Adam Ramzi: Smart & sexy porn stud costars at The Nob Hill Theatre
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It is rare that a man in 21st-century modern gay pornography is able to balance Armani male model looks, physicality and unbridled sexuality, with a brain and degree to match. Adam Ramzi sets a standard for gay porn that is unrivaled and unabashed.
In his premiere series of performances at The Nob Hill Theatre, with his equally stunning performance partner, Kurtis Wolfe, The Nob Hill Theatre will reach a new high in both pornography and performance. The Bay Area Reporter caught up with him, immediately following him making homemade sambuca.
You've lived in San Francisco for several years, and you're finally performing at this legendary venue. How do you feel?
Well, I don't actually live in San Francisco any more, but I still consider it my home away from home. I'm very excited to come back for my first true Nob Hill experience.
How do you think you'll feel when you see your name on The Nob Hill Theatre's legendary marquee and watch yourself having sex on its screens?
I'll tell you when I see it!
What kind of performances are you looking to create with your partner, Kurt Wolfe?
I'm sure Kurtis and I will discuss when we get together that weekend how we're going to play our performance, but based on our past interaction, I can guarantee you there will be lots of chemistry. He has a very unique brand of magic that mixes very well with mine. We respond well to each other, and it feels very organic.
How often have you performed live sex shows, and what interests you about them?
This will be my first of its kind. Though I have an exhibitionist side, and am no stranger to the stage, I have never actually performed in a live sex show, so this will be an experience!
What kind of gear do you like to wear for dancing? Drop names!
Oh, I'm not picky. I prefer comfortable, though a little flare adds to the overall feeling. I wore a Rough Trade Gear harness recently that made me feel almost regal, and it definitely affected my moves.
What music genres, artists, really gets you going during live performances?
Anything with a steady mid-tempo beat, and an element of darkness, and it all just comes together. Very high BPMs, and run of the mill pop music, don't do much for me, so it feels like I'm going through the motions up there when these are what DJs play when I'm dancing. Of course, sometimes it depends on the party, too, and the vibe we are asked to help create.
Where are you from, and how did your upbringing impact how you've embraced your sexuality?
I grew up in suburban Los Angeles, in an Armenian American household. Sex was never something openly discussed, but access to pornography was not at all difficult. So that was helpful, of course.
What did you aspire to be when you grew up, and how has that evolved?
The performing arts have always been a passion, as a musician and an actor, and I thought for a long time I would channel that into a career in journalism. Things happen, things change, and while I was able to secure myself a job in entertainment to fund the ability to be a touring musician, things changed in my 30s and I went back to grad school to pursue a career in psychology. I still perform, but the psychology studies more than anything are what led me to porn.
What was the very first porn film you ever saw and how did it make you feel about your sexuality?
I can't recall specifics, but the Old Spice channel was a go-to for me as a young teenager. And I knew something was different about me, because I only lingered on the scenes in which men were involved. Girl-on-girl did nothing for me, and I could tell even then that that may have been for a reason.
I understand that you were first approached by Raging Stallion Studios for adult film work. How did that happen and what was your initial response to the offer?
A year into my graduate studies, I began taking much better care of my physical shape, so I decided to try that old website, DudesNude. Soon after, Chris Ward of Raging Stallion found my profile and decided to reach out.
What convinced you to 'take the plunge' into porn?
Sexuality was such an enormous part of my studies, and to be honest my life, in general. All of our lives, I think. It informed nearly every piece of what I was uncovering in my studies. So the timing was just right. The offer came, and the more I thought about it, the more it felt like something I needed to do just to complete this journey into my psyche. It came from a desire to explore deeper, and to heal.
How do you create chemistry with scene partners, especially when it doesn't occur naturally?
To be honest, this happens to many varying degrees, so it really just depends. I usually try to establish some kind of camaraderie with a scene partner, if the attraction is not there. If there really is nothing between us, I almost treat them like they aren't there. I find these certain go-to memories, and they take me to that place of personal arousal. The rest of it is just acting for the camera. It's not the ideal situation, but it happens, and I try and make the best of it.
If you could relive one porn shoot over again, which would it be, and why?
