Interviews \ Jesse Glover

DW Forum - Jim Kelly said in an interview that Bruce’s ability was under estimated. He said that he would have done very well in competition and that some people aren’t giving him the credit he really deserves because there reputations are on the line. I think he is talking about the World Karate champs at the time he was alive. What is your opinion on what Jim Kelly said and who do you think he was talking about?(Chuck Norris, Joe Lewis, Mike Stone, Bob Wall???)

Jesse Glover - I don't know who Kelly was talking about but I do know that Bruce would have never entered any event that had rules and judges. He had watched his brother lose a fencing match because of poor judging and it turned him against any kind of judging.

DW Forum - Did Bruce Lee ever talk about Thai Kick Boxing? What were his opinions on this martial art? What would he have done if he had to fight a Thai kick boxer? Did he think about incorporating any Thai kick boxing into JKD?

Jesse Glover - When I knew him he was aware of Thai boxing. He said that they had beat most of the gung Fu men who had travelled to Thailand to fight them. Later I think that he thought they were too restricted.

DW Forum - What was it like training with the best? Was he strict?Did he only teach fighting techniques or did he also teach forms?What was Bruce like as a sifu? Do you miss him?

Jesse Glover - Naturally I miss Bruce. I was quite sad when I heard of his death. Bruce wasn't that strict when I learned from him. Bruce taught forms and fighting techniques. Training with him was a blast.

DW Forum - Was a bruce lee a funny man? Did he have like good jokes? Did he never get upset about anything?

Jesse Glover - Bruce was a very funny man who liked to hear and tell jokes.

DW Forum - How long did you study with Lee? What were your first impressions of Lee? What made Lee nervous? Did you witness Lee in a street situation? What is the most valuable aspect you learnt from Lee?

Jesse Glover - I trained with Bruce over a five years period. I was impressed by Bruce because he could do what he said that he could do. What scared him was the possiblity of meeting a bigger version of himself. The best thing that I learned from Bruce was to do my own thing.

DW Forum - George tells me that Bruce was pretty good with guns, can you elaborate on this? Any funny moments or stories?

Jesse Glover - Bruce was a natural shot. Leroy Garcia and I took Bruce out shooting and right away he was hitting the center of targets fifty feet away. Leroy gave Bruce a gun for his birthday and he used to shoot at birds out of his window until I told him that shooting at anything in the city was against the law.

DW Forum - What was the most heart touching thing Bruce ever did for you?

Jesse Glover - The most touching thing that Bruce did for me was to introduce me as his assistant instructor during our demonstrations.

DW Forum - Can you please tell us anything about Bruce's temper, did you ever see him erupt and if so what happened?

Jesse Glover - Bruce had a very bad temper but funny things set him off, Stuff that everyone thought would set Bruce off didn't and other things sent him through the roof. In spite of this he could always refrain from physically attacking someone.

DW Forum - How much time did you spend training with Bruce & what did you think of him as a person and teacher? How many training session in total did you spend with Bruce Lee? It's been many years since Bruce Lee died. You must have seen many martial arts come/go and change. How do the current day martial arts today compare to the JKD that Bruce Lee taught. Have they progressed to a point where you would consider them better than what Bruce was teaching? Did Bruce ever ask you to be in one of his movies? What were you thoughts when you saw Bruce Lee on the Big Screen in the movie theaters? What do you consider the most important thing that Bruce taught you? Did you ever meet or talk with Jim Kelly (ETD)?

Jesse Glover - When I first met Bruce I trained with him several times a day for several months. At this time I ran around with Bruce and we trained whenever Bruce had the desire to train. Bruce was a good teacher when he wanted to be but he didn't like teaching, he would rather train. Bruce was likeable and funny. It was great to be around him. I haven't seen any JKD people who are better than Bruce. I have however seen one in Scotland who reminds me of the way that Bruce was when I first met him. Bruce never asked me to be in the movies. When I fisrt saw Bruce in the movies I thought Wow. I know that guy and he has made it.The best thing that I got from Bruce was a way to learn and a path to follow. I never met Jim Kelly.

DW Forum - I presume you were one of the witness during famous Wong Jack Man fight (which Bruce remembers while phone conversation with Dan Lee). Could you tell us about that fight? Were there any set rules, was Bruce angry about that man or was afraid he might loose? How it really looked like (what was Wong's style?).You see there are so many versions of that duel that it is easily to lost the right direction.

Jesse Glover - I wasn't at the fight but Bruce told me about it. Wong and some of his followes came to a place where Bruce was working out. The only people with him were Linda and James Lee. At first Bruce was concerned because there was only him and james against several people. Once that he learned that the fight would be between wong and him, his concern left him. After they squared off Bruce attacked. Wong turned and retreated and Bruce chased him. Wong was moving in the direction of Bruce's punches to the head so they weren't have much of an effect. Bruce said that he was running out of breath and that he knew if he didn't end it that he would run out of wind. At this point he made an all-out effort to close the gap. When he caught up with Wong he knocked or threw him to the floor and mounted his chest. He forced him to say that he had made a mistake. At this point Bruce let him up. While Bruce was alive noone challenged his account of the fight.

DW Forum - You as one of Bruce Lee's first students have been taught the basics of wing chun at the very beginning or Bruce taught you something else back in 1961-63?And my second question is: many wing chun people criticize jeet kune do and states that it is not a different style but just "poor edition" of wing chun gung fu (also because Bruce was exhibiting Chi Sao and one inch punch which in fact are WC stuff). I don't think so but my question is how could you defend JKD from that kind of judgement?

Jesse Glover - I am not a JKD guy so I can't really comment on JKD. I did learn Wing Chun and techniques from other styles. I call do Non-Classical Gung Fu. Back in the 60s I asked BNruce about teaching and he said okay as long as I didn't call it Wing Chun or Jun Fan. I see a lot of Wing Chun in JKD but it is not trying to follow Wing Chun. I don't think that most Wing Chun men understand where Bruce was taking his art. There are lots of people who do JKD but I haven't seen many who have the speed and the power to make it work. Bruce was all about speed and power. He was like a world class fencer who could close and fill any opening that he saw. It takes a long time and a lot of training to do this.

DW Forum - In the early sixties, when Bruce Lee and Ed and Skip and LeRoy were kids, did you guys regard him more as a teacher or as a group of guys hanging out? Or was it somewhere in between?

Jesse Glover - For most of the guys Bruce was a friend first and a gung fu teacher later. The lot of us ran around together.

DW Forum - Were you ever the victim of any of Bruce's practical jokes or saw him in action with them, if so can you please tell us what happened? Also is it true that Bruce had a phobia of water, possibly due to his sister Phoebe trying to drown him in revenge for another practical joke played on her? I think Bruce tried to drown Ruby Chows son in the bath once too.

Jesse Glover - I was never the butt of Bruce's practical jokes. I never saw Bruce's fear of water. He never told me that he was afraid of water. I don't know what he did to Ruby Chow's son.

DW Forum - Thanks for coming today and answering our questions Jesse.

Jesse Glover - No problem.