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LAMYLAMD WITH MICHELE LAMY

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LISTEN 🔊 MICHELE LAMY - LAMYLAND

WITH CLAYTON PATERSON & JOEY GOODWIN

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Clayton: We are doing a fanzine based on a boxing metaphor. It’s not boxing itself, necessarily; it's about our biggest struggles in life. It's called 12 rounds, 12 people. And Joey and I are the corner pieces. So, it's really about taking really fascinating and interesting people, and finding out what the struggles in their life have been, to get where they are, now. 

Michele: Joey told me about it, and I said it was genius! But then you made me [nervous], like of falling apart if I took boxing. In life, I don't really see fighting one another. I could not see fighting or hurting somebody else.

Clayton: It’s just the idea.

Michele: I know, but you start somewhere [with boxing]. I always think, like... dreaming something you think is really bad? But perhaps I’m more optimistic than pessimistic, because I think this is going to turn into something very nice.

Clayton: No, are you kidding? With you? It’s beautiful. [Laughter] 

Michele: So, I was thinking, “Oh, my God,” about the hurt [in boxing], and of course we all have those thoughts. I was starting to feel I live a lot of those things… and all of those things. I was born at the end of the war [World War II], but I have the feeling that I live the war, all of the time.

Clayton: Where were you born?

Michele: In the mountains, in Jura. In France. And you know, at the end of the war, there was a lot of Resistance there, and it was terrible at that time, at the end. The Germans were going back to Germany to escape, so they were burning everything on their way. So, I have this, informing me from there.

Clayton: Well, that’s a struggle.

Michele: That was a struggle, but it’s not really the struggle, it’s just something where all of a sudden, you think you have lived somewhere. On the other hand, I can be in the Middle East, like I was, not so long ago, in the desert of Abu Dhabi. The antique waters - where there is the biggest desert in the world - I find fascinating. And then, I feel that I was there, too!  [Laughter] So, I have that feeling, too, in a time of repose!

Clayton: Did you ever know Vali Myers? She is an Australian artist who lived in Paris after WWII. She was well known in the underground Bohemian scene. George Plimpton wrote about her in, I think, the first Paris Review.  She was a striking figure, with a shock of flaming red hair, pale white skin, black kohl circling her eyes, and prominent tattoos on her face. Eventually, she became an opium addict, left Paris, and took over a valley in Positano, Italy.  

Michele:  No, I did not. Because I was here a lot in NY, then, when I had started to discover how great it was, you know. I was there in Paris, May Day ’68, and then after that, I thought, “This is over.” 

Clayton: Did you know Jean-Luc Godard?

Michele: Oh yeah, I know Jean-Luc Godard, and I always say what style I have is because of Jean-Luc Godard. If I smoke all the time, it’s because of him. Because his movies, I’ve seen over and over, and everyone looks so good with a cigarette. And at that time there was Truffaut. At that time I was a very Deleuzian person, Gilles Deleuze, the philosopher, so I was accidentally in his class.

Clayton: I see you have tattoos. I didn't know you had tattoos. Oh, my God, very nice. Who did the tattoos?

Michele: So, that was funny, because after NY, I lived in LA. I was here [in the USA] for 29 years.

Clayton: What years would this be?

Michele: From ’79 to 2003 [in LA]. Now, when I’m in Europe, I come back here all the time. And I know the NY you are talking about, and I know what you did. I know it was fantastic, and what it was… and now it’s something else. That’s it, it is something else. You said you wanted to live on the Lower East Side. And now you are here, and we are sitting on this bench [from Overthrow].

Clayton: Yeah, it’s an addition. Did you ever know the Leu family? The tattoo artist, Filip Leu… they had lived in Paris.

Michele: No, because this, I got in LA. I had trouble getting those tattoos, because at the time, there were still simply the traditional tattoos, and I wanted to do mine on the fingers. The artists there wanted to do their own thing. I’ve always revolted in this way, because I didn't want to have some sort of owl or whatever. It doesn’t look like me. Anyway, finally I went to Palm Springs, and there were no tattoo parlors there, and I met a biker and finally, he did this. And then, after that, it was just fun in the house. And it did not go farther than that.