This is tough, because I've had some really good days with some really great people, so I'm going to answer it this way. My favorite scenes are the ones that end with the scene partner, director and I having shared an unforgettable experience. Each scene carries its own set of circumstances -location, crew, director, chemistry between scene partners, and many other stories and details that consumers could never know about- and I don't think I could ever relive just one scene. Though I will say, I do wish I could experience making love to Tommy Defendi again. That story might be the closest one to needing a repeat.
If you could work with only one porn producer or director, who would they be, and why?
Each brings their own unique voice and environment to the creation of good porn, I would never choose just one.
What's the most important lesson that you've learned from scene partners, directors and the industry, in general?
Be nice, always, but also be confident and know your worth. This combination makes everything better.
You've worked with some really amazing scene partners! Who are your next fantasy partners?
I'll answer with a local favorite - I have no idea how the universe has allowed me to be in the industry this long without having shared a scene with Jessie Colter. We even lived in the same city for three years, and only came close once. And it was my fault, for some reason I had to back out of a shoot and we never got paired up again. Silly me.
Who are your fantasy celebrity scene partners?
Like... non-porn celebrities? I want to make out with Nyle DiMarco and make him laugh. My answer might be different tomorrow.
What's your view of porn star escorts, and have you ever considered joining their ranks?
Oh, it happens now and again. I am not against it at all. Sex work is respectable and intriguing to me.
You've performed at The Powerhouse's legendary weekly Bulge parties for some time. Tell my readers why they should attend.
I'm not sure if Bulge the party exists today as it did when I was a regular part of it, but I will say that dancing at Powerhouse was always something I enjoyed and looked forward to doing. The vibe there is one I've always enjoyed. Just the right combination of seedy and social, and somehow the music there is amazing more often than not. The best local DJs spin there, and I feel like a million bucks on that box.
How important are the friendships, etc., that have you created in the business to your overall approach to life, business, sexuality, etc.?
The most important thing to me is community. As queer people, the families we choose are sometimes more important than blood relatives, and a lot of this is borne of our shared experiences. Members of the gay porn industry have a very unique understanding of a rather large component of our community's collective sexual experience, and some of the connections I've made here are very important to me. I can't say that about everyone I've met in this industry, as it does also create some huge egos. But it's just so nice to talk shop with someone you care about who's been through the same kind of thing you have sometimes.
What's most surprised you about the kinds of men who become porn actors?
I love the smarties. Give me a porn star with a brain and a sense of humor, and it usually ends up overshadowing their sex appeal. But the combination doesn't hurt, of course.
What do you want aspiring porn actors to know about the business?
I had a conversation recently with a newcomer who ended up in a Twitter war with a troll who was very vocal about how "disgusting" he found him. This is like a rite of passage, and everyone has to learn it. Do not engage trolls. It will only upset you, and when you engage, you fuel their fire. Ain't nobody got time for that.
How do you feel about being a part of the current wave of educated men over 30 entering the gay porn field, and what do you think is your contribution to it?
I feel great about it! And I don't know that my contribution will be a great one, but I certainly hope to be remembered as someone who sustained a career in this industry with confidence while remaining kind, vulnerable, and humble. And I want to write about my experience for years to come, to share every facet of making porn from a psychological perspective.
You have a Ph.D. in psychology, with an emphasis on the LGBTQ community. Please share with my readers the aspects of the community that you see your work addressing.
Unfortunately, I have not begun the process of pursuing a Ph.D. yet, but I do have the masters and am on track toward an MFT license. The recurring theme with my clients tends to be shame-based. We have a lot of shame in our community, and it affects how we connect with others, how we feel about sex, and how we self-actualize.
Are you currently practicing? If so, where?
I'm currently practicing in the Larchmont Village neighborhood in Los Angeles, under the supervision of LMFT Mark Friedes. He's super capable and very sex-positive, and I'm so lucky to have his guidance.
What issues/concerns do gay men most often present to you in your practice?
Without getting into too many specifics, it's almost always relational stuff. Clients and fellas who write in to my sex and love advice column (on gay lifestyle blog, Where Gentlemen Go) almost always are exploring alternative relationship styles, and are looking for ways to feel better about wanting to experience connection outside of the normative relationship model. I feel very fortunate to be an advocate for such exploration.
What do you want the LGBTQ community to understand about seeking psychological help?
That we are here to help! It can only help, even if you attend a single session. There is no need to feel ashamed of wanting to look deeper. Even the uncomfortable stuff is good for the soul. Through discomfort comes growth.
