Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Meet Allen Kevorkov

With the theme of inspirational stories, once again I'd like to introduce someone who had quite the journey in life. Meet Allen Kevorkov and listen in his own words how far he's come and the fun and interesting things he's up to:

1. A little bit about goes! I'm a lucky father of two beautiful girls, Alina (3), and Natalie (10 months). They have the best Mommy in the world, my wife of 6 years, Kelly, whom I met through 11 years ago. Geez, time flies. Oh and we have two kitties, Molly (12) and Maxie (9). My first cat, Joey (12), stayed with my parents to keep them company after I moved out. I studied Business Administration and Marketing in college, and during my sophomore year, I started a business selling computers, computer hardware and accessories, as well as doing repairs and upgrades for friends. I guess they liked me because the word of mouth allowed me to build up a decent customer base, some of whom utilize my services to this day. At this time, I have one regular client and a few others, here and there. About a year after graduation, I started a full-time job as a Network Administrator at a small marketing firm. I was later promoted to Manager of Information Systems. I left the company after twelve years in 2013, when I shifted my focus toward email after joining a local eCommerce solutions provider as Deliverability Analyst.

2. It makes me feel pretty old, when I start to think how long ago I began playing claw machines. It's been a significant part of my life since I was about 5 years old. There was a little amusement park across the street from my house, and there was a small arcade, where I experienced the claw machine for the first time. It was a horizontal cabinet with a glass top, and the most common prize found in these machines were cigarettes. Clearly, these machines were intended for adults, but my Mom allowed me to play it, and I won three times in a row. That kind of success in claw machines was pretty rare, especially for a child, and it ignited a passion that has never left me. I bought my first machine 11 years ago and have since owned three others, two of which I still have in my basement.

3. Interesting facts... I suppose it depends on what is considered interesting, but let's start from the beginning. I was born in Baku, capital of the former Soviet republic of Azerbaijan. I am an only child and I suppose you could say I'm spoiled, although I've always been very close with my cousins and spent a great deal of time with them growing up. Due to civil unrest in my neck of the woods, we were forced to flee our hometown, and my family was permitted to leave the country as Armenian refugees to start life anew. We landed on the US soil in January of 1991. The first couple of years were very difficult, as we learned to adapt to the new culture and lifestyle. I experienced a fair share of prejudice and bullying in middle school, which left a good dent in my confidence and self-esteem, but by the time I started high school in the fall of 1992, I had adapted fairly well and it was a much more positive experience with new friends in another school district.

4. I started my YouTube channel in 2006. I love entertaining my friends, and I've always wanted to make a science fiction type of movie on my own, using special effects, such as time travel to meet myself in the past or future. When I took a day off work to try to accomplish this, I quickly realized that doing this on my own would take a lot more time and patience that I was willing to dedicate to it, so my first YouTube post ended up being just a collection of special effect tricks in a video titled "How to be a Superman". I later made the video private, as I didn't feel it was a good representation of my skill. I am not exactly sure what prompted me to make my first Claw Machine tutorial, but with over 300,000 views, it is by far the most successful video on my channel. Speaking of which, May 28th 2014 marks the 7-year anniversary, since that video was posted. During the first year, I made 3 tutorial videos, after which I started working on music videos. After numerous requests, I revisited the idea of making claw machine tutorials 5 years later, and once I realized just how much the interest has grown over the years, judging by Matt's incredible fan base, I decided to create Be The Claw, the idea for which was inspired by "The Claw" from Toy Story and SpongeBob's quote "be the crane" from the Skill Crane episode. 

5. Music production is another big one for me. I started writing, when I was about 10 years old. I initially played piano, and a few years later, learned to play guitar as well. Throughout teenage years, I've recorded numerous albums on tapes and gave out to friends and family and it wasn't until my most recently album, published in 2009, that I started feeling more comfortable sharing my work with the public. I created a webpage and offered both digital and CD versions of my album. Music has always been a great companion through difficult times and gave me a voice that I seemed to lack otherwise. I have made a number of music videos to my songs on my own, which I have also posted on my YouTube channel. My music styles include soft rock, pop, easy listening, comedy and parodies. I also enjoy customizing cars, although it is an expensive hobby, which has taken a back seat after I started family.

6. Anything else... To people, who haven't met me in person, it often comes as a surprise that outside of YouTube, I am generally fairly shy. I have wonderful parents, who traveled across the world in search of a brighter future for me, and they have always supported my somewhat unusual obsession with claw machines. My father used to take me to amusement parks and arcades with the sole intention of playing the claw machine and I am grateful for that. I became addicted to the Internet in high school because it opened up a whole new world of people and way of communicating. It allowed me to make many friends that I wouldn't have been able to meet otherwise. I enjoy talking to people online, and the three traits I value in people the most are kindness, generosity, and sincerity.

7. Where can I be found? I'm pretty Googlable, but my claw machine website is, which I created in 2012 in hopes of uniting all the fans out there. I started using Twitter recently, in light of my invitation to join Matt in NEN / Sugarloaf's Twitter Chat. My Twitter handle is @betheclaw and all my posts automatically end up on my Facebook page at My Youtube channel is For anyone interested in my music, that can be found at and

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