Interview: Shyla Stylez
Gene Ross from www.adultfyi.com writes: I'm telling Shyla Stylez, former JKP girl, now with LA Direct, that her former photos didn't do her justice. Stylez is drop dead, breath taking. And, of course, you know we had to ask her about her marriage to JKP head Bob Friedland. I ran into Stylez on a Defiance set and Skeeter was going to shoot a scene with her and Ben English. Stylez had never worked for Skeeter before.
"I've definitely heard of his name and I've been aware of him," she said. "Honestly I haven't heard anything about him. I just heard his name and I asked somebody the other day, who is Skeeter. He's a gentleman. He's a good host. He's very welcoming. He's nice to be around. He kind of puts your mind at ease and makes you feel comfortable."
Stylez just recently returned to the adult business.
"There were a couple of scenes I shot previously but I was kind of iffy on what moves I wanted to make with it," she says. "I've been with Derek a few weeks and it's been going really good. I'm very happy with them." The first time she met Derek, Stylez was hosting a BTS of a Playgirl shoot.
"I can't remember exactly but they were looking for something like the next Playgirl model for the magazine," Stylez recalls. "I was interviewing all the guys and I met him on that shoot. He was very quiet and kept to himself. He was polite and I've only seen him recently. He's a good guy. He's got a good business aspect on things and has done very well for himself. I think it's admirable when somebody is able to branch out in other ways within this business and find other ways to make money and what not."
Stylez' decision to get back in the business was based on the fact that she felt she wasn't done doing what she needed to do.
"I had two years to get away and think about things- what I wanted to do with my life," she goes on to say. "I realized that I had certain goals that haven't been fulfilled. I wanted to be able to take something from it to further the rest of my life." It didn't seem like Stylez was gone that long and I asked her what she was during in the interim.
"Laying low to be honest with you," she laughs. "I was in Chicago with my boyfriend. I'm in a relationship and completely away from everything." Upon reflection of her time at JKP, Stylez says she doesn't have anything bad to say about it.
"I was treated well- I worked a lot; but I enjoyed my job and I didn't have a problem with it at the time," she says. "I like to work. Motivation keeps me going. Working and furthering my career is something I believe in." Stylez was with JKP maybe less than a year. She first got into the business when she met Erik Everhard.
"We crossed paths- I really wanted to get into the business," she notes. "I was living in Vancouver and just doing pictures and things like that, trying to find my way to do films. Now here I am. I guess it was meant to be." At the time she was in Vancouver, Stylez was also dancing at a club where she was a house girl. She also had the opportunity of dancing in Japan when the girlfriend of a good friend of hers had done well there.
"It sounded like a good opportunity, really," says Stylez. "It was something I was interested in trying. I figured why not- try it and see how it goes. I think I went about it in the safest manner I could. I was fine.
"But I didn't make it that long," she adds. "Unfortunately people aren't very upfront with things. But I never had a problem with the typical things that you hear about them taking your passport or anything like that."
"Or putting you into white slavery," I suggest.
"There was none of that going on," Stylez maintains. "But it was kind of shady and what they failed to tell me was that in order to keep my dancing job, I was supposed to go out on three dinner dates a month and bring the client back. I was supposed to get business cards from clients in the club and contact them and e-mail them and try to get them back. I just really wasn't used to any of that. I felt very unsafe about the whole thing."
"And I was also doing small things for the Internet," she adds. "And I was a Hooters girl for awhile, too!" According to Stylez, when she first met Everhard, he was contracted to Anabolic.
"And that was the majority of my work when I first came into the business. I really didn't work for anybody else. They kind of took me under their wing and I dove into the deep end, swimming my way to the shallow area." According to Stylez, someone put her in contact with JKP to work for them.
"I did a couple of films for them and they took me aside and offered me a contract," she said. "I thought about it and we talked about it a couple of times. And it seemed like a good thing to do."
Stylez grew up in a very small town and knew even at the age of 17 that she wanted to do something in the adult business. About a year after she left school, Stylez moved to Vancouver. In school she always had a boyfriend who was the older guy out of school, she says.
"I guess I was the hot girl that all the little boys wanted to date but couldn't have because my boyfriend was older!" she laughs. "I always did good in school and was very much the little social light." Asked if there was any specific reason why she gravitated to older guys, Stylez thinks that's just the way it went, nothing intended.
She dated one guy for 3 1/2 years but says it didn't work out.
