2013 – ICON DEVO

2013 Inductees

As skateboarding’s second wave kicked into gear during the late ’70s, key bands fueled the new direction of the counterculture.

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As skateboarding’s second wave kicked into gear during the late ’70s, key bands fueled the new direction of the counterculture. Chiefly among them, Devo’s fast and jerky new sound fit perfectly, embodying the faster and looser style unchained by urethane, the Z-Boys low-to-the-ground style, and the aggressive edge they brought with them. The band itself performed gigs with skaters, had pros such as Tony Alva and Steve Olson skating in their videos (“Freedom of Choice”), and even played at a number of skateparks. Since the ’70s, Devo has appeared in countless skate video soundtracks from companies including Vans, Powell-Peralta, Real, Anti Hero, Slave, Creature, Cliché, Polar, Lakai, Santa Cruz, Habitat, Zero, Foundation, Thrasher, Big Brother, Volcom, Nike, video games such as EA Skate and even the Dogtown and Z-Boys documentary itself—permanently fusing their sound with the act of skateboarding for four generations of practitioners. Formed in Akron, Ohio, in ’76—based on their theory of devolution of American society following the Kent State shootings (witnessed by founding member and Kent State student Gerald Casale)—Devo exploded onto music charts after a ’78 gig on Saturday Night Live and their cover of the Rolling Stones’ “Satisfaction.” Quickly backed by David Bowie, Iggy Pop, and a number of other successful artists, their first three albums—Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo, Duty Now For The Future, and Freedom of Choice topped charts and have been cited by Rolling Stone as some of the most influential of the ’70s and ’80s. Whip it!

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