A man named Quiet hit the big streets of Johannesburg at the age of 15. He hustled his way to his feet, started the black punk movement of the 80’s and quickly carved a niche in the fashion scene. I had a chat with him downtown Melville and about his life, experiences and racing Harleys through the streets of Hillbrow.

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Here’s the YouTube Transcript of our conversation (again, YouTube’s listening skills aren’t great.):

you got your the
name of your store and all that stuff
i’ve just got to go to my
name is quiet quiet yeah has it always
been your name was that
nickname how did you get that name
because it goes back to the what
80s when we were young it was a group of
us and then we formed this
what a party
just called like the black panther
movement the the black
panther movement punk movement yes
like pound yeah yeah of the 80s
because why we formed that
because the music that we used to like
we used to like
um events like the cure
uh the clash sex pistol
uh that was and that wasn’t quiet so
that was loud so is that like a very
because with the what made us to like
that kind of music because
it used to be a case system what was
happening
you must know in the 80s we just thought
like
let’s just form our own inner movement
which is going to be called we are punks
yeah that’s it proper punks yeah well
really used to be proper punks with the
moon cam
not now this youngster will see them
today shaving
the side we did it in the 80s man
we were young where here in hillsboro
we used to study i remember the first
place where we stayed
we stayed in
what king george and the priest street
yeah right on the roof and then
and uh mike and i
mike is another body of mine in the band
yeah yeah and there was another dude by
name lucky
and then there was another dude by named
sizwe there was
another tweet by name charlie and then
there was a another name
guy by name jack yeah it was about eight
of us
in in a band or just in a year yeah
a group in a group then you bet you had
a band but you had
the band it talks about like what five
of us what did you play
me i could play pins yeah yeah play bass
sing
yeah yeah and then where i mean if you
were in hillbrow where did you
where did you play
very nice scottish club it used to be
called like click club
in hillsborough in kosair
in kosa street where because the end
there was a nightclub there very good
night club
in the 80s yeah quality club
and there was this other one also called
um
decor dance yeah in market street yeah
and there was
another one called the doors yeah i know
the doors in
front of street do you know the doors
yeah they moved to edinburgh yeah
there was another um uh
other one for the yappies now which used
to be called idols
which it was in entry for the yuppies
yeah
for those you know rich boys and stuff
yeah yeah yeah
yeah because you must know during those
days we had like
uh even with us we had like two groups
with our group as a black punk movement
we had like guys which they used to like
skinheads music yeah
like hardcore very hardcore stuff yeah
they used to go to club image
which is was in front of street myself
and the others wish to go to league club
which was more like playing music like
what
um the black sisters of messi the
russian yeah yeah yeah yeah the cult
yeah david bowie and dinner yeah
i mean so in the 80s how how what was
people’s reaction to
to a black punk band uh us actually
for us we had like our search
and we had the fabulous time really yeah
because what happened
we had like uh
[Applause]
blacks which they used to like our vibe
we also had blackfish they used to hate
us
because of because of the way of the
the way we looked and then you know what
i meant because of
our image because you know we didn’t
look like them
we were like you know we wanted our own
you know
but you didn’t care we didn’t give a
damn also we had the problem also with
other white which they used to call us
some morphes and stuff like that
but we didn’t give you a good damn you
say either you like
us we don’t like because we don’t care
about you we do what we like
you just wanted a journal yeah and then
that’s it
it’s just just like that and how long
were you together for
[Music]
we said do we grow up together almost
like something like
30 to 40 years yeah yes we
brought together all of us i think
yeah come on so that’s everything so all
you wanted to do was really play
yeah what were you doing
in the daytime like what did you have a
now everything came with that and then
we started making now we
winky pickles i’m i’m thinking that must
have been
like what uh
15 16 samurai the 1986
i started making winkie pickles what’s
winky pickles the point shoes
pointy shoes the point yeah i had a
point and you called them winky pickles
yeah
yes yes also from hill bro yeah
choose to make them yeah yes in
hillbilly like leather
yeah the whole thing everything have you
got anything
no no we don’t make them now and that
was
our heat in the 80s
yes we did so well because we used to
sell
at the market theater you know down in
christchurch
we’ll have kids coming from places like
pretoria
uh jimistin vogsberg coming to buy winky
pickles from
us man and they’re all handmade yeah
they are all handmade
that’s fine we did very very well yeah
very well so what’s your background
where are you from where were you
original
where i was born i was born in the east
in the east coast
eastern cape yeah
you know at the border of kosovo natal
and eastern cape
sat there at the border yeah israel was
born
but i left there when i was about 15
years old
why i came to germany because with your
family i wasn’t
no not with my family by myself when you
were 15.
