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  #1  
Old 05-08-2006, 09:17 AM
TonyDB TonyDB is offline
 
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Default From Tred to Jose - like night and day

Didn't catch too many fishing shows this weekend as I was finishing off fixing the last of 3 broken water pipes in Maine. But, I did see Jose Wejebe put on a pair of finns and mask to go after a Red Bass in the coral heads of Australia's GBR. I saw him do that once before in Key West swimming around pilings to land a massive Tarpon. Dam impressive.

Jose is my favorite fishing TV show host followed by Flip Pallot. Not only does Jose provide some excellant insight and fishing footage, but his charity work with several organizations like Make a Wish and Cystic Fibrosis is unparrelled. I especially like his low key, laid back approach so much better than Treads "beat the piss outa ya till you do it my way" attitude.

So I did a little research on him....most of which came from his web site. Pretty interesting life and IMO, deserves our admiration, unlike you know who.

Born in Havana, Cuba in 1958, Jose Wejebe grew up in a politically tumultuous time. Fidel Castro leading the Cuban revolution had just seized power and was imposing communist ways on the country. The new government then began taking land, money and property from some of the families with claims that the property now belongs to the ?revolution?. His father and grandfather were imprisoned for speaking out against the Castro regime. Jose, his mother and sister fled to the Swedish embassy for safety and stayed there until papers were set for asylum in the US. After turning over most everything they owned to the Cuban government including all their land in Cuba, Jose?s father and grandfather were released from prison. Completely broke and destitute, the family escaped.

The beginning years in America were not easy for Wejebe family. With a total of 10 family members living in a two-bedroom house and barely enough money to get by, life was challenging during Jose?s younger years. However, growing up in Miami, Florida, the tropical locale was a integral turning point for the beginning of Jose's marine based career and life. At age eight, his father first took him out on the waters of Biscayne Bay and taught him to fish. His mother purchased him a mask and fins. What he saw underwater changed his life and perspective on the world forever. There was a whole new world for him to discover and since then, he has never stopped exploring.

At ages 12-14, Jose read everything he could get his hands on that had to do with fishing. He meticulously studied his heroes such as fishing legends Stu Apt, Flip Pallot and Lefty Kreh. He would write to them and send them handmade flies he tied himself. Coincidentally, Flip Pallot, who was then a South Florida banker, financed Jose's first professional guide boat at age eighteen.

Jose, even at an early age, began to create lifetime relationships with others that would benefit many. Stu Apt taught young Jose to pole, Flip Pallot taught him the fine art of bonefishing and Lefty Kreh introduced him to the perfect fly cast. ?They were my inspiration and my heroes. They showed me that you can turn your passion for fishing into a successful career,? says Jose.

In his early teens, Jose purchased his first boat with the money he earned working at a gas station. The small Crosby skiff prompted him to leave the land behind and combine his love of the water into a weekend business spear fishing and diving for tropical fish for extra money. During this time he was able to log many hours on the water and work towards his Captain's license, which he received at age eighteen. This is when he began his career as an inshore charter captain.

For several years he worked full-time at the Miami Seaquarium, starting as a diver, then moved up to working with and training marine mammals. His time working ?hand and fin? with dolphins and sea lions only increased his fascination and desire to learn more about the world under the water. On his days off he would guide the local waters of South Florida.

His true passion was being on the water everyday, so Jose decided to fulfill his dream and became a full-time guide. He navigated and fished his backyard waters of Biscayne Bay with ventures to Florida Bay, Everglades City and the Florida Keys. ?The best thing about fishing for me was exploring and finding new spots,? explains Jose. ?At the time, there were still relatively unfished areas and if you worked hard enough, you could find a few secret spots of your own.?

In the late 70?s, Stu Apt recruited him for a job working on an offshore boat in northwest Bahia Pez Vela, Costa Rica. Stu had recognized Jose's talents as an extraordinary fisherman, his skill for speaking two languages and his friendly candor and universal appeal. The native fishermen were good, but none had been exposed to some of the new styles of light tackle and fly-fishing that the American tourists were wanting.

After continuing his travels to other hot fishing destinations such as Venezuela and Cabos San Lucas, Jose absorbed the locals? knowledge and techniques as well as gaining experience and time running the larger offshore boats. Each place he fished, he would exchange information and bring back new ideas to his local Florida waters. He learned different ways to fish each species and tried out-of-the-box techniques that often proved quite productive. With his open mind and new techniques, he got results and people were starting to notice.

A few years later, Jose purchased his first offshore boat and began to fish both inshore and offshore year round. He would impress his clients with new creative and interactive ways of fishing and used many methods to catch the same species. ?At the time, being a guide was not as prestigious as it is today,? explains Jose. ?There wasn?t as much business, so the way to build repeat clients, you really had to show them some unusual and exciting ways of fishing.?