Clayton: Let me ask you a question. After 9/11, in New York, style was just sort of eliminated. Before that, you had like Punk and Goth and Grunge kids; you had all these extreme forms of individuality. And after 9/11, everything kind of went, just… straight. Everybody went really conservative. I mean, it's really not until now that I'm starting to see kids wear, like, different color hair and more extreme fashion again. New York kind of lost that edge for a long time. Did Paris do the same?

 

Michele: Paris lost it before… and they really lost it. In London there is more stuff. NY now is different, you have to go farther than New York to find style, because it has been gentrified. You know, when you are here, it’s like one classic store after the other… and I’m saying it as a joke, because I‘m working on one. [Laughter] But it’s not the same thing. You don’t have the places to go.

Clayton: Even before chic became part of fashion, you could go to these different places which were real inexpensive, and if you had style - like you have style - you could buy things and give yourself style. Now everything is just about money, and all the little places where you could get the unique stuff are gone. Do you find that?

LISTEN 🔊 MICHELE LAMY: LAMYLAND

WITH CLAYTON PATERSON & JOEY GOODWIN

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Michele: Yeah, but there are still those little places to go, that I know about. [Back then] we were getting from America those dresses from the ‘40s and mixing it with something a little bit like a Mao jacket, because we were going to make some kind of a revolution, sewing away. But it’s the same thing. It’s because they cannot afford the rent. You know, when I arrived a few weeks ago, I learned that Pat Field had closed. That was something, for me, that I thought would stay forever, because she had “it”… So, I don’t know how we can find it but, you know, it’s everything now. People have changed their image. Everything we are finding in thrift stores is coming back, but it’s all labels like Saint Laurent or Gucci. The rich kids that are buying this, they think they are discovering something. I don't know…

Joey: Would you say that a person's style, not necessarily just how they dress, is probably based in the experiences in their life? Places they grew up, people they were around. Because so much of how trends start is in communities - it could be, you know, a basketball court in the Bronx.

Michele: Of course. It always happens this way. For me, I know when it started. The first time I was in North Africa, I was a late teenager. And when I saw those Berber women sitting on their knees, with their head scarf full of wrinkles, and looking so beautiful…? There was nothing else you could show me. Not any kind of other image. There was something… there was the past, there was the story. I was attracted to this part of the image. You know I am very The 1001 Nights. Somewhere, deep down, I feel that if I don’t tell a story, they are going to cut my throat [Laughter]. So, it is all about instinct, and looking at things, and seeing what it is that you want to say.

Clayton: You've always had style. I mean, you are Style.

Michele: Yeah, but… it’s the soul, and we see this. So, perhaps all of a sudden, there will be something completely different in NY that’s coming out, so you have to be the one to push it. One last push before it goes out. [Laughter] It will be interesting to see. So what are the plans?

Clayton: Well, we’ve got the fanzine, we’re working on bringing out more caps, we’ve got a boxing glove with Joey, trying to take over territory. You know, conceptual thoughts.

Michele: Exactly. But, you know, this space [9 Bleecker] has something so available… 

Clayton: This space?

Michele: Yeah. This space, it’s beautiful. 

Clayton: Absolutely. This place has soul. You can feel it, Number 9, absolutely.

Michele: That’s why we -

Clayton: So, that’s why we are here.

Joey: So, Clayton can even tell you a little bit about what this building was, before us.

Clayton: Yeah, this was the hippies’, when they were, like, Youth International Party. It was very political, very pro pot, marijuana, but it also had style. It always had good artists who hung their posters and things, so it incorporated a lot of art, it was downtown, plus it had the flavor, where you had Robert Frank, you had CGBG’s, down the block - 

Michele: CGBG’s!

Clayton: Yeah, everything was here. Pat Field was down on 8th street. You had all that stuff here. You had that whole flavor, and that’s why it’s so refreshing to see somebody like you, because it brings back the flavor. Because the flavor has been missing. We are hoping to bring it back.

Michele: Exactly… but you know, this place [Overthrow Boxing Club NY] has something so real. It’s beautiful.  

Michele: I need to sit here forever. And you all stay here.

Clayton: That’s what we hope for, I mean, we are getting lead people like you to be here, and bring back that spirit, you know. Let’s see what happens, but that’s the game.