yeah you could take a train
you know those trains which used to like
uh i cut a train from um
coxset and then the train
okay it did this um there was like you
know
those days the train will change you’ll
have to wait for the other one which is
coming from
gaben yeah yeah yeah yeah so we’re there
for something like
a few hours like four to five hours
waiting for the new train coming from
there then
yeah and then the train will take you
like two days
three days to be in jail back and then i
go
change your back and then did what and
then just thought that
a new life and then i just said come on
man i didn’t want to stay there because
most of the guys that
uh i used to go to school with
most of them they went to places like
betan you know pattan
where is like it’s no more like the
farm in devon
yes drinking potatoes and that i didn’t
want to do that
me i just stopped like i want to go to
this big city
because i had like two brothers which
were here in chile
but my intention was not going to them
just to come and create my own
you know your own your own life my own
life exactly
yeah and then
i was like up and down up and down until
i met this other dude by the name sisway
says he met lucky and lucky
[Music]
he introduced us introduce us to another
tweet by name
busy and then [ __ ] he knew
jack and then check a
new charlie and then
that’s why it’s just like
it turned we talked like outside like
we’re a kid that we didn’t have
like homes all of us because we are all
different types
so where did you stay when you got here
where were you you just arrived
with a bag yeah actually i was happy
that
i was i met this other guy
it happened that you speak the same
language i said tim listen man
i’m from eastern capital i don’t know
i don’t have a place to stay man he said
to me no you can come and luckily
this guy used to work what at night me
i’ll be sleeping at this
uh at this house at this house and then
during the day him he sleeps
no me i must make a move
yeah yeah yeah that’s what happened and
that’s where you
got street smart again exactly i had to
be streetwise
and what did it help me a lot how long
did it take you to get
you know to get get on your feet and
yeah man those days like i’ll say
it took like two to three years yeah it
wasn’t easy
yeah life wasn’t easy so how did you
become so how did you get into fashion
and into motorbikes fashion
getting to all these things from like
also
just like i think somebody was just
being motivated by this the fact that
this thing like
good people people looking cool in
jawbag and then now
thinking like oh what can i do
just myself because like as i said what
can i do that to be able to
put something here because i must
remember the music that
us we fell in love with we didn’t
get popular music that the people there
you like yeah
it was not like uh what you used to call
it public
music you know what is public yeah yeah
yeah yeah
something that is gonna be hit for a
week and
one two three people that forget about
it yeah yeah yeah so
that wasn’t your thing your ass we just
like to just music to play
yeah and that’s it we didn’t want to do
it for money
you know what i meant yeah yeah we did
it because we like
the rock from the heart
yeah yeah you know what i mean yeah so
that’s why we fell in love with music
and then this side uh we had our
very first shock features in pretoria
street
um no no no no no
the very first shop was in touring
street
yeah in bait so that one we call it
lmq blacky mike quiet
and these are all the guys from the
bands
from the band all your mates what
started the store together
yes yes yes because it just felt like
okay for us to be able to be seen
what we’re doing let’s put the
statement what we say
always love letters always always always
always always loved that why
it’s just that you must remember leather
in the 80s of luxury
yeah it was not like anybody that
could wear leather yeah and that is a
thing that put us into that
so let’s try something that is very
different winky pickles
winky pickles and leather belts yeah
with
that very punk
chains you know some
unbelts with studs yeah yeah yeah
and then that’s it and that was popular
then very
very popular because it was so different
yes because it was something different
yeah we just wanted
to to put the statement that they will
come
so did you say did you do it because he
loved it or did you do it
to be different we did it because we
love
it as well also that’s different as well
is involved
of course also we love that thing to be
different because we don’t wouldn’t like
to look like
each and every person that is walking on
the street yeah yeah
and so and so so what is the name of it
again
lucky mike l m quiet
lmq and where’s lucky where’s back in
mark today
lucky is in uh it’s called this uh tack
shop in
in new york yeah still is
and mike he’s got his shop here in
ranbir
is it yeah also fashion yeah sam
him is more with bikers now mike is
doing very well he goes to the bike
shows
are you into bikes um for sure look
man i had this terrible accident even
