Questions for Matt Barnes

Discussion in 'Kenpo' started by John Bishop, Mar 8, 2007.

  1. BGile

    BGile Banned Banned

    I would expect nothing less from you John. LOL

    Guf I know who you are. Maybe you and Dan can sit in on it, since John is always a no show.

    He has been asked to attend other times, you are in Glendale its not that far from Bill Ryusaki's (burbank). He has a class on Thursdays and a get together afterwards. Maybe you'd like to meet him and talk? Let me know in PM.

    Yea somehow it did get hijacked. I think if you look back you can see why.

    Last edited: Mar 24, 2007
  2. DAnjo

    DAnjo Valued Member

    Yeah. I'm really looking forward to sitting down with my seniors and some freakin' white belt!

    But, to keep on topic, Matt: How many Leoning white belts does it take to become and expert in kajukenbo history? Or: If a 65 year-old Leoning White belt spouted off on the internet and no one was around to read it, would it still be just as obnoxious?
  3. meijin10

    meijin10 Valued Member

    The material you have been posting, excellant job. I believe that you are the first to post the material on the internet like this.
    Do you know which system they came from and their era? I have been trying to place a timeline on the 108. I have been cross compairing the material and was curious to who did what to them.
    I am from the original 40 system, the Brockton Academy of Kenpo never went to this 108 system until after I left and joined the IKKA.
  4. BGile

    BGile Banned Banned

    Well Dan, Guf would like to go, I have asked Guf in a PM.

    History is a hard item to get straight when there are so many untruths and fame and fortune riding on a book or other things like interviews or magazine articles that are more nonsense and fiction rather than truth. Many in the media, like they mention "truth or legend print the legend" Truth does not sell it seems as well as good old BS. :confused:

    Mistakes are made. Erroneous information happens accidently also. I believe at this date and time it is best to allow Wikipedia to be cited more than just opinions. DVD can be nice, books and Magazines of course, numerous ones out there, one (DVD) has come to my attention of late that is interesting it is one that is put out by M.A.D. Prof. Mitch Powell 30 years in LEO, and a Kajukenbo expert I am thinking he is in it, and mentions that, the first wave of
    instructors were the pioneers of the art." Johnny Leoning, Sonny Gascon, Tony Ramos, Alejo Reyes, Charles Gaylord, Al Dacascos, Joe Halbuna, Sid Asuncion, George Seronio.

    Actually I am 65 years, but young for my age thanks to the # of days
    I work out regarding MA. Minumum of 3 a week if you are interested.

    I am certainly not an expert in Kajukenbo history and the more trifles that keep popping up about the BS that is out there, leads one to believe no one else is an expert on these Boards. It appears all are making some errors and it is to be expected in my observations, John and Joe mention that things change that need to be updated, but with blatant mis-truths and caught at it, is another thing.

    In court when an expert witness testifies (I am an expert regarding bookmaking, horse and sport been deemed so by the courts long ago) If I was to make the errors John has on these boards, I don't believe he would be allowed that statis anymore.

    If you'd like to discuss that topic we can do so but the last time we did it got closed and one of the topics actually got deleted, for whatever reason I am not really sure. Except that information has been found that leads to confirming an old GM is not quite telling the truth either. But it could be others do a lot of talking for him on these forums and he may not even know what is said (John mentioned that a few years ago to me over at MT).

    So staying with the topic and a question for Matt. How many times can you commit purjury (and get caught) will you be able to continue in that vein (expert)? This question has to do with LEO which John and I both are retired from. Since you have the option to not discuss it from my side of it, I understand if you don't want to go there.

    Regards, Gary
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2007
  5. KGS BBS

    KGS BBS Valued Member

    First of all, the only 'others' you could be referring to is me, so as you told Gary, if you have a problem with one of my posts or me then take it to me privately, practice what you preach. I have never called you an 'idiot' or any reasonable facsimile thereof when answering your questions in the past on the forums, I was always respectful. Let's not play games either, it is so obvious you posted a response right under Gary's post and referenced him and 'others' and then state because you didn't mention his name or mine, it's okay. Well, that's B.S. and you know it.

    Furthermore, I did not go off topic nor hijack or derail the thread, John posted some information regarding someone in my lineage that I was interested in and it went back to a correspondence we had before so I asked for a clarification for historical accuracy, pure and simple. Since you use the word 'idiots' in your response to those who have debated John, then I will respond with this: "I have to listen to this from a 25 year old" who states 20 years in the martial arts, good for you, then you started at 5 with Mr. Mattera's organization.

    You talk about disrespect but then use the word idiots to describe someone with a difference of opinion or in my case, asks a simple question. How dare I, lol. You wrote: "Heh, I should follow my own advice". - Yes, you should. Show me where my post to John was disrespectful? Think about it. No, "YOU need to learn how to private message people", not Gary. You've changed? What were you like before?