Michele: I could sit here all year, so yeah, alright, I’m in.

Clayton: There you go alright, alright.

Joey: About the bench.

Clayton: About the bench.

Joey: So, the bench, this bench here, has come to symbolize what this place is. At any moment, it could be “just the guys” sitting on the bench, or it could be a famous actor. Today, that guy sitting here was Jonah Hill. It could be the leaders of the hippies. Dana Beal gave a speech when Powell was running. It could be you guys sitting here. This bench has really just come to symbolize the meeting spot.

Clayton: It’s a magic spot. They have had James Earl Jones come through. Will Smith. It has that flavor, you know. It gives a feeling. An attraction.

Michele: Yeah.

Clayton: And that’s what’s here right now and that’s why I always sort of push Joey to work really hard now, because the magic is here, and it’s been awhile since downtown New York has seen the magic.

Michele: So, this location has this magic because what it was already, before, and you knew that when you came here. And you are from the neighborhood?

Clayton: That’s part of what I always get on to Joey about. I say the magic is something that you have to respect. You can’t really force it. And now that the magic is here, you have to really accept that, appreciate that, and love that. Because it’s not always here. You know, magic, it disappears. Right now, that magic is here and when the magic’s here, you have to work as hard as you can, as much as you can, to keep that thing moving. Because it leaves. For a while it was London, for a while it was LA, for a while it’s NYC. It’s been awhile since New York had the magic. 

Michele: So, you think this is the only place right now?

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Clayton: Yes. It has that quality. Right now, this bench is one of those benchmarks and one of the problems with having it, is it feels like it will always be there. And then, all of a sudden, it’s gone. I’ve had different periods of fame, and all of a sudden, it’s over. The phone stops ringing. One day, it’s Oprah. Next day, it’s over, and that’s how it is. Like you said with May Day ’68: everything was there. Then all of a sudden, “Poof, it’s gone.” Right now, the magic is here,

Michele: Yes, it has that quality. So, we have to respect that. Because somebody can come with the cash and say, “I want this place for me,” not knowing they are going to kill it.

Clayton: Robert Frank, when we moved in here, he said “Oh, my God, I’ve got neighbors?” I’d said to Joey, it takes the right personalities, and all of a sudden? Robert Frank, the photographer, is part of the magic. He loves it here. He & his wife, June, are often sitting out in front of Overthrow and adding to the atmosphere.

Michele: I know! I saw them talking together. And then they came in [to Overthrow].

Clayton: And that’s magic…

Michele: Yeah, that’s magic.

Clayton: Right now, it’s here.

Michele: That’s why you have to train your body. And it’s important, because it’s a phase right now, when everybody wants to be in shape more than ever, so it’s important that there is a boxing place with all the romance…

Clayton:  And that’s enthusiasm, that’s vibration, that’s youth and development. That’s from Robert Frank all the way down to kids.

Michele: That’s the magic.

Clayton: That’s the best part of New York. When you have that soul, that magic moment, that’s something that you can’t buy. You can’t make it happen. It just happens, and right now the bird of paradise is here. I can feel it, I mean how else would you be here?

Michele: Ohhhh laaaaa! [Laughter] You know, it’s fun… when I am here, I live at The Bowery Hotel and it has some sort of good spirit, too. And that’s how I found Overthrow, because you only opened a year ago and I have been coming for nine years.  When Rick [Owen] came for three days and he arrived from the airport, he just wanted to take a walk and we passed by here, because to me it is like… here you are… here we are… this is where we are! 

Joey: How did you get into boxing?

Michele: There was a technical reason. Because I knew I had a problem with my leg, but I wanted to deal with it with my head. And it was at the point where I could not run forward, I could only run to the side. So, I always wanted to exercise, I always went to the gym, and it was good for my head. There was the Wild Card Boxing Club in LA, so I went there and I was training there. Because, you know, in boxing, you sort of move this way [to the side] and so I was just fine, it looked like I had nothing [wrong with me]! So that was one thing.

