In early 2006, Diplomat Records co-CEO Jim Jones announced his sponsorship venture with DipSkate, a Freestyle Rolling team headed by Calvin Sayles and Ramelle Knight. Already fulfilling a multitude of roles in his career, including recording artist, producer, executive, and video director, Jones and his Harlem-based crew The Diplomats have partnering with the newest phenomenon in the world of extreme sports, Freestyle Rolling, to create DipSkate, a Diplomat Records-sponsored skate team.
Commonly referred to as “aggressive skating” from its inception, Freestyle Rolling is the modern-day progression of inline skating, which blends skating, music, and fashion together.
Several years ago, New York filmmakers The Brown Brothers (Chris and Courtney Brown) dove into the business of Freestyle Rolling with the same vigor as the skaters they were following on a daily basis. After several years of teaming with pro-skaters Ramelle Knight and Calvin Sayles on different ventures, including an international sponsorship with leading fashion company b.unique & co., the four men sought out new ways to elevate their collective success.
Jim Jones first approached The Brown Brothers after viewing their latest documentary film, “Know Difference,” which received critical acclaim at several 2006 New York screenings. “When I got the opportunity to see [The Brown Brothers’] tape, and they told me how the skaters feel when it comes to the Diplomats, I was honored,” explains Jones. “They feel like we’re the realest thing out there, and they love everything that we’re doing, so it was a beautiful opportunity.”
The vision that everyone shares in the DipSkate movement comes from an organic realm of shared professional and personal values. “Jim respects the hustle, the same as we do,” says Ramelle Knight. “He sees what we do is real, and we’re going to take it as far as we can, like he is with his projects. We’re all grinding out here. We are bringing music and skating together to build a union that will make an even stronger team. It is a revolution that will be much appreciated.”
Sadly, in March 2007, the team’s manager Joseph Miles III passed away. Joseph’s enthusiasm and dedication to the Freestyle Rolling movement was intoxicating, and his spirit helps carry on the team today.
“This is a beautiful venture,” Joseph said upon his official involvement with DipSkate in 2006. “The biggest movement in Hip Hop teaming up with the biggest up-and-coming movement in the world of extreme sports. This is something most people haven’t experienced, and it’s going to change a lot of opinions out there.”
For more info on DipSkate and Freestyle Rolling, visit MySpace.com/Dipskate.