    I don't wish to have a problem with you, I didn't ask for one. It is your right to agree and support John, I have no problem with that but there is a right and wrong way to do it and you don't have to do it by putting down others. If you want to use the ignore feature on my posts, fine, your perrogative, however, if you wish to pm me as you stated is the proper protocol, I'm okay with that too, better yet, use, I check that more often. I am willing to clear the air on this. - Joe
  6. KGS BBS

    KGS BBS Valued Member

    Gm. Al C.:

    Al, I can remember in 1978 Mr. V. came to see me at my school. It was a Saturday morning and I was off, one of my black belts was teaching the kid's class and gave me the message. I'm positive on when it was because Gm. Villari wanted to talk to me because I was training at SGM. Pesare's school. Mr. Villari then called me on his way back home and asked me to come see him on Monday in Dedham. We had a long, good conversation and it was then he told me he had the 108 combinations. Now, we had a black belt workout one Friday. I believe it was also in 1978, he stated he had streamlined the system to 50 combinations and 21 forms besides the blocking forms of the 8 point, 10 Point and Plum Tree. They were 1-5 pinan, Statue of the Crane, 1-6 Kata, Honsuki/Hansuki, Shou Tung Kwok, Nenglis North & South, Swift Tigers, Invincible Wall, Five Dragons Facing the Four Winds, a Japanese sword form and one Bo form.

    In the black belt workouts I never remember him going past the 39 combinations and from my conversations with Prof. Cerio, that may have been the number he left Mr. Cerio with. The Professor told me it was 'around' 35 and I have seen NCK techniques that have some resemblance to those over 35, one that immediately comes to mind is the last numerical I mentioned, #39. These were the numerical ones, Prof. Cerio also left him with an undisclosed number of various punch techniques, clubs, knives, guns, grabs and so forth. I saw one (punch technique) just about identical to one I was taught in Framingham, around 1974-75 in Nick's first published book on Kenpo. (Matt, take notice for your archives). Against a right step-in punch, step in with the right foot while simultaneously using a left pressing palm block and right chicken wrist to chin, immediately begin turning counter-clockwise until your back is facing opponent while executing a downward backfist to groin, now Villari's follow up was a rising heel kick to the face of the buckled over opponent, Cerio's was a back kick to the body. Hope this helps. - Joe
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2007
  7. meijin10

    meijin10 Valued Member


    I don't want ot get off subject so I will start another thread for this.
  8. KGS BBS

    KGS BBS Valued Member

    Sounds good, Al.
  9. DAnjo

    DAnjo Valued Member

    Oh I see. You think Wikipedia is a reliable soruce of info. It's made up by users of the site. It's accuracy is all over the map and totally unreliable.
  10. BGile

    BGile Banned Banned


    Hi all,
    I believe it is a much better source than when it started and the fact that it has so much easily accessable information and the way it is all tied together so you can search endlessly is pretty good stuff. It gets you information that use to be very hard to come by, it is truly a good thing IMHO

    If someone writes to it and it is correct or it needs to be changed it is now looked at very carefully, pretty cool. Not like sites that are totally wrong and made the mistake because others had it before and did not say the correct thing.

    Matt have you used it or do you have the same opinion that Dan has? Not all sites are as good or try to have the accuracy you have, but all I need to do is go to Wikipedia and search.

    The information is for all, and sometimes the "wild card" has the true scoop and later the information is posted for all to see by someone who borrowed the "wild cards" information. Happens all the time actually.

    Regards, Gary
  11. BGile

    BGile Banned Banned

  12. John Bishop

    John Bishop Valued Member

    More questions for Matt;

    If your collecting of tecniques has included those taught by George Pesare and Nick Cerio;

    1. Can you describe the differances in the techniques from Pesare, Cerio, and Villari?

    2. Do you feel that these are three distinct systems? Or, are the differances miniscule?
  13. Matthew Barnes

    Matthew Barnes Valued Member

    Rank Question

    Just a clarification question: Was he ranked in anything else that you are aware of. I remember the old Charles Fisher site, and it seemed to have enough information that it indicated some Kajukenbo knowledge. I know this doesn't mean much, but since Leoning was training in other arts, is it likely that he received a higher rank in something else?

    Also - Leoning having a club in Hawaii. Was this with Sijo's blessing? Was it common for someone who was not (according to some) a black belt to run a club in Hawaii?


  14. Matthew Barnes

    Matthew Barnes Valued Member

    Sorry if I'm going out of order, but I've only got a little time.

    Yes, I've had access to material from all three, and have met two of the three for training at seminars personally (Villari and Pesare). The material from White to Black belt in Pesare's system and Villari's system is very similar. Nearly identical. It's closer than say between Original Method and Tum Pai in Kajukenbo from what I've seen. The difference is more in 'hardness'. After black belt, Villari's material diverges quite a bit.

