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The Dragon Lives: Towering Over Hong Kong, Bosnia & Los Angeles
article by Paul Swaim, AMAM

The city of Hong Kong recently hosted a weeklong festival to honor the memory of the late action film star Bruce Lee. While Bosnia erected a similar statue the month before.

AMAM-MAGAZINE acknowledges the 40th Anniversary of Bruce Lee's passing on this date: 07/20/2013

The Iron Hand of James Yimm Lee The Iron Hand of James Yimm Lee article by Greglon Lee and Gary Dill, JKD

You may often hear a lot about Bruce Lee’s students, but there is one in particular that is very special to me, my sifu, James Yimm Lee. He was an authentic 1st generation student of Jeet Kune Do or JKD. I will always keep his memory alive for he was one of the major players and developers of early JKD.

James was part of the Oakland, California (USA) based Chinese-American group who called themselves the “Three Musketeers.” This threesome also included Allen Joe and George Lee (both still living). They all lived in the Oakland area in the 1960’s and were Gung Fu practitioners when they first discovered Bruce Lee in Seattle. Eventually, they formed a life-long relationship with Bruce when they started training directly under him. In those days it was known as “Jun Fan Gung Fu”, which was the predecessor to what later became renamed as “Jeet Kune Do” by Bruce. Bruce and the “Three Musketeers” would take turns going back and forth between Seattle and Oakland for their Gung Fu training.

An American Karate & Kickboxing Pioneer: Joe Lewis An American Karate & Kickboxing Pioneer: Joe Lewis article by Paul Swaim, AMAM

Legendary martial artist Joe Lewis (March 7th, 1944 – August 31st, 2012) was considered to be the original American Kickboxer by his peers. He was also a popular Karate "Point" fighter, actor and instructor with a legion of loyal students around the globe.

After his having won "United States Heavyweight Kickboxing Champion", "World Heavyweight Karate Champion" and "United States National Black Belt Kata Champion" titles under his belt, he has been highly celebrated and voted the greatest fighter in (Kenpo) Karate history.

Who's the Bas? Who is the Bas? interview by Adam Morra, MMA Correspondant

While no longer actively competing, accomplished fighter Bas Rutten is one of mixed martial arts’ most well-liked and respected figures. Whether in the capacity of actor, color commentator, ring announcer, gym owner or co-host of HDNet’s “Inside MMA,” the Dutch legend remains a constant presence on the MMA scene.

Recently, AMAM-MAGAZINE.COM caught up with the 3-time King of Pancrase and former UFC champ just long enough to loft these ten questions his way....

The Small Deadly Circle of Wally Jay The Small Deadly Circle of Wally Jay article by Paul Swaim, AMAM

Professor Wally Jay (1917-2011) is the founder of Small Circle JuJitsu. Jay primarily studied a Jujitsu system known as Danzan-Ryu under "Henry" Seishiro Okazaki in Hawaii from whom he was eventually awarded a Masters certificate in 1948. Having also studied Boxing and Judo, Wally Jay gained knowledge and experience in various martial arts, allowing him greater insight and a personal perspective on how traditional techniques could be evolved and improved.

While the origins of Small Circle Jujitsu are based on the 2000 year old classical jujitsu, the evolution of the Small Circle emphasis dates back to approximately 1944.

Put Up Your Dux interview by Michael Reis, Correspondent

Before my interview, it’d been 30 years since Frank Dux had been personally interviewed for any US magazine. So, it’s no surprise someone as talented as Dux could be surrounded by countless false allegations in this country.

I admit it’s easy to question if the man the film Bloodsport was based on is for real.

After 30 years of hype, here’s the truth.

Frank Dux was born in 1956 Toronto to holocaust surviving parents. At age 7, they moved to California, but financial hardships ensured a hard upbringing. Lack of finances forced Frank to seek out less traditional martial arts instruction; not something most people expect from a champion fighter...

My Day with Jackie Chan article by Paul Swaim, AMAM

A good friend called one afternoon to tell me that the store he owned would be setting up a booth at the upcoming Science Fiction & Comic Book Convention, which was to be held at a fancy hotel in downtown Los Angeles, California.

He called to inform me he'd just found out that the special guest speaker for the event was to be none other than, action superstar JACKIE CHAN! He would be there that day to promote the release of his latest film: Rumble in the Bronx in the US.

Recently, AMAM-MAGAZINE.COM was invited to cover the official unveiling of international superstar Jackie Chan's likeness, now immortalized as a featured wax statue at the popular Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum on Hollywood Boulevard.

Wong Fe Hung by Associated Reporters

Legend has it that Wong Fei Hung (1847-1924) was born in Foshan, China on the ninth day of the seventh month of the twenty-seventh year of the reign of Emperor Daoguang. When Wong was five, he began his study of martial arts under his father Wong Kei Ying, one of the Ten Tigers of Canton.

