Interview by: Thomas Bradley
Photography by: Tabatha McGurr/MTTM
Tabatha McGurr, more affectionately known as "Tab", is the young voice of market-leading women's streetwear brand, Married to the Mob. She has quickly established herself as one of the most vibrantly honest personalities within the community. With a family heritage so heavily laden with creative tendencies, Tabatha ceases to disappoint as she demonstrates her deftness with the written word almost daily on her internet platform, www.marriedtothemobnyc.com. In this interview Tab discusses what its been like growing up in such an artistically rich family, where she figures into the MTTM equation, the current state of N.Y.C. and there's even mention of her dog, Coco...
Describe what its been like growing up with parents who are as creative and intelligent as the two you've got?
Well it's certainly not the kind of thing you describe like an outfit. I can go ahead and say that its "awesome" and they "opened my eyes to all sorts of cool shit" but that's boring and obvious. The fact that they are both from very different backgrounds is a really important factor in explaining how I was raised. One half of me is an empowered French woman, and the other is a peculiar and very intelligent New Yorker. They weren't and aren't the kind of parents that sugar coat everything. Not like those moms you see in the subway going "You see that man Billy? That's a homeless person, don't talk to him." There's a video of us in '94 (I was born in '90) or something, where a woman is asking me what my favorite movie is, and I can't remember the title but I named the characters, "Alex, Georgie, Pete, and Dim".
Complete interview and photos after the jump...
Is there any pressure to succeed in the arts or in any venue since they've become so prolific?
Not at all. I'm not a painter, I'm a writer. It's a whole different kind of art.
Describe your household and your relationship with your brother.
My folks have been separated for a few years now, and my brother Timothy lives in TriBeCa, so it's just my Mom, my dog Coco, and myself. Before we grew up and went our separate ways though, we were pretty normal. Family vacations, dinner time in the living room, hockey practice. I'm sure when people think of the McGurrs they imagine the opposite of what's considered normal family values, and while we're no Huxtables we're really not that different. However, it was pretty impossible trying to explain to my friends all throughout elementary school and junior high what that odd leafy smell was that was soaked up every inch of the house. Back to Timmy, I really love him, now more then ever. When we lived together we were so typical, fighting over stupid shit, him hitting me and me calling my mom. I'd always want to hang with him and his friends since he's older and he'd have me do shit like lick plates of Tabasco sauce for entry, then deny me. Now we're homies, he's the best. But he's always fucking late!
Thus far, you've been expressing yourself via: the written word. Do you foresee a move to any other media or do you think you have found your artistic niche so to speak?
Writing is it for me. It's amazing to be able to draw a really nice picture, but if you can do the same thing with words in somebody's mind, then you've got skills. It's the simplest thing you could do, yet it's really hard.
What has Married to the Mob meant to you ?
A job! Kidding. Leah and I met at the Spring Street block party, before MTTM really made a name for itself. I thought she was the coolest because I'd been spending my youth with all these dudes downtown, and there weren't really any girls around. She dressed really dope and had doorknockers on and was drinking wine...it sounds so corny but when you're a 13 year-old kid, that's exactly the kind of individual that appeals to you. She was super nice to me when I'd see her at parties and shit like that, and eventually I started hanging at her place where she introduced me to her little sister, Sarah. Sarah and I became best friends and then I basically became the third sister. When the company got a website and began really making a name for itself, Leah asked me if I wanted to write for her. I was 15 and so fucking excited to finally be able to talk all this shit where people could hear me, and a lot of heads liked it. So many amazing things sprouted from that first summer meeting on the block, and it's been so much fun being a part of this phenomenon MTTM has become. I love you Leah!
Describe the role you play in the crew.
I am basically the blogger in charge. 5 days a week I try and make sure there's something up there, whether that means showing off new product or just giving my opinion on some current event. I also answer all mail and requests sent to our myspace, and believe me, that shit takes a minute. Aside from that, my role in the "crew' is of the mischievous little smart ass, I suppose. When I was like 15 I was quite the party animal. I was out every other night getting into shit and starting trouble. People would come up and talk to me and when they'd find out how young I was they'd just bug out. At the time, it all felt really good. I manipulated and lied and snuck around and was just bad. Now when people tell me they're throwing parties I get tired. First off, New York aint the same, parties suck now, people suck. It was fun then because it was new, and everyone I knew was partying together, but I don't know none of these losers on the scene now. I'd much rather be on my couch watching the office with my puppy. Anyway, drifting! Did I mention I have A.D.D.? Now that the beast has been tamed I'd say I just bring an aspect of real New York City youth to the crew. I know whats goin' on in H.S, new slang and all that jazz. "If you see the Police Warn a Brother".
How do you think M.O.B. will change over the next year?
I honestly have no idea, except for the fact that it'll continue to grow. The way things are going now, picking up speed with every line, it's obvious that Married to the Mob is getting bigger. Anything with a following like this is bound to move forward.
What brands/people have been of interest to you lately? Why?
Shout out to Nike bubble coats in faded autumn colors and baby blue cortez, as well as Timb. constructs. I'm a fan of generic shit, like those "New York" embroidered hoodies you see on Canal. La Perla lingerie, PORTER bags. Crux and San-X stickers. I like the simple things in life.
What do you think about this "streetwear" community?
I've talked about it a lot, I'm actually starting to get sick of recycling my thoughts, but it has to be said. Remember that golden time when NY wasn't all chain stores and Starbucks and kids were broke and you met your friends in the park and came up with something fun to do from there? The boys were in white tee's or skate freebies and chucks and wore bucket hats?! Man, that was fucking street wear. The Japanese stole it and stupid fucking American teenagers stole it back and now I see these dumb ass kids walking up and down Broadway (who are from the streets, mind you) paying out the ass for exactly what they stand for. "Street" isn't about lookin' cool, and fresh, or whatever. It's not a contest. You don't look "down', you look more like Tucan Sam or an alien spaceship. It's just about being a kid from the city who's gotta be comfy enough to face any fun that comes his/her way. And what's with all the brands copying each other? Keep it simple, keep it sick.
What might we expect from you in the near future?(the site, a book, magazine article, music video!!!???)
I'm graduating high school in April! I will make perfect cinnamon rolls from scratch. Re-visit Brazil and move to Hong Kong. Maybe I'll start a book, although I'm a big procrastinator. I'm going to get my dogs head tattooed on me (I'm not trying to be funny). I'd love to contribute to some magazines again, so all you editors, holler at me.