Real Name: BLACK 

Stage Name: Lobster Boy/Black Scorpion "The Worst Magician in the World!"


 
SSW: I'd like to begin the interview by having you give us a little background about yourself?
 
LB: Born in Texas. Live in Austin. I am a director at a local news station. I like the ladies; I have a wiener dog named  Delaney Valentine and a cat named O.G.B. or Mister Adventures if you're nasty.
 
SSW: Is that all you have to share?
 
LB:  Ummm, let's see I like getting tattoo's, would like to not be poor and in debt, I write lyrics and play the keys for my band Built By Snow www.builtbysnow.com or www.myspace.com/builtbysnow
 
SSW: What was it the got you interested in the Sideshow? 

LB:
I met Joe Hermannaka the Amazing Mr. Lifto here in Austin after my best friends wedding. He works at an awesome bar down here on 6th called

 

Casino El Camino and he was the 1st person who'd ever made me feel good about my hands and feet. My interests in his world led me to the ?Freak Show?. Him and fate.
 
SSW:
He was the 1st person who'd ever made me feel good about my hands and feet, what was your perspective before you me Joe?

LB: I really didn't think of them as a gift more as that little something that keeps me from living a normal happy life like on the "Cosby Show". Now from touring I've found that, especially magicians, think that they are awesome. Lifto was just the 1st person of many who pointed out how lucky I am. 

SSW: I know that in this politically correct world the title of Freak causes a lo
t of people problems, Your shows mission statement is changing the world one Freak at a time.  How do you relate to the title and what was your life like before you entered show business? 



LB: Well at 1st I thought this was all going to be some joke I could write a novel around, but then when I met these people I learned that they/we literally are changing the world one freak at a time each time we are together, weather it be on stage or off, if you get us all together at once people will definitely turn their heads to look. I mean I can not even tell my friends about things we do cause it always sounds like the beginning of a joke, "So the half girl, our dwarf and I, Lobster Boy, walk into a bar," but there is no punch line we really did just go into a bar, got drinks and played pool.
 
SSW:
I learned that they/we literally are changing the world, how are you changing the world? 
 
LB: By letting people know that the "freaks" are not any different from "you" the audience. It amazes me that people still do not realize this, but together we can change people perceptions on a lot of issues. I mean look at kids in high schools today, killing each other over what, because someone is overweight and so let's make fun of them and torture them for it...jebus, have we not learned anything, it's all sad and if we can show that having bumpy skin or no legs and even weird lobster like hands still have value and can live happily with who they are than maybe some kid won't kill himself for being on the heavy side.
 
SSW:
You get us all together at once people will definitely turn their heads to look, how do you feel about all of the attention? Has it been positive? 
 
LB: Well any publicity is good publicity. Attention is attention, good and bad. I like the attention when I'm up on stage, afterwards if I don't want it I can put my hands in my pockets and hideout in a corner, but that's just me, freakshow or not. 

SSW: Was your life difficult before you entered show business? 

LB: Whose isn't and it has become more difficult since. The only different is now I have more options for my future? hopefully.
 
SSW:
Whose isn't and it has become more difficult since. How has it become more difficult?
 
LB: Because going on tour will make you crazy and this was my 1st one ever and on top of that with real life Freaks! But in the end I've learned I am by far and away the Freakiest Freak of them all, cause my mind goes to some weird places...I have awarded myself a PhD in Freakology, because what college offers that course, so I have the power to do that myself...you can't be taught that, you gotta learn it!


SSW: Freakology? You can't be taught that, you gotta learn it!  Would you explain what you mean by that? 

LB:
I'm just joking around, it's like Hunter S. Thompson purchasing a doctorate in Divinity by mail order and referring to himself as a Doctor of Journalism. I mean what institution could argue with the credits and curriculum in which I earned my title?



SSW: How has your perspective changed since you've been in the show?  

LB: It's been turned upside down. I feel like Alice after going through the rabbit hole.
 
SSW: Alice after going through the rabbit hole, could you give use a little insight in to what you mean?
 
LB: Well before this adventure I was apart of the "normal" world, numbed out on anti-depressants making it though the days and weeks. Now I'm slowly breaking down walls I've built around myself and learning what essentially makes me happy...Performing, writing, my dog, and hot showers. Oh yeah and nekkid women. 

SSW: How has it changed your life?   

LB: It's completely changed my life and I'm not even sure in how many ways just yet.
 
SSW: I'm not sure in how many ways yet, has it affected your day job, friends, and family?

LB: The 1st few weeks back I was pretty much insane from all the attention...attention on my hands which for the most part were never really an issue I brought up, then I couldn't stop talking about it all and seemed a bit obsessed. Now I'm getting back to balancing everything out in my mind. If you want to read up on some of what I was going through at the time my MySpace Page shows just how wacky I felt. www.myspace.com/tasmin2

SSW: The show community is a closed group for the most part; they take care of their own. Historically when folks were out on the road the Town's were outsiders to the show folks. They had a lot of mistrust about show people, what has your experience been in your travels and do you think they are different than what others have experienced? 
 
