Monday, 30 April 2012

from Liverpool......The Universal !!!



A long-standing friendship: The Universal & Three Stroke Productions

A couple of years ago we came across a new band from Liverpool, who called themselves "The Universal". We were immediately impressed  by their style and attitude, so we decided to interview them for our blog  Our ThreeStroke logo appeared on their debut album cover, and we were proud sponsors of their CD launch gig in Soho,  London


In December 2010 they played their first live set in Milan, Italy with Smodati receiving a warm welcome and some very good feedback.
Our friendship and collaboration with Terry and the band continues, and we look forward to listening to their new upcoming tracks.

THE UNIVERSAL have been busy writing their new album. Recording has started and it should be ready by the Summertime. In the meantime, they have been gigging extensively around the UK.



They have recently parted ways with their record company, so are, at the moment unsigned.  Although 2012 will still see the release of the aforementioned new album, along with a solo album by THE UNIVERSAL’s songwriter, Terry Shaughnessy. 


An acoustic EP ‘No Room At The Doom And Gloom Hotel’ has already been released earlier this year, to a fantastic response and is available via the internet at –

www.facebook.com/TheUniversalBand

The Universal are :  Terry Shaughnessy, Piet Koehorst, Gary Chambers, Dave Ormsby


This is England (Official Video)
Shine on (live @Liverpool Sound City)

Next gigs:
 5th May 2012 - THE GLOBE, CARDIFF

6th May 2012 - THE HEAD OF STEAM, LIVERPOOL (afternoon gig)


18th May 2012 - THE FIDDLER'S ELBOW, CAMDEN, LONDON - Hipster's Mod Club


2nd June 2012 - THE FORGE TAVERN, DIGBETH, BIRMINGHAM


9th June 2012 - SCOOTERISTS FOR HEROES at ADAM and EVE, BIRMINGHAM


22nd June 2012 - THE FLEECE AND FIRKIN, BRISTOL as part of The Uprising Tour with Marmalade Sky and The Theme


29th June 2012 - DITCH THE TV at THE MAUDSLAY, COVENTRY (acoustic set)


7th July 2012 - SQUARE ONE, CREWE


29th July 2012 - SUNDAY BEST SCOOTER FEST 2, CAPEL MANOR GARDENS, ENFIELD (acoustic set)


25th August 2012 - THE HEAD OF STEAM, LIVERPOOL - Vortex Floor Gig


15th September 2012 - AUNTIE ANNIES. BELFAST with The Strypes


29th September 2012 - THE RIBBLE VALLEY MOD WEEKENDER at THE GRAND VENUE, CLITHEROE


20th October 2012 - SOULDIERS BY THE SEA SCOOTER RALLY, BRIGHTON


3rd November 2012 - SHILDON CIVIC HALL, SHILDON, COUNTY DURHAM


16th November 2012 - THE GREAT EASTERN SCOOTER RALLY, MABLE THORPE, LINCOLNSHIRE


MORE DATES TO BE CONFIRMED!!!

Monday, 16 April 2012

Distant Echo: Men's Designer Clothing


"We understand there's a certain breed of man who are engrained in football and music culture. They are proud of what they wear, and amongst the jackets, jeans and smart shirts there's a staple helping of clothes that celebrate this obsession of what they're about". Distant Echo 

A few words with Daniel, owner of this Liverpool based online store.....


HOW DID U START, AND WHAT ARE YOUR MAIN GOALS?
Distant Echo was launched in April 2011. For many years I have been inolved in various clothes related websites and have wrote software that spiders and collates information from dozens of websites. Along side this I've also got a healthy passion for what many would call football casual clothing. Sometime in 2011 I decided to press ahead and merge these two interests and - alongside other business ventures - launch a site selling designer clothing that, in one way or another, celebrates football culture. We aim to stock a wide range of quality clothes that appeals to people of a certain ilk. And we aim to do it all in a genuine and fair manner!