And then of course, mainly, I needed a challenge… to be in front of somebody. And you know, with this kind of thing, with the rules and the coordination and the fun…. For like, two years, I was going to Wild Card, and they didn’t know who I was. They called me Frenchy, or they thought I was a tourist… There was a scene there that was amazing. Because Freddie Roach, with Parkinson’s, cannot drive a car. When he gets out of the ring, he is like this [all shaky], but when he’s in the ring and trains his champions, he’s just fine! I mean, this is really amazing! And there was [Freddie’s brother] Pepper and all those characters. James Toney, at the time, when he started training there, he was big and you had him coming there to Wild Card, with all the blondes. And, you know, everyone there is a “champ”, for five minutes one day… or forever. So, I started this and I really loved it. There was suddenly… it’s not the romance. I don’t know what it is. It’s the challenge to you, and to be in shape.

Joey: The rhythm of boxing, the rhythm of art, of life - do they all intersect, for you?

Michele: Yes, but here you have a rhythm that’s sort of loose. When you go to Wild Card, no matter what you are doing, when the bell rings, you have to stop whatever you are doing. And there were all these things there, like everyone was buying the newspaper and they would throw away everything in the paper except the sports section. And then? Just reading the boxing. The life was written by those three minutes and I’m sure it’s soothing, when you start feeling good in your body and empowered. I didn’t want to hit someone, that was a fear I wanted to overcome, but it’s more, like, to escape. There is a lot of it that is like ballet. I’m not talking about heavyweights. They just want to “boom”!

Clayton: Do you do yoga, too?

Michele: No, I’m not good at yoga, it’s like the opposite… I box and I go to the gym in Paris every day. Here? When I come here, I’m having so much fun, I don't even train. I watch. But I still exercise. I am eating well, and I love it.

Joey: Tell me a little about this film you are making with Katya. How does it connect your various passions... art, boxing, style, philosophy?  Why did you choose to film at Overthrow?

Michele: I met Lucia Rijker way before Katya. I was "training" at the Wild Card with Freddie and Pepper – enjoying the scene – as I was the only "tourist there. I don’t know how that happened . And I got accepted when James Toney wrapped my hands. You know that I had Les Deux Cafes in Hollywood then.

Joey: How did you meet Katya Bankowsky? Did you meet because of boxing? How did you start working together?

Michele: Katya came over to Les Deux when she was showing Shadow Boxers at the Egyptian Theatre. So, we did the party at Les Deux. Everything connected.

I moved on to Paris in 2003. Lost touch with Katya. But on a lucky night, we met in a restaurant during fashion week in St. Germain. By then, I got to have some projects in NY. I always stayed at The Bowery. And my friend Chris Wallace, who was associated with me at Les Deux as a late teenager - and since then an editor at Interview Magazine - comes to greet me and tells me about Overthrow "next door." We went to you that first night, and fell in love. I dragged Katya the next day. Here we are!

She just sent me the rough cut of our shoot at Overthrow. It's our best, so far. Perhaps best, forever.

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Clayton: Yes. It has that quality. Right now, this bench is one of those benchmarks and one of the problems with having it, is it feels like it will always be there. And then, all of a sudden, it’s gone. I’ve had different periods of fame, and all of a sudden, it’s over. The phone stops ringing. One day, it’s Oprah. Next day, it’s over, and that’s how it is. Like you said with May Day ’68: everything was there. Then all of a sudden, “Poof, it’s gone.” Right now, the magic is here,

Michele: Yes, it has that quality. So, we have to respect that. Because somebody can come with the cash and say, “I want this place for me,” not knowing they are going to kill it.

Clayton: Robert Frank, when we moved in here, he said “Oh, my God, I’ve got neighbors?” I’d said to Joey, it takes the right personalities, and all of a sudden? Robert Frank, the photographer, is part of the magic. He loves it here. He & his wife, June, are often sitting out in front of Overthrow and adding to the atmosphere.

Michele: I know! I saw them talking together. And then they came in [to Overthrow].

Clayton: And that’s magic…

Michele: Yeah, that’s magic.

Clayton: Right now, it’s here.

Michele: That’s why you have to train your body. And it’s important, because it’s a phase right now, when everybody wants to be in shape more than ever, so it’s important that there is a boxing place with all the romance…

Clayton:  And that’s enthusiasm, that’s vibration, that’s youth and development. That’s from Robert Frank all the way down to kids.