At the time, the popularity of fishing and tournament activity was on the rise in the Keys. ?The tournaments made you a better fisherman in a shorter period of time. You had to know your waters, you had to know your fish and you had to know your angler?s capabilities.?

His brief stint of fishing tournaments around the Keys proved highly successful. He took first place in the Fishing International Tarpon tournament two years in a row with angler Del Brown, first place in the Islamorada Bonefish Tourney with angler Bill Levy and placed in many other tournaments around the Keys.

During the early and mid 80?s, the fishing industry was on the cusp of a development boom of light-tackle techniques. According to Jose, ?We were just catching a lot of big fish on light lines? and that brought the attention of the sponsors. At this time, he worked hard to build relationships with industry leaders such as Shimano, Mercury and different boat manufacturers. He immersed himself in all aspects of fishing including field-testing tackle, working boat shows and writing reports and articles on his research and findings. By being proactive and paying his dues in time and hard work, Jose earned the respect of the industry.

At this time, long-time friend and mentor, Flip Pallot, had the award winning show, The Walker's Cay Chronicles, and invited Jose to fish with him. Because of Jose's extensive travels, unique way of interactive fishing and his natural ability on camera, it made for perfect TV. ?You can?t fake that kind of camaraderie. You have two people in a boat catching fish and having fun; it comes across to the folks watching.? They filmed approximately twelve great shows together.

Eight years later, Jerry McKinnis one of ESPN's top producers introduced him to the concept of the new, upcoming network of ESPN2. Jerry who had previously filmed several tournaments with Jose in the Keys, felt he would be a perfect host for the new network. Jerry?s intuition was that with Jose?s interactive style of fishing and the colorful personality, it would be the perfect match for television. Excited with the ultimate opportunity, in 1995, the first Spanish Fly episode was aired. Both the show and the network's popularity exploded.

The show, named after his boat, was an opportunity and a porthole to show viewers what he had learned around the world. With Jose?s soft-spoken and articulate onscreen presence, Spanish Fly created the perfect mix of technique, entertainment value, breath taking scenery and a type of story telling communicated in Jose?s signature laid-back style. ?I have always found it easier to show people what the coolest things about fishing are, rather than just tell them another fish story.?

Still approaching fishing as an adventure and exploration, the series visited both exotic and domestic locations and always kept an eye towards new and cutting edge techniques in both fishing and the filming. Coupled with spectacular cinematography and the unforgettable flamenco guitar soundtrack, Spanish Fly quickly became the number one rated fishing show.

?The biggest credit goes to the crew. Mike McKinnis, Shannon Nardi, Tim Schick, and Wes Miller all added the unique color, look and flair to the production. If ever there is a team effort sport, this is it,? says Jose. ?I am completely thankful to the producers, editors and camera crew for the success of the show. ?

Jose relishes the ability to demonstrate to people why he fishes and unique situations anglers can encounter on the unpredictable and exciting salt waters. He often shows viewers how to fish for the same species on different tackle and use the same tackle for different species, with the end result to always increase fun factor.

He feels by teaching viewers by example and bringing more people into the sport of fishing, they will take better care of the environment in which they enjoy. The light-tackle saltwater guru is always encouraging the message of conservation.

Added in 2001, Jose created a series of short vignettes called Vida Del Mar that runs in between other outdoor shows on ESPN2. It is a 2-4 minute chronicle of breathtaking underwater footage of marine life. It reflects an interesting perspective on how life below the surface can make us all better fishermen.

Filled with the right combination of stunning footage and story telling, Vida Del Mar is quickly becoming another huge success.
While not filming Spanish Fly, Jose finds time to work for several charities including Make a Wish Foundation, Cystic Fibrosis and Big Brothers and Big Sisters. He feels strongly the importance to take the time to fish with kids and teach the next generation of anglers.

So what's next for the Spanish Fly? Jose is currently venturing to new and remote fishing destinations. He continues to explore unchartered territories and learn more local techniques. Like he did as a younger man, he continues his quest for new ways and new species. Jose has also discovered a new passion for flying. He received his private pilot?s license a year ago and continues to enjoy logging hours in the sky.

Jose also has a few new and exciting projects in the works and will be announcing them in the near future. He currently resides in his waterfront home in the Florida Keys.

http://www.spanishflytv.com
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  #2  
Old 05-11-2006, 02:54 PM
Brandon-K Brandon-K is offline
 
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Spanish Fly is my favorite fishing show! Good post!
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  #3  
Old 05-11-2006, 09:38 PM
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zimno1 zimno1 is offline
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check out the flyfishing chick in "WHAT A CATCH" some eye candy catching fish is always a pleasure (if your into fly fishing that is) also the new ESPN show "guide house" is Montauk fishing guides taking out clients in the (Mecca combat fishing zone). good footage



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  #4  
Old 05-15-2006, 08:00 AM
TonyDB TonyDB is offline
 
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I haven't made up my mind yet with regard to the show the Guide House. This weekends episode was dissapointing. The english guy getting into a tiff with another fisherman reminded me of the ulimate fighter series....and he was in the wrong. I know it's their livelyhood but, that doesn't give the the right to run over a pod of blitzing fish others have already staked out on.

