Photography by Miguel Villalobos
Interview by Danny Calvi
Allen Silver, lives in the heart of San Francisco’s Castro neighborhood, where he’s been since 2000 with his partner Will Swagger (who also happens to be an escort, by the way). Ten years ago, Allen landed his first role as a porn actor in Chris Roma’s Built to Last, and a steady stream of daddy roles followed — Daddy Dreaming, Daddy Hunt, Dad’s Automotive, Dad Goes to College, Dad Gets into Trouble, etc. — making him the go-to DILF ever since. As you might expect, Allen’s pretty handy. Not only does he have a knack for turning household objects into instruments of pleasure, he also programmed his own website and is a certified masseur, one of the last to be trained at The Body Electric School. Allen’s an early riser, and I caught up with him by phone after he’d had his breakfast, which is the same every day: oatmeal and a single egg.
Danny: Hi Allen. What will you be doing for Christmas this year?
Allen: I usually go back to Texas where I’m from. But I’ll probably stay here in San Francisco this year. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever stayed in San Francisco for Christmas before.
It would be a first. Yeah, I’ve always gone back to Texas.
When you were younger and living in Texas, did you long for an older man in your life?
No, not really. My relationship back when I was in Texas was very traditional. It was gay relationship, but we were monogamous and had, you know, a beautiful house and two dogs. Anyone can give advice on what color to paint your living room. We were kind of like the gay couple you’d expect to find in that situation.
Are you mostly into guys your own age or younger?
I would say so, yeah. I always been attracted to guys with a certain energy, but it’s not as much about their age. I had a little bit of a nasty sexual desire that was really strong for a guy of a certain age. But it generally happens more with guys around my age.
Do older men bring something to sex that younger men can’t just because of their inexperience?
Well, absolutely. But younger men bring this freshness and an energy that may be lacking in an older guy. So it’s a tradeoff. But yeah, when you get older, and you’ve been an honest explorer, you just sink into what is right for you and you don’t have to worry trying to be somebody you’re not and your sex definitely gets better.
I read that porn directors send you scripts, and when I read that, I thought like, ‘Do porn directors even use scripts?’
So you had to like learn lines?
I had a ridiculous amount of lines for ‘Dad Takes a Fishing Trip’. They have a lot of talking in that movie. I was really nervous about learning all these lines, so I got one of those little digital recorders and I recorded myself saying all the other actor’s lines. I used that to help memorize lines. But I left the recorder on a plane, so somebody probably found this recorder with all these lines saying things like, ‘Oh yeah? Why don’t you pull it out and let me see how big it is’.
That must have been fun for them!
It surprises me when, on the set at a movie, somebody shows up hungover or unprepared. I’m just like really? You’re blowing a really good chance here because if you show up and you do decent job, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll get called again.
Has your popularity as an adult film actor led to more escorting?
Basically, which came first, the escorting or the porn… Well, I started out doing conscious sex work under a title called Sacred Intimate. It’s something I trained for and I absolutely love it. It’s like a calling for me. Brian Mills over Titan called me a new age hooker because my approach is this, you know, sort of holistic healing and hot sex.
I remember those Body Electric workshop fliers at the gay community center in San Diego, California.
They’re great. I went through an awakening, and I started doing work with the Sacred Intimate. As I started doing porn — which I love because I’m a little bit of a prima donna, I love being looked at and complimented — the clientele didn’t change. The downside of that is that you will get people who are a little — they can’t really say what they want because if they’re so excited to be with the guy that they’ve seen on the screen.
I guess it’s difficult to live up to your own screen personality.
I don’t try to and – and really, I’m very much myself in the videos I’m in. You won’t see me doing anything in videos that I don’t really love doing. It’s very easy for me to translate that into activity with someone.
How enjoyable is sex with guys who are only tutored in porn?
I had a couple of experiences being with somebody who — I can tell they’re just wanting a film in their mind, like a performance… It’s less fun to be with somebody who is trying to play out a role they think they should be doing, but it’s not really what turns them on — or they don’t really know what turns them on. On the other hand, someone who doesn’t really know what they like and is honest about that can be a lot of fun because they’re open and exploring.
What can guys learn from porn?
You could learn what turns you on. But you can’t really learn about how to open up a virgin asshole. You never see that…
You’re a pretty hairy guy. Have you ever been asked to alter your natural look for a video? Like manscaping your back…
I never shaved it all. They did trim it for Titan. I think they probably wanted to show my body off a little better. Otherwise no, I’m just myself. There was one movie where, as an experiment, they dyed my hair — that will never happen again!
