After meeting MCRE through Chris RWK on Instagram we have stayed connected ever since. MCRE sent us a physical copy of the new album with Think 2wice and we were really impressed. We were even more impressed after we heard about the setup they used. Also the bars, beats and everything in between were solid. We had to know more so we linked with MCRE to get a real in-depth look into the album and life for an exclusive interview only on StereotypeCo.com. Hope you enjoy.Read More
Filtering by Category: Interview
Interview with Dave Noodlez
The day I met JP was just over a year ago. We were both helping young people put together their final event of the year 'The Future Concert'. JP was one of the performers of the night while I helped with photography. He had this really positive vibe that traveled with everywhere. His music was uplifting and really set a great mood for the rest of the night. He told me he was working on some music and really wanted to put out an album. I told him to let me know when it released and I would love to hear it. Well 1 year has passed and what do you know? He was a man of his word and truly delivered with 'Guavamatic Space Dream'. Stereotype Co linked with JP to get a in depth look into the album, his dreams, experiences and more.
Why did you make this album ?
I made this album because the times call for it. How can I be an artist and not reflect the times? I made it because there's a call on my life to speak Life, speak what I see - to speak of the fire next time, as well as the light behind the clouds.
In 2014 after the non-indictments of officers who killed Michael Brown and Eric Garner there were protests rising up all over the country. Here in NYC I was one of the thousands of other citizens who stopped traffic, fed up with what has finally started coming to the light. Then some friends and I from my hometown, Mt. Vernon, NY decided to host a demonstration. After that protest I knew I had to make a decision. I had to focus on just how I would contribute to this movement. And since music and art is such a deep passion of mine, I decided to contribute music that would reveal love and depth and truth and light and joy. I made this album because we needed it - because I needed it.
What inspired you to create Guavamatic Space Dream?
We had a lot of setbacks during the production of this music. From distorted files to equipment failure to scheduling conflicts and more, there were a lot of obstacles to get here. Indie life, right? During one of those stretches of time when production was halted due to setbacks, I actually wrote out an entire screenplay and score for an album-inspired short film. It's ill. Still trying to do that. The budget just wasn't there at the time.
But that process of writing an entire short film revealed to me the whole story of the Guavamatic Space Dream. So when I got together with ZILLA, my ace boon and my pARTner in shine, we discussed the visual elements of the music and we decided that we had to do something different. He was the first person to hear the album in its order and in its entirety. We, like, share a brain so he understood exactly what I was trying to execute with the album cover and promo videos just from hearing the music.
Remember when Jadakiss had the Top 5 Dead of Alive and they created an actual sculpture for his album cover and he carried it around to interviews and stuff? ZILLA figured we should do something similar. He had this idea to create an artifact. Something that could be carried around and have its own life and its own story. And that's where the idea of this aged looking booklet came from. We created an actual relic that contains "ancient" information and imagined this whole story (based on my short film stuff) for how it got into my hands. And we wanted to capture that story in the trailers.
What is your goal as a hip hop artist and artist in general?
My goal is to inspire people. I want my art to move people. I want it to spark minds and open hearts. I want it to make people dance and be free. I want it to make people nod their heads and feel the heartbeat of those no longer with us. I want to reveal truth. I want to speak Life.
When did you know you wanted to make music?
It first came when The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill dropped and my aunt wouldn't let me listen because there were some curse words on there, but I was like nah, I'm gonna sneak this cassette tape in the basement because she's doing something so special that I want to do too. But then I knew I wanted to make music for real when I was in high school and I had the opportunity to start recording music.
My homie Hayling (of Columbia Nights) had a studio in his crib. There was this adjoining room he had right next to his bedroom and his Pops let him set up a studio in there. Pro Tools and all that. Those Saturdays when I would go kick it with him were some of my favorite days in high school. I used to look forward to those sessions OD. Every time I heard the records we made I wanted to do more. Those joints were definitely not good. But you couldn't tell me nothing circa '03-'04. I remember so distinctly having the thought that I wouldn't be able to keep doing this because I wasn't supposed to be a rapper. I was supposed to go to college, and be a preacher or a lawyer or something like that. But even after going to college I just couldn't leave this rap thing alone yo. By the time I entered grad school I knew I was going to be doing this for the long haul. And here we are.