Michele: That’s the magic.

Clayton: That’s the best part of New York. When you have that soul, that magic moment, that’s something that you can’t buy. You can’t make it happen. It just happens, and right now the bird of paradise is here. I can feel it, I mean how else would you be here?

Michele: Ohhhh laaaaa! [Laughter] You know, it’s fun… when I am here, I live at The Bowery Hotel and it has some sort of good spirit, too. And that’s how I found Overthrow, because you only opened a year ago and I have been coming for nine years.  When Rick [Owen] came for three days and he arrived from the airport, he just wanted to take a walk and we passed by here, because to me it is like… here you are… here we are… this is where we are! 

Joey: How did you get into boxing?

Michele: There was a technical reason. Because I knew I had a problem with my leg, but I wanted to deal with it with my head. And it was at the point where I could not run forward, I could only run to the side. So, I always wanted to exercise, I always went to the gym, and it was good for my head. There was the Wild Card Boxing Club in LA, so I went there and I was training there. Because, you know, in boxing, you sort of move this way [to the side] and so I was just fine, it looked like I had nothing [wrong with me]! So that was one thing.

And then of course, mainly, I needed a challenge… to be in front of somebody. And you know, with this kind of thing, with the rules and the coordination and the fun…. For like, two years, I was going to Wild Card, and they didn’t know who I was. They called me Frenchy, or they thought I was a tourist… There was a scene there that was amazing. Because Freddie Roach, with Parkinson’s, cannot drive a car. When he gets out of the ring, he is like this [all shaky], but when he’s in the ring and trains his champions, he’s just fine! I mean, this is really amazing! And there was [Freddie’s brother] Pepper and all those characters. James Toney, at the time, when he started training there, he was big and you had him coming there to Wild Card, with all the blondes. And, you know, everyone there is a “champ”, for five minutes one day… or forever. So, I started this and I really loved it. There was suddenly… it’s not the romance. I don’t know what it is. It’s the challenge to you, and to be in shape.

Joey: The rhythm of boxing, the rhythm of art, of life - do they all intersect, for you?

Michele: Yes, but here you have a rhythm that’s sort of loose. When you go to Wild Card, no matter what you are doing, when the bell rings, you have to stop whatever you are doing. And there were all these things there, like everyone was buying the newspaper and they would throw away everything in the paper except the sports section. And then? Just reading the boxing. The life was written by those three minutes and I’m sure it’s soothing, when you start feeling good in your body and empowered. I didn’t want to hit someone, that was a fear I wanted to overcome, but it’s more, like, to escape. There is a lot of it that is like ballet. I’m not talking about heavyweights. They just want to “boom”!

Clayton: Do you do yoga, too?

Michele: No, I’m not good at yoga, it’s like the opposite… I box and I go to the gym in Paris every day. Here? When I come here, I’m having so much fun, I don't even train. I watch. But I still exercise. I am eating well, and I love it.

Joey: Tell me a little about this film you are making with Katya. How does it connect your various passions... art, boxing, style, philosophy?  Why did you choose to film at Overthrow?

Michele: I met Lucia Rijker way before Katya. I was "training" at the Wild Card with Freddie and Pepper – enjoying the scene – as I was the only "tourist there. I don’t know how that happened . And I got accepted when James Toney wrapped my hands. You know that I had Les Deux Cafes in Hollywood then.

Joey: How did you meet Katya Bankowsky? Did you meet because of boxing? How did you start working together?

Michele: Katya came over to Les Deux when she was showing Shadow Boxers at the Egyptian Theatre. So, we did the party at Les Deux. Everything connected.

I moved on to Paris in 2003. Lost touch with Katya. But on a lucky night, we met in a restaurant during fashion week in St. Germain. By then, I got to have some projects in NY. I always stayed at The Bowery. And my friend Chris Wallace, who was associated with me at Les Deux as a late teenager - and since then an editor at Interview Magazine - comes to greet me and tells me about Overthrow "next door." We went to you that first night, and fell in love. I dragged Katya the next day. Here we are!

She just sent me the rough cut of our shoot at Overthrow. It's our best, so far. Perhaps best, forever.