To supplement his poor family's income, as a child Wong followed his father to Guangzhou and throughout the rest of Guangdong Province to do martial arts performances and to sell medicines.

All Hail Bart Vale article by Paul S. Lewis, AMAM

World Champion Shootfighter Bart Vale is one of the pioneers of mixed-martial arts in the USA.

After competing as a kickboxer, Vale trained in grappling and freestyle fighting under Masami Soranaka and Yoshiaki Fujiwara of Japan's Universal Wrestling Federation. Vale coined the term “Shootfighting” to describe this new mixed-martial arts style that combined kickboxing with shooting (to rush in and take down your opponent), or legitimate wrestling. He also co-founded the International Shootfighting Association to help promote the new sport.

Vale was one of the first foreigners to compete in Japan. In doing so he became the first American to win a World Shootfighting Championship in 1992. Vale has also competed in kickboxing and no-holds-barred matches in Japan, the United States and Russia.

Directing Akira Akira Kurasawa article by Richard Bennett, AMAM

"Celebrating 100 years of pioneering film-making by Akira Kurosawa"

If the legendary Japanese director were still alive he would be a century old this year.

Arguably, he might be the most influential film maker in history. Born in Tokyo in 1910, the prolific writer-director has a hugely celebrated film-making career that spans more than 50 years. Learn more about this highly influential filmaker here...

Going Beserk over Billy Jack! Billy Jack article by Paul Swaim, AMAM

2009 Los Angeles Film Festival at the Billy Wilder Theater:

Made in 1969 / 1970, "The ultimate little movie that could," was bounced through three film studios before finally being released in 1971 / 1973.

It's huge success remains one of the most amazing film stories in the history of the movie industry, and is still owned by the filmmakers, Delores Taylor and Tom Laughlin.

Fans can now enjoy seeing this pioneering classic cult favorite, featured in its new HD restored-Digitally projected format.

A Final Tapout: Charles "Mask" Lewis Jr Charles 'Mask' Lewis article by Paul S. Lewis, AMAM

3-11-09: MMA Clothing Pioneer, Charles Lewis Jr., better known to UFC & MMA fans as "Mask", was killed in a hit-and-run accident early Wednesday morning in Newport Beach, California.

At close to 1p.m., a Newport Beach Police cruiser spotted a red Ferrari and a white Porsche driving recklessly on the southbound side of Jamboree Road, according to a public information officer with the Orange County Sheriff's Dept.

Brazilian Martial Arts Pioneer: Helio Gracie Grandmaster Helio Gracie article by Paul S. Lewis, AMAM

January 29th, 2009: Brazillian Jiu-Jitsu Grandmaster Helio Gracie dies of pneumonia at age 95, leaving behind an impressive legacy among the world's martial arts community.

"It's Been a Thrilla" with Smokin' Joe Frazier Smokin Joe Frazier article by Steven Hartke, Practitioner

Listening to Joe Frazier talk about his legendary third bout against arch-rival Muhammad Ali on that sweltering morning in the Phillipines back in 1975, you get the impression that he was still upset about the controversial decision...

Beloved around the world, Frazier will always be remembered as one of the greatest in the sport of boxing during a time that many die-hard fans refer to as the best of the Heavyweight era.

American Martial Arts Icon: Sifu Larry Hartsell Sifu Larry Hartsell article by Bustillo, Lewis, Shore

It's rare for an experienced student or novice instructor to find a new teacher who is able to consistently introduce such volumes of advanced martial arts techniques as Sifu Larry Hartsell has.

Those of you who are avid martial arts enthusiasts know what level of impact this must have; it's like being an up and coming musician and getting the opportunity to study guitar with Eddie Van Halen or learning the piano from someone as accomplished as Elton John!

The Godfather of Grappling: "Judo" Gene LeBell article by Hartsell and Lewis

What do you call a man who has fought bears, jumped the "General Lee", was friends with Muhammed Ali, tought both Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris, whose mother is the only woman ever to have been inducted into the "boxing hall of fame", who sparred with "Sugar Ray" Robinson, was taught to choke and break necks at age 7 by a legendary herculean wrestler named Ed "Strangler" Lewis, has been lit on fire, dropped from buildings, and was the man who won the first ever MMA competition in American history ...

... if you have any brains you consider him the toughest man alive, and if you're smart the you call him the prettiest man in america. We at AMAM present to you "Judo" Gene LeBell -- don't piss him off.

Bruce Lee and William Cheung: The Early Years article by Keith Mazza, Wing Chun

Before Bruce Lee was a martial arts star, he was a young actor, bullied by his schoolmates and often getting into trouble. In this interview, Wing Chun Kung Fu Grandmaster William Cheung recounts Lee's early days of training and the difficulties he faced as a martial arts prodigy.