How did you come up with the title for the album? What inspired that?
After my Kickstarter campaign successfully ended, one of my beloved communities, Elm City Vineyard Church in New Haven, CT, hosted me for a celebration performance and talkback session. Now, "guava" is obviously one of my favorite words. It sounds cool. It feels good to say. And I think it's just a dope word. It's also a backronym for Groups Undercounted Arise Very Adept I randomly asked people for dope variations on "guava." Guavamatic was one of those answers. I was like, 'huh, now that could work lol.' A woman named LaQruishia shouted it out and it definitely stuck in my head as something incredibly guavalicious. And then there's the whole connection to Nas' illmatic...guavamatic...levels B.
I wanted the music vibe on the album to feel spacey, like a dream. I feel like a lot of the lyrics were translated to me from the Divine in dream space so it only seemed right.
Who helped make this album possible? Writers, Producers, Muses, Support System, Etc
Bruh, the Peace and Power Family is mad guava'd out and flexxy like right now! 194 Kickstarter Backers. We raised $10,000 to make this happen, man. I'm too grateful for those folks who believed with their dollar bills.
About a month after the campaign ended I hit up Rod the Producer, a dope musician, producer, engineer from my hometown. On one hand, he's SUPER guavalicious. Like, dude is a genius. And I promise I don't use that word lightly. On the other hand, we were supposed to have worked together a couple years prior and I just felt like the time was right. His name just dropped on my heart one day. It was a Friday. I was at my barber shop and Al B. Sure! who was in town just happened to be up in there. My barber has cut the hair of like ALL the legends from my city so this wasn't exactly random. Al was dropping gems on the folks in there about following our purpose, and never knowing how our purpose could actually save lives. He had me all guava juiced up so after he dipped, I was like I need to hit up Roddy tonight! I hit him on the text like, Yo, where you at? I'm coming through." I pulled up to the studio, chopped it up with him, shared my vision for the project, and the rest is history as they say.
The rest of the production team is also super dope. I got a story for each of these folks, but maybe that's another interview. It's a heavy squad, man. Ibe Soliman, Hayling (who I mentioned before), Chucky Kim, Jarren "Xtra Medium" Simmons, and Sevy. My guest artists were Franceska Marie, Isaiah J. Tate, Alia "Li" Pierre, James Gardin, Antoine Dolberry, Destiny Davis-Tolbert, Tina Colon, Lillian F. Reynolds (my mama!) and Melay. My videographers and visual artists were Malcolm Douglas Brown and ZILLA. My general advisors were Rodney J. Reynolds (Pops!), R. Joshua Reynolds (my brother!), Arty McFly, Sarah Zapiler, Ashley Mui, Syreeta Gates, Hakim Pitts, Veracity Savant, Thomas Alston, and Isaiah DeLeon-Mares - may he rest in Peace and Power.
What is your dream now that you just accomplished this dream.
I still want to do the short film I mentioned earlier. Also, I want to continue establishing Peace and Power Media as an artistic hub that produces music, visual content, and written text. If you build it, they will come. And I'm building it. On some Nas, "start a label, run it, sign yourself." That's a major dream. I want to go on tour. Do pop-up shows all over. A Peace and Power Music Festival. I want it all man, lol.
What is your favorite track? Why?
Aww man, the answer to this question changes every day. Today, it's "Ready [Aim] Fire."
