When we speak of the 'Golden Era' of skateboarding in the 90's there are usually certain names which come up in the conversation. Shiloh Greathouse is often one of those names. Shiloh is an OG of the era and is considered by many to be one of the most stylish and technical skateboarders of his generation. Any professional skateboarder’s name which still crops up after almost three decades has to be someone special. He was on the cover of the first ever issue of Big Brother Skateboarding Magazine, had an infinite catalogue of incredible tricks, an impeccable style and was never afraid to speak his mind.
The Los Angeles native grew up spending most of his time skating in Hollywood where his dad resided and he often skated with legends such as Jason Lee, The Gonz, Guy Mariano, Paulo Diaz, Gabriel Rodriguez, Kareem Campbell and Daewon Song. Shiloh and Guy Mariano were very close and both were responsible for a lot of ground breaking tricks being created in street skating at the time.
Starting out Shiloh's first sponsor was a brief period riding for Alva however not too longer after he found himself on Steve Rocco's World Industries and was viewed as the new upcoming breed of skateboarders potentially taking over from some of the older pros.
Shiloh had a talented crew which skated all over Los Angeles, spending a lot of their time at Lockwood Elementary School, L.A's iconic picnic table skate spot. It was evident early on that Shiloh had mesmerising technical skateboarding ability and a lot of this was displayed in the World Industries 'Love Child' video in 1992. There are so many unbelievable technical tricks in this part it is hard to fathom it was 28 years ago. It was quite simply so ahead of its time. Some of the standout tricks are the Switch Bigspin Flip down stairs and Shiloh's ender, a perfect Backside 270 lip-slide on a rail. To this day I believe this is the sickest trick he may ever have done.
Shiloh's 'New World Order' part followed in 1993. The part flowed to Slick Rick’s ‘I Shouldn’t have Done It’ and opens up with Shiloh, spray can in hand, tagging some walls with graffiti. This was again another awesome part and contained many ground breaking and innovative tricks, none other than his ender of a Switch Frontside Bigspin Boardslide.
There were many rumours over the years that Shiloh and Kareem Campbell were supposed to leave World Industries and join Chocolate Skateboards. What alledgedly happened was that Rick Howard and Mike Carroll had approached Kareem and Shiloh to lead a new Girl Skateboards spin off company called 'Sister' however Shiloh had a change of heart last minute and decided to remain on World Industries. Shiloh produced another epic video part in World Industries 'Trilogy' from 1996. The part opened up with a skit of Shiloh escaping prison in his orange jumpsuit, hopping a fence and into Kareem's car as they speed off into the sunset. Skating to Mary J Blige, Shiloh attacked ledges, rails and did a number on many a picnic table with some smooth tech skating at its finest.
In the World Industries video 'Rodney vs Daewon Song 2' from 1999 Shiloh had a short but packed part and a trick from this video which I don't recall ever seeing done before was his third last trick in the part, done on a ledge. Fakie Nose Grind, Switch Varial Heelflip out however Shiloh himself says it is more of a Pressure Flip. Whatever it was, this blew my mind at time and was more evidence of the vast range of jaw dropping tech tricks he had in his locker. Blink and you'll miss the tech madness of that one!
When Daewon Song left World Industries in 1999 he started Deca Skateboards and he brought Shiloh with him. The 'Second to None' video seen Shiloh and Daewon skating various obstacles in the Deca Warehouse of which they dropped some heavy tricks over fork lift trucks and gaps with potential sketchy slam consequences given the setting.
No longer riding for Deca and without a sponsor, Shiloh decided to make his own video 'Skateboarding is Dead' in 2004 which flew slightly under the radar and is undoubtedly a very underrated part. You can tell that at this point Shiloh is simply enjoying his skateboarding with no pressure from sponsors, smiling and jokingly foot planting across multiple benches in the intro to the part. He ends the section in typical Shiloh style with a buttery Kick Flip Back Side Nose Blunt Slide.
When Transworld 'First Love' was released in 2005 many skateboarders viewed Shiloh’s part as a ‘comeback part’ however he had still quietly been skating behind the scenes and perhaps not too many had seen the low key 'Skateboarding is Dead' section. In the intro to the part Shiloh states how skateboarding back in the day was very different to how kids skate these days; "it had nothing to do with hey we are going to go skate to this spot in the city, it was like, we are going to skate the whole city. That's what street skating was all about." This part was epic, skating to 'The Killing Moon' by Echo and The Bunnymen, Shiloh shows us his natural style dropping a flawless selection of tricks.
After the Transworld part Shiloh found himself on Stacy Lowery's company Bueno and they released an awesome video called 'Wizards of Radical' in 2006. Stacy and Shiloh shared a part and it was enjoyable to watch some great skating from two very experienced skateboarders however unfortunately the company was discontinued not long after.
I think it would be fair to say that Shiloh was definitely in some part under-appreciated for his contribution to skateboarding throughout his career. His loyalty to brands at times perhaps did not result in the rewards he deserved. He was popular but at the same time underrated. His relaxed style offered progressive skateboarding way ahead of its time and he always looked so natural on a board. His varied trick selection made his parts so good to watch and he has contributed many timeless video parts. Shiloh was a pioneer for tech skateboarding and helped define the direction of skateboarding’s progression to where it is now. He had a gift of making difficult tricks look easy, most of which wouldn't look out of place in any skate video part today.
Shiloh told me he still skates all the time and he even has a mini ramp in his back yard so he clearly has not lost that love for skateboarding. When we asked Shiloh if we could pick his brain for a 'Favourites' Interview he expressed that the questions and choices are 'so tough' and rightly so. For someone who experienced so much in the industry, had so many tricks to offer, skated with so many great skaters it would be challenging to pinpoint a favourite however here is the list below;
Favourite Trick Of All Time?
Kick Flip Back Side Nose Blunt Slide
Favourite Board Graphic?
My World Egyptian Vulture Slick
Favourite Person To Skate With?
Favourite Skate Video?
Favourite Music Album?
Wu Tang 'Enter The 36 Chambers'
Master of the Flying Guillotine
Favourite Place For Vacation?
Favourite Trick Could Never Land?
360 Flip Board and Body to Lip Slide on a rail
Thank you for taking the time to do this 'Favourites' instalment and thank you your contribution to skateboarding Shiloh!