    Nick Cerio is a special case. What he originally taught was again, nearly identical, but after training with Chow and Chun, and forming Nick Cerio's Kenpo, the changes were significant, but the fundamental execution was similar. It's kind of an interesting hybrid, as you can see moves in both the Villari and Pesare material, but done with a hint more 'Hawaiian' flavor. In conversation with Nancy Cerio, we talked about the forms that folks learn in both Villari and Pesare's curriculum (the 'Kata' series) and she recalled learning them in the early days and was able to describe them accurately, although they are not a current part of her curriculum.

    To sum up, I'd say that the difference between Pesare's and Villari's material is no greater below black belt than between that in a United Studios school on the west coast and at most of the former Villari's schools on the East Coast. If you kidnapped a dozen green belts from each, and put them in a class in the other, they'd all be able to follow the forms, but some would be startled by the intensity, and some would find it 'easy day'.

    So the variance is probably no greater than between Kajukenbo branches, with Nick Cerio's being the biggest difference. (a la Won Hop Kuen do? Not in how the material is done, but in degree of difference.)

    Hope that was kind of helpful.

  15. Matthew Barnes

    Matthew Barnes Valued Member

    It's convenient, but yes it is subject to dispute and intentional falsehood. These are usually corrected in somewhat short order. It is not considered suitable for journal articles or true academic work. However, it actually compares favorably in accuracy to many 'paper' encyclopedias, such as Britannica. I do use it now and then for background info, such as when I name someone in a blog entry.

    And as much as I try, my site has some errors I need to correct, as it is an ongoing process.

  16. Matthew Barnes

    Matthew Barnes Valued Member

    Thanks Joe and GM. Al

    Thanks Guys, and thanks for the other thread - I'll be keeping an eye out over there too.

  17. Matthew Barnes

    Matthew Barnes Valued Member

    In most cases, we've credited a 'source' but that's usually the submitter. As time goes on, I'll try to insert the 'lineage' of the technique as there are some variations at certain numbers. I did have a discussion with someone a while ago who actually had some insight as to who was responsible for any given ten, as he indicated that the senior masters made specific groups, and that's why '41-45' were lefty.

    So, I'm sort of working on it. I'll be hitting you up for some help along the way. :Angel:

  18. John Bishop

    John Bishop Valued Member

    John Leoning was ranked at 7th degree in kung fu by the "Hop Sing Tong Benevolent Association". At this time I'm don't know what kung fu system his rank was in.

    The Kalihi Club was approved by Sijo. At that time all Kajukenbo clubs were directly under Sijo's control, and he provided the instructors.
    In the early days it was very common for color belts to have small groups of students. Some instructors were ranked as low as purple belt.
    I know now it seems odd that color belts had their own schools, but look at BJJ in the U.S. 15-20 years ago. There were probably 10 or more color belts teaching for every black belt that was. In fact now days there's still BJJ color belts teaching their own groups.
  19. RevIV

    RevIV Valued Member

    Matt not sure if its just late and you had to drive almost 5 hours and do a 3 hour seminar.. but the lefty combos were 45-50. No biggy, but these were the ones that were supposed to be lefty only.. Which was interesting because my origianal instructor said everything was to be done lefty and righty.
  20. DAnjo

    DAnjo Valued Member

    This is very helpful Matt, thanks. I'm beginning to see how certain ideas came about. We had, for years now, heard that Karazenpo and SKK were pretty much the same thing up to 2nd degree black belt (Where Villari took off in his own direction). On the other hand, I've heard from former students of Prof. Godin that his "Karazenpo" was no different than Original Method Kajukenbo. This caused a bit of confusion because SKK and Original Method Kajukenbo didn't look the same in either content, or (to my eye at least) execution. So now a picture is emerging as to what happened.

    The only thing we have to tell us exactly what GM Gascon taught in the 60's to his students are the original 4 forms and 10 combinations that SGM Pesare brought back to New England with him (I believe that's what you wrote in an earlier post). The rest of his curriculum (Gascon's) is unknown (teh anticipated 2006 manual never emerged). The rest of the system that Pesare taught was his own creation (as he's personally stated in emails that I'm not going to re-post here as it's been done by me ad nauseum), so it naturally would not look like Gascon's stuff beyond that original material mentioned above.

    Godin, after returning to Hawaii in the early 60's, apparently went back to teaching Kajukenbo techniques as "Karazenpo". Later, he modified his curriculum to incorporate his further training with Prof. Chow etc. (who eventually promoted Godin to 10th degree), and called his art "Hawaiian Kempo".

    Given that Pesare told everyone that his "Only" teacher was Gascon, (despite his black belts in TKD, Escrima and Judo), people assumed that what Pesare taught was basically "Karazenpo". Since Pesare's art looked virtually the same as SKK, everyone thought that SKK was the same as Karazenpo. However, it seems that it's more proper to say that SKK is the same as whatever Kempo Pesare teaches, and not the same as "Karazenpo" at all.

    This makes me start to understand why Pesare has said the things he has regarding the Karazenpo folk trying to take credit for SKK. SKK is not the creation of Gascon, it seems, but rather of Pesare (at least up to 2nd black).

    Very good piece of the puzzle.
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2007

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