Rick Rasmussen won the 1974 United States Surfing Championships at more or less the exact moment Lou Reed’s Rock and Roll Animal went to the front of my small but not-unworthy record collection, and I’ve come to believe that the two men, together, planted a seed from which my fascination and love for New York would sprout, grow, and blossom. Rasmussen was 19 and a total unknown to us West Coast grems when he won the USSC. But we liked what we saw. He surfed hard and aggressively. Had a lot of flair. You could see it in in his red-on-yellow board, in the big white-toothed grin, in the swagger that came through even in the small number of photos printed in the mags. Plus he had the coolest nickname—"Raz." -- Read the full article "Street Hassle: Lou Reed's Ode to Rick Rasmussen" by Matt Warshaw here. Video clip edit courtesy of Matt Warshaw and Encyclopedia of Surfing.