By On the occasion of our 20th anniversary
By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
And, as it turns out, not even much of a stage. The final-round duel between Tuff and East Coast champ C-Diddy never really came off. Call it a communication breakdown. As event coordinators played a song by the White Stripes, Tuff began to perform. When he saw that C-Diddy wasn't performing, Tuff stopped, awaiting further instructions. The song stopped and started again. C-Diddy quickly began to perform alone, leaving Tuff confused. He believes that cost him the title.
"The air-guitar people apologized and said they told the judges that C-Diddy didn't engage," Tuff says. "I think it cost me the trip to Finland. I was on my home turf. The audience was chanting my name. I had a few more licks and kicks to do even though I was sweaty."
But now the cheers have faded, and his wig is covered by a thin layer of dust. Hintz looks back on the night with mixed feelings. "It's definitely been a blessing and a curse. It's given some attention to my craft. Air-guitar fans had been waiting for the day that air guitar would have its due. But you also find yourself [performing] at weddings and at parties, and people introduce you to others and say, 'Let's hear a little something.'"
In the meantime, Hintz waits patiently for fame. "My phone lines are open," he said. "I have ideas. I think Krye Tuff has lots to offer the entertainment world. I'm the West Coast champ, I live in LA and it's 2003. The stars are aligned. It appears that the time is now for air guitar. When I look out the window from my cubicle, I sometimes think Krye Tuff should be let out, and someone should give him the opportunity."