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Lamar Davis


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Sifu Lamar M. Davis II was born on the 8th day of August in the year 1957 in Newnan, Georgia. Shortly after this his family moved to Alabama, where he grew up. He started training in martial arts at the age of ten. His first training was in shotokan karate and kodokan judo. It was Bruce Lee playing the part of Kato on the Green Hornet TV series that first got him interested in the martial arts. He started buying martial arts magazines whenever he could get his hands on them. Thanks to this early interest in magazines, he has all of the early issued of Black Belt magazine with articles on or by Bruce Lee. This includes the issue that "Liberate Yourself From Classical Karate" originally appeared in!

When the episode of Longstreet titled "The Way of the Intercepting Fist" premiered, he was sitting in front of the TV set with eager anticipation! It was incredible! Bruce Lee basically played himself and explained Jeet Kune Do right there on the show! It was a sleepless night for him after watching that show! He knew that whatever it took, he would one day become an instructor of this incredible art of Jeet Kune Do!

By the time he was fifteen years old, he was training in Northern Shaolin Gung Fu, Ed Parker's Kenpo, Tae Kwon Do and Tang Soo Do all at the same time! He achieved instructor's degrees in all of these arts! Since he couldn't yet study Jeet Kune Do, he would learn everything he could about whatever was available. At least he would be developing some of the attributes necessary for Jeet Kune Do!

In the late 70's Lamar met a man named Robert S. Brabante. Robert was an instructor of three different martial arts. Lamar started training with him, eventually earning instructor's degrees in Shin Pao Chuan Gung Fu, Filipino Escrima and Filipino Kuntao. All the while Robert knew of Lamar's interest in Jeet Kune Do and Bruce Lee. He told Lamar about an old friend of his, Sifu Joseph I. Cowles, who had trained with Bruce Lee in Seattle, Washington. He suggested that they invite him for a seminar. Finally, a door to training in Bruce Lee's fighting method was about to open!

Sifu Joseph I. Cowles came to Birmingham and taught a two day seminar. He was so impressed with Lamar that he spent most of his time the first day working one-on-one with him. He even went home with Lamar that evening for dinner and more training! The next day he put his assistant instructor in charge of the class, which was self defense for women, and spent the whole day working privately with Lamar! He then allowed Lamar to make a videotape of him demonstrating all of the Modified Gung Fu techniques.

After Sifu Cowles left to go home, Lamar spent hours each day studying the video and working on the techniques until he had learned them all. He could execute them all with speed, power and good form. He was determined to become ranked as an instructor under Sifu Cowles.

In 1980 Lamar sponsored a seminar in Birmingham for Sifu Dan Inosanto and Sifu Richard Bustillo. He was able to talk to them about their experiences with Bruce Lee and learn more about Bruce Lee's training methods.

Later that year Lamar brought Sifu Joseph I. Cowles back to Birmingham for another seminar. This seminar was awesome. Pure Modified Gung Fu! Sifu Cowles surprised Lamar by asking him to assist him with teaching the seminar, and later informed him that he could now consider himself an instructor. Lamar was ecstatic! Lamar has great respect for him and considers him his first Sifu in Bruce Lee's fighting methods.

Lamar was aware of the fact that there were many other people out there who had trained personally with Bruce Lee. He made it his personal goal to seek out as many of them as possible to train with them and find out what their unique qualities were. He knew that to get a full picture of Bruce Lee's method, he would have to find students from all three periods of Bruce Lee's development (Seattle, Oakland and L.A. Chinatown). He had already experienced some training with Dan Inosanto and Richard Bustillo, who were both from the L.A. Chinatown period. Through this training, he was made aware of what was later to be known as the "JKD concepts" approach to training in Bruce Lee's art.

Over the next fourteen years (1984 - 1998) Lamar went on to train with such first generation students as Jesse Glover, Ed Hart, Leo Fong, Howard Williams, Jerry Poteet, Steve Golden, Ted Wong, Joe Lewis, and with Taky Kimura and Roy Hollingsworth while visiting the Modified Gung Fu Institute in Seattle.

By joining Jun Fan Jeet Kune Do and attending their events, Lamar has been able to meet and train with original Bruce Lee students, Bob Bremer, Pete Jacobs, Daniel Lee, Herb Jackson, Allen Joe, George Lee, David William Cox and second generation students Tim Tackett, Chris Kent, Andrew Kimura and Greglon Lee. Lamar is recognized as a Full Instructor in Jeet Kune Do, and is highly recommended as an instructor for those who wish to train and be ranked in Bruce Lee's fighting method.

In 1990, Lamar flew to Los Angeles, California to meet with Sifu Ted Wong and one of his senior students, Zee Lo, to discuss the forming of an organization dedicated to the original teachings of Bruce Lee. In early 1991, Lamar flew in for a second meeting, which consisted of many recognized names in the world of martial arts. It was determined that there would be two separate organizations. Lamar would be in charge of one of them, the United States Jeet Kune Do Alliance, and Zee Lo would be in charge of the other one.

Sifu Davis has kept his organization going! It was about this time that prominent JKD instructor Sifu Ted Lucay Lucay called and congratulated Sifu Davis for hanging in there and keeping things going! He said, "I admire you, my friend! You are actually doing what many before you have tried to do and failed! I am a strong believer in your cause! If I can be of assistance to you in any way please do not hesitate to call on me. Hang in there! Good things will come your way!" Sifu Davis hosted a seminar for Sifu Ted Lucay Lucay shortly after that and they remained good friends right up until the time of Sifu Lucay's untimely death!