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POWER MALU

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Clayton: So, here we are with are with Joey Goodwin, Power Malu, and Clayton Patterson We’re doing an interview for our fanzine about “the struggle.” The struggle can be any kind, any number, of difficulties. You were just talking about reflecting on your life. And about a movie you’d like to make, that reflects the struggle of surviving on the Lower East Side, people being evicted and hoodwinked, and whatever.

Joey: First, Power, tell us who you are and a little bit about your history.

Power: My name is Michael Angel Viera, Also Power Malu, Babee Power, Mike Power, Power Viera, all these AKA’s people got for me. Basically, been the “mayor” of the Lower East side. People know me as being neutral. I’m able to go to any project, anywhere in the Lower East Side. Not take any sides. Just have love for everybody, have respect for everybody. I started going out, hosting shows, when I was about 15 years old. I used to promote a lot of parties in New York City. That got me into the clubs. I was able to get on the microphone, introduce people that were performing, became this whole “slash” person that was seen everywhere. I got invited to be part of music videos by a lot of artists and directors. I got known as “the kid that’s in everybody’s video” and it became this thing in the ‘90s where, if I wasn’t in the video, the video was not “official.” So, there are dozens and dozens of videos that I’m in, and it’s like the “Where’s Waldo” type of thing.

Then, being that I was in all these videos, I also started doing a television show called My Life Television, where I would do sketch comedy, improvise, and invite people to come down as guests that I would interview, in the music world, in the acting world, and in the party world. And it became like a variety show. Out of that show was born The Lyricist Lounge Show, which premiered on MTV in 2000: the ideas from My Life Television, combined with another couple of artists, Wordsworth, Master Fuol, we created the idea for the first ever lyrical sketch show. I became well-known for that.

In the meantime, I was working on music for Latin groups and Hip Hop groups, where I would do a lot of writing - what’s called now “ghost writing.” I was doing a lot of consulting and helping to put together TV productions or music productions with different artists and producers.
From that, I was seen by a lot of my people from the neighborhood. And that kind of gave me a lot of ambition to do even bigger things, so that I can always come back to the neighborhood and be able to help those who thought that it

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Power: Right. Absolutely. That’s a great story.
Clayton: So, in making those choices, which one would you choose?
Power: Both are great.
Clayton: But you can’t do them both. You could only do one.
Power: Why?

Clayton: Because to make a movie, it will take you a year to raise the money for each one. It’s hard, as we know, and to get the script, and get people involved, you know. It’s hard enough getting this interview, never mind doing two movies.
Because that’s a possibility for something that could be international. We were saying, he’s talking about doing this movie about people losing their homes. I’m also saying because Alicia is World Champion and you have this boxing club here, that has a history - of Overthrow, the Yippies, and all that. And it’s also community. If, for example, you concentrated the movie on Alicia and she keeps going the way that she’s going, he then has a movie that will be heroic and inspiring. He will be part of the gym that you’re part of and it has the possibility of going to Sundance and having people really be inspired by it, you understand. ‘Cause I understand the other story entirely and I understand the sympathy for the other story. But the Alicia story? That could be a feature movie.

Joey: But at the same time, it’s about what a person’s heart is into. Jay-Z has a line where he says, “How can I feed the poor,” help the poor, “if I’m one of them,” or whatever, right? That’s kind of a metaphor for what you’re talking about. Somewhere, he goes very commercial and he, in some way, sells his soul. And he admits it. But doesn’t give a fuck, because that was his prerogative, right? Everyone has their prerogative, what they want to do, what their ambition tells them to do, or what they feel comfortable doing.

Clayton: But they are choices. And neither one would be selling out, we agree with that, right? One just has the potential of being commercial, and the other one has the potential of not being commercial. I mean, I’ve spent my life on noncommercial things, I understand that whole genre. But that’s a choice.

Clayton: Part of the thing is, Power sees himself as an ideal. He sees himself as a mentor, in a way. It’s psychological. He wants people in the neighborhood to know that if you do the right thing and you try hard, it is possible to live here, be here, but also be very successful, right?

Power: Yes. That’s exactly it.

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Power: They grew up fighting, you know. Him and his brothers. So, that’s very much how he got involved. He got recognized in the neighborhood and -
Clayton: Did somebody - a priest or a neighborhood guy - say, “Hey, you should get into the gym”?