They don't tell you anything about what their using for flies or techniques employed. All they seem to do is run and gun looking for the surface blitzes. They complain about each other, their clients, and other fishermen. Even their short cooking segment doesn't give you enough info to reproduce the recipe.

I guess I have made up my mind...I don't like it...useless dribble IMO.

The only reason I have watched it this long is because they're after stripers and I was hoping the show would evolve. But they're giving us striper guys a bad rap.

Maybe it's the fact that they're all fly-fishermen.....kind of an elitest, holier than thou segment of fishermen. Yes I'm generalising of course but I have come across fly-fishermen who give the impression that if you don't fly-fish, you're not a real fishermen. I appologise to those fliers that don't fit this stereo-type.

Flame away!!

BTW, I do have a fly rod, 2 actually.

Kind of the same relationship blow boaters have with power boaters. I actually had one blow-boater elitest tell me that Jesus walked upon the water, but that doesn't make him a sailor. And yes, I have a sail boat too.

Sorry Zim, the Guide House is not my cup of fish chowder.
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Old 05-15-2006, 05:37 PM
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zimno1 zimno1 is offline
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like i said, good footage. nothing technical and nothing informative. just chasing and catching fish. some bonehead thought this would be entertaining. it is sad that if you wanna flyrod montauk you have to pay to contend with these conditions. i just like seeing a bass blitz up close and personal.that said, as elitist as it may seem the only reason flyrodders don;t talk and mingle with others is that it takes away time on the water and someone will follow you thinking it;'s alright to see where your going, alot of guys just wanna be by themselves while on the water as this solitude is part of the fixation with flyfishing. then again, some flyrodders "are" just plain snooty. i myself are the opposite. i wanna interact with anyone fishing (no matter googin or sharpie) just makes for good company and conversation.



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  #6  
Old 05-16-2006, 06:42 AM
TonyDB TonyDB is offline
 
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Fish on Zim, .
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  #7  
Old 06-14-2006, 12:55 PM
TonyDB TonyDB is offline
 
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OK my respect for Jose was just taken down a few notches. I saw his mug shot taken when charged with his 2nd count of DUI on another site.

Oh well it's a sickness and I hope he gets it under control.
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Old 06-14-2006, 01:34 PM
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merrillizer merrillizer is offline
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He's a chump compared to ol' Rolie Maaaahtin



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  #9  
Old 06-14-2006, 02:08 PM
TonyDB TonyDB is offline
 
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Roland is OK. He's just kinda one-dimensional...hardly ever see him fishing for anything but LMB and crappies. Jonny, you know I love fishing for large mouths but, there's way too many shows that focus on them IMO.

Also, I prefer the more low-key/humble fishing show hosts like Jose and Jerry. Probably why Tread just rubs me raw.
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Old 06-14-2006, 02:24 PM
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merrillizer merrillizer is offline
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One dimensional??? Roland was voted best Fisherman in the world. You might be thinking of Bill Dance? Roland is constantly fishing for different things......he's in a different spot of the world everytime. One week he's jigging for big lake salmon, next he's down in the Gulf hunting Jacks etc, and the next he was in Lake Okeechobee fishin fa 10 poundah LMB's. I dont know...I dont think I've ever seen him fish for the same thing 2 weeks in a row.

Bill Dance though lol....seems like he's sittin on tha same pond or lake every week



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Old 06-14-2006, 02:29 PM
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Striperjim Striperjim is offline
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I seen Roland fishing for stripers. I think hes addicted these days.
Shaw Grigsby is a guy who likes the saltwater and the stripees too.
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Old 06-14-2006, 02:45 PM
TonyDB TonyDB is offline
 
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I know Roland ("son") from Bill. OK, Maybe I over-stated him being one-dimensional but you have to admit, his claim to fame was bass fishing. I did read that he was retiring from the bass fishing tournament trail to pursue redfish tournament fishing.

Bill Dance never tells you where he's fishing. I bet that's because most of his shows are taped on some private pond stocked with 5 pounders.
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Old 06-14-2006, 03:10 PM
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merrillizer merrillizer is offline
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Yup, private stocked pond where he can work his 2 foot long buzzbait and get whacked everytime

I seen Roland bucktailin' for river Stripers under some dam.....I think it was in Alabama....



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