last year june
i was almost i nearly died eh
i was in como almost for five days
motorbike
yeah i was on my harley going home yeah
you know brown fontaine
yeah i was like turning there i think
somebody
just you know these people these days
they piss on the phone while they’re
driving they don’t look
because luckily the traffic light was
green for me
i was just standing left what the next
thing that i saw
i woke up in hospital how many days
later
as i said homer yeah like five days
no you couldn’t come i promise you man
you nearly died
i nearly died from a motorbike yeah from
the air motorbike accident this leg
was like broken twice man yeah i’ve got
a pin now from here
in your head yeah right now
as i’m talking to you
right now now it’s funny i never
because mike and i and lucky we all had
motorbikes
i’m talking about what 86 87 88
you are young we used to rate
race between the cars going you know
climb street
going down we were on the way we’re
going to the injections because we used
to chill there
like maybe it’s friday night or saturday
night
racing between the cars we never
experienced stuff like what they have
experienced
recently how long ago was your accident
this last this last year in june is it
yeah
a year ago yeah a year ago look at me
now i’m like at 55
years old well i was about
eighteen nineteen twenty years i never
had no fear
look now and then that thing is like
kind of traumatized me
so now you’re scared are you obviously
fearful of a bike
it’s just that you know what i’m not i
don’t i don’t fear it’s just that
the reckless people driving around
too reckless not respecting each other’s
freedom i mean you can drive as
carefully as you want
yeah but like somebody’s gonna come and
you’re right you know what i mean
they’re on their phone yes
exactly that’s why i said somebody’s on
the phone this side is driving
can you do that you can’t do something
like that know
and this person it was like a hit and
run somebody
said that it disappeared somebody was
driving past
actually stopped and called the
ambulance for me
and the person is gone the person that
says a lot luckily
also i didn’t see this person maybe if i
did see the person i would have been
dead
because from the job i think when you
see the car is coming to you
for showing me i was relaxed because the
traffic lights were green for me
i was relaxed but if you had seen him
you would have tensed up and then
let’s see maybe i would have been dead
maybe yeah
yeah maybe i it’s just it’s just that i
believe that god is there man yeah
god is there absolutely yeah also bruh
in this kind also luckily we still have
very good doctors we
take nothing away from that because what
happened
i didn’t have a medical aid i had to go
to like a
public hospital but the managed to
fix me this leg as i said was broken
twice
now i’m able to stand but
i won’t be the same because that time i
used to joke i used to train
yeah before my accident i used to do
something like 40 push-ups every night
before i have a bath
that also kind of helped because you are
because
you are healthy yeah yeah yeah i’m not i
don’t drink
alcohol ever never i never drink
did you used to and never alcohol
yeah i never dreamed that like that
who’s never
tried i know only but you know from the
pang movement you should take all this
[ __ ]
but in the 80s 90s for sure we had to
take
a acid and all this [ __ ]
ganja yeah all this
in the 80s yeah for sure but not alcohol
right no
no not me but alcohol makes you do silly
things no
and then just that i never like alcohol
makes people aggressive yeah exactly i
don’t like that i like something that’s
just going to calm me down
yeah i’m a calm person i’m very relaxed
you are
very chilly i don’t like something that
is going to drive me insane
what good is it to be insane
so tell me sir tell me about your shop
here in melville
um a shop in marvel okay how’s it going
uh and what’s it called it’s called okay
okay myself
um okay i’m gonna be in the corner
myself
i call myself second attitude second
attitude
yes but i’ve got two options
because i had a shop in pakistan
attitude
yeah i just closed it two years ago in
parker’s yeah in the main
in the main road in maine yeah by solid
crammer oh just during that time of mr
zuma’s era you remember yeah the
economic in this country just kind of
went to
down yeah yeah and then i had to close
the shop and
like start also leather yes i said to
close the shop and like
just start doing only markets um
and this dude
this great boy his name is josh
he knew each other since from when he
was about 50
yes he used to also go to the same job
where i used to go
this action why they used to play
cossack music
the place that i told you about yes yes
you knew each other since well that time
josh and i
josh is on his early 50s now i think
it’s 50 yeah
51. uh josh he said to me a quiet man
i found a shop in marvel in 7th street
and then would you like to bring some of
your latest stuff
in and just to make a beautiful vibe
and stuff like that because of course
simon and mary