To what color?
Uh, just like a brownish color. They wanted to take some of the grey out.
But your grey hair’s sort of like your trademark, isn’t it?
Yeah. It was pretty hilarious. But I’m open to things, just like, ‘Okay, let’s try it’.
What about with other guys, do you find it a turn off when guys are shaving their pubes?
I like somebody to just be whatever they are. If you’re shaving and trimming all that stuff off, you might feel like a cactus with your clothes on.
Do you guys with really hairy backs present a unique challenge to you as a masseur?
Yeah. This is – it’s a funny question. So I assess how hairy it is, how hairy that back is, and sometimes the guy is just so hairy, there’s no point putting massage lotion because it’ll just turn into this big, gooey mess.
So you’d do more like a dry massage?
Once in a while… You can actually do a massage with cornstarch if the guy isn’t sweaty. Somebody who’s got a lot of hair, they will be slippery in a different way.
With so many gays being certified massage therapist these days, what is your unique selling point in terms of being a masseur?
Well, I’m one of the few people around who were trained by the Body Electric School before they stopped doing massage certification. It’s not that it’s that unique and weird, it’s just that it’s a very specific type of massage. And yes, a specialty of mine is anal massage. I’m actually trained in that, and I just love helping men get in touch with their assholes.
How do you keep the transactional nature with a client from getting in the way of the sex or spoiling the mood?
Well, I think it makes it cleaner. I mean, if you’re starting out with that agreement. You see, there are several factors that go into good sex. There’s the getting into each other’s energy, the eye battles, looking into each other’s eyes. There’s the sensuality, like just how the touching feels, and how that goes. And then there’s role play… You don’t have to have all those factors, but if you do have all three of them, it’s gonna be really good. When you’re setting up a relationship as a client and a sex worker, you’ve already established a point of role play. It’s almost like you can let that go, like that’s already a given. So contrary to it getting in the way, it actually makes it better in some ways. The only problem is if the client has some hang up around it, in which case you need to talk about that, like if it makes him feel dirty or bad or wrong to be paying someone for sex.
Have you ever hired an escort yourself?
Yes. When I started doing this, I wanted to have that experience. So I actually hired these two guys and had a beautiful experience. I really don’t understand escorts who’ve never done that because you really need to know what that feels like from the other side. It makes you nervous, you know. It’s a little scary to call somebody you’ve never met, and discuss money… I’d do it again. It’s a good thing.
Do you keep a certain wardrobe that you dip into when you’re escorting? Like I guess you have suits or other options, like if your client wants you in head-to-toe leather.
I don’t, actually. I have very few leather items. I do get requests for certain things to wear, but it’s kinda silly — it’s off your body in the first five minutes.
Oh, I see.
I’ll bring some gear… Some things like floggers, and some minimal bondage type stuff because those are actually things you can use. The only thing I get consistently asked for that will stay on are underwear and speedos. There’s a lot of guys that really are turned on by white underwear, for example. And so I will give a massage wearing white underwear the whole time, and they just love it.
I guess jockstraps are probably pretty popular.
Exactly. Like that kind of thing is like a turn on. That’s actually sexier than being naked sometimes, to have like one piece of clothing on like that.
Do you ever get requests from fans of your films to buy items of clothing, like a jockstrap or a pair of shorts?
Once in a while, yeah.
And do you try to honor those requests?
I try to. It’s complicated… So I recently had a request for boxers. You know, I wear boxers a lot in these movies. Of course I don’t want to just pull one out of the dryer and mail it to him. I may want to wear it a couple of days, you know what I mean? It’s almost like there’s some energy that has to go into it. So I can’t do this as like a shopping cart item on my website, you know, because it’s such a personal item. But yeah, I get requests for that, and socks.
Has anybody ever asked you to show up in costume like, I don’t know, as a priest or as Santa Claus or something?
Yes. I had a client once who wanted me to arrest him. So I came to his hotel dressed — and I have to be careful going out in public like this because you’re not supposed to — in a full California Highway Patrol uniform someone gave me years ago. It’s the real thing. So I showed up, put handcuffs on him, put him in the car, took him home and did stuff to him.
I guess you were not driving a police car.
No, you have to keep it in the fantasy realm. Well, I don’t even have a car, so I had to rent one. It was really hot, I gotta say.
