It was 96'. Maybe 95'
I was so into The Beastie Boys its all I talked about. I met a guy that worked at Spencer's gifts who owned a TR808. I thought he was a god.
Hip Hop was in my soul. I was obsessed; but I had no idea my musical interests would drive my visual career. I learned about Ricky Powell from photos. This same man with the drum machine would show me the most amazing book of my teenage years. Oh Snap: The Rap Photography of Ricky Powell.
Ricky had photographed RUN D.M.C., The Beastie Boys, ODB, Wu-Tang, Flava Flav, and MANY MANY more. He had also shot several famous people all over New York City, Lawerence Fishburn, , Woody Allen and whole ton more.
This book taught me that I could make a career out of photography, and later, cinematography.
It was my inspiration.
20+ years later, the internet would help me connect with my mentor. I got to hang out with Ricky, Shoot a few flickeronies, and talk shop for a while in Washington Square park. It was surreal and made me realize how important mentors are. Even if they are indirect.