The NY Post has a Q&A up with Pharrell that mostly talks about his involvement with skateboarding. I know that some people out there feel that Pharrell and Lupe are basically posers who have jacked skateboard culture to help their image. In their defense, I don’t believe either of these guys ever stated they were great skateboarders or even good and I do think that their involvement in skateboarding helps the possibility of another skateboard park being built versus another basketball court or baseball field.
Q: So it’s not weird that The Ice Cream skate team has four black kids and one white kid on it?
A: The media isn’t used to it. The majority of the skaters in Philly are black but you wouldn’t know that because the media doesn’t find that interesting. [I want] to encourage minorities that there are other things to do in the world besides having a mean jump shot or selling drugs [among other things]. Skating is something else you can do. I want to use my influence in the media to help bring skate teams to light. Johnny Knoxville, Bam and Tony Hawk have opened doors, and [now] I want to.
Q: There was some backlash last year when skaters took issue with Skater P and printed up “Pharrell Can’t Skate” T-shirts that sold out. What’s the deal?
A: I was honored. I never said I was going to skate. I can’t see why anyone would ever be mad at me for helping to push the door open for everybody else. It really influenced a big part of my life, just like music did. I learned jazz progressions in band, and I gave entirely back to that world. I go and speak and high school, colleges – Oxford once, Harvard twice. It’s not a new thing for me to give back. I’m a philanthropist because that’s the way my parents raised me. I [also] know that’s what God intends for me to do. I just give back in every way shape and form.