Friday the 13th is the perfect night for a tattoo artist to open a bar. My friend Matty No Times and his partners launched A-Bar last night in Greenpoint. The bar looked great and it was packed all night. Too packed almost… I could barely take photos because I was too close to everyone! It was a great time and I saw a bunch of old friends (including a girl I went to homecoming with in like 1998!) but the highlight was probably when they branded a big A on the door to officially christen the place.
Now that you know about the party I am going to tell you a long pointless story about how I ended up there. Firstly I met Matty at the one year anniversary their tattoo shop Three Kings back in 2009. A year later Matty needed a liver transplant and Inked Magazine sent me to shoot his benefit. After that we started running into each other a lot more at Sailor Jerry events that we worked together but at all those Sailor Jerry events Matty never tattooed me.
Now we skip 2014 and the time that I bought a photo of Eazy E from NYC photo icon Ricky Powell. He took my photo and it ended up on Frank 151. I ended up making it my Facebook photo for a minute and that brings me to the next part of this pointless story: Buff Monster.
Buff Monster is a friend and an amazing artist and he needed some new press photos. I am a huge fan of bartering and I am kinda obsessed with Buff’s Melty Misfits. Melty Misfits are Buff’s own version of the Garbage Pail kids I (and every boy in the 80’s) collected as a kid. I told him I would shoot his press photos if he drew me as a Melty Misfit.
Buff went through my Facebook photos to find a good reference and ended up using the photo Ricky Powell shot of me for the drawing. When Buff gave the drawing to me I decided to get it tattooed on me. I asked him if there were any tattoo artists that dug his work and would want to do it and of all people he mentioned Matty.
Totally coincidentally I was in Three Kings a few days earlier and Matty told me that he needs a photographer from time to time and would be willing to trade a tattoo for photography work. I told him I was down whenever he needed me so when Buff mentioned Matty I hit him up immediately and that’s how I ended up with this sweet Matty/Ricky/Buff tattoo of myself!
So finally we come full circle and I am finally paying Matty back for that tattoo. Moral of the story is barter for everything. Money is for capitalist oppressors and people who like to eat food and have shelter. The end.
Anyway, congrats to Matty and Alex and all the other A-Bar partners on their new bar. It looks great. And keep opening more spots so I can come back and photograph them for more tattoos!
Ps. Buy my book.