How does your practice address the sex-shaming that is so prevalent among gay men, including bi/G4P-phobia and bottom stigma?
Every case is unique to the person presenting it. I can direct you to a few links in which I've been able to write about this stuff online, but I'd rather keep client issues private.
Socially, what do you see gay men getting right and wrong with each other?
I think social media interaction has steered some of the ways we connect within the community off-course. Maybe that's not a gay thing, maybe it's just the time we are living in, but it's bled into our community and how we address issues that affect us. The people who are aware of it do a pretty good job of being kind and inclusive to all LGBTQ folk in real-time social interactions, but there's still a long way to go for most.
Where do you see gay male social activity going in the 21st Century?
I suppose it depends if we're able to nip some of the negative social stuff I just mentioned in the bud or not! I hope to see more fluidity in gay men, in terms of sexuality and gender expression, and not to let politics get too much in the way of our ability to have a good time together. I think that gay men have been pioneers in so many ways for, I don't know, forever! I'd hate to see that come to a halt during such an important time.
What's your take on the current presidential administration's anti-LGBTQ policies?
Everything is a mess. For the moment, my plan is to stay out of it, pay attention when it matters, share any information I think is vital, vote when I can and, in the meantime, take care of myself and my loved ones, until this whole ass-ache blows over.
What's your take on the gay porn actors who publicly support Trump (Colby Keller, Sergeant Miles)?
Sergeant Miles is very sexy, but in the brief interaction I've had with him, as well as what I've seen of his twitter activity, I've noticed a lot of kind of obvious language and behavior. You can't really reason with someone whose political stance is, 'This is how I feel, and nothing you say can change my mind!' Again, the whole social media thing has turned political discourse in this country into people just fighting for the last word.
As for Colby Keller, his position was a little different. It was misguided, to be sure, but it wasn't outright support of Trump. It was the more Sarandonian (yes, I made that up) position that he'd rather see a major shake-up in the system than follow the damaging status quo.
And, again, I do think it was misguided and was missing some political nuances, but, also it makes me wonder sometimes. If Hillary was elected outright, there's every chance that we'd just have more apathy among young people. Right now, young people are outraged. And they should be. And I've seen more people my age running for Congress in this country than, I don't know... ever? Our generation is waking up. And that's the weird silver lining coming out of this mess. I just hope the damage being done isn't irreparable. Because it is certainly scary.
Returning to your personal life, what does a man have to do or be to get your romantic attention/consider him LTR material, if you're even interested?
I will admit, this is a bit of a soft spot at the moment, as I am currently transitioning out of something long-term. So it's kind of hard to say. I'd like to say that emotional maturity is something I look for in a man, but that's kind of bullshit, because I tend to be attracted to man-children. I love charm. I love sparks of youthful, playful energy. But oftentimes, that does not result in long-term success. If I could find someone who blends those two dichotomies, and is competently polyamory-minded, then I'd be open to seeing where that goes.
How do you seduce a man? How do you like to be seduced?
For me, charm and wit go a really long way. If I toss a line and they swing back, we're off to a good start, and vice versa.
Your still photography modeling is just as beautiful as your porn work. Have you ever considered fashion work?
Not actively, but I am certainly open to it. I like to put myself out there as someone who is available for all kinds of creative endeavors. I never don't enjoy being in front of a camera, so if anyone is interested, hit me up.
When The Nob Hill Theatre's curtains open, its spotlight caresses your physique and its sound system begins to pump an amazing beat, what will occupy your thoughts, as you give your fans an amazing show?
I'll be nervous, at first. But then I'll look around and remember the history of this space. I'll look at Kurtis, and I already know he will feed me confidence with just a glance, and then I will say, "Let's do this," and we will make some Nob Hill Magic.
Adam, thanks for agreeing to this interview. I wish you all the best for a successful run!
Thanks so much!
Adam Ramzi performs with Kurtis Wolfe at The Nob Hill Theatre. Thursday, April 19 is Circle Jerk, the interactive downstairs fun ($15, 9pm). April 20 & 21 are 8pm (Kurtis solo) & 10pm (Adam and Kurtis) shows. $25. 729 Bush St. http://thenobhilltheatre.com/
Where Gentlemen Go column: http://wheregentlemengo.com/category/goforit/play-gentle-with-aram-giragos/
Cornelius Washington's Erotic Photography: https://www.cuirphoto.com