"Ready [Aim] Fire" because of how resilient it is. WIld story here. First, I had written a bulk of the lyrics a few years ago to a different beat. But the way Roddy and I ended up working was so organic and so connected that I HAD to move these words to the moment and music we were creating together. It has this 90s vibe to it. Pete Rock is one of Rod the Producer's mentors and we ALMOST got him on the track for the intro. The legend was in the studio, in the booth, ready to lay down vocals, Roddy pulled up the track....and all the files were distorted. Hence, Pete Rock vocals. After trying to find the distorted files and fix them through technology, we ended up just recording the track again. It ended up being the last song recorded for the project waaaaay after all the other tracks were recorded and mixed. Then we did a video for it. So it's definitely one of my favs.
Also, in the context of the album I feel like it's a turning point. It's track #3. And I feel like it's the point at which the listener really makes the commitment to experience the full Guavamatic Space Dream. That's what a few people have told me anyway. So I think its role as a threshold is also what makes it special to me.
Have you ever been Stereotype'd? Tell us more
Absolutely, I've been stereotyped. I'm a young black person living in the United States of America. Too many individual situations to even remember. But I'll tell of my first semester, freshman year at Yale when I was waiting at the campus shuttle stop for a friend who was visiting that weekend. A campus police officer approaches me, slowly, with his hand on his gun and cautiously asks: "Have you ever been to juvie before?" I replied, taken aback, "Nah, I live here. I'm waiting for my friend." Still not calm, he replied: "Oh, okay. You fit the description of someone we're looking for." And then, he walked away.
Have you ever broken a Stereotype someone had of you? Tell us about it.
Yes. When I first arrived a my prep school for 8th grade one of my classmates came up to me and asked if I was the new kid who came to play basketball. I told him I was the new kid there to go to school. And I dedicated my time there to doing everything and anything possible I could to never be put in a box. That was a really transitional moment for me, man.
Can you share some advice for someone trying to chase the Guavamatic Dream?
Don't stop. Listen to history. Look toward the future. Live in the moment. Let God do God's thing.
What would be your Guavamatic Dream collaboration for a song?
2016 3 Stacks. 1998 L Boogie. 1983 Purple One. 2040 My Own Child.
LISTEN & SUPPORT
As huge hip hop music fans and connoisseurs of beats it was a matter of time before we would link with OddKidOut. Fresh out of Philadelphia born and raised. Making music is where he spends most of his days. We got his new album 'Within' on repeat as we handcraft our new Summer Collection. We linked up with Butch Serianni to get a deeper look into his inspirations, creative process, favorite producers, goals, times he broke stereotypes and much more. This is one artist you should get to know as he is set to make some big things happen in 2016 and beyond. Read more...
What was your first piece of producing equipment?
My first piece of producing equipment was technically Logic Pro Express, which is like the starter version of Logic Pro X. My mom bought it for me on my birthday when I turned 14. The next piece of gear I acquired was my Native Instruments Maschine MK2. That was about a year later.
What producers inspire you?
My top favorite producers are J Dilla, Pharrell, 9th Wonder, Madlib, DJ Premier, Timbaland, Madlib, Pete Rock…I could keep going but I’m just going to stop there lol.
When did you know you wanted to make music?
This sounds super cliche, but my entire life. In my baby videos, the only thing to stop me from crying was when my parents would play music. I could only sleep if music was on while driving in the car, I was constantly dancing. My dad saw me air drumming in my car seat and he bought me my first drum set after that. It’s really been in me my entire life. It’s how I perceive my surroundings, how I execute my routines…I see ordinary things as rhythmic and melodic devices. Sounds weird, I know.
What inspired you to make this album?
The drive behind my EP was certain events in my life that pushed me into a different realm. Things like my dad almost passing away from cancer (multiple times) and my parents getting divorced, to losing a strong foundation of family all while still in high school really molded me into the person I am now. I don’t like to be a basket case, I know people go through much, much more than me. But personally, my experiences were building up inside of me and the best way to get them out was through music, and specifically the WITHIN EP. It was really cathartic for me to make this EP, instead of drowning my sorrows in drugs or acting out, I just locked myself in the studio and let the pain fade away.
