used to pull. I can impress any grade school kid in town, but not anyone else. Wait, for some reason I can usually pull undertakers, but I can no longer do undertaker drop-ins.
What are your thoughts on us bringing back some old designs?
Awesomeness. I think it’s great to bring to light that part of the history of BMX. The pro rider/official side of it has been pretty well documented, and it’d be a shame if all our indie/DIY history got lost. So congrats and good luck! Thanks guys.
No, thank you Bill! Go to www.keaggy.com and see some of his latest and past works.