"Roman Candle" turns 20: Secrets of Elliott Smith's accidental masterpiece (slideshow)
Elliott and the friends with whom he recorded in middle school in Texas (photo courtesy of Dan Pickering)
Those of you watching the Olympics in prime time tonight will get to see Shaun White, arguably America’s top snowboarder (or at least its most recognizable), in his quest for gold. White, who has been competing professionally since he was 13, has won 18 medals at the Winter X Games since 2003, and won gold medals in the halfpipe competition at both the 2006 and 2010 Winter Olympics. At Sochi, he walked away from the new Olympic snowboard event, slopestyle, after citing concerns over the course’s safety and “to focus solely on trying to bring home the third straight gold medal in halfpipe for Team USA.”
Now White is reportedly taking “a little break” from the sport. Instead, he will tour with his band, Bad Things.
Here’s a look at White’s top tricks, along with a preview of what his future as a musician holds:
Gold medal halfpipe run in the 2006 Winter Olympics
Switch backside 900
The Doubleback Rodeo
Gold medal halfpipe run in 2010 Winter Olympics
White earned a first-run score of 46.8 out of 50,securing his place as a gold medalist in his first run.
The Double McTwist 1260
White performed the Double McTwist 1260 as his “victory run” at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. “I won the gold again on my first run. This time on my victory run, I did a new trick: the Double McTwist 1260. I called it the Tomahawk,” he fondly recalled in Vogue.
Cab Double Cork 1080
Frontside Double Cork 1080
2012 Winter X Games
White scored 100.00, a perfect score at the Winter X Games in 2012, in what was widely considered to be his best run to date. He completed the halfpipe run with a frontside double cork 1260 — a trick he invented just four days prior.
Front Side Double Cork 1440
White practicing his new, ambitious trick for the halfpipe in Sochi:
In a Billboard interview from the summer of 2013, White said that his music helped him keep his training “fun and exciting.” Sometimes, “you gotta take a break from it,” he explained. But the band, who released an album in October, went on break to accommodate White’s training schedule. “We’re taking a quick break so Daddy can go do what he does best,” joked vocalist Davis LeDuke.
Here is their single, “Caught Inside”:
And here they are, performing at Lollapalooza:
Prachi Gupta is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on pop culture. Follow her on Twitter at @prachigu or email her at email@example.com.More Prachi Gupta.
Heatmiser publicity shot (L-R: Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson, Neil Gust, Elliott Smith) (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott and JJ Gonson (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
"Stray" 7-inch, Cavity Search Records (photo courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott's Hampshire College ID photo, 1987
Elliott with "Le Domino," the guitar he used on "Roman Candle" (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Full "Roman Candle" record cover (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Elliott goofing off in Portland (courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
Heatmiser (L-R: Elliott Smith, Neil Gust, Tony Lash, Brandt Peterson)(courtesy of JJ Gonson photography)
The Greenhouse Sleeve -- Cassette sleeve from Murder of Crows release, 1988, with first appearance of Condor Avenue (photo courtesy of Glynnis Fawkes)