Hardcore In Ink – Part #1 Chad Koplinger.

By Ed


Art By Chad Koplinger For DXR.

Chad Koplinger is a well known world wide tattoo artist with a taste for Hardcore, travel and good food amongst, a host of other stuff- a man after my own heart. I wanted to do something new and have a look at some other aspects of the scene and fans of.

DR: Hi Chad how’s things bro? Where are you right now? 

CK- I am in Paris right now but off for a pretty crazy trip, we are going to Sweden, Italy,Greece, China, North Korea, Spain, and Norway this time around……

DR: So when did you first discover Hardcore? What were some of the first bands you heard?


A young Chad in a YOT shit

CK- i was ten….i was pen pals with amery smith who was the first drummer from suicidal tendencies…i dont even know how that happened, but anyway, he made me a mix tape, with thrash songs on one side, and punk and hardcore songs on the other…..i never even listened to the trash side! i fell in love with minor threat, bad religion, black flag especially….this was 28 years ago!


 DR: What bands really did it for you in the early days? 

CK- like i said minor threat, black flag and the misfits…..but i also

 got the revelation “the way it is” comp tape when it came out, and i loved every band on that, i played it till it broke, ahahahah


DR: What was the first show you went to? Who was on the bill and where was it? 

CK – flint michigan, 1991…..shows were hard to know about back then, i lived far from detroit, and even flint seemed far, it was 30 miles away…..but my parents weren’t supportive, and i had no way to get there…..so finally by 1991 i got to go see civil disobedience in flint, i have no idea who they played with, but it was amazing, i got my nose broken 30 seconds into the first song of the first band, i was hooked!!!


DR: I love how on one of the tattoo age parts with Smith Street they have the Integrity skull as flash and one of the guys says ppl have just picked it off before unknowing, that’s so rad.

Have you done many HC tattoo’s or HC inspired tattoos over the years? What are some of the most memorable?


CK – yeah man, i love that…..i have done a few, but not that many actually….. 


DR: I remember seeing that you attended one of the COS reunion shows in the last couple of years- how was it? Have you seen many of the other crucial & old Rev bands ie; Bold, Insted etc?

CK – yeah man, that show was amazing…..i have loved that band since i was a little kid, so seeing them was really great and kind of emotional for me, also seeing the first judge reunion show…..those bands meant so much to me my whole life, and to finally get the chance to see them was like a dream come true, i dont care what the circumstances were, i have heard so many haters, but honestly i never thought about how any one else felt about hardcore but myself,  meaning i dont care if the people that sang the song 25 years ago still believe in it or live like that or not, it still meant something to me……even if i dont still believe in it either! 


DR: Do you collect records now or have you in the past? What was some of the gold in your collection if so? 

CK- i did have  a small collection, i was always pretty poor, so whatever records i had when i was young it was a small miracle i had them at all….i just started collecting again last year, i was trying to resist, im such a collector of shit by nature, i went way overboard right away…..but still, i dont think i have anything too crazy, i have a yot posi numbers record that i think they only made a small amount of…..


DR: What would you say your all time top five Hardcore bands are? 

CK – judge, chain of strength, gorilla biscuits, minor threat, slapshot, 


DR: What was the last Hardcore show you went to?

CK-  this is hardcore 2015…..took my kid and her boyfriend too, wanted them to see the real thing, ahahah


DR: I know you’re big on good food, so what and where are some of your favourite places to eat worldwide?

CK-  Tokyo, paris, Montreal, New York, Thailand and vietnam…….


DR: Who are your top five favourite chefs worldwide? 

CK -Chris flint, Antonio park, Aitor Zabala, Hiroki Yoshitake


DR: what would you say your main inspirations are in terms of your tattooing style? 

CK -traveling…..all the weird shit you see out there man…..also ed hardy

DR: You travel tons, but where are some of your favourite countries to go and tattoo?

CK-  Italy! also Colombia, and Nepal…..


DR: where are some of your favourite shops to tattoo in? 

CK – smith street tattoo, tattoo paradise, tattoo faction, great lakes tattoo, congress street tattoo, tattoo mania, hunter and fox, chapel tattoo, frith street, grimm reaper, ladies and gentleman, captured, three tides tattoo, lifetime tattoo, rock of ages, invictus, infamous, hobos…..and more im sure!


DR: What would you say the tattoo industry looks like in 2015 with shops popping up all over the place?

CK-  grimm……


DR: Who is killing it in the Tattoo game in 2015? 

CK – so many people man!!! Greg Christian, Jason Scott, Mamone, Nello Rossini, all my smith street bros…..so many more man!! ….


DR: Thanks for your time dude and take care!

CK – thank you bro!!!!!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Chad Koplinger, Frith St Tattoo, Hardcore In Ink, Smith St Tattoo

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s