Training with a Legend: Guro Dan Inosanto article by Paul S. Lewis, AMAM

Every year the Inosanto Academy of Martial Arts plays host to a weekend-long series of training with a variety of very special guest instructors. A great opportunity for inspired students and self-defense enthusiasts to train with some of the legends in the martial arts community, this unique program allows attendees some comprehensive exposure to a select collection of true pioneers in their field.

A Lucay Star: FMA Pioneer Ted Lucaylucay article by By Wes Bennett & Steve Charleson

"Maximum distance, maximum velocity. Applied to vital targets do not require great strength, only quiet assurance, knowledge, and precision."

~ Ted Lucaylucay

Ascending New Heights with Kathy Long Kathy Long article by Paul S. Lewis, AMAM

5-Time World Champion Kathy Long is a true pioneer of women's competitive Kick-Boxing.

In 2009, Kathy has now set her sites towards MMA competitions and has made her "Cage-Fighting" debut this past summer.

During a recent outing to Yosemite National Park, she ascended to the peak of the famous Half Dome. When asked about the experience, Kathy remarked, "After five hours of hiking to the top, my legs were literally burning. It reminded me of the time and effort it takes me training in the gym to become fully prepared for a fight!"

The Iron Dragon: Richard Bustillo Forward by Paul S. Lewis, AMAM

I was one of the first original students to join Bruce Lee's Chinatown school (Kwoon) in Los Angeles, California, says Sifu Bustillo. I was just 24 years old when I first met Bruce Lee. Bruce always emphasized the importance of being well-rounded in all the fighting-ranges of combat; at I.M.B. Academy, my students are instructed to focus on that, he continues, Jeet Kune Do allows the individual to create a personal curriculum. Part of Bruce Lee's philosophy was to know oneself in order to gain more self-knowledge.

Memories of my First Teacher: Ed Parker article by John Doty, JKD/Kenpo

My return to my martial arts roots, Kenpo, was the direct result of a spark of continuous hunger for spirituality through fighting arts. I have always regarded Kenpo in the highest esteem. My father introduced me to the art in 1966. I was thirteen years old. As a consequence of initiation I met another man, Ed Parker, whom I looked to sort of as an alternate father figure. He told me a parable about having cried and cried because he had no shoes as a youth, until he met a man who had no feet. A humble man, he associated with and trained celebrities such as Elvis Presley, but never flaunted it.

Shoot-Fighting: Sensei Yorinaga Nakamura article by Paul S. Lewis, AMAM

My first visit to the world famous Inosanto Academy of Martial Arts was over a decade ago. I went there mainly to witness a demonstration featuring a new and exotic discipline called, Shoot-wrestling or Shooto, which was being formally introduced to the United States from Japan by a very impressive artist I'd read about named, Yorinaga Nakamura.

I was in awe the moment I finally stepped foot inside the Academy!

Steven Seagal: Martial Artist, Lawman or Musician? article by Paul Swaim, AMAM

As a Buddhist, we look at life literally as an ocean of suffering, not expecting anything to go smoothly. ~ Steven Seagal

Action film superstar Steven Seagal is a man of many impressive talents. A renowned master of martial arts who's said to have the honor of being one of the only western Caucasian's to have formally taught the art of Aikido while living in Japan.

Dan Severn: Poetry in Motion article by Paul S. Lewis, AMAM

Standing next to Dan The Beast Severn during our first meeting at the 2005 Black Belt Hall of Fame Festival, where I took part in his training seminar, he appeared to be very broad and strong.

A very imposing figure indeed, one that I would want no part of in a fight, even though he claims he's never actually been in one! As it turns out, he's only 'The Beast' amidst his various competitions

The Original Kings of Karate: Luis Solis Original Kings of Karate article by Luis Solis, Kenpo

This is the first in a series of articles dedicated to those specific individuals that have been there before us, and that have already put in the time, effort and sweat in order to make the path easier for the rest of us to follow ... introducing Luis Solis.

Dan Rodarte: Legendary Muay Thai Promoter in the U.S. article by Paul Swaim, AMAM

DAN RODARTE is like a deep wellspring full of life experiences. He sort of reminds me of an oasis in the desert. A fertile place filled with vast information that promises to quench ones constant thirst for some pure refreshing knowledge. He deserves our respect not only for what he's accomplished as a devoted martial artist & caring instructor, he's also earned it for his enormous contributions as one of the most revolutionary full contact martial arts event promoters in the last few decades!

'Pak'ing Punches in to PAY-PER-VIEW article by Swaim, AMAM & Vic de Thouars, Silat

Recently, I paid an unannounced visit to an unassumingly small martial arts studio in Bellflower, California, which is operated by the rather colorful Maha Guru 'Pak' Vic de Thouars.

In 1946, he and his family had moved to the Netherlands then soon back again to Java. Later, in the summer of 1948, 'Pak' Vic de Thouars began his personal Sera martial arts training.

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