In 1991 Sifu Lamar M. Davis II was inducted into the World Martial Arts Hall of Fame as the Jeet Kune Do Instructor of the Year. This came as a surprise, as he was not expecting it at all! He attended the ceremony, which was held in Akron, Ohio, where he met Sensei George Dillman and Sensei Wally Jay, who were both close friends of Bruce Lee. Sifu Davis was inducted again in 1995 with the Master Instructor Award, which is one of the highest awards given! Almost unheard of for someone under forty years of age at the time!

In 1989, Sifu Davis wrote his first article for a martial arts magazine. The article was on Bruce Lee's trapping hand techniques and it appeared in Black Belt magazine. He has had over fifty articles published since then and has appeared in Bruce Lee magazine, Inside Kung Fu, Inside Karate, Wushu Kung Fu, M.A. Training, Karate/Kung Fu Illustrated, Irish Fighter, COMBAT, Karate International, Worldwide Martial Arts News, Jun Fan Journal, Kicksider, Fighter, Martial Arts Illustrated, Wing Chun Today, Martial Arts Legends and several other magazines. He has several other articles already written and is always working on more! He has his own monthly column in COMBAT magazine over in Great Britain. His first book, Jeet Kune Do Scientific Streetfighting, has been published and distributed in seven countries worldwide!

In 1993, Sifu Davis started working on a series of instructional videotapes, which he decided to call Jeet Kune Do Complete. The goal was to make the most in-depth series of instructional videotapes ever done on Bruce Lee's fighting method! The series consists of twenty volumes! The shortest tape in the series is one hour long. Most of the tapes are pushing the two-hour mark! Sifu Davis accomplished his goal! His series is by far the most in-depth ever!

As he was working on the Complete series, he also started working on the seminar series. This consists of footage from various seminars taught by Sifu Davis. There are fifteen tapes in this series at the time of this writing with possibly more to come! There are also a few other tapes that are not a part of any series.

There are several other series of instructional videotapes planned for the future, with a probable discontinuation of the Complete series! Other series to be released are (1) Hardcore Jeet Kune Do, (2) Hardcore Jeet Kune Do Explosive Combat Trapping, (3) Hardcore Jeet Kune Do Street Combat, (4) Hardcore Jeet Kune Do Training Methods and (5) Hardcore Jeet Kune Do Instructor's Training.

In 1996 the United States Jeet Kune Do Alliance became Jeet Kune Do International and the Jeet Kune Do Trapping Association. This was due to a growing interest in the organization and a need to expand so that those from foreign countries could feel more a part of things. Until they ceased to exist in 2003, Sifu Davis was the Executive Director and Senior Instructor of both of these organizations.

As a result of his training with approximately eighteen of Bruce Lee's original students, Sifu Davis has learned the entire curriculums from the Seattle, Oakland and L.A. Chinatown branches of the Modified Gung Fu Institute. Sifu Davis now shares his extensive knowledge with others through his organizations, seminars, instructional videotapes and magazine articles. He also offers private instruction, semi-private instruction, group instruction, seminars and training camps.

In 1999, Sifu Davis started working on an idea for an Instructor Trainee/Instructor only organization. This organization became the Jun Fan Fighting Arts Association. Officially kicked off in 2000, the Year of the Dragon, the organization’s logo states “In The Shadow of The Dragon”. This is symbolic of the fact that Bruce Lee was born in the Year of the Dragon and was known to the world as “The Little Dragon”. The idea behind this is that if Bruce Lee didn’t do it, we don’t do it either!

Today Sifu Lamar M. Davis II is the most highly ranked Instructor of Bruce Lee’s fighting methods in the entire world! He is certified as a Full Instructor of Modified Gung Fu and Jeet Kune Do by FIVE of Bruce Lee’s original students! Here is a list of those who have certified him and the period that they trained with Bruce Lee:

Sifu Joseph I. Cowles - Seattle Period
Sifu Patrick Strong – Seattle Period
Sifu Leo T. Fong – Oakland Period
Sifu Jerry Poteet - L. A. Chinatown Period
Sifu Steve Golden - L. A. Chinatown Period

Due to an unfortunate series of legal matters involving the Bruce Lee Estate, in 2003, as a pre-emptive legal move, Sifu Davis changed the name of his organization for one last time. It is now called the Hardcore Jeet Kune Do Chinese Gung Fu Association, and is open to all (both students and Instructors) who are seriously interested in learning Hardcore Jeet Kune Do. This organization consists of a highly dedicated group of practitioners that are dedicated to the goal of preserving Bruce Lee’s original teachings.

In 2004, Sifu Lamar M. Davis II was inducted into the Universal Martial Arts Hall of Fame with the Jeet Kune Do Sifu of The Year Award. This was quite an honor! Sifu Davis was unable to attend the induction ceremony due to a previous commitments, so his very close friend Master Richard Ryan, Founder of the Dynamic Combat Method, accepted the award for him.

Today, Sifu Davis Is the Head Instructor of the Hardcore Jeet Kune Do Academy in Birmingham, Alabama. He is available for group instruction, private instruction, semi-private instruction, H. I. T. Sessions and worldwide seminars.

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