Rigsektball started in 2011 after Bim attached a hoop to his band's tour van as a joke. They challenged another band to a game of three on three before a show. That summer, Bim announced he was putting together a band basketball tournament on the van. Before he had time to think it through, 32 bands had signed up to play. For the first year, all the games were at different locations all around Portland. Each location was picked by the band with fewer MySpace listens, we've come a long way. Haha.
In 2012 we got some other Portland music people involved in the planing process (Rochelle Hunter was a key aspect of this) and started booking shows after the games. We held the games in the parking lots or side streets next to small venues where we had ripper shows afterwards. That was the year we started the Rigsketball compilation which is a tape-only release of songs from all 32 bands.
Starting in 2013, we've hosted the first and second round of the 32 band bracketed tournament at the free, all ages, music festival called PDX POP NOW! Up until 2017, we also put on our own free mini-festival called Rigsketball Musicfest. For this, we closed off a street and built it into a multi-stage setup with bands from all corners of sonic preference, and hosted the semifinals and finals of the tournament at the festival. Our focus has always been on community. Not in a serious way though, through novel meaninglessness. We like things janky. Everything about Rigsketball starts as a stupid idea we think would be funny. We're always shocked when anyone takes anything we do seriously. Like when VICE.com did a feature piece outlining the project. What? Why? We're just inviting a bunch of bands to play basketball on a crazy van-hoop so we can joke around with them, try to convince the guy with the good parking lot to let us stay until the games are done.
In 2014 Juliet Zulu made a profile video on Bim and Rigsketball which got a Vimeo Staff Pick. That shit ripped! That production team really knows how to make a thing looks cooler than it is! That video raised Rigsketball's viability both locally and internationally. Ultimately though, Rigsketball is not about growth or reach or any of the things that people may tell you an artistic project has to be. It's just about bands having some fun. So as long as we're able to provide a setting for that, we consider it a smashing success. Although, we are desperately trying to figure out how to get the van to Japan, do you have a rich uncle with a plane? Hit us up.
Throughout Rigsketball's history the van has been there for bands and artists. Helping folks get to shows when their vans break down, giving visual artists a compelling platform to do and show art on. The rig was even involved in a mayoral candidacy. It has hosted satellite tournaments in cities outside of Portland including what has become a Rigsketball tradition at Treefort Music Fest, in Boise, Idaho. In 2015 Bim made a baby van with wings out of yard wood and PVC pipe and Styrofoam that we flew in Red Bull Flugtag in Portland, OR. That shit was pretty absurd and dumb.
Over the years, we've had the pleasure of hosting something like 250 bands in 3 on 3 basketball games on the van. What a joy it is to do something unnessisary. What a good thing it is we don't have spreadsheets. How proud we are that we have no idea what we're doing. THIS RIPS!