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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Our new arrivals » » Smoothini the Ghetto Houdini (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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smooth
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Las Vegas
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click here to see me perform

I wrote this intro on another board, it should work here as well:

Who am I?

Isn't that one of those deep philosophical questions? It is also one of the first questions you must ask in this craft of ours. I mean, if you don't know who you are as a person, how are you even going to come close to knowing who you are as a performer? I have read things like that for years, and I tell you what.... last year I figured out exactly who I am.

Or so I think.

I see videos of me performing now, and of me 10 years ago at 16 / 17 years old. And the change is beyond remarkable. I know who I am. And knowing that will allow me to introduce myself to you all.

Hello Magic Woods. I'm Smooth.

I was born October 15th, 1980 in the Dominican Republic to a very poor family. Wow, how typical huh? But what do you expect from a third world country? lol. Spanish was the only language that I knew for years, and for some reason it didn't stop me from falling in love with Michael Jackson at a young age.

My family moved to New York City on the day of my 3rd birthday, and I remember it like it was yesterday. I remember asking my mother when we landed in JFK International Airport where was Michael. Because I wanted to meet him. I had the entertainer in me from that young.

I grew up in the so-called bad part of town. Just a little bit north of Harlem, in a neighborhood called Washington Heights. I was pretty much a shy kid, but I would be able to play all alone for hours on end. Around 6 or 7 I started joining every school play possible. And then something crazy happened. I saw Eddie Murphy spit his comedy. That is when I knew I wanted to become an entertainer. Didn't matter what it was, I just craved the attention, the stage, and the knowledge of making people happy. Is that insane or what?

At the age of nine I started magic, but more importantly I started entertaining. You have to understand that I didn't know where the magic store was. Plus my parents couldn't afford to get me books. I had to literally steal magic books from the library. But the passion was there. I couldn't do a lot of those tricks because they usually involved props that I couldn't get a hold of. So what I developed instead of technical skill, I developed how to make things entertaining.

When Simon Lovell came to one of my shows he said, "I've never seen anyone hold a crowd like you. It's like you are selling a thirsty man some water." That skill came from not performing magic.

When I was 15 I got my first step into the world of magic. I got the Encyclopedia of Card Tricks and memorized the impromptu section. It was my bible. The drug dealers in my neighborhood took a liking to me and got me to Times Square so I can hustle the tourist. It was the streets that raised me from that point on.

Yeah I did some illegal things, but I was young and dumb. I learned a lot of lessons on those streets. Like, 30 people all trying to rush to the train and none of them care if you have a good trick or not. How can you grab that entire crowd’s attention?

See, at that time I thought to myself, "Smooth, you need to learn how to entertain WITHOUT the magic. Because once they give a sh^t about you, you can sell them anything you want. You can sell them the idea that you can read minds, that you are homeless, and that they need to tip you." That is how I earned the title of John B. Smooth: the Jedi Shogun. Everyone from teachers to family members called me Smooth.

But I was young and dumb.

I didn't have the common sense to take myself to the next level. Finally at the age of 18 I found my first magic store. I got introduced to a world that I never thought possible. For about 3 years all I needed was a deck of cards, and I would "make up" or "jazz" tricks. But I didn't do anything besides that. It was 98 when I found a magic store, and now I added all kinds of stuff to my arsenal. Rope tricks, Mentalism, ITR, thumb tips, balls.... wow, what a beautiful thing.

But it was like New York wasn't ready to see a thugish magician from Washington Heights.

David Blaine comes out.

Now here I am, my personal life goes haywire. I have a baby girl to take care of, and I am busy as hell going to all these exclusive hip-hop parties. Performing for rappers, producers and celeb's.... but I was so stupid I didn't take advantage. I would smoke weed and get drunk and have sex with random girls..... I was just a little kid introduced to the world of entertainment, without having the maturity and discipline to control myself. Finally I graduate high school and have to think about what I want to do with myself. My fiancé at the time convinced me that I had no chance on becoming a full time magician, so I started working for Bank of America.

I worked out of three locations, one of them being the World Trade Center branch of the corporate offices.

At the start of 2001 I started to think that losing my dream of taking the magic world by storm shouldn't go to the side. So I assembled a team of people that were going to help me. And it as great. 3 of the key players worked with me at the Center. Only 2 worked in the same company. But all 3 of them died during the attacks. I had the day off.

Soon after the attacks I joined the Marine Corps, mostly for my family, but more for myself to escape my city. I went to Iraq 3 times on combat tours. And I have made it back. I have been stationed in Japan, where I have learned how to speak Japanese fluently (making it the fifth language I can read and write with).

Now that I am out of the Marine Corps, and have grown up a bit, I had questioned myself if being a full time con artist is correct. And I think so.

I have a passion for this craft that is inhuman. I am very positive and rarely have negative things to say about life. I support every magician out there, and you will never hear me judge another practitioner of this art in a bad way, because that is just wrong. I support everyone, but at the same time I give constructive criticism that they can use to better themselves or to take it into consideration.

The only thing that I don't like are those that feel it necessary to judge and throw opinions and hate upon things that they don't know about.

I have been judged on me changing my name to Smoothini the Ghetto Houdini, I have been judged about mixing hip-hop with magic, and I have been judged for everything under the sun. I have been judged for taking Houdini's name. When Houdini took Robert Houdin's name. Look at the logic in that. But when the day is done it will take a lot more to destroy me in this industry than some words. Mostly because I know who I am.