"I ended up moving and there was distance between us for awhile- and it just wasn't the same when I move back," she reflects. "He had moved on to something else, didn't tell me and I kind of made a mistake myself. So the relationship ended." Stylez is very close with her mother.
"My mother is everything to me," says Stylez. "She's supportive of me. She obviously would have liked for me to choose something else for my living but she understands. I talk to her a lot and she understands that this is something that I take pretty seriously. She knows that I'm going to move on to do what I want to do with the rest of my life. This does not define who I am as a person. And she believes in me." Only her mother's first reaction upon learning that Stylez went into porn was to cry.
"She cried- she said she couldn't talk to me any more on the phone that night," Stylez recalls. "But she called me the next day and it was like nothing had ever happened and we've been fine since." Stylez says she resembles her mother to a T.
"I'm my mother's girl," she says. At the same time, Stylez will tell you that she chose to let the relationship with her father go.
"It was better for me," she says. "My parents split up when I was five. My father moved across the country so I only got to see him every summer growing up. I was always daddy's little girl, but I don't know what happened exactly. We just grew apart and it became a very unhealthy relationship for me growing up."
Stylez and Bob Friedland at JKP eventually got married.
"We had met a few times to discuss the contract," says Stylez. "We ended up enjoying each other's company very much. And he proposed marriage to me eventually. He was my best friend. I still love him. I will always have love for him. As bad as things can be sometimes, I choose not to look at those things. That was someone that influenced my life."
"Obviously you took a lot of criticism over that marriage," I point out
"I did," she admits. "It was very hard. It was hard going in public. You get looks but I get looks no matter what. Then you add that other factor to it. People want to assume what they want to assume and I was always fine with that. I think it bothered me a lot and sometimes it really bothered him. But we know where we were and whenever we'd be out, we were in our own little world. We enjoyed each other's company and we would talk and talk for hours. I had the most beautiful dinners with him. We'd just get lost with each other and nothing really mattered around us. I really didn't care what people thought. It was kind of shame on them but they can't understand that there was something between us."
But the love train derailed and Stylez feels that things, for one thing, happened too quickly.
"I don't think I gave it enough time before I jumped into the relationship," she says. "Everything moved very quickly- the contract and then the marriage. I think that I got overwhelmed and I don't think I gave myself enough time to really consider things and eventually I discovered that this wasn't somewhere I wanted to be any more. As much as I loved him, I wasn't in love with him any more."
"This business can be very ugly when it comes to relationships- did you from the get-go have someone trying to break you up?"
"It had nothing to do with anybody's influence," Stylez replies to that. "It was just the simple fact that I took a step back one day. It's almost like I didn't recognize myself in the mirror any more. It was almost I had turned into a different person and I really needed to step back. And after considering it and thinking about things, I was in a different time of my life. I was 19 years old when I met him. I was 20 when we got married and you mature. Your mind sometimes looks at things differently. There's nothing you can do about that. It's in any relationship. In any relationship you either grow together or you grow apart. Unfortunately I was still growing and maturing into a woman when he met me. From maturing into a woman, I just wasn't there any more. It had nothing really to do with anything. It was where I was at the time and I just didn't feel it was what I wanted in my life."
"You truly, honestly feel like you were in love with him?"
"I know I was in love with him," she states. The marriage lasted under a year, and by the time JKP had folded, and Stylez was long gone.
"When I left Bob, I left the business," she says. "The break up was very hard all around. I broke up with him. I was very honest with him about it. I wanted to still find a way where we could have some sort of a relationship. He was still the CEO of the company I was contracted with. It was nothing he did. I was trying to help him understand that it was just me and where I was and that it wasn't what I wanted any more. I came to him and I was very honest about it. I felt that was the least I could do- to be honest with him. Unfortunately people don't always take that the right way. He didn't like it and he didn't want to let me go."
"He's disappeared and dropped off the face of the earth- did you keep any contact with him?"
"I have not spoken to Bob since the day I left," says Stylez who claims that she's a sucker for love.
"I'm willing to try it- I believe in love," she insists. "There's so much good that can come with that and I love to love. More than even to receive, I love to love somebody. That makes me feel whole. That makes me happy to be alive, especially in this business- that can get hard. You have someone at the end of the day supporting you and really seeing you for who you are because there are stereotypes all the time and you don't feel like people ever get the chance to know you. When you have that at the end of the day, it makes it all worthwhile."