WHAT KIND OF BRANDS ARE MORE LIKELY TO BE INCLUDED IN YOUR ESTORE?
The labels that we stock all take at least some inspiration from football and music sub cultures. Some of these brands, such as 80s Casuals started out by printing t-shirts with designs that have nods towards the antics of young football fans two decades ago before becoming 'proper' clothing labels. Other newer brands such as Peaceful Hooligan have set out their stall by manufacturing fine clothes that will be of interest to a certain type of football lad. We've got the likes of The Casual Connoisseur on board who have built up a cult following with leanings towards film and popular culture as well as football. And of course we're proud to stock Three Stroke Productions on the site who take big doses of inspiration from Mod.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE TO YOUR CUSTOMERS WHAT THEY WILL FIND WHEN THEY APPRACH DISTANT ECHO?
Visitors will find a wide range of clothings that broadcasts a certain message without being too overt. There is definitely an emphasis on quality and designer. Although some items could be considered as 'fan-related-merchandise' the clothes are not the type you'd find in a traditional fan-shop or stall. The mainstay is t-shirts. Some of the brands stocked have made their name through t-shirts however there's also hooded jumpers, coats, polo shirts and more. In the summer shorts did particularly well!

IT SEEMS THE MUSIC SCENE PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN DE...CAN YOU TELL US A BIT MORE ABOUT IT?
Music undoubtedly plays a major role in what we do. Although I'm sure some would contest it I'd say that music has played a massive and consistent role in casual culture throughout the years and will continue to do so. From the clothes themselves to the creativity that the culture has spawned the music; from mod to ska, acid to Britpop to latter day Indie it's almost ever present. And I think it always will be. I think it's fair to say that for a lots of our customers going to a good gig means as much - if not more - than going to a good football match. To help harness this and show our commitment at Distant Echo we've recently being supporting grassroots live events by helping assist with the selling arrangements of a few gigs and even a Warehouse rave in the North of England.

FUTURE PLANS
We're looking forward to continue building what we started in the forthcoming year. We've been working closely with the labels to expand on the range and plan ahead to the summer. The next month or so will see some significant new stock arrive on Distant Echo including some exciting new lines from Three Stroke Productions.

Find out more about http://www.distantecho.co.uk/

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

MMA: Masaya Doi. MMA Fighter. Japan

Hello Folks, today we have a great opportunity to enjoy something different. No clothes today, or fashion. It's combat sports time. In a way we are coming back to our roots. The Three Stroke Combat Studio was infact a MMA and BJJ gym (and team) in the early years of the third millenium. So gym mats, gloves and sweat represent part of our DNA. MMA have recently been experiencing a great response from the public. TV and magazines cover combat sports now more than ever, and MMA instructors are now easily available across the country..
Masaya Doi is a MMA fighter from Japan. His grandfather used to practise Kendo while his father is a Karate black belt.....

1. Hi Masaya, tell us something about yourself...
When and why did u decide to become a MMA fighter?

 I was born and brought up in a big family where my grandad practiced kendo and my father was a karateka(he's a black belt).
I myself loved fighting so I took up karate when I was 16.In 2001 at the age of 24 I  moved to London where I spent 4 and half years to explore then unknown world.I  worked there as a doorman while attending English language schools.It was fun just to work and study in a foreign country for me at least for a while-but not taking much exercise every day I came to crave for restarting my karate training but I couldn't find any dojos close to Finsbury Park which I lived in.
Instead I found a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu club called Carson Gracie London Team.It was somewhere in 2002or 3 I think.I didn't like the idea of grappling with men then-that should have been done only with girls.But then rising popularity of MMA educated me to enlightenment-you have to know how to grapple to be a complete fighter.So I joined Carlson London and guess what I really loved the game of grappling.There were a couple of guys who had some experience in MMA,namely the owner of the gym Luca and Denis Kelly (a professional MMA fighter who runs his own gym Team Nemesis in Melbourne Austtalia),who lead me into the world of MMA.I fought several times in England between 2002-2005 before getting back in Japan to continue fighting.

