We had the good fortune of connecting with Cleve Willis and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Cleve, what do you want people to remember about you?
What do you want your legacy to be? What do you want people to remember about you? Someone who tried to be less wrong daily. Perhaps some for the music I did over the years , as a newer actor, co-owner of Still Hot Yoga (SHY) and also a person who stayed sober and might have helped a few folks along the way , like those who always helped me.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Please tell us more about your career. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story? After music ended that first time I spent a lot of time going to more and more Bikram yoga classes , to get away from the social media away from the illusion of “cool” and I found more peace than I had had. The next logical step to go to teacher training. Letting go of my music identity, was and still is not easy And instead being a guy who now gets to co-own the studio with Ahoo Sarab and who gets to still play and record music and gets to be an actor every now and then. Know that I know the brand of the studio I care about my amazing teachers and the incredible community that makes the studio, and I continue to be teachable, I do not believe in guru instead we just do what we do , no bells no whistles. We as a studio are not fancy AND you get the an authentic practice by authentic teachers.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to? Yikes, pre covid. I live near downtown Decatur I would prob go eat at one of the local spots of course. Sushi, Indian , Thai, or perhaps Leons or victory. I miss Java Monkey terribly. Local coffee, dancing goats , or Banjo coffee. I would show them some areas , by driving through east Atl, stopping by Smiths Olde Bar nostalgic to me. Hope to have a gathering of a few friends for a dinner somewhere. The Truth is I laugh at this, I have become boring I would tell them honestly to call another mutual friend to take them out after the dinner , I would dip on back home, so they could have a great time out , which I do not do much of anymore. . My friends who know me will get a smile out that statement.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Alright, so let’s jump right in! The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there a person, group, organization, book, etc that you want to dedicate your shoutout to? Who else deserves a little credit and recognition in your story? wow.. great question and so many people. The Namedrop section years ago I would have fed on “namedrop” now I am simply proud and thankful for the folks in my life that have helped me grow. Eric Jennings, former owner of Still Hot Yoga , Rebecca Rumpf & Rebecca Emmalee Causey Bikram Yoga teachers. Music: former bandmates in Rockets to Ruin whom we worked so hard to do what we did and develop relations in that world and that a couple of us still have. Rachel Bolan who helped get us out there , produced our first full length record & (managed us), sorry man, he put us on the road, Mark Willis & Nicole Jurovics in my younger troubled times helped with music and getting my life more on track. Nicole with yoga also. Lee & Chris Banks Stone Vessel music we did (Ashley Rivera ) AND currently the music I do with, first off, A close friend and who happens to be a great writer Tuk Smith of Tuk Smith and the Restless Hearts, who has given me the gift of writing with & producing music I couldn’t be more proud of in a project called Ghost Of You with Danny Silvestri ghostofyouatl or ghostofyouofficial links in article. Jesse Owen Astin for doing new acoustic stuff. And Acting , Stewart Talent for keeping me signed. Thank you Christy Clark I have had the privilege of being a part of this agency.
Other: https://clevewillis.wixsite.com/clevewillis https://open.spotify.com/album/3nZUoigXyyXhmYQ4r6CzSH?si=Wt9BknZnQce0Ed1-zwmQcw
photo by Gissette Valentin