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Steve "Cab" Caballero: From Tracks To Punk

By Andres Pachon

A. Pachon, a journalist and skateboard addict, is a full-time writer for SHIT® Magazine.


Born on August 11 of 1964, in San Jose, California. This American man with Mexican roots has become one of the worlds top skateboarding legends. He is a professional skateboarder and musician. Caballero is known for the difficult tricks and air variations he invented for vertical skating and for setting a long-standing record for the highest air achieved on a halfpipe. Cab began skating in 1976 at the age of 12 and started his career for real at age 14. His first sponsor was Campbell Skate Park. In 1979, Caballero entered a national skate contest in Escondido. After finishing fifth, he was approached by Stacy Peralta who offered him sponsorship with Powell Peralta. He turned pro in 1980 during the Gold Cup series at the Oasis Skatepark, Southern California. By this time, Caballero had invented the 'Caballerial', also known as 'Cab', a jump with a full 360º turn going backwards on the skateboard... Caballero is also credited with inventing the frontside boardslide.



Skateboarder of the century
Photo: Mikael Cho (Unsplash)

As you just read, during the first half of the 1980s, Caballero was arguably the best professional skater and was featured on the cover of Thrasher Magazine several times. Thrasher also named him the skateboarder of the previous century. He is features as a character in five of the Tony Hawk video games, from Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 2 to Tony Hawk's Underground, and as a downloadable skater in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater HD. It is well known that the punk movement, originating from England and later installed in the USA, had a great impact on his life. Yes, Mr Caballero has been a member of several punk bands including The Faction, Odd Man Out, Shovelhead, and Soda, and released a compilation CD on Sessions Records named Bandology displaying the various bands he has appeared on songs with. The Faction song "Skate and Destroy" featured on the soundtrack of Powell Peralta's eponymous Bones Brigade Video Show.







In 2014, Vans, one of his most important sponsors partnered with Star Wars producers, signing a contract where Steve got to dress like a Wookie from Star Wars and skate in a commercial and thus transforming into a much more recognized image in pop culture. That same year Caballero turned 50, after 35 years of skateboarding, countless recorded videos, own skateboard models, lots of merchandise and broken records. Nowadays this master continues doing what he is passionate about but in a calmer way. His current sponsors include Powell Skateboards, Bones Bearings, Independent Truck Company and Autobahn Wheels among others. Caballero keeps appearing on covers of publications year after year. Also, there are some skateboarding shoes that bear his name and specifications: the Caps and half Caps. He is listed in the most popular skateboarders' lists for his "aerial" jumps. He is also recognized as an innovator in the street skate revolution in the early 90s and for his fluid and technical style.

The versatility of this legend made him a winner in everything he's done, but Steve has undoubtedly earned himself a great place in the skateboarding legacy. Even if you don't like his style you are going to remember him every time you try to do a Cab.



Read also: Chris Cole: From Grandma’s Window to a Skateboarding Legend

Read also: Mark Appleyard: The Canadian Moonshot

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