How did you come up with the title for this album? #Inspirations
The EP was named WITHIN because it came from within me. My deepest emotions are in these songs, and the idea of being strong within and not having to rely on others is what keeps me afloat in the midst of the chaos in my life. I thought that it all fit well together, to have this EP be the representation of what is happening inside, or in other words, within me.
Who helped you make this album?
I produced all of the tracks on the EP, but I pulled support for vocals from some close friends and talented musicians. Ashley Leone sings on the second song, and her swooning vocals really captured the eerie emotion I wanted to convey. She’s been my homie for a couple years. GoGo Morrow and Bonic did their thing on the track “Amore”, and they did such a good job that it became the single of the EP. Working with them was really an honor as their track records are amazing, and they also just have great personalities and are fun to work with. Odyssey has also been my friend for years and we collaborate a lot. It was only a matter of time until we released something publicly and I was really excited about putting him on the EP, he really did his thing and closed the project out with a bang. My manager Kirkland Lynch helped out immensely with crafting the project, alongside with my stylist Muhammad Abdul-Hadi. My roommate and one of my best friends, Scott Solakian, also stayed up with me till 3 in the morning crafting the EP countless nights. He is the person I run all my music through because I trust his opinion more than anyone else’s.
Explain your process of making a beat
There really isn’t a set process for me. When I sit down, I don’t try to make something. I don’t go into a beat trying to create a certain sound or vibe because most of the time that just narrows your vision. What I work off of is emotion. If I’m feeling a certain way about something, I let myself loathe in that feeling, and then I start scrolling through sounds until I find something that speaks to me. It just feels organic to me to do it that way. I do, however, usually start with the melody and then build the drums, then the bass, and then add the extra layers afterwards. When I sample music, I just sit back and listen to songs all the way through (I usually read a book during listening), and then make mental notes as to where I want to chop the song. I read during because it allows me to hear the music differently than if I just sat there trying to analyze every little piece.
What is your favorite track? Why?
My favorite track on the EP is probably Amore. It resonated with me so much because it was one of those times where I was like, “Oh, I just made a song”. A lot of my music is hiphop, beat oriented, so I get excited when I break out of that mold sometimes. Of course that soulful vibe is always present, though.
What is your goal as a producer and artist in general?
My goal as a producer is to create music that speaks to people’s soul. Whether it makes them bob their head, smile, dance, etc, I want my music to be a safe haven. Nothing makes me happier than seeing people vibe to music; it’s sort of like a medicine in the way that it can cure your state of mind. Even if a teenager somewhere is stressed or depressed, I want them to listen to a sad song that I’ve created and find solace in it.
Have you ever broke a Stereotype someone had of you? Tell us about it
Hmm, I think I have definitely broken a few. My first experience was being in a room of very talented musicians when I was only 15 years old. It was a jam session in Philadelphia, and everyone there was 30+ years old. I watched tentatively as they all played, and eventually decided that I would head up and hop behind the drums. When I got behind it, I could see all their faces, thinking what the hell is this little kid gonna do. But when I started playing, everyone started looking at me like I was as old as them because I crushed it. So that just goes to show, don’t judge a book by its cover!
If you could have 3 artists on one of your beats who would they be?
Jeez, that is a tough one. Okay, I think I would have Anderson .Paak, Nas and Kendrick Lamar on the track. I would die and go to heaven twice if that happened.
What is your dream for 2016?
I want to get some really good placements, meaning that I would produce beats for high level artists. I want to work with the best in the game, and I know that is an ambitious statement, but I know I can get there.
Where can people find you? (social media, website, upcoming shows)
People can find me on any social media by simply searching @oddkidout. Twitter has an underscore (@oddkidout_) because some inactive jerk has the normal @oddkidout username taken. But I am most active on my Instagram page and that is where I post my live shows, new releases, etc. You can also find the WITHIN EP on all musical platforms (iTunes, Spotify, Soundcloud, etc).
What is some advice you would give to up and coming producers trying to be like you?