2. Describe your daily shedule?
    Train? Work?

 I teach English in the evening  4 times a week.
When I have a day off from work I train twice a day:fitness in the morning(weights,run,sprint,plyometrics,agility training and so on) and MMA training in the evening.
When I got work in the evening I do fitness in the morning.
On weekends I go to high school wrestling clubs/karate dojo in the morning and MMA training in the afternoon.
I also go mountaineering locally as a hobby and also for fitness once a week or two except winter.Akita which I live in is a very snowy mountainous place up in north of Japan.
There isn't a complete day off for me-I always either work,train or quite often,both.
 
3. Can you  tell us a bit  about your latest matches and plans for the current season...I fought a TUF(the ultimate fighter) fighter Richie Whitson in Melbourne Australia on Nov 2010. My team had kind of a vague game plan for this match but when this guy start to swing for the fences it completely went out of the window and became a slugfest,
  when I got eventually knocked out.A couple of months later when I was lifting weights I got my neck herniated to be sidelined nearly for a year.
 It was obviously because of the the damage accumulated from fighting and training.
  I thought it was silly of me to have fought and trained without taking precautions and well thoughout plans.
  After recovering from it I started to train harder but real cautious not to hurt myself both in fitness and mma training.
  On 17 Dec 2011 i fought on a Japanese cage fight show called HEAT against a Chinese striker,who we had made a specific plan for.
  It went as we expected and ended up in a TKO victory.
  My next match is on 8 April on the same HEAT show.me and my team is ready to fight smart but win excitingly!
  I always wanted to come back to England to fight as a better fighter against a better opponent.
  Hopefully it will come true this year!



Are you inspired by any fighter present or past? Tell us a bit about your fighting style...Manny Pacquiao.His boxing is excellent so as his personality. So fast,so powerful, so accurate, so smart and so much heart.I have never even tried to be like him...he's from another planet.
Another fighter I admire a lot is a former UFC light heavyweight champ Lyoto Machida.the reason why I like his fight style is more practical.
He has a great karate techniques which enable him to cover a huge distance using his unique stance and footwork,although his reach isn't too long.
I have also a karate background and short reach so emulating him comes relatively natural and very practical.

What "fighting" means to you?
Fighting is first of all extreme fun.I love having fun.It is something absolutely necessary to me like dogs need to be walked daily-if not they'd go insane and die so would I.


 
How is the scene in Japan like?Japanese MMA scene has been shrunk a bit compared to before considering its popularity during the PRIDE days.
But we have a long tradition of  practicing and admiring the art of fighting.A lot of MMA promotions hold shows around the nation and they have produced many
world class fighters such as Yushin Okami,Hatsu Hioki and so on.
Sometime soon before my days are over,I wanna be in the UFC like them!

European kids are mad for football  (and so are we...)   Do like   football ? Any favourite teams?    If not you don't which other sports do u follow?
I don't follow football much.Its partly because i am so poor at any sports which involves a ball.
There are a lot of former successful football players in MMA such as Kenny Florian,Forrest Griffin and the undisputed UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo.
My MMA coach was also a successful football player so he makes us do a lot of fitness training used in football such as agility ladder training, dribbling a medicine ball and so on.
From an MMA fighter's point of view, football is very very good for especially cardio,agility,footwork and off course kicking power which are all essential to MMA.
Kicking without getting arrested is great...If I had a kid I would make him/her take up either karate or football,if not MMA.
Just kick it^^

 Have you ever needed to use your fighting skills  outside the mat/cage?

