RF Video Shoot Interview with Tracy Smothers, Disc Two

This is the second and final disc of the shoot
It runs for two hours and sixteen minutes
The interview is conducted by Brett Lauderdale

Smothers talks about the incident in which Vader slapped the reporter in Kuwait. He worked with him in a short match the night before as he had food poisoning. Vader got tripped on his way to the ring and went after some people in the stands. Smothers said that Vader got in as much trouble for swearing on TV then he did slapping the guy.
He talks about working in Japan after SMW closed down. He worked for New Japan and for the W*ING promotion. He calls Kenta Kobashi the best Japanese wrestler he ever wrestled. He talks about working for All Japan and accidentally messed up the finish against Giant Baba and was never brought back. He also said that Mr. Pogo hit him in the back of the head and needed 18 stitches as a result then beat the shit out of him afterwards.
He talks about getting hired by the WWF. Bruce Prichard showed him around the office and interviewed them. He was hired with Bill Irwin, Alex Porteau, Tom Brandi, and Tony Anthony. He got a call from Bruce later on that he was going to be Freddie Joe Floyd and Smothers didn’t mind because he had a job.
His first show with the WWF was a “Superstars” taping two nights after the 1996 King of the Ring show. In his first match, Smothers faced Bradshaw, who he knew from Japan, but said he changed a lot and did not want to put him over so Bradshaw kicked out of his finish then put his chin in Bradshaw’s chest and held him down for the pin. Bradshaw beat him in the second taping as Smothers said how Bradshaw was stiff with everyone. He was told about being put on the house shows against Bradshaw but that never materialized and only did a few house shows in the WWF, usually against Tony Anthony. He did say that he was allowed to do independent shows as long as he got approval from the office and that Cornette always said yes unless it was for someone who the company had heat with.
Smothers said that Vince was always cool with him but he never saw him much and Vince was focused on beating WCW in the ratings.
As far as agents he worked with, he was with Tony Garea, Rene Goulet, Dave Hebner, George Steele, and Blackjack Lanza.
He talks about working with Steve Austin on a “Superstars” and how he was one of the best heels in the business, which most people forget. He said that he worked his ass off too.
He talks about how Shawn and the Undertaker did not like him or the other Smoky Mountain guys. Smothers said that Bret was cool.
Smothers said that he worked with guys like Barry Horowitz and the Headbangers but that he did not like his gimmick and had a hurt groin. He said that when his banjo music played for the first time he made a comment about wanting to change the gimmick and turned around and saw Bruce Prichard and Kevin Kelly, who did not seem to happy.
He then talks about having heat with Jake Roberts and how one day, he took the Godwinn’s rent-a-car and took off and never came back. Smothers talks about how they split up the Gunn’s and Billy & Tony Anthony faced Bart and himself. Roberts told Smothers and Anthony before the match that the program is between the Gunn’s and they should not have been here and must have sucked off someone to even get into the company. Smothers said that he was pissed and went off to the bathroom and said he started to shadow-box in the bathroom then they went out and had the match and Roberts congratulated them all first for doing a good job at selling.
Smothers then goes off on a rant on Bradshaw, Undertaker, and Shawn Michaels for getting a ton of people fired during their career. He then calls the Harris Brothers “kiss ass mother fuckers” for sucking up to the Undertaker. Smothers says that the inmates run the asylum and that there are many talented guys that will never have a chance. He talks about how if he bought TNA, the first thing he would do is fire Sting and Hogan to free up $2 million dollars.
Now, Smothers talks about how he left the WWF. He was at a “Shotgun Saturday Night” taping and went long with Tony Anthony in their match and as a result, the Blackjacks vs. Furnas & LaFon match did not happen and those guys were pissed as they had to stay for the taping. Well, before the match, Bruce Prichard kept on switching the times of the match and Smothers said that he actually heard Lawler tell Bruce Prichard that he should not be with the company as he was working shows for Bert Prentice, who was Lawler’s opposition then heard Prichard tell Lawler that this was going to be his last day. After the match when they walked back, Prichard asked them why they missed the cue as Smothers saw Cornette and said that he is being sick of getting fucked with and that is revved up and called the Undertaker a “motherfucker” and called him the ringleader. Smothers said that he kept walking and Owen Hart followed him in the dressing room and both teams and Ron Simmons came in and Smothers said that he was not fucking with them and that he ended the match when he got the cue. Also at this time, his contract was expiring in a few weeks and he knew that he had a job with Heyman so it did not matter. After he showered, Phil LaFon asked him what happened and Smothers said that he got the cue when he did and the WWF let his contract expire.
