Kurt Lockwood, a tattooed and muscular 42-year-old, is holding a woman upside down in a standing 69 position. He has already gotten several blowjobs, a footjob, penetrated her in four different positions, sucked her toes, and given her at least two orgasms. At this point, it's no easy task for a man his age to keep both the woman-a porn star named Sunny Lane-and his member aloft as a dozen or so crew members look on. In the age of Viagra, this might not seem so remarkable, but when Lockwood first got into the porn business in the 1990s, there were not many men who could get wood on demand and "pop" on command. And, just so you know, there are no fluffers to help out-that's a myth.
"We were more specialized than brain surgeons," Lockwood says. "I'm not saying we are that important, but I mean, at the time, there were like 30 guys in the whole world who were making a living at it. A lot of the old guys are bitter about it. It used to be a skill, now it's a pill."
Lockwood grew up in Dundalk, got a theater degree from University of Maryland, and then moved to San Francisco with his band Da Groove in 1993. When it became clear that things weren't working out with the band, he moved to Los Angeles to try to work as an actor. He quickly got an agent and began to get commercials and bit parts, but the bigger roles eluded him. "I considered myself a real actor and wanted to be an artist, and Hollywood is not the place to do that. On one of the last auditions I went on, they basically asked me to play Urkel, because Family Matters was big at the time. So I did the audition and did my best Urkel, but I was thinking to myself, I played Hamlet and now I'm doing a second-rate Urkel impersonation for a Game Boy commercial."
Disillusioned with the Hollywood acting scene, he started another band, called Sexy Xrist. "We were like Guns N' Roses meets Nirvana," he says. "And we did really well there and made it to the top of the local music scene and were selling out the Whisky a Go Go."
The band went to New York to play the legendary CBGB Festival and were staying at the equally legendary Chelsea Hotel when Dee Dee Ramone, who was staying in the next room, knocked on their door. "I opened the door and nearly fell over," Lockwood says. "'Cause there was one of my idols, the guy who invented punk rock. And he was just as friendly as can be. He had a handful of joints and we smoked and talked-well, he talked and I listened."
The next night, onstage, Lockwood looked down and saw Ramone in the front of the crowd. Ramone asked if SexyXrist would open for him on tour and help fill out the backing band for his own solo project. "So I toured with Dee Dee Ramone. How 'bout that?" Lockwood says a bit ruefully, because things didn't turn out so well.
They were in L.A. waiting to tour Europe. "Dee Dee had these separate friends," Lockwood says. "He had his rock 'n' roll friends, he had his druggie friends from back in the day, and he also had these scary biker, white-power guy friends. While we were resting from tour, the druggie friends came around, and I was at my birthday, and somebody came in and said Dee Dee had overdosed."
Ramone's death essentially ended Lockwood's music career, and his girlfriend, who was also in SexyXrist, started to dance at Jumbo's Clown Room, a famous L.A. strip club where Courtney Love also used to work. In 1998, the couple's pot dealer at Jumbo's told them about a production company that was shooting "amateur couples" who had never shot porn before.
"We were already into that whole rock 'n' roll life kind of thing," he says. "She was bringing girls home from the club and we were having three-ways and stuff like that. And it was a lot of money. And when you're a struggling musician and you can have sex with your girlfriend and have your bills paid, it's pretty attractive."
The company called back to see if they wanted to film more scenes, but Lockwood and the woman had just broken up. "They said, "How 'bout we just hire you and we'll get another girl,'" he recalls. "And I wasn't seeing anyone at the time, so I did that and got recommended for some more and here I am, over 10 years later, with 1,500 scenes shot, slept with probably between 1,200 and 1,300 women, shot scenes all over the world, and won three [Adult Video News] awards, and directed eight major company full-length feature releases-including a Boogie Nights parody."
Lockwood not only directed The Real Boogie Nights, but he also wrote it and starred in it, and used SexyXrist songs to score other films. Lockwood sees the kind of creativity his porn career has allowed as far more rewarding and less embarrassing than most Hollywood acting.
"I don't want to play somebody else's game where I'm doing a second-rate Urkel imitation," he says. "That is being a whore. They might as well have an organ grinder and say, 'Dance, monkey, dance!' That, to me, is more soul-destroying than having sex with a hot girl for money."
Still, Lockwood retired in 2009, when he and his partner had a child together and moved to Spain. "I had made a lot of money in porn, so it was a good time to retire," he says. "That was during the bubble, before the internet gutted the industry, much like Napster did to music."
When that relationship ended and Lockwood came back to the industry, it was a different world, in many ways. Viagra and the internet had changed everything in porn-and cut the money someone like Lockwood could make in half.
But it wasn't just porn. America's relationship to money in general had changed. Lockwood was an immediate and fervent supporter of Occupy Wall Street. "I think it started on Oct. 5," he says. "And I was there at Zuccotti Park on the 7th." In the park, he debated former Saturday Night Live star-turned-conservative media personality Victoria Jackson, delivered fiery speeches, and kept a blog (AmericanAutumnRevolution-SFitzgerald.blogspot.com).
Lockwood is obsessed with politics, and though he sees no shame in his work in porn, he acknowledges that it has closed a number of doors to him. "I would love to do something like Anderson Cooper," he says. "I'm also a history buff and would like to teach school, but I know I can't do that because of people's hypocrisy. Half of all internet traffic is porn and it is a $5 billion-a-year worldwide industry. It's not us who's watching that. It's you. But we're the only ones who are really honest about it."