Bugeisha magazine began as a collaboration between Walter Dailey, Angel Lemus and Brian Morgan. Walter Dailey and Brian Morgan started a weapons company called KEMCO (Kobudo Equipment Manufacturing Company) in Pennsylvannia in the mid 1990s during a time where there when there were very few options to purchase quality weapons, and those that were available were very expensive.
Angel Lemus is a graphic designer with a background in advertising, magazine design and production. He knew Walter Dailey from the Seibukan Karate Association and in the early stages of the formation of Kemco the idea was brough up of how to advertise the weapons company’s product line. After many discussions the idea that creating a new magazine dedicated to Okinawan and Japanese martial arts would not only provide a means to advertise Kemco’s weapons but it would also provide a much needed place for the traditional martial arts community around the world to come together.
Thus Bugeisha was born to provide the type of articles covering traditional arts that were becoming scarce during the early 90s as more and more popular martial arts magazines were focusing on celebrities, the latest martial arts fads of the era, and generally failing to provide content of interest for the traditional martial arts community.
Bugeisha was produced as a quarterly magazine between the fall of 1996 and summer 1998. Sadly, the last issue to be printed was that of summer 1998, issue number six. There was one more final issue, number seven which never made it to the printer but now it is printed for the first time in the Bugeisha Collector’s edition available at Amazon.com.
Bugeisha was a world wide sensation during its short life among the traditional martial arts community. Bugeisha’s office was inundated with letters and emails offering sincere thanks from grateful readers who loved the format and content of the magazine.
It was not very difficult for Bugeisha to attract some of the finest authors and historians of the time to fill its pages with content that was not only of great interest back then but still remain relevant and timeless to new generations of martial artists.
Martial artists/authors such as John Sells, George Mattson, Patrick McCarthy, and Toshihiro Oshiro to name a few provided stories about the empty hand arts, weapon arts, history, philosophy and practical how-to articles.
It is my sincere hope the rebirth of Bugeisha magazine in 2021, and the Collector’s edition of the classic issues will provide hours of reading and education about the arts that we know and love not only to the veteran martial arts community but also to the new generations of young practitioners learning about the arts for the first time.
L-R: Tim Rodgers, Walter Dailey, Angel Lemus, Jim Pizii. March 1997 Pennsylvania. At this time the idea of creating Bugeisha were being discussed.