Anyone that follows Pro Surfing knows of Warren Metcalfe. But for those that are new to the sport here’s the basic 411 on the blonde haired phenomenon known by such nicknames as “Wo Wo” and “War Dawg.”
Over the years he has successfully competed in the Bad Boy Pro, the Vans Pier Classic, the Puerto Escondido World Qualifying Series and won the Cerritos Corona Beach Classic. In addition to participating in surfing competitions he has also made appearances in several magazines including GQ, Playboy as well as had his countenance adorn the Dodger Stadium main screen and the lifeguard towers of Los Angeles.
Sponsored by Airwalk, Metcalfe has surfed with celebrities, raised funds for charities, starred in surf films and is in the process of launching his own business. He also recently made time to sit down with me this week for an in-depth interview. He is what he had to say:
Please share with us how and when you became involved with Airwalk.
I first became involved with Airwalk through a photographer friend named Michael Muller. He invited me to come along for the action sports shoot and from there I became a part of the family.
Will you be taking an active part in Airwalk’s 25 Anniversary celebrations and if so, what will that part entail?
I would love to contribute any way that I can. I’ll do my best to pull out some serious dance moves. I definitely plan on attending depending if I can sneak away from a new a film project I’m working on with VH1.
Do you have any products or videos scheduled to drop in this summer?
I’m almost done with my part in David Parsa’s new surf film. I’m also working on opening a shop in Cabo San Lucas, it’s called the Cabo Collective. It’s a surf/skate shop where we will also have an extreme tour business ‘” off road racing, bungee jumping, hurricane hunter surf tours, spear fishing and much more. Our location will also have a raw juice & food bar. The bar will also serve alcoholic beverages for events and music venues. We plan on showcasing local and international music groups on our wood half pipe stage.
What upcoming surf competitions are you scheduled to participate in?
At the moment I am not scheduled to participate in any competitions. I’m concentrating on a show that’s in the works for VH1 based on the Cabo shop, and a group of adrenaline junkie friends that share the same passion for action sports.
I read that you once had the opportunity to give surfing lessons to Will Smith and Jada Pinkett as part of a Red Cross fundraiser. Tell me a little bit more about that. Do you think either of them have a future in surfing?
I had the pleasure to hang with them at the event where they graciously donated to the Red Cross for the opportunity to surf with Garret McNamara and myself. They are awesome, talented people! They expressed that their son really wants to get more involved in surfing. I’m sure little man will transfer his karate kid skills and be ripping up waves in no time. That being said, I think they definitely have a future in surfing.
Have you given surfing lessons or surfed with any other music, television or film stars? If so, who and when?
The past few years I was living up in Malibu, where I became friends with some of my favorite musicians and actors who also share the same passion for the ocean. Anthony Kiedis is a good friend of mine who is an avid surfer and former neighbor. He used to pick me up in his golf cart to cruise around and surf. It was funny cause at times I’d be amping up to his music then giving him pointers on his surfing right after. Juliette Lewis is another friend that I surf with ‘” we’ve had some great surf adventures together. She’s a rad girl! I recently met Nathan Followill from Kings of Leon, who expressed his urge to come visit our shop in Cabo and get some warm water fun.
What is the strangest thing that has ever happened to you in your life?
Last year in Indonesia I nearly died three times in a week. I left central Java an hour before a volcano engulfed the city. Then the next spot I was in got hit by one of the largest earthquakes in my lifetime. Then, to top it off I barely escaped a tidal wave. All the while I had no idea any of this was in the weather forecast ‘” I was too focused on finding the perfect wave.
What is your favorite childhood memory?
When my elementary school declared Wednesday was beach day. Life was so simple then!
What upcoming charity events are you involved with (if any)?
I’d like to keep working with the Red Cross and Surfers Healing. I’d also like to find or create a charity to help the groms in Baja.
In your opinion, how has the surfing scene changed since you first immersed yourself in it?
Since I first began surfing, the sport has evolved greatly, just as in all of the extreme sports. Airs, maneuvers and waves are getting bigger and more technical every day.
Do you consider those changes beneficial or harmful to the surfing scene overall?
I think it is all positive as long as everyone carries on soul of the guys who pioneered surfing.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
Probably on a beach! I see myself still traveling, trying my best to push surfing to the next level. I’d hope that the Cabo Collective would be a successful business, working with charities and social groups to make a positive impact.
In 10 years?
I’ll be racing spaceships… haha! Just kidding. In reality, I’d like to stay on the same path. But you never know!
Who do you admire the most (living or dead) and why?
That’s a hard one! The list is long. I really admire Rob Dyrdek’s approach to life. He’s a rad guy and seems to have a ton of fun while helping his family and friends. I also admire Andy Irons for his fire and I’d say Kelly Slater for being a super human freak.
When you look back on your life thus far, what accomplishments are you most proud of and why?
First, I’d say becoming a professional surfer because it was a huge battle. In fact my mom never supported it until I was able contribute to the house from the money I’d made surfing. Because there were no good schools in Cabo, I did four years in a military school to keep myself on the path to my dream – it was the only school on the beach in California – otherwise I would’ve been in a coed landlocked boarding school. This allowed me to prove myself in contests and be in the water. Second, would be getting a signature shoe from my favorite shoe company Airwalk. Third would be creating a shop and a show concept for VH1. Fourth would be joining the Screen Actor’s Guild through work in movies and commercials – one of which I got to kiss my dream girl, Jessica Alba. Fifth would be raising $11,000 for the Red Cross.
If you could vacation anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
Right now I’d probably go to Tavarua because it’s an amazing wave and I’ve never been there.
What is your idea of a perfect day?
I’m gonna get creative on this one. Right now it would probably start of by waking up to my dream girl and a really good coffee. Then I’d have an unlimited buffet with my favorite foods for every meal. I’d probably be on an island with perfect uncrowded waves so I could surf rights and lefts with a handful of my best friends. There’d be a big party to close it all down. With all kinds of toys: dune buggies, jet skis, skate ramps etc. Off course I’d have my favorite bands parachute in and a firework show to close the evening.
If you had the chance to live your life over again, what one thing (if any) would you do differently and why?
My decisions have shaped who I am today and as boneheaded as some of them have been, I don’t regret them.
If you could only be remembered for one thing, what would you want that one thing to be?
In one way or another I’d like to be remembered for having a positive Impact on the world, hopefully as a result of my current lifestyle and ventures.
Is there anything else you would like to say to the readers?
Thank you to everyone who has and continues to support me! I couldn’t have done it without you! “Follow your dreams no matter what. Make sure you live it up while you’re on this planet”
My children are skateboarders and I have a history of following action sports.
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