Power: I’m not sure if it was a priest. I think it might have just been someone who was training people at the time and started a group in the neighborhood.
Clayton: A community improvement group? There used to be social groups in the neighborhood, in that period of time, that guided kids out of drugs and other problems, and into certain areas.

Power: Yeah. So, they grew up right here on Allen Street & Forsyth.
Clayton: Allen Boys? And there was the Forsyth Boys…
Power: Way before that. Actually, but eventually their offspring became integral parts of those groups. So, his thing was boxing. And of course, I always have him here [pointing to a tattoo] as a reminder. This was something that I did in Texas. I was working with this Tex-Mex artist named A.B. Power: Yeah, they called him The Kid. He passed away. It was an accident on the Lower East Side. Second Avenue and 4th Street. He got hit by a truck, crossing the street. That was tough. December 4th, 11:53.
He always had this thing that he was going to make a comeback. But he turned to drinking because this is his dream, and now he’s not following his dream.

Power: My “World Title” is to be able to inspire other artists to follow their passions and to give them a platform to be able to do that. Because I understand how difficult it is. I understand that there’s people that have been really close to making a living, doing what they love, but circumstances in their lives caused them to quit. And they have never known if they could actually make a living doing what they love, so now they’re pretty miserable in their lives because they never followed through. My World Championship would be being able to inspire more people to follow their passions and follow their dreams and really go after what they believe.

Clayton: You’re an inspirational coach.

Power: And this is something that I do now, without having that major platform. I do it with people that are immediately around me and I see the impact that it has on them. This is why I want to do it on a global level. I know I can do it on the global level. I have that impact on people.
You know, I have a running group that I work with, called BridgeRunners, and I’m always in the back of the pack because I believe that the back of the pack is where people start out. And the hardest part is for them is to continue. So, I inspire them, give them words of encouragement while we’re running, and sure enough, they’re now in the front of the pack. That’s what I love to be. I love to be that net to catch people from falling.

power-gif2

Power: They grew up fighting, you know. Him and his brothers. So, that’s very much how he got involved. He got recognized in the neighborhood and -
Clayton: Did somebody - a priest or a neighborhood guy - say, “Hey, you should get into the gym”?

Power: I’m not sure if it was a priest. I think it might have just been someone who was training people at the time and started a group in the neighborhood.
Clayton: A community improvement group? There used to be social groups in the neighborhood, in that period of time, that guided kids out of drugs and other problems, and into certain areas.

Power: Yeah. So, they grew up right here on Allen Street & Forsyth.
Clayton: Allen Boys? And there was the Forsyth Boys…
Power: Way before that. Actually, but eventually their offspring became integral parts of those groups. So, his thing was boxing. And of course, I always have him here [pointing to a tattoo] as a reminder. This was something that I did in Texas. I was working with this Tex-Mex artist named A.B. Power: Yeah, they called him The Kid. He passed away. It was an accident on the Lower East Side. Second Avenue and 4th Street. He got hit by a truck, crossing the street. That was tough. December 4th, 11:53.
He always had this thing that he was going to make a comeback. But he turned to drinking because this is his dream, and now he’s not following his dream.

Power: My “World Title” is to be able to inspire other artists to follow their passions and to give them a platform to be able to do that. Because I understand how difficult it is. I understand that there’s people that have been really close to making a living, doing what they love, but circumstances in their lives caused them to quit. And they have never known if they could actually make a living doing what they love, so now they’re pretty miserable in their lives because they never followed through. My World Championship would be being able to inspire more people to follow their passions and follow their dreams and really go after what they believe.

Clayton: You’re an inspirational coach.

Power: And this is something that I do now, without having that major platform. I do it with people that are immediately around me and I see the impact that it has on them. This is why I want to do it on a global level. I know I can do it on the global level. I have that impact on people.
You know, I have a running group that I work with, called BridgeRunners, and I’m always in the back of the pack because I believe that the back of the pack is where people start out. And the hardest part is for them is to continue. So, I inspire them, give them words of encouragement while we’re running, and sure enough, they’re now in the front of the pack. That’s what I love to be. I love to be that net to catch people from falling.