I would say don’t try to be like me. Just be yourself. If you try to emulate something or someone else, you will just fade away eventually. Aside from your own doubts, most of the time the uniqueness that we all embody is what draws people in the most. If you can get over the fear of doing what you truly love and think is cool, regardless of what is popular, you can really make some headway. If people are beginning to look at me as someone to look up to, I hope they realize that I’m still just a 20 year old kid who is making music that is true to who I am. And I’ve been scared shitless many times thinking that no one would rock with what I do because it’s different. So be you, that’s the most important thing. Be happy, be confident, be you.
LISTEN TO 'WITHIN' EP
We had the pleasure of linking up with wrestler PB Smooth. Originally from Hempstead, New York who played college basketball for D1 Hofstra University & D2 Mercyhurst University. Check out our exclusive interview with PB. An active dreamer who has a bright future. He speaks on what he learned from wrestling, the stereotypes, advice for athletes, what he eats before a match, training regime, his dream championship match and much more!
What have you learned from wrestling that you can apply to every day hustle?
One thing I’ve learned from training and being involved with independent wrestling is that it is IMPERATIVE to be strong-minded. With Professional Wrestling, there is a lot more creative freedom than people would perceive. You have the ability in most cases to create your own identity and persona, but you can’t live and die by it. You must be ready and willing to try new things if one thing doesn’t work. Generally speaking, I have learned that not every promoter, wrestler, or fan will support every decision you make; there are also times that a promoter or wrestler can try to convince another wrestler into doing things that he or she may not feel safe or comfortable doing. It’s a constant battle between figuring out what works and knowing when to stay true to what you believe in. Whether it be a gimmick you feel can really work; saying “no” to a spot in a match you aren’t ready for; or just being confident enough to take criticism and not allow it to break you, a strong mind is a MUST HAVE in this business. I’ve been fortunate that although my first experience is still a work in progress, I get a lot of support from the locker room and my promoter (Jamie Scott of Pro Wrestling Rampage) with the direction I’m headed, so I am confident that it will work.
How often do you train?
My training consists of many different things. I lift weights 4 days a week, do cardio 2-3 days a week, core training every day, and yoga about once a week. In terms of in-ring training, I do it whenever opportunities present themselves. I’ve been to several different training seminars; one led by “Asylum,” who is a big Indy star and another by “The Franchise” Shane Douglas, who was the first ECW Heavyweight Champion. On a regular basis I am trained by Aaron “Omega” Draven and “Big League” John McChesney, both well-established stars on the Indy Pro Wrestling Circuit whom have competed in the ring with and against some of the biggest names in the wrestling business. I also spend time every day watching film of big men in wrestling that have styles and move sets that correlate with the type of wrestler I aim to be. Some of these wrestlers include Razor Ramon, Diesel, Ernie Ladd, and Test. Other wrestlers- such as J-Rocc, out of Cleveland, Ohio and “Big Time” Bill Collier- have watched some of my training and given me tons of feedback on what I can improve on. On top of all of these things, I also find time to work on promos and finding new ways to display the entertaining aspect of my in-ring character. Whether I am in the ring or out, there is something I am doing every day that relates to my craft and can be considered training.
What advice would you give young athletes?
The best advice I could give to young athletes is to stay the course. As athletes, we are always told what it takes and means to be successful at our sport; it is even possible to surf the internet to find the perfect workouts, training regime, and/or diets to help us accomplish our goals. However, I feel the ultimate factor in obtaining set goals is consistency. There are thousands of athletes that can work hard for a day, a week, or even a few months. To be a great athlete, I feel that it takes a year round commitment, maybe even a lifestyle change. You have to be consistent with your work ethic as well as everything else to truly reach your potential as an athlete.
