Introducing Stab's Guest Editor: Matt "Mayhem" Biolos
"We’re going to have a lot of fun, and maybe bring back a little sting to the Stabbing."
Stab has graciously—or, reluctantly?—handed me the reigns for a 10 day Guest Editorship. I'm honored.
My relationship with these boys dates back far before Stab even came to be, and I’ve always felt a strong affinity with what Stab was, is, and what it will be.
Like ...Lost, Stab’s beginnings were a special time. It was, as the name originally implied, a stab in the face of the then stale and stagnant surf media world. Taking irreverent, stinging jabs at everything and everyone….while backing it up with creative and even groundbreaking, quality content.
Driven by Sam McIntosh's surf credibility, and his doggedly determined vision to build a better mag (as well as his then-partner, the brilliant, often fork-tongued Derek Rielly), Stab set the standard for Surf Publications, as the medium itself was rapidly descending into obsolescence.
The first years were rambunctious fun. I became great friends Sam. He almost single handedly persuaded Taj Burrow to come over from Firewire, to ride my boards full-on. Derek pulled some of the best interviews and conversations of my career from me.
But a few years ago, it looked as if the writing was on the wall and magazines were a dying breed. As surf media went digital, Stab again led the way.
In our biz, quality trumps quantity, and Stab has consistently created the most original, thought provoking, high-quality digital content in the surf world. We trust Stab to tell us the truth, even if it hurts a little.
About five years ago, as the surf industry’s fragile house of cards came tumbling down, advertising dollars became scarce, and consumers—Surfers—became numb to blatant pay-to-play ads.
Regimes crumbled all over the surf world. Sam and Derek split ways, corporations came in. As a friend of the brand, I feared the worst. But Sam managed to steer the ship masterfully and continue to lead in bold creative directions (though Sam would be the first to admit Stab had a bit less bite, during the corpo years).
Incredibly, after a couple years, he managed to regain complete control of Stab again, and in the most stringent financial time in surf marketing/media history, has put together a young team, and is now consistently bringing original ideas, and compelling content to the table. Usually on his own dime.
Stab’s commitment to The Surfboard itself (and those who build them), as the most important component of the surfing experience, is evident in projects like Stab In The Dark and The Electric Acid Surfboard Test.
Recently, while most surf media outlets are filling their feed with re-posted content, created by others, Stab put it all on the line, with the unprecedented, self-produced Stab High.
An aerial surfing event, in a wave pool, reportedly costing nearly half a million US$. Who does that?!
Stab does. And they do it for us.
Which is why I accepted the offer to Guest Edit, and will attack it with aplomb… I’m going to climb up on the bully pulpit and speak my mind. Not everyone will agree with everything, but hopefully I can carry my weight and make good on the faith they have in me.
We’re going to have a lot of fun, and maybe bring back a little sting to the Stabbing.