From a gig as paralegal to event party planner to disciplined athlete turned boxing instructor and now accomplished business man-Emile Awe Reed is one focused individual seeking excellence.
I’d been to Loft SC a few times…I wondered who was behind its open concept. I chatted with Emile via Skype a little over a week ago and talked about it quite a bit….
How House Music has influenced his life:Music has always been a part of his life. He was in the choir at school. He attended North Western State University and was a member of their Choir. He grew up listening to Nana Maskari, Harry Belafonte among very many unique artists. He grew up listening to Classic Rock and loved bands like The Who and Led Zeppelin. He still hadn’t embraced House by then yet but by the 80s and 90s (the most influential era in my House Music opinion) and really got into Reggae. He notes that it was not until one of the longest running Toronto parties (Twilight Zone) that created the connection. He started attending events in (2004).
During a difficult time in his life he truly embraced House. He eventually met DJ Gene King who always mentioned the importance of an ‘open mind’.They are now business partners! Look out for UDM (Underground Dance Music) parties they throw twice a year!
House Music IS Just So Cool: He opened The Boxing Loft Social Club. House music’s sole purpose at the Boxing Club serves as a pace-setter for boxing technique (shadowboxing) and foot technique. ‘Boxing still uses rhythm just like dance….. Reed tells me with conviction,’most of the House I hear, I love…if you want to be a good boxer, you’ve got to be good at everything-a complete fighter…this is why I fight to music’.
Unlike many…..I had no idea ‘The Boxing Loft’ was an actual boxing gym! As a brand marketing pro-star I thought it was a well-crafted brand image that simply brought people together-along with a prop stage boxing ring (silly me)! With “Inspired Gatherings’ happening frequently, ‘Social Club’ is exactly what it is. There are arts focused events, boxing instruction and dance party events all happening within those four walls! The social component never ends!
Reed started running events at 199 Queen St. E in 2004 and ran into snags with liquor permits for locations and capacity violations. It made sense to find a permanent home for events and voilà: The Boxing Loft was born! Growing up he watched Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers and learnt that during their time social clubs were VERY popular. People with similar interests gathered to socialize and grow their memberships. This is what the future will look like at the Boxing Loft!
The Way Emile Sees It: Reed has a way he does business with co-organizers in the scene. ‘I’m always gonna be upfront and real with people…I’m a new cat, I’m still learning….I like to work with anyone who is willing to learn, you need others in order to attain wealth….With more people there’s power…I’m a busness person first….You have to be respectful…It’s not just about me’. <<<shine’s thing too!
Working With the Local Toronto House Behind-the-scenes promo people: If it wasnt for my team, I wouldn’t be here without hosts and promoters. (if I didn’t mention you, I apologize)….You are the ones that enable my name to get out there. I appreciate that they have helped me brand The Boxing Loft. Even though I’m the boss-I don’t stand alone…..I’d be nowhere if the DJs didnt play in my space.
DJs as Artists:How Does That Work?
DJs should be validated as artists. I have an idea of how DJs should play. This is how/why I choose who plays at The Boxing Loft. DJs like Yogi,Stan Zeff, Zepherin Saint,Ian Friday, Josh Milan, Joe Rizla. DJs of THAT calibre-this is how I choose. I try to keep the DJ guest choices at a certain level…..you know that standard…..As an athlete I strive to be the best, same as the DJs. I have to make sure I shine so the DJ shines and the underground’ll shine. I want The Boxing Loft to act like an advocate for House Music.
What to expect at The Boxing Loft:
No drugs allowed inside (it’s a sports venue and creative space too!)
Make sure as you enter TBL you can somehow relate to what you’re taking in (art/music/sport)
Come in with an open mind
You will always be treated well
It’s a place with an incredible vibe