Back in London I worked as a doorman so naturally it was impossible to avoid trouble all the time.
One time on arriving at work in Brick Lane the owner of the bar I worked for asked me for a removal of a metal case with huge stitches on the head(looked seriously like the one from an old horror film the Hellraiser) out of the premises.I tried to persuade him to be dismissed in vain only to find him start vandalizing the interior of the bar so I had to force him out.After throwing him out he came back trying to attack me swinging for the fences so I had to take him down and apply a hold  on him.
Occasionally I still work as a doorman on MMA shows in Akita now,so I could say I use what my MMA skills quite often.

Music ...Thay boxe is often associated with straight edge and hardcore music....
Do you like music...? any favourite bands/singers?

Yes,I do love music of all kinds if the quality is good.Especially love rock music of all sorts around the world,such as the Clash,Rage Against The Machine,Foo Fighters, The Elephant Kashimashi,Maximum The Hormone,Stemm,etc,etc.
Recently I came to know a real rebellious musician called Kazuki Tomokawa,who I personally made friends with.
I used one of his songs 'Chinsetsu Tange Sazen' as the entrance music on my previous fight.
A documentary film about him called 'La Faute Des Fleurs' was made by a French director Vincent Moon,which won the best film award in Copenhagen international film festival few years back.He's such a cool person and his rebellious soul is getting even more sharpened as he gets older(He is 62 years old).I wish people in Europe would have a chance to experience his world.
In fact,he is going to do a gig or two in England next month.Check out his website if interested...
http://kazukitomokawa.com/

Japan and Tokyo look exciting ...  we need some recommendations for our readers...:)
tell us the 2/3 best places visitors  shouldn't miss ....   (nice venues, sumo, historical sites, shopping...anything...)
If you are a traveler with cash,you can enjoy Tokyo a lot.
There is this cheesy area called Roppongi in Tokyo,where lots of foreign blokes are hanging about to meet local chicks.
Among the cheesy places I think a night club called Gas Panic is definitely one of the cheesiest.You can try your luck there but stay gentlemanly...
All the doormen there are well trained mixed martial artists!
If you wish to explore a real Japan,in other words a total back country, Tohoku region might be where you want to be.
There are countless rice fields in between mountains,most of which villages have great Onsens(hot spring spas).
You can enjoy slow paced life with good food,mountaineering and relaxing in traditional Onsen resorts in such area as Akita,Aomori,Iwate and Yamagata in the region.
Regarding histrical sites,I recommend Kamakura near Tokyo and Hagi in Yamaguchi.They are 'cooler' than Kyoto in my opinion.Both of them used to be samurai cities with masculine atmosphere that stand contrast with Kyoto's somewhat feminine aristocratic air.

Thanks Masaya ! !

1. Name:Masaya Doi
2. Age: 35years old(birth 23/jun/1976)
3. Fighting weight:70kg
4. Pro MMA record:10wins 7losses 4draws(Including results not shown on Sherdog)
     http://www.sherdog.com/fighter/Masaya-Doi-20587
5. Fight videos available:
    22sep/09 vs adriano magnani(australian bjj champion)
    http://www.veoh.com/watch/v19277912sawfgwyY
   Deep future king tournament 2008 vs hayato sasaki (the one with blue shorts is me)
    http://www.veoh.com/search/videos/q/masaya+doi+vs#watch%3Dv19275478zJGTCWk4
    http://www.veoh.com/search/videos/q/masaya+doi+vs#watch%3Dv19275483TQKjkHKc


6. Other accomplishment:
    2008 north-eastern japan deep future king tournament winner
    Placed 2nd in all japan deep future king tournament in 2008
    2007 north-eastern japan amatur shooto champion
    Placed 3rd at "southern grappling challenge"both in grappling and kumite(amatur mma with non-contact       strikes)in woking,surrey,england on 4/apr/2004
    Brown belt in kyokushin karate
    7years of wrestling experience
  
7. Primarily a striker but with good wrestling.Love submissions as well especially chokes and    omoplata.

Masaya Doi for Three Stroke Productions

Three Stroke Productions clothing
Style, Identity, Respect
1997