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4 Mar 2020

“The beauty of BMX is that you don’t have to do a damn thing that you don’t want.” Nathan Williams - KINK CHAMPAGNE



Interview by Rob Dolecki | Originally published in DIG issue 99.99

The one and only Nathan Williams closed out KINK's epic Champagne video with what we deemed to be the best video part released in 2019, and arguably his best section to date - which is quite a bold statement in itself. Keep a particular eye on his last 10-plus moves - all could have easily been section-enders in themselves.

We caught up with Nathan to find out more about how it all went down.

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Photo by Calvin Kosovich

Did you get many injuries while filming for Champagne:

Ha, quite a few, but nothing super major. Bruised ribs, hit my face, ha. Then just bruises and scrapes.

How does it feel to have the last section in yet another video?

I feel very honored! Especially after seeing everyone’s footage. Any one of them should have had it!

Of all the sections you have under your belt, how do you think this new one holds up to the past?

Eh, I honestly have no clue. Once I’m done filming for something, I don’t like to think about it or dwell on it. It is what it is. As long as I feel like I’ve put in as much effort as I can, then I’m happy. Everybody is going to have an opinion, ha.

What was your favorite filming trip for the video?

I would have to say, Madrid for me. I have always had a special place in my heart for Spain, plus it had been quite a while since I had been back. Just being able to pedal from the apartment every day and then, on top of it, having a sick crew to be there with…can’t beat it!

What was filmed closest to your crib?

Either the pegs hard 3 or the ledge ride hop the L.

Which clip took the shortest to film?

Probably the gap to switch tires.

And which took the longest?

Probably the crook tires one bar from Tulsa. Between the process of cutting the chain that was on the rail and then trying the trick, it was like a whole day affair.

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Nathan with three for the price of one. Photo By Devon Hutchins

"Once I’m done filming for something, I don’t like to think about it or dwell on it. It is what it is. As long as I feel like I’ve put in as much effort as I can, then I’m happy."

- Nathan Williams

Jameson got some shine time; how many riding missions was he along for during Champagne filming, and how hyped are you when he follows along during a line?

Ha, he came on the most he possibly could. I actually flew with him on one of the trips. I would say more than half my clips Jameson was there for, ha. And yeah, honestly, it’s kinda weird motivation whenever he’s following along in the line or in the clip because I think about how funny it’ll be to have him in the shot, ha.

What are your favorite spots/setups you have clips on?

I would probably say the tooth pop over ledge ride in Tulsa and the switch crook 180 over were two I was really hyped on—mainly just because I had been wanting to ride them for years, but just hadn’t made it there.

The song choice is pretty epic; how did that come about, and why the Patricia version?

I gotta give all the credit to Darryl on that one. We had gone back and forth on a few other songs and I knew I wanted somewhat of a slower song, but we were having some difficulties finding ones that weren’t blocked on YouTube. That version was one of the only ones not blocked. But to be honest, I think I like the French version better than the original.

Of such a highly talented team, who do you think came through with the most hammers for the new video?

That’s what is so sick about the Kink crew: EVERYBODY wants to go in. It’s so motivating to be around. I honestly can’t pick one because everybody had lots of hammers.

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Photo by Calvin Kosovich

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Photo by Kevin Conners

You had some amazing oppo-side, switch-footed moves in there; is that what everyone should strive to include in the future?

Thanks! I mean, yeah, if that’s what they want to do; but, the beauty of BMX is that you don’t have to do a damn thing that you don’t want to, ha. I personally think it’s just a fun way to challenge myself and it kind of reminds me of learning tricks when I first started riding. It feels awkward as hell, but the more you do it, the more comfortable it feels.

Do you have any sketchy stories to share from cruising around during filming?

The first night that we all got to Madrid, a few of the guys went out cruising around and ended up seeing this dude freakin’ out and running around stabbing himself in the neck with a knife (Calvin actually has some footage of the guy). Not quite sure why, but he ended up with cops all around him bleeding out on the floor. And then, about two days later we went to a little park to hang out for a bit and when we pulled up, there was a bunch of commotion and we ended up seeing two guys covered in blood and learned that one of them had stabbed the other one! So Madrid can get a bit stabby, ha.

Your last 10 clips all could be enders; was there a specific order you and Darryl hashed out?

I just left that up to Darryl. He knows how things should go; so I just say what I want to use and what I don’t and then he works his magic.

How was filming with the rest of the team while working on this video project?

A pleasure! Everybody is so easy going, nobody is stressing getting out of the house in the morning, and there is always jokes and shit-talk even while filming, so it makes for kind of a light-hearted feel.

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Nathan getting straight to work in Denver, Colorado not long after he'd been added to the Kink team. Photo By Kevin Conners

"That’s what is so sick about the Kink crew: EVERYBODY wants to go in."

- Nathan Williams

What was your favorite trick, or the most rewarding to have filmed in there?

I think either the crook tires 1 bar or the pegs hard 3. Each for different reasons. The crook tires clip took forever and the pegs hard 3 I was sweating pretty bad. Honestly, I didn’t even know if I could do it.

With amazing video parts under your belt from the past few videos, did you feel any extra pressure to fire out an awesome part for this video?

Nah, not really. I mean, I always want to try and grow in whatever I’m doing and make things to the best of my ability, but in the end I try to not have any judgement on them. If that makes sense?

That last clip looked like you launched out of a kicker and not an out rail, and with perfect form on the 3. Was that one take, and if so, would you have done it again if it wasn’t as proper?

Well, thank ya! Nah, that took me two attempts at the 3. The first one I landed, but just looped out from the impact. And then I got it on the next one. It depends on how bad it looked, but I was sweating that one pretty hard so I probably would have said fuck it and just taken the sloppy one, ha.

Now that Champagne is done, do you have plans to work on any other projects?

I've started working on my X Games part with Peter Adam, but that is just a short little thing. Other than that, just wrapping up this part with Christian Rigal. We actually just got everything pretty locked down for that and it’s going to be out soon. So, keep a look out!

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Photo by Devon Hutchins

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