The side show at Coney Island was still active and run by John Strong.
Chris Allison had this to say about the day:
“I remember heading out to Coney Island that day to shoot pictures with Jim. We had no idea John Strong was going to be set up there. I had met John at the Sideshow gathering and thought lets see if we could shoot some pic’s on his lot. ….. John was very gracious to let us shoot wherever we wanted…. great pictures that day! Thanks John and thanks Jim!”
Visited the newly renovated SLIPPER ROOM on Orchard Street and interviewed Coney Island’s own Adam RealMan. He does all of the following:
THE ELECTRIC CHAIR
THE BED OF NAILS
RAZOR BLADE EATING
EATING LIT CIGARETTES
MASTER OF MAGIC The Coney Island Sideshow has been relocated to The Slipper Room while the Coney Island USA site gets rebuilt after the hurricane Sandy took it’s tool there.
Adam talks about his work as a ‘strongman‘ and ‘sideshow‘ performer.
More photographs of Adam and the Coney Island Sideshow at BB Kings can be seen here.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
The show was ‘on tour’ and I wanted to do some photography of the show. Scott Baker sat across from me at the table and we talked ‘sideshow‘ and variety arts. Lots in common regarding our favorite performers and genres.
Not long after that evening I heard Scott was in ‘chemo therapy’ for cancer. I hoped for the best!
Once I heard he was better I wanted to interview him about his work as a ‘Human blockhead, fire eater, glass eater, escape artist, master magician, ventriloquist, eats live crickets and lit cigarettes, swallows and regurgitates razor blades, performs levitations, outside talker.’.
We met a music rehearsal space near Times Square and the room was perfect for the interview. I ask Scott about his illness and he wrote this:
“To some, hearing that you have “The Big C” is a death sentence. It only made me furious, and I was determined to not let it get the better of me. Going for chemo and getting a radiation per day for seven weeks, I worked until I simply couldn’t move. It was extremely rough going, but through the miracle of modern science, medicine, and the faith of many friends, we kicked the thing! I had to learn to do many things all over again, and now hopefully do them much better. For the record, I had cancer of the squamous cells on upper left soft palate. To this day, nobody knows how I got it!”
Scott is Backand better than ever! I am posting a several videos for your enjoyment.