I am the Jedi Shogun that has the first successful weekly magic show in San Diego in over 30 years. I am the village idiot that has kept that show completely packed for the past 8 weeks. I am the Mage that, against all odds, convinced a neighborhood that they did want to see magic. And most importantly I am the magician that doesn't need magic to make people question whether or not they are awake or dreaming.

I am a bit cocky.

I am very naive.

I am not afraid of asking questions and failing.

I am grateful to everyone who supports me, supports magic, and does good in the world.

I am still a Marine at heart.

I am Peter Pan.

I am currently 26 years young.

I am that feeling a six year old gets when they open their hands and where they thought they saw one sponge ball, but now there is two.

I am going to be able to support myself and my family with magic, no matter what obstacles come my way.

I am an international pimp and hustler.

I am Smoothini the Ghetto Houdini.
MagiCanada
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Vancouver
140 Posts

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My welcome isn't as long as your intoduction, but...

Welcome to the Café! Smile
Ardmac
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Gippsland Vic. Australia
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G'day Smooth.
WOW !!
Strewth mate,.. your intro could form the base plot of a mini movie. -
I was certainly entranced.
'Hope you achieve all you need on your journey.
Welcome.
IF you can fill the unforgiving minute
with 60 seconds worth of distance run then yours is the Earth & everything that's in it,..
Jeff_Mash
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Bay Area, California
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Welcome to the Café!
Your friend in magic,

Jeff Mash, CEO
MJM Magic - "Magic for Magicians, Jokesters, and Mentalists!"
http://www.MJMMagic.com
Maro Anglero
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FLORIDA
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Welcome to the Magic Café! Smile
For the Magician: The hard must become habit, The habit must become easy, The easy must become Beautiful



Doug Henning
jimhlou
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Inner circle
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You leave me speechless.

At this point I'd say you could pretty much do whatever you put your mind to. I'd love to see you perform, if I ever get back to California I'll look you up.

Jim
smooth
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Las Vegas
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Thanks everyone for the warm welcome. I've been going crazy all day today because they wrote an article about me here in San Diego. check this out

And I got a bunch of emails from the readers all day, and then my website shut down because I over exceeded the bandwidth. lol

When it rains, it pours.
Vandy Grift
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Milwaukee
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Sup Soomth. Nice to meet you. I also served in the USMC and have been to the Rock, but spent most of my time on the mainland doing Barracks duty in Yokosuka.

Looks like you've accomplished quite a bit at your young age. Keep up the great work and Welcome!
"Get a life dude." -some guy in a magic forum
WoodRat
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California
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Welcome to the Café! No worries, it's all good.
Learn something new everyday.
Andy the cardician
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A street named after my dad
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Welcome to the Café. What a great write-up. I truly enjoyed it . . .

Andy
Cards never lie
Atom3581
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That is good Smooth. you are a skilled man.
Habu
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Texas / Alabama
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Welcome to the Café, can't wait to hear more from you.
www.magicbyhabu.com
Real name: Rick Jackson
Habu: Taken from SR-71 spy plane I worked on. It's name came from a poisonous snake on Okinawa. Hope my magic isn't poisonous!
mark1991
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Boston, Lincolnshire, England
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Hi there,

Welcome to the Magic Café!

Hope to see you around!

Many thanks

Magical Mark Watson
(mark1991)
http://magicnewstelevision.com/mn/magicalmark



Magical Mark Watson - Christian magician, juggler, puppeteer, all-round entertainer and lover of Christ!
smooth
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Las Vegas
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The small time that I've been here I haven't really participated in many conversations. Just wanted to say that this is a great site, very big.... but I guess I'll get used to it.

'~Smoothini the Ghetto Houdini
Dmann
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Crossville, Tennessee
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Welcome to the Café!
Justin Style
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2010 Posts

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Welcome to the Café!


Just a thought:

Forget Smoothini!? Got no zip!

Try this: GODINI "The Ghetto Houdini"!

I like it.

When they ask what it means you can state the obvious, or you can say it means "That I have God in I". See what I'm saying?

Big Shout out to all my boys in SD...

Justin Style
smooth
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New user
Las Vegas
12 Posts

Profile of smooth
LOL..... I actually like it! NO doubt.... I'm from Manhattan originally. I'll be there in 3 weeks or so.
Dr. TORA
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TURKEY
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Hi Smooth,
A very nice and a detailed story. I can not call it an introduction but a story. You have had tough days and you have a very high level of selfconfidence. Very nice...Welcome to our beautiful Café. As you have noticed it is one of a kind;unique.Absolutely the best the best place about magic ever.You will find this as a invaluable source that you can not buy even with money. The people are so friendly as well as being helpful.The Café is such a the unique place for Magic. It is ever expanding and has over 30.000 members throughout the world. It will make a great contribution to your magic perspective. Do not forget to post often. You will find many new friends and many new ideas here. I predict you will like the Café.Please grab a chair and begin to type your next post while you have a cup of strong Turkish coffee on my bill.
We are glad that you have joined us.
Image
Magically Yours,

OZLEN TUNCER /Dr.TORA

Have you visited my new Website in English, yet?

www.magictora.com or www.torasmagic.com
JeremyM0411
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Moody, Alabama
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Welcome to the Café and enjoy!
Ted Danger
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San Francisco/Utila
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Smooth,

Good going with the languages, that's always been tough for me.
"One may say the eternal mystery of the world is its comprehensibility." Albert E.
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