Brutus Beefcake looks back on being hired by Vince McMahon, working with Hulk Hogan, why there’s a nostalgia for old school wrestling with the mainstream media

wwflogo1The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling Podcast with Brutus Beefcake
Hosts: John and Chad
Interview available at Tmptow.podomatic.com

Why is there such nostalgia for the old school wrestling in mainstream media and why is there such a lasting mark left by that era: “I’ll tell you exactly what it was: it was a time that will never come again. The wrestling business exploded and all of a sudden we were brushing up against Hollywood and Hollywood would have never been caught dead being associated with any about wrestling until the ’80s and then it was MTV, VH1, Saturday Night Live, NBC and mainstream television and all of a sudden it is lit up on Friday nights and Saturday Night’s Main Event and Hollywood saw it was cool to be in wrestling and around the wrestlers. It was a break-through time that marked the changes in wrestling and a time with personnel that was so diverse and so talented and it was a time that will never happen again.”

Getting hired by Vince McMahon and becoming Brutus Beefcake in the WWE: “Well, it was my big break coming to ‘New York’ and it wasn’t just a couple years, it was seven years wrestling in different territories and getting experience wrestling and learning from true legends and old-timers that had really been around our business for a long time and learn from their experience and their knowledge. Going to the WWF, they were grabbing everyone and every talent possible and it was the right place, right time for me to become Brutus Beefcake. I walked right in there and the next thing you know it is exploding. I loved being the heel Brutus Beefcake and although being a baby face is great and everyone loves you, I’ll tell you I had more fun being a heel and getting to wrestle (Hulk) Hogan in the sold out arenas and having people screaming at me and wanting to kill me and that is how you know you are doing the right thing in the ring.”

Getting to work with Hulk Hogan in main events after their years of struggling to make it together in the business: “There was no doubt that it was great. We were doing mega business everywhere and sellouts every night. When you have your run with the champion it was always sold out and all the guys that he wrestled they were selling out with whether it was King Kong Bundy, Paul Orndorff, Big John Studd and I just got thrown in the mix with a lot of big and really experienced wrestlers. It was a great time for me but also a good learning experience and gave me more knowledge so that when the time was right and they decided to switch me to babyface. Which is funny because they didn’t even tell me they were going to do that. All of a sudden it was one day they sat me down and said you are going to be “the barber” and my first question was what is the barber? There is no such thing as a barber in wrestling. I did some fast footwork and kind of had to recreate myself and thank god that it worked because it made me bigger than ever.”

Did he expect the cuttin’ and struttin’ to catch on with the fans: “Nobody had ever done something like cutting people’s hair in the ring before. You would have a haircut match that you would maybe have in the Southern territories that you could have after a year but that was usually when it was time to move on and if a guy had hair you would have a hair vs. hair match and the guy would be gone from the territory and you would never see him again. Trying to have to incorporate this into a nightly thing and on every television show or taping that I worked I had to go out there and wear different outfits and cut someone’s hair and come up with something new and constantly change it to keep it exciting for the people. It was a big challenge but I didn’t have anyone standing over my shoulder saying do this do or do that, it was all me and whatever other things I would get from a few friends like Hulk Hogan. Hogan was there to guide me a little bit which was very helpful.”

Being back in the mix with WWE after 23 years away from the company and appearing on The Edge and Christian Show: “It was great and we (Edge and Christian) had a ball. We worked on a Friday and I had flown in on a Thursday and we worked for a couple of hours and knocked it out fast. Afterwards, I got to tour the facility and went around the building and got to see some old friends there that I hadn’t seen in close to 25 years. You definitely haven’t seen the end of me there. I just did a where are they now segment that won’t be out for a little while but they came down here and filmed me at my home and I filmed stuff at Raw at a Raw show they did down in Tampa (and they had a really big house) and there is going to be a lot coming in the future and they’ve got some plans for Brutus. They sought me out. One of the main reasons why is because of the toy companies and the people who want the legends and the older guys and all of the superstars of wrestling from the past. There are not too many of us left and that is the one big problem, there are so few guys and real main eventers that even have anything to do with the business or are still involved.”


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