Do you have like a toolkit? Obviously, you bring lube and cockrings and that sort of thing. But what might we be surprised to find in your bag of tricks?
I bring a very lightweight kinda bondage gizmo. I like to use something really soft, like a furry hat or something when they’re blindfolded and they don’t expect it. Also, an ice cube can be awesome. You can surprise the hell out of somebody with ice. If you tie somebody up and then start giving them unexpected sensations, and they’re surrendering to that, it’s incredibly relaxing. Especially if that guy’s like a boss or has a lot of responsibilities in daily life. A lot of people, you know, they never let go, so when they’re forced to let go, although they agreed to it, it’s wonderful.
You seem to be a kind of like spanking expert. How does one become good at spanking? Is that something you learned?
It’s not that I’m an especially great spanker… What I really want men to do is to come up with their own desires, and not have me giving them a menu. With Body Electric, the staff were actually teaching spanking, so I know how to properly spank someone without hurting them. Like how to do different types of blows and slaps that will be very pleasurable or percussive. If guys are willing to have a spanking experience and they’re scared, this is a safe place to come to someone who knows what they’re doing.
|Miguel Villalobos put his camera down for a sec |
to sketch Allen’s manliness.
It’s nice that people are teaching spanking in the world. To what extent, when spanking, do you become a kind of paternal figure?
I think of it as a power and surrender experience, not so much discipline. It’s about, you know, someone agreeing to submit to you, and they actually become more powerful because they’re allowing this to happen. As they sink deeper and deeper into the experience, that’s where you get into like really high-level endorphin states, a high place of surrender. It feels wonderful. From the outside, it could look like punishment or discipline, but it’s really kinda the opposite. It’s taking them, in a caring way, to someplace which is kind of like deliciously painful.
One of the things that’s frustrating in porn is like where they’re just beating the crap out of some guy, and he really is having the crap beat out of him. It’s kind of painful for me to watch because I know that that’s just him enduring. And for me, it’s not about enduring. When you get somebody to that space, they’re wanting more. They’re not enduring, they are asking, begging even…
I guess you’re probably really good at tying knots. What are the most useful knots for bondage scenes?
Well, there’s only really a few knots I use consistently. My setup is ropes with knots in them and metal clips, and then I use this like store-bought little bondage thing with velcro. Believe-it-or-not, that works surprisingly well. But with knots, you need to know how to do a square knot and you need to know how to do a slip knot. That’s pretty much it. With those two, you can do anything. I’ve always wanted to learn that elaborate Japanese rope massage. It’s so beautiful.
It’s never too late, Allen.
What is the appeal, I wonder, of total mummification?
It’s similar to sensory deprivation. It’s touching on that kind of experience I talked about before, where you’re taking someone outside of their normal sensational realm. For mummification, I use Saran Wrap. And basically what happens, you become immobilized. It’s a very interesting experience to willingly allow yourself to be immobilized in that way.
Have you tried it yourself?
Absolutely. I wouldn’t do anything to somebody that I haven’t done myself.
Oh, really? I guess you also have clients who liked to be tickled and tucked in and read bedtime stories…
That’s wonderful. Yeah. Those are like almost non-sexual kind of adult-baby situations. It’s being nurtured, it’s the soft side of dad. There’s a longing in a lot of men to have me do things their father never did. So many gay men wish their strong, loving father had held them in their arms, and read them a bedtime story.
You think so?
I think there’s a thing that happens with fathers of gay boys, where on some subconscious level, they recognize what’s going on with their son and it spooks them, so they’d actually be more distant. This longing that the boy has, not necessarily for a sexual experience, but for a caring father, doesn’t happen and there’s a hunger.
Would you say that your own father was caring?
Yes, he was. He was caring in his own way, very loving and providing, but not nurturing in the way that I described, I would say.
Does it ever happen that another daddy will hire you for their boy while they’re away?
I haven’t had one while they’re away, but I have had that happen where they want to bring me in to have me do stuff to their boy in front of them. Kind of – as a treat for the boy, yeah.
Do you and your partner Will ever work together as escorts?
Yeah. Generally, that usually takes the form of a four-handed massage.
Four-handed massage. That sounds good…
Yeah, it’s pretty great. If you never have done that, you should treat yourself. It’s a lot of intense touch and attention.
Does your asshole need some attention? Reach out to Allen Silver, and find out more about his films through his website. Allen wears a bracelet by 1-100 by Graham Tabor and Miguel Villalobos. More about their collection of handmade jewelry can be found on their website.