I was cleaning out the basement today and came across an old VHS master of the first scene I ever shot. It was back in 1992 and Homegrown Video liked it well enough that they offered me a deal to do my own series, and Mike South’s Southern Belles was born.
The video industry was flourishing and my first release was nominated for an AVN Award, I was floored. I didn’t win that year but for me a nomination was a win.
I wasn’t a porn insider, I wasn’t born into the biz, nobody I even knew worked in porn save for a guy in Ohio named Dirty Bob and I only knew him cuz I offered him a ride once at the CES show in Vegas. Suddenly I was meeting everyone in the biz, and I was an “insider.
A move to Porn Valley seemed inevitable, but the more I visited L.A. the more I hated it and I determined that I would do best by sticking to my roots and shooting real amateurs. It was my niche and AVN called me a “maven” at it.
I ushered a lot of girls into this biz shooting first scenes for girls like Melissa Hill, Anna Malle, Midori, Anastasia Blue and Sana Fey, among others. Midori thanked me when she won an AVN Award and so did Felicia Fox. More recently Kayden Kross thanked me when she won Best American Starlet at the Hot Video Awards.
But for each of those there have been numerous girls who did it for fun (and a little profit) that I owe much of my success to.
I went on to shoot layouts for Magazines, even shot some centerfolds, got my next door neighbor (Alexa Lauren) into Penthouse (Sep 1999), I won more than one of the coveted AVN Awards and became friends over time with a lot of people in the biz. There are some good people in the biz too. I always liked Ron Jeremy, we have had some fun times together. Joey Silvera and John Leslie, both super nice guys, ditto Paul Thomas. Paul Fishbein and Christian Mann are both friends as well, I have deep respect for them.
Then there’s the guys like Tim Case, Felicia Fox, Harry Weiss, Porno Steve, Bob Verna, Steve Lane, Serenity, Tim Lake, Anna Malle (RIP), Christy Lake, Morgan Hagen, Lisa Sparxxx, Karina, Zoe, Brandy Alexandre, Wankus, JimmyD, Dirty Bob, Robin Byrd, Henri Pachard (RIP), Tod Hunter, Dave Cummings, Melissa Hill, Midori, J.R., Peter Van Aarle (RIP), Mark Kernes, Stacy Valentine, Anastasia Blue (RIP), Bill Margold, Rodney Moore, Dr X and a whole bunch of others that I have hung around with and had good times with. I have great stories about every one of them too. Who’da ever thought it? Certainly not me. I did notice there’s way too many RIPs in there.
A few of the things that stand out for me: Winning my first AVN Award, A feature Profile in “Oxford American Magazine – Southern Film makers issue”, working for an award winning mainstream director, working with a 2 time Emmy award winning mainstream director, Being on Bill Cunnigham’s radio show, Being on Neal Boortz’s radio show (more than once, Directing the Whack Pack Gangbang, Having a character based on me in a book that was a best seller (“A Kiss Gone Bad” by Jeff Abbott) and of course, starting this blog.
I was here when Jenna came into the biz and I was here when she said she would never spread her legs for it again. I saw Rob Black come in and I saw him go out way later than he should have. I saw the biz in it’s boom years and now I’m witnessing it shaking out.
It’s been a fun ride and It’s nearing the end. I mean I’m not going anyplace yet but next year will mark 18 years in the biz and 10 for this blog. I’m starting to think about fishing more than porn….OK well I always thought about fishing more than porn, but the truth is I’m running out of things to write about.
Thank God for Julie Meadows! And the lovely Lindsey Lovehands!
And thank God for you guys…my loyal readers!