Sapientia with Trance Blackman

James Blonde - An Artful Life; Family, Careers, The Police, Punk Rock Philosophy

March 18, 2023 Season 1 Episode 2
Sapientia with Trance Blackman
James Blonde - An Artful Life; Family, Careers, The Police, Punk Rock Philosophy
Sapientia with Trance Blackman
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Show Notes

For today's episode, I am joined by my good friend James Blonde.

James has a led a fascinating and full life, never backing away from challenges and taking crazy risks. Even after breaking his back, an injury that would permanently sideline most people, he persevered, overcame, and continues to push himself to stay active, creative, and making some noise. We touched on everything from his childhood in England, to coming back time and again to Canada, and eventually moving here permanently to build a new life while rebuilding his body. Family, careers, martial arts, working security on tour with The Police in the early '80s, practically inventing reality TV in the UK, his early career in fashion and photography, and how all of his challenges continue to shape and inform his journey.

(01:13) Part 1
Growing up in the England
A ballerina meets a serviceman in Paris
Dad becomes an artist for life
Out-earning dad at 12 years old
Taking up martial arts, tai chi and karate
Learning discipline and self-control
Training for Olympics, 1980 boycott
Working as a bouncer at 17
Became an arborist
Meeting his first wife
Moved in and embraced the whole family as his own
Being mistaken for celebs all the time
The Ramones, The Clash, early punk rockers
First band – Wireless
Getting hired as security for The Police
Internal battles of the band
Being on tour with the biggest band in the world
Never smoked or did any drugs
Back to Montreal with The Police
The Ghost in The Machine
Logistics of protecting the talent on tour
October 1987 hurricane in England
The science of being an arborist
Getting trapped up a tree in the storm
Ground beef
Fixing up old Land Rovers
Lucrative license plates
4x4 adventures
Mother's battle with cancer
Operating a ski hill
Ski trips around the world
Back to England to change directions...

(59:47) Part 2
Living in the home of King Leopold II
Climb up a hill, come down with a mission
Be alone in nature, find your purpose
Off-road adventure challenge
Hitting up sponsors, entering the business world
Learning to think big
Speaking to OPEC, a crash course
Starting a 4x4 school
Mapping out the challenge course
Inventing the 4x4 train tow system
All-wheel-drive club
Satellite TV sales
Catching a crook
Back up a hill...
Parapont, parasailing
Getting into real police work
Training your mind to let things go
Moving into Special Investigations Branch
Youngest commander, perfect conviction record
Using your brains and your brawn
Breaking his back; two disks blown
Can't work, chronic pain, move to Whistler

(2:06:31) Part 3
Setting up a photography studio
Being of service to society being in SIB
Prison programs for car thieves
Up a tree for a week-long stakeout
Advanced training in SIB/SAS
Model agency and commercial photography
Moving into video and television
Getting creative in marketing campaigns
Moving to Canada
Working with German national lottery
$1000 cigars

(2:31:57) Part 4
Divorced, settling in to a new life
Dystrophy in the legs, intense pain
Multiple doctors, many pain meds
Staying active even with pain
Recovery after back surgery
Keeping your head while in constant pain
Nobody is going to do it for you

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