Some Info On The Head Instructor and Founder of Regal Chess.

contact chess master Kofi

I have decided to include some information about myself, as a teacher, and as a tournament player.

contact chess master Kofi
National master Kofi Tatum holding trophy after first place finish at tournament.


I started with competitive chess around the age of 19. First taking a real interest in the game as I attended a local community college there in Oakland, California. I had always had a love for chess. However, my passion towards chess mainly revolved around my desire to best my siblings at the game. We would often have highly competitive matches when I was a teenager. It was my older brother, as well as my sister who would sometimes play against me on my brother’s computer. Quite a simple program we would use. I didn’t understand a thing about algebraic notation. Noticing the strange coordinates on the screen, I would just dismiss them as gibberish, not really understanding that it was a form of language that could really guide you through mistakes, and improvements on play.

After attending college in Oakland, I noticed quickly that my perception of my game, didn’t exactly match up with what I was seeing in my results. I believed I was far superior to these guys who would talk loud, abrasive, and just outright offensively in a lot of ways. I said in my mind “how can men who talk so abrasively, and frankly silly, have any idea on how to play chess?” I was unpleasantly surprised.

Just about every individual I played was able to beat me at slow chess. I had no idea what ” blitz” was at the time, and playing on the timer seemed far off my reality. Needless to say, after about 5 to 6 months of study at the local library, as well as applying certain concepts to over the board play, I became stronger than nearly everyone at the college. Even one guy who CLAIMED to be a master. ( I found out later his rating was closer to 1750.)

This is the experience I had coming into chess. At the age of 19, in a new city, I needed to make a mark for myself. I started playing against the local college students, then the coffee house players, and eventually I worked my way into tournaments held in Berkeley, San Francisco, and Oakland, California.

Eventually, I made my way back to Southern California, where I grew up. I started to carve out a place for myself in the L.A. chess scene. Playing around Southern California, even Vegas on some occasions.

Through great fortune and good friendship, I had the opportunity to eventually play out of the country. My chess career took me to Reykjavik, Iceland, where I had the good fortune of playing several titled players at a local cafe. We play for stakes, of course. Honestly, I didn’t come out so bad playing against International Masters as a 1900 USCF rated player. I managed to even take second place in a local blitz tournament in Reykjavik. Losing out to a Fide master, who eventually became an International Master.

With all that said, I have decided to include a bit of my tournament history on this summary of my chess career. Providing a link to my USCF tournament record. Follow the link below to see some parts of my chess career. Not including most of those coffee house games for stakes. As well as the victories I’ve obtained over Grandmasters and International Masters online.

Follow this link for a breakdown of my tournament history.

Author: Kofi

My name is Kofi Tatum. I am a chess master. A Chess Coach. Chess Champ. A rap artist. Singer. Guitarist. Martial arts enthusiast. As well as a billiards champ. Glad to make your acquaintance.