Find John on Social Media
Texas pros like Craig Johnson, Jeff Phillips and John “Tex” Gibson were famous throughout the 1980s for their powerful skating, hard partying and friendly personalities. Born in 1964 in Houston, John Gibson grew up in nearby Pasadena, where he started skating in 1975. Not long after, a horrible park called Skater’s Crater opened, which John started skating along with some local pools and ditches. After a while, he got a job as a pad nanny at Gulf Coast Skatepark with Ken Fillion. “We never wore our pads. We just terrorized and skated around. We got paid minimum wage just to raise Hell,” John said of that experience. John received his first product flow when Chris Strople gave him a Caster deck. A few months later at a contest in Oklahoma, Tex got offers of sponsorship from Dogtown, G&S and Zorlac, and ended up on the latter. Then in 1979, Caster sponsored John and flew him out to California for the Del Mar stop of the Hester Series, where he got second place in amateur pool. In 1980, Caster flew John out again for the Gold Cup and ASPO Series, in which John won am pool at the ASPO Del Mar and the Colton stop of the Gold Cup.
At this point, John was seen as a serious threat to the California competitive-industrial complex. When John won am pool at the Lakewood Pro-Am in 1981, he was also getting flowed Trackers and Gyro hub wheels. By 1983, John had started a skate rock band called Bark Hard and Caster stopped making skateboards. So, he re-joined Zorlac, who turned him pro and gave him a signature model deck. Around this time, Independent also sponsored him. At John’s first pro contest at Whittier in 1982, he ended up in eighth place. (By 1983, Tony Hawk started winning most vert contests.) A few years later, the money dried up at Zorlac, so John moved over to Alva, Life’s a Beach and Tracker, which gave him more opportunity to travel overseas to places like Brazil and Tahiti. In the early ’90s when street skating took over and vert contests disappeared, John went to school to become a sound engineer and played in bands like Blunt, Sugar Shack, and Poor Dumb Bastards. At one point, he even reformed Bark Hard. Later, John helped an organization called PUSH (Public Use Skatepark of Houston) to get a concrete skatepark built in Houston.