you know simon i was simon and mary
say him he’s going to be setting finals
i said no that would be cool man
actually
i said to him before i go further
i said to him where are you getting this
shop he said to me
in corner seven and second i said to a
man
i’ve been there actually i wanted that
shop
of church mike and i my cousin
we stopped there there we stopped there
that uh
fmv we’ve stopped that side we crossed
the road we went to the tattoo shop we
asked the guys hey guys what’s happening
about this empty shop here
they said no the shop has been taken by
the guy
who’s involved with health kitchen
so there’s the guy took the shop that’s
how i lost it i was like maybe
a week behind josh and i started to
judge you very lucky
and the fact that i wanted that shop and
then i was a bit
too weak behind you that’s why you got a
show
yeah and then they said to me no it
means you are meant to be there
come here and then that was this is how
it started yeah
that’s how it started here small yards
it was about uh it was about four of us
that made it
a bit difficult but now maybe it’s gonna
be
myself it’s better because yeah but the
clicker can
you know do your thing yeah yeah what’s
the name of the shop
uh i want to call it a quiet resistance
quiet resistance yeah this is the same
shop here
yeah i want to call it quiet resistance
now it’s going to be a new name and you
sell leather
yes leather and uniform boots yeah and
uniform army
yes yes and handmade stuff you make
stuff yourself i know
and no i make only those bags now i
don’t do handmade stuff anymore now yeah
come on but the wallets and the bags and
the bags exactly that’s what i’m trying
to i want to do now
and that’s all that’s it yeah i want to
call it quiet
resistance and business now it’s tough
very tough for everybody man yeah
it’s not easy it’s been tough for
everybody and there’s nowhere you don’t
sell anything online
everything is here yes but actually you
know what
at the same time i said thank god the
fact that somebody’s been in there
and this playing clan for a long time
enough
because we have like people literally
just come for you especially
also that’s why i always say to to
anybody if you do a business make sure
that you don’t plan the bridges man make
sure that you
make people happy you know what i mean
yeah yeah yeah yeah you don’t mess up
things
so everything will go well because even
you’ve only got a certain amount of cash
exactly exactly
i didn’t bring any money with me man
cool oh yeah thanks well
at least now there are people that they
just came especially maybe for me
and then this dude kevin they come
specially for him
oh okay yeah that’s a g-building
relationship yeah but for sure
you have hey man you’re not the band
talk talk yes
life is where to make it do you know
that song yeah
yeah it means something love is what
you’re doing yeah you’re like connecting
the bridge
connecting yeah connecting the
relationship exactly everything
your life is in your hand yeah
if you mess up other people with other
people are going to mess up with you too
exactly
yeah exactly i love your story
i love you you’ve got such a cool story
have you so
so what are you into now what music are
you into now
now man it’s it’s funny now
even if i want television i get so bored
because i used to like that channel vhs
you know which channel is it not the
play that old school music
yeah but now this young souls today man
they all play the same [ __ ]
sounds the same yeah it sounds the same
it’s for me it’s
driving me crazy so you’ll still listen
to that like
come on for sure you must remember for
me
the artists of the 80s yeah the 90s
you are brilliant i love the nazis
now there’s too much money but [ __ ]
rubbish music that’s the way and have
you ever traveled
traveled the world for sure i’ve been
i’ve been to spain
the mother of my kids is from france man
she’s
she french yeah she’s french and where
is she now she’s right because she’s
from the south
but like no i think we got tired of each
other she went back to france
she was with me for 26 years 46 years
when you had your accident
she came no december to see me with my
daughter
i’ve got two daughters i’ve got mango
and jade yeah
now all my kids some they must be
meaning
my mango is 21 is in university in paris
and jade is with the mother in the south
of france
which is avenue after marseille
you’re proud that uh yeah for sure i
have to be proud man
they’re the future man is my key
exactly so when are you going to see
them again um i think i’m going to see
them this
december is it are they coming here
really they are they’re coming to
they’ll spend some time with me because
manga couldn’t come
in december have visa expired she
realized that during the time of
buying tickets that a visa inspired
yes inspired oh but jade and lorna
which with my ex-wife they were here
they came to see me
which was brilliant so spain you’ve been
in spain you’ve been in france i’ve been
to england
england yes i’ve been to italy milan
yeah
yeah would you ever live there or is are
