Kanoa Igarashi was a force of nature during the US Open in Huntington Beach a few weeks back, despite nature itself actually being not much of a force the entire event. The back-to-back US Open champ clearly has mad skills in grovely conditions, but, apparently, his win is at least partially due to the musical stylings of a 21-year-old Huntington Beach rapper calling himself “Yung Pinch.”
“I wanna give a shout out to Yung Pinch,” said Igarashi to commentator Joe Turpel in his post heater. “He sent me one of his new songs from his new album right before my heat. He got me all hyped up.”
As it turns out, Igarashi and Yung Pinch actually interviewed one another before the contest got underway (you can watch that gem above) where they discuss surfing—”I’m too lazy, bro,” says Pinch. “You wake and surf, I wake and bake. It is what it is, mang.”—and music and the intersection of the two—”I can relate,” says Igarashi. “It’s like, there are so many people, but once you’re in your zone, once you’re doing your thing, everything’s blocked off. All you wanna do is do what you love to do.”
Is Yung Pinch’s music going to propel Igarashi to victory once more at the Surf Ranch Pro next week? Did he forget to play his Pinch hype up playlist before Teahupoo? Does Griffin Colapinto need to form an alliance with a San Clemente rapper to win the next US Open? Only time will tell. In the meantime, please enjoy the full interview between Igarashi and Pinch above, and watch Pinch’s latest music video, “Smoke & Drive,” below.