Dusty grew up in Baltimore, Maryland and now lives in New York City. We spoke with him at his friend's apartment in Gramercy where he has been staying. He talked to us about the art of finessing and how to stay advanced.
Alyssa (Springtide): So you’re from Maryland… How did you end up here?
Dusty: I was maybe like 20 when I moved here. I saved up and moved here. I wanted to do styling at first. Now I kinda changed my mind.
Emma (Springtide): Did you do any styling?
Dusty: Yeah, I did. I styled for Bullett and JARS when it was like, lit at the time and The Fader...I interned.
Emma: What were you doing in Maryland before you came here?
Dusty: Well, at that time I was working at Walmart (laughs) and I was depressed as fuck. So I saved up and I moved here and I ended up fucking going back because I spent all my money going out every fucking day because I just moved here and I was like, “Oh I’m in New York! I’m finally here!”. But it was the wrong decision. So I ended up going back. Walmart took me back and then one day I just didn’t show up to work and I got fired. I got unemployment. I took my unemployment and I came back.
I definitely don’t want Walmart in my damn interview though…
Alyssa & Emma: No that’s interesting!
Dusty: Oh, it is interesting? Ok yeah, fuck it. I finessed Walmart. They had me in the Arts & Crafts section. I was like, the best. No one else was an artist who was employed there so I was the best one.
Emma: This is like a chic Walmart outfit you’re wearing right now.
**Dusty is wearing light wash denim, cut at the hem and a blue denim vest with lots of pockets and patches**
Dusty: It definitely is right?! I made it. Actually, I got the patches from Walmart..
Emma: See? Perks! I like it.
Dusty: Yep. Went back to the section when I was in Baltimore. I was like, “Oh, MY section.”
Alyssa: So where do you go to hang out in New York?
Dusty: I like to go to Paul’s (Baby Grand) a lot. That’s like my favorite spot cause its like so low key and like, every time I go I know my outfit is lit as fuck so… I feel like I’m just known as the person to go there and just like, give looks. So they’re like, “Oh, we like him” and I get free drinks all the time so that’s why I like to go.
Alyssa: Right now, are you doing anything for work?
Dusty: Alright so, basically, I’m just finessin’ through life. I get like a little money every month and I just use that shit on clothes… because I’m addicted to clothes...and I’m doing music and modeling.
Emma: What quality about yourself gets you in the most trouble?
Dusty: I don’t really feel like I get in much trouble.
Emma: Ok, so, what quality keeps you out of getting in trouble?
Dusty: I don’t know. Probably my finessin’. I’m a really good finesser. It’s all about how you carry yourself and I’m very confident, so…
Emma: Where do you get your confidence from?
Dusty: I don’t know. When I look good, I feel good so no one can tell me nothin’. Like, I know I’m pulling shit off that other people can’t pull off or like, don’t have the confidence. And I’m like, “You can do it...you just not bold enough”.
Emma: Where did the name Dusty come from?
Dusty: From my grandmother. It’s after a wrestler named Dusty Rose. So I’ve had it since like 1 year old.
Alyssa: Were you a wrestler?
Dusty: No, but I used to love wrestling. Stone Cold Steve Austin, Undertaker…
Emma: What’s your birth name?
Alyssa: Do prefer Kyle or Dusty?
Dusty: Dusty is my personality. But Kyle is kinda what helped my finessin' in a way and made me carry myself the right way. Then once I’m starting to drink and shit.. I’m Dusty. I’m like, turned the fuck up. When I come to the door and I know everything,…the facts and all that, I feel like I’m Kyle.
Emma: What possession have you had for the longest amount of time?
Dusty: Damn. What possessions do I be having for the longest amount of time? I always lose shit. I’m clumsy as fuck. I be buyin' shit over and over.
Emma: That’s actually the perfect segue into our next question, then. Is there something that you have lost or misplaced that you still think about?
Alyssa: It doesn’t have to be physical, either…
Dusty: I lost a buncha shit. My chargers… I coulda been had like 20 chargers already! My grills…I lose them all the time. I just got a new pair so, add up like 10 pairs of grills…that’s probably thousands of dollars. Damn.
I guess it depends on the moment I lose the shit cause I lost a Stussy hat in a taxi before and I was like, “Ugh, I want that” and now it’s like, Stussy is kind of like played to me.
Emma: But it was devastating when you lost it?
Dusty: Yeah. I just got that shit and it was NICE. But I saw like 5 people had it at the same party and I mean, I wore it better but I was like, “Damn guy... But you know, you did it, you got your picture. Let it go”.
Alyssa: This picture where you have the blue glitter on your face.. were you dressed up to go somewhere?
Dusty: I wasn’t going nowhere. I just knew I had this blue suit and before I had painted my face all red for Halloween so I was like, “Now I got the blue suit so imma do my face all blue”. I don’t like to wear the same shit constantly so I thought I was gonna sell the blue suit after I got the picture but then my friend was like, “You could wear that shit for Fashion Week” and I was like, “I can, but what the fuck I’m gonna do with it?” I’m not gonna paint my face blue again cause I already did it DOE.
Emma: Where did you get the suit?
Dusty: I got it from a vintage shop in Baltimore. They were like, “You need this suit. Its so 80s. Its so you. I don’t see no one else buying it here” and they tell the truth so I was like, “Yeah. I need this suit.” I was gonna wear it to Afropunk but I didn’t.
Alyssa: So once you do something, you don’t like doing it again?
Dusty: Yeah. I be done. After I have fun with it, I’m done with it.
Like, “Did that. Next thing”. I think advanced that’s why my shit say, “ADVANCED NIGGA” in my damn bio. Like Rihanna…do you you see her? She do that shit then she be on to the next. That’s how I think … like a celebrity.