When asked about the drug scene in the WWF at that time, Smothers said the drugs were kept hidden and not around the locker room. He said that no one was on the juice then due to fear of the testing. However, he does tell a story about Ahmed Johnson and how Delta Security hooked him up with steroids while they were in Kuwait but that he couldn’t sneak them back into the country.
Smothers said that the ECW locker room had a cool atmosphere. He also said it was a lot more relaxed too. Smothers then talks about how Heyman took the violence to a different level in 2000.
Now, Smothers is asked about working in front of a lot of “smart” fans in ECW and if it was harder. He said that it was as they knew the business so you had to work harder and the expectations were higher. He also said that it felt fresh.
Smothers talks about how Heyman made RVD, Tommy Dreamer, and Taz into stars. He also talks about how he got over younger guys like Roadkill, Danny Doring, and Chris Chetti.
He said it was a blast working under Paul Heyman, saying that he made it fun. He then talks about how Paul moves quick and that he came up with the idea for him to join the F.B.I five minutes before he went out to the ring. Smothers puts over Little Guido for being a great wrestler.
Smothers said that he knew Tommy Rich since 1983 and how he was always drinking beers in the parking lot, where a lot of them partied.
When asked about Taz, Smothers liked working with him and puts over his judo background. Smothers said that Shane Douglas could cut great promos. The interviewer asks if Shane’s promos against other stars like Flair hurt him, Smothers said that he doesn’t as he was doing cutting edge stuff and one of the top heels in the business.
He calls Raven smart and eccentric and has a great mind for the business. He also believes that politics kept him from being a bigger star.
Smothers recalls working with Rhino in his tryout match and how he told Rhino to do the spear on him and it nearly broke him in half.
He then talks about the end of his ECW run. They were cutting costs and he had been there for over two years and they made Little Guido a singles wrestler. Heyman never told him that he was let go but he took the hint when they stopped using him and was mad because he never got proper notice. He did state that Dreamer got him booked on some of the house show loops in the Southeast.
Smothers said that he never saw anyone in ECW so messed up that they could not perform.
He talks about the “One Night Stand” PPV. Vince told them all that they were going to restart the ECW brand.  Smothers said that Vince put them up in a hotel and shuttled them to the venue. He also talks about how glad everyone was to be there and see each other.
Now, Smothers talks about the JBL/Blue Meanie incident. Smothers said that JBL had been drinking all day long. He said that before they did the walkthrough, Danny Doring asked him this was going to be a shoot as the atmosphere was strange. Smothers said that the ECW guys were all there hoping to get a job. He then said that he heard JBL tell the WWE guys not to hesitate to knock one of the ECW guys the fuck out, to which Smothers told JBL that it was a two-way street. When the brawl took place, Smothers noticed that JBL was waffling Blue Meanie. Smothers said that he was with Tomko, who was hitting him hard on the back . When that ended, Smothers said that he went over to JBL to ask what happened, as he never knew of any problem between him and Meanie, then JBL said “fuck you” to Smothers and punched him in the back of the head .Smothers said that he rabbit punched JBL after that and might have given him a black eye. After that, Smothers went over to Sandman and saw some other brawling then laid some more shots into JBL. Backstage, JBL was pissed at Meanie. Smothers then talks about how he trash-talked JBL in an interview and how it circulated around the internet, which helped him get independent bookings. Smothers said how he is not afraid of JBL then goes on about how he is a backstabbing son of a bitch who got a ton of people fired.
Smothers is asked about Chris Hero, who he helped train. He says that he hopes Hero gets over but the WWE is spiteful and will fuck with you on purpose. Smothers then puts over Hero for studying the business and being a great teacher.
When asked if he has any regrets, Smothers talks about how he got to travel the world and had a lot of fun, noting how you could never do that at another job.
He then tells the smart fans that they should not be so quick to dog a match and just to enjoy it and have fun. Smothers says how not every match will be rated 5 stars and to just cheer and boo the wrestlers as you paid the ticket. He says that if you hate it that bad, why would you even go to the shows.
Right now, Smothers is a delivery manager at a pizza restaurant in Indiana. He is asked if he was mad that he never made more money, Smothers said that his temper and lack of political savvy probably cost him money but he made a good, middle-class living.
When asked if he watches the WWE today, Smothers says he works nights and will catch AM RAW and says that they need to slow it down today, especially when it comes to selling.
He would love to be around the business today and says how he still works on occasion today but cannot move around too well. He then shows his flag, which is attached to a solid tree branch, that was given to him by a Klansman in Pikeville, KY in case he ever got into any