you africa
i lived in england i lived in england i
didn’t like
the weather they’re also right but they
used to like this and they came downtown
oh yeah that’s the real thing it’s
happening it’s happening
it’s happening
but steve hey man this
home south africa we still have
the most beautiful country that’s why
guys you must defend it
okay from the corruption and all these
things
from the politicians because they know
me i always tell people
what i do i’m an artist i’m not a
politician
but i can tell you [ __ ] if you look like
you know you come with some
different stories because i know what is
right what is wrong of course
you know what i mean yeah you’ve got
experience
exactly street wise
show me some of those those photos of
when you were young oh
yeah i’ll show you
this one was my air i had the ltd
thousand this was my bike can you see it
that’s your bike yeah i’m gonna put it
just for the camera as you can see yeah
that’s you right yeah that’s me who’s
that who’s the other guy that’s mike
mike so mike is still in ramberg
involved with
with the bikers yeah who’s this
[Music]
the boys huh yeah
what are you doing with t-shirts you
spoke about t-shirts you sell t-shirts
i make t-shirts yeah i make this my
brand
i wanted to bring you one but i didn’t
know your size you didn’t respond yeah
the medium or small do you like a tight
fit or yes which i like them
too you’re not a hip-hop
[Laughter]
there’s nothing we can do say that again
this is me here
this is the mother of my kids that’s why
i say uh
can you see it oh good job i think it is
yeah
yeah look at you right yeah stylish
now this is the shop i had in can you
see that pakistan
you’re selling long coats and yes for
sure
yes is it a men’s like a men’s
advertiser yes yes
and this is okay now here this is me
in ireland
yeah this is me in idols i was in idols
i was yeah
i had there with the yappies yeah
have you got any pictures of your mohawk
[Music]
i’m just i think maybe at home i might
have
it yes yes but they used to like to wear
hats
he loved it oh this is what the during
the time of uh
afropunk what what
afropunk also now
what you must remember those days it was
like
um not easy to uh
this is me with dr martins
that’s the plan oh yeah 10 14 14 oh for
sure we were 14
all of us this is mike and gaby
this guy another guy just came in the
pool
all leather yeah for sure well you guys
are leather
yes for sure yeah yeah [ __ ] wall yes
yes
yeah model yeah yeah this is like you
know
this is this is when this is we were
young as you can see with the faces
here we are nike mike uh
quiet mike quiet and this is
quiet night you see yeah and then that’s
it permission
maybe you’re serious eh
that’s cool well this side
exactly from cape town yes
they were your friends yes yes yes mark
this is but now they’re all like this
other one i think
somewhere in switzerland oh what ian
this is ian i think he and this one he’s
been in switzerland for the last maybe
30 years now is it
yeah this one but this one now is here
he’s a producer
and i don’t know where is this one you
see this is mark
this one you used to play bass yeah this
is me
somewhere in the early 90s where is this
shot yeah
this was muscle like somewhere in bruma
bruma yeah broomer lake
exactly did you have a shop there as
well yes
yes yes man i used to go there a lot yes
yes
you go to the skate park there yes yes
yes it seems that it must have been the
90s when the
cowboy boots were in yeah the early 90s
yeah and that’s it that’s it
yeah yeah oh man i love it i love your
story so
so so i’m going to promote i’m going to
promote your store
okay on this that would be great that’ll
be cool get people to come here so
people know you’re open
exactly yes it is art
so this yes
what is the address here the address
okay there’s seven corner seven in
second corner
seven and seven seven and second yes
cool appreciate it appreciate your time
rock and roll you see mr baldwin have
you met him
this guy was my hero
remember somebody told me
and video do you know that yes which is
the most amazing woman
yeah so where do you where do you source
your product from um
like you know come on man because i’ve
been doing this
now they just call it’s about the
community
phone number they’re fun news yeah they
send you some pictures
i said i want that
[Laughter]
[Music]
i appreciate your time sure man and uh
i’ll send you a copy of this so you can
see it and listen but now
talk about this yeah it shows you that
all these musicians
as i was telling you about talk talk
like
what is what you make it in the jungle
but all those musicians
whatever they write about you always had
a meaning
it’s just a message always always unlike
this one
they’re gonna they found that
the sound the music it’s got no meaning
and like modern music is what you’re
saying exactly
this is you are having this faith come
on
you don’t know there’s no evidence
there’s no substance
that is the word
they can’t get nothing you can’t get no
you can’t learn nothing from
yeah you just listen to that boom boom
boom