Chukwuemeka Alams most people call me MECCA or Chukwu.
2.Where are you from/ Where do you currently live?:
I was born in the Midwest and raised all over but Seattle (Northgate don’t
hate!) is where I currently rest my head though Abidjan is home… That’s
where my heart is.
3. Where did/do you go to school and your major?:
Well I started taking college classes while still in high school. After I
graduated school I went to one of the local community colleges for a
quarter just kind of taking random classes. But my heart wasn’t so I
decided to make a change and move to Africa, Where I had my true
4. What is your Grind?:
I run the clothing label 21MC and until
very recently a design firm called visual koncepts. At visual koncepts we
designed for panic at the disco, gym class heroes, coldplay and a million
other artist and record labels. In 21MC I design, ship and handle the day
to day business. Which is great but it’s a means to an end. There are more
important things that need to happen in this world then running a clothing
company. Helping our friends and families in Africa through education and
training is the most important thing I feel like I can do in my life right
5. How did you get into what your doing now?:
I was living in Ghana for most of 2006 and while I was there I was just
really inspired by the colors and textiles of the country. Those colors
and fabrics really added to the quality of life over there. And I wanted
to bring that same feeling home with me. So when I returned to the states
I started my label called Power fuzz which soon after evolved into 21MC.
6. When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?:
I always wanted to be in the creative field. I dreamed of being a world
class painter or chef somewhere. I feel like those are 2 things I could
passionately do forever! Even now I still love to paint and draw. I find
it helps me unwind and chill out. The same with cooking it’s a real
passion of mine and I try and share that passion with as many people I can
or at least whoever will eat my experimental dishes. Lol
7. What are some contributing factors that shaped the life you live now?:
My mom, my brother, my sisters, my faith, my friends and Africa have all
chipped in to make me the person I am today for better or worse. As it
pertains to my hustle my mom worked 3 jobs to provide for 4 kids. My
brother was one of the top college basketball players in the country,
something he worked at everyday since he was six. My time living in Africa
I feel like has proven to me that anything is possible with a little hard
work…..Maybe a little blood and a few tears as well. You can never tell
an African that something is impossible his will power won’t accept that.
We have always fought for what we have and continue to fight for more.
8. Any specific people that mentored or helped guide you to your current path?:
My man Steve in Ivory Coast! The whitest African you will ever see! He
changed my life by taking me to Africa the first time. Steve along with my
friends and family in West Africa helped me put life in its proper
perspective. They showed me life is short so while you can seek knowledge,
seek truth and display love to others. I believe from that you will gain
freedom from whatever oppresses you and ultimately happiness. I couldn’t
imagine what my life would be like if I hadn’t gone.
9. What motivates you?:
A need to contribute and add something positive to the world around me, the refusal to go broke
10. Your favorite author and why?:
Anthony Bourdain, (if he counts) he’s just one of the realest dudes ever!
He has such a great out look on life and he’s learned how to be content
with the simple life which is hard to do for many people.
11. What are 3 goals you want to achieve within the next year?:
Make the voice in my head SHUT UP and stop talking! Lol, Ummm……find a
place where I’m somewhat happy and at peace, make 21MC the hottest line
out and to go BACK TO AFRICA FOR GOOD!
12. One person that continuously inspires you and why?:
There are so many people and things that inspire me but if I had to choose
one person it would be my mom. She has gone through a lot and continues to
be an amazingly generous and kind person.
13. 3 Indie brands you LOVE to rock?:
I really don’t rock any indie brands but 21MC. I’ve never been into this
whole indie street wear look. Plus I’m 6’3 275 pounds ( think shrek) so I
imagine I would look pretty foolish in tight jeans rocking size 15
creative recs. But 3 brands that I like are cassette playa, rockers nyc
14. What annoys you the most?:
Wasting time, fakes, jakes, fiends and the slums.
15.Your best quality?:I’m trying to be good to everyone around me. Patience