Noting that she bears a passing resemblance to Tyler Faith, I asked Stylez how she got along with the other JKP girls.
"I love Tyler!" Stylez says. "Tyler was my ultimate tag team partner. I had so much fun with that girl and I've been hearing that she's happy and I believe maybe engaged. I am so happy to hear that for her. She's such a great girl and honestly I miss her. She was my girl. They put us together a lot. I had a lot of fun." As for Jill Kelly, Stylez says she's always had a lot of respect for her.
"I always tried to keep it very business with Jill," she says. "I always felt for her because I know that she was always torn between a lot. Even though I knew that I could come to her, I didn't want to because I had respect for her and Bob's friendship. That was first before me and I didn't want her to feel in any way that I was interfering and I kept her more on a professional level, I suppose. She's a great woman. She's a strong, strong woman. And I got along good with her."
Jenna Haze was also working on the same set as Stylez, but beyond the fact they'd run into one another now and then, there wasn't much contact between the two.
"She ran into me one time and I wasn't too happy about what was said," states Styles, leaving it at that. "That's okay- that's alright with me. It doesn't matter to me. I always thought that Jenna and me were on a cold level, and I've never had anything against her in any way. I didn't feel like she did either. Of course there was that split with me and Bob. She was so over there. I understand that she has to be over there but I never felt like I did anything to her and I think it was on lukeford or something. She had said some stuff.
"When she ran into me, I was coming out of a Trashy Lingerie party. I was walking to the car from the club and was dressed in the appropriate apparel. She said some stuff. Whether she said it or not and things got out of context, I just felt it was really inappropriate and low class saying that I was a hooker on Sunset Blvd. and that I was a gold-digging, money whore. Because apparently I was suing Bob for $4 million. Which was news to me. But I feel it's really low class. But at the end of the day that was two years ago. If I see people, fine, hi, I'm friendly. I don't say shit about people. If people want to say things about me, I take it as a compliment because they're talking about me and that just makes it better for me. I must be petty interesting if they want to talk about me."
Stylez is very happy in her present relationship.
"Which is a little bit of a shocker because he's 23," she laughs. "But I don't have a type. I treat everybody the same. I try not to judge and there's chemistry with all sorts of people from all sorts of walks of life and you just never know." Stylez's boyfriend is outside of the business.
"It's tough for him but we're working through it," she says. "We're trying. It's been ups and down but I just really feel like we're going to get through it no matter what." Stylez met him at his niteclub in Chicago.
"He's successful," she adds. "He's very bright, very intelligent. I just really see so much in him. He's going to go all the way. Me and him I really feel like we have that in common. We've known what we wanted at a young age and we've had a natural ability to succeed at it." Stylez never kept her occupation a secret.
"And when we were friends I told him this was something I was going to do again," she said. "I told him my goals and in which way I felt like I wanted to do it. I think there was a part of him that didn't actually believe it was going to happen again! So, of course, now just recently that it has, he's been a little in shock. Before it was easier for him to accept but now that it's happening it's a little difficult for him. But he truly loves me at the end of the day. He's able to get through it. I do not know how I give him so much credit. I honestly wouldn't be able to be on that side. And I know that."
Stylez says she wants to take another crack at a contract.
"I like the stability," she says. "I think it gives me time to really work on the other parts of the career more- the website, the dancing; just marketing myself in a way where ultimately I can be a household name. I think that's kind of a key to get there. Of course I definitely want to be under a contract as long as it's good for me and it's good for them."
Although the website's not up yet, it will be www.shylaxxx.com. And Stylez says, yes, someone grabbed her name when she wasn't looking.
Asked if she felt the industry has treated her fairly, Stylez is of the belief things are what you make of them.
"It's all about you- the industry is exactly what you make of it," she says. "I guess it's fair and it's very plain and simple in the way things work in this business. It's all about how you go about it."
Beyond porn, Stylez says her fondest wish is to be a baby machine.
"I want to be an at-home mommy- I want to have a family and have my babies and maybe have a business with the money I've made in here to invest it," she says.
"That's what all this is for. It's for later. Being raised by a single mother and seeing how tough it was on her, it just wasn't fair. God forbid if anything happens in my relationship later with my children I don't ever want them to think they have to worry; and I know that I can take care of them and provide for them no matter what. I want to be a little self-made woman and comfortable."