We see you got a couple of tattoos. What was your first? Tell us the story
At this point I have about 38 tattoos. My first one and one of the last ones I’ve gotten are actually my two favorites so I will elaborate on them. The first tattoo I got was one on the right side of my chest. It says, “Suffer Now Rejoice Later.” I got it when I was 17 and the phrase is truly the essence of my being. I was raised to believe that hard work is the difference between being great and mediocre, so I adopted this mindset to give myself a better shot of fulfilling my dreams and aspirations later in life. The other tattoo is a unicorn on the back of my left arm. It symbolizes me forever embracing my strength, freedom and eccentricity. I spent a lot of time trying to find the unicorn that looked less feminine, and the unicorn head on the stereotype beanies matched up as a perfect visual of what I was looking for, so the tattoo has a resemblance with your work!
What do you eat before a match?
Before shows or training, even leading up to the show, I try to maintain a healthy diet. I feel as though what you’ve been eating on a consistent basis is what makes the big difference in your body, as opposed to just eating a particular way right before a match. I do struggle at times to maintain the correct diet for my goals but for the most part I eat a lot of healthy foods such as : boneless/skinless chicken, vegetables, sweet potatoes, granola for snacks, and a few other things. I am currently trying to put on more muscle so I am now aiming to intake about 5,000 calories a day, but I don’t want to lose my lean figure and abdominal muscles at the same time. As of now it is a work in process.
Who are your biggest inspirations to follow your dreams?
I’d say my biggest inspirations are my friends, family, and coaches that believe in my dream. Although I was raised to be a basketball player- and followed that mold throughout my college years- I’ve had many passions in life. Wrestling was something I was extremely passionate about, but being that this type of wrestling isn’t something you go to school for, I never knew how to get into the business and just focused my efforts on being the best basketball player I could be. When I decided not to play overseas professionally and come back to school to finish my Masters, a lot of my old teammates told me that I should get into wrestling because of how much I loved it. They also felt I had the size and personality for it, but still I never actively pursued it. I was lucky enough that a girl I was working with at the time knew about Indy Wrestling and got me in touch with John McChesney, and from there it just happened. When I told friends and family about my wrestling, a good amount of them understood why I was doing it and automatically supported me. My personal trainer back in New York (I now reside in Erie, Pa) even found a specific workout plan that is tailored to what I am doing with wrestling and sent it to me. It also just so happens that my grandmother watches WWE religiously and has been a big fan ever since I could remember, so the thought of her being able to see her grandson wrestle inspires me on a whole new level. Although there are many people that don’t agree with my life choice and think it isn’t safe, there are just as many people that support me, and they are enough to aid in my motivation to hustle hard with this business.
Call the Coroner because I'm Fresh to Death. Can you explain what this means?
One thing I’ve learned watching all the greats in the wrestling business, is that they all have their own catchphrases that get the crowd engaged. It’s like a finishing touch that puts emphasis on what was just said. I think this is a very important component when trying to get the audience to identify with your persona. PB Smooth is basically that big man on campus you always see that thinks he’s ‘that dude.” He dresses in unnecessary expensive clothing, always has a clean haircut, shows off his muscles, thinks he’s the best looking guy in the room, and displays a type of cockiness but calm swag about himself; as if he doesn’t care or fear anything or anyone around him. With that being said, Call the Coroner, I’m Fresh to Death is sort of an urban slang that is a way of telling someone you are better than them, in a more hip way. Just as if a commentator at a basketball game would say something like, “Call the fire department because this man’s on fire!” or 90s hip hop would describe someone’s outfit as “dressed to impress.” Me saying “Call the Coroner, I’m Fresh to Death,” is a play on words that how cool I am and how dope I look with the way I’m dressed and the things I say. Call the Coroner is also fitting because I use the Chokeslam as my finisher. With my height at almost 7 feet tall, once my opponents hit the ground from being lifted that high in the air, it’s game over. Call the Coroner!Many people are under the impression that wrestling is fake.
Many people are under the impression that wrestling is fake. Can you explain this stereotype?