LB: Wow that's an eyeful. Ummm, I think our country is suffering a lot right now and most communities have seemed to welcome us and our message. I mistrust general anyone until I get to know them one-on-one so I do not want to let my two day experience in a town reflect upon a whole community. And I can't speak for other's experience on the road, but as Tenacious D sings, "The Road is a B-I-itch my friend"

SSW: What does your family think of you working in the sideshow?
 
LB: My mother loves it and believes, as I do, that this show in some small way may help someone else. 

SSW: I've felt like an outsider most of my life, I like things outside of the norms, that's one of the reasons I enjoy the shock and amazement of the sideshow, would you give us some idea of how you fill you fit into the world and how has the effected where you are now in your life? 

LB: Hmm, I don't believe in the "norm". I mean I do not believe anyone is normal because most people get what they think is the "norm" from some TV show produced in a town where cops kill people, people kill cops and people kill people, and no one seems to care. Since hopping in and out of this tour I've seen a lot of different folks and none of them were normal. In fact I'd go on record as saying we ?The Freaks?  were not the strangest folks at our shows. The audiences were great though, but there were some crazies out there as well!

SSW: What would you tell someone interested in running away and joining the sideshow?
 
LB: I would respond with, "What are ya' some kind of Freak?" But in all seriously, people should follow their hopes and dreams, as well as remaining responsible to those who care about them and always stay true to who you are.  And then I'd call them a "raging lunatic" and ask them to leave me be, rabid vultures!
 
SSW: Where do you think the show will go in the future?
 
LB: I don't know as a show, I guess as long as people what to see it? As a family we will always be connected somehow. I'd really like to see about a "reality show", I've worked in TV for a while and know that with these people/freaks that we have what seems like a perfect vehicle for our sideshow and message and could sell to the general public. We've got the perfect key for the audience to relate to in me, I mean I put my hands in my pockets and look like I could be "your" son, take my hands out and now I have a pass into the "Freak World" and the audience would hopefully feel comfortable watching me learn the business and this weird world. I could see on A&E after "Inked" and "Mind Freak", we'd be the "Freak House" and they could brand it as "A&E's Freak Night."
 
SSW: Would you like to be apart of it? 
 
LB:
There's no question I'll somehow be connected with the show, because they're family to me now. But then again who knows if they'd even want me back...I mean, I am quite the "Diva" and have grand illusions of being the man who might revolutionize the world of magic when I can't even spell it. So yeah if they can handle me being, in my own mind, the "Ultimate Freak" and we could make some money to keep going and pay some bills, than yes I wouldn't do it!

Did I get you? I love the written word, to bad I'm like the lyric from "Smells like Teen Spirit", "I'm worst at what I do best".


But yes I might do more shows. I'm also interested in venturing out to other shows to learn from other folks about this all. So call me folks if you want to fly the one and only tattooed, magician lobster bro to your venue, even freaks gotta eat.
 
SSW: Is there anyone you would like to thank?
 
LB:
My Momma, Ed, my bad-ass brother Drew, my brother JP and his wife Momma Voss, Natalie, Andy, Robert, my band mates in "Built By Snow" Rad Winterbottom, Brandon Stein!, Matt "Mad Dog" Murray and Ben "the Bomb" Bauer.


As well as Lifto, TJ Walker, Dusty Granberry, my Dad, Reverend Doctor Stephen Strange, David Grohl, My All-Round Advisor Kyle Tullos, as well as his wife Ashley, LowRent, Sam X., HEA, Jackie, Ken, Richard B., JoBi, Shiri, Dylan, Deidre, Elizabeth
http://www.phreeque.com/ , Toad Packer, JoJo Khrist and of course the 999 Eyes ov Endless Dreams and That Damned Band.
           
And if you'd like to see more of some stuff I've done with my pals than check out  my pal Harrison's Page for some funny videos at
http://www.awshaddup.com/


Werd out and hope to see you soon, look out for me on the road because I'm learning magic and have some kick ass tricks down like the self tying shoelaces, the humming card and more freak stories!

 

I would like to thank Black for taking the time to do this interview with Sideshow World.

 

John Robinson Sideshow World
 


Header Image: jrrobinson copyright 2007 all rights reserved

 

Photographs courtesy of Black copyright 2006 all rights reserved

1- Black's Back

2- Black on the Key Board

3- Hands X-ray

4- Mr. Pryor  one of Blacks Tattoos

5- Lobster Boy

6- Black and Puppet in LA

7- Looks Like a party to me???

8- "I still look the same just  taller and wider"

9-  Hair today, gone tomorrow!

 


Each month we will try and interview a new performer for the site.  Because of the logistics of it face to face interviews are tough to come by.  A good percentage of the interviews we will be doing will be via e-mail or telephone.  If you are interested in being interviewed for the site drop us a line.

 

Featured Interviews

 

All photos are the property of their respective owners whether titled or marked anonymous.

"Sideshow WorldTM" is the sole property of John Robinson All rights reserved.

 sideshowworld.com   sideshowworld.org   sideshowworld.net  sideshowworld.biz   sideshowworld.info

is the sole property of John Robinson All rights reserved.

E-Mail Sideshow World     E-Mail The Webmaster