Last year, Japanese hair stylist and surfer Kyousuke Karube took a trip out to California, surfed, and cut hair. Mostly the hair of notable surfers. A photo exhibition followed, as did a movie called Cut Back to California. But good luck finding it outside of Japan. At least until November, when filmmaker Masatake Kiyono plans to debut it in the U.S. The trailer was so brilliant we were compelled to seek out Karube for his thoughts on the project. I chatted with him over e-mail last week.
How was your hair cutting trip to California? Which surfers ended up getting a hair cut from you?
It was a great experience, because I gave haircuts to many famous surfers. Everybody said “I love my hair cut!” I was so glad, especially when I gave a hair cut to Joel Tudor, because I started surfing when I first saw Joel’s DVD, Longer. Joel’s hair cut was a treasure.
Where did you surf while in California? Did you get good waves?
Swami’s, Cardiff, Windansea, San Onofre with Tyler Warren, Leadbetter, Rincon, and Churches. Rincon was the best wave I’ve surfed in my life.
Where do you cut hair back in Japan?
My shop is “Hair California” in Shonan Kanagawa. It’s near the ocean. I can surf everyday!
Who came up with the idea for Cut Back to California?
The project is my idea. I wanted to relate one’s work to surfing because I love my work and I just love surfing. When I talked to Masatake, he said he wanted to make a surfing and haircut documentary film. He shot it on Super 8 and decided to name it Cut Back to California.
How long were you here?
We were at the coast for two weeks in February, 2012. Stayed in a camper van.
Who had the best hair? Who had the worst?
Everyone’s hair is best.