I want to start of by saying many wrestlers and promoters have different ways of answering this question and my response is my own words. I personally feel that people don’t understand what wrestling is supposed to be, and that’s why they dismiss it or call it fake without even really watching it or giving it a chance. If I were to be discussing an episode of say, “Game of Thrones,” with someone and they were talking about how much they enjoyed the show and the characters. If I were to say, “You know it’s fake right?” that person would probably give me a confused look, like I just popped their balloon or something. Pro Wrestling is not to be looked at as if it is boxing, or UFC. It tells a story through the spirit of competition. It incorporates athletics with an entertainment aspect. More emphasis is put on provoking crowd emotion and shock value, than who actually wins the match. If I am a heel (bad guy), my job is to make everyone in that crowd hate me, just like whoever plays the villain in a movie you watch. If that actor can’t make you hate them in the movie, they aren’t a good actor, so the same concept applies. The only difference is that what we do is more real than any movie you see because we are actually in the ring performing in real time, without special effects and film editing. What we do in that ring is very much real. If it weren’t, people wouldn’t get hurt and injured as much as they do. WWE has maybe 5 or 6 of their top guys out right now due to injuries sustained in the ring, which isn’t something you can fake. You rarely hear about an actor getting hurt on set. So in a nutshell, what we do incorporates athleticism, competition (in a different aspect), and story telling. We are both athletes and entertainers and I believe what we do is a sport.
What is your favorite slogan that inspires you?
My favorite slogan, which will probably be a new tattoo soon is, “Fortune Favors The Bold.” I don’t remember exactly who started it, but I read it in a book entitled Extreme Focus by Pat Williams. I believe that in the wrestling business, as well as in every day life, that this slogan deems true. It is very important to be able to make decisions in life. If you make a decision and stick by it, you can either be right or wrong. We can learn from the decisions we make and they teach us courage, confidence, and right from wrong. I think being indecisive in today’s world is very deadly and can be a complete dream killer. The decisions we make in life, big or small, impact us in a major way and indecisiveness does not give us a fair shot and making the right decision.
What is the biggest Stereotype of wrestling? Explain
Aside from the stereotype of wrestling being fake, which I touched on, I think another big one is the validity of Independent Wrestling. Just like me in the beginning, most people only knew about WWE (that was WWF at the time I first started watching) because that was all I saw on television. Just because that was the only Pro Wrestling promotion I knew about at the time, didn’t mean that others didn’t exist. I’ve later learned that WWE is just the grand scale of wrestling, such as how the NBA is with basketball. There is still great wrestling on independent shows around the country such as Pro Wrestling Rampage (Erie, Pa), Empire State Wrestling (Buffalo, NY), International Wrestling Cartel (Pittsburgh, Pa) and many others. There are also other big name promotions such as Ring of Honor and Lucha Underground. I am beginning to see a lot of great wrestlers on these Independent Markets and a lot of names on WWE today have worked their way up by being discovered on Indy shows. Our last PWR show, we worked a tag match that included Yusuke Kodama, who is a big star for New Japan Wrestling that was trained by wrestling legend, Tajiri. There are a lot of great independent wrestling shows and wrestlers out there that I feel don’t get the credit they deserve. Just like there is the NBA, D-League, and overseas basketball that all have great players, Pro wrestling operates in sort of the same way.
Who was the best pound for pound fighter the business has ever seen?
I honestly couldn’t answer that; I feel it is a matter of preference.
Tell us some of your new dreams
My big picture dream is to be on the WWE main roster, which would require me to try out for WWE’s development league at some point and work my way up. I am still in the very early stages of my wrestling career and I have literally thousands of things to learn. For the next few years I just plan on building my body up, gaining a lot of in-ring experience, and absorbing all the knowledge possible from my trainers and other wrestlers I come into contact with. I have to fully embrace the humble beginnings and learn the business the right way so that I am ready should an opportunity present itself.
What would be your dream championship match? PB Smooth vs ?
I would have to say my dream match would be me vs. The Rock. I personally feel The Rock is the Jay-Z of the wrestling business. I say that because he was able to transfer his skills and talents from the ring into other aspects of life, which not everyone can do. I enjoy watching his work and think I would learn a lot from being in the ring with him.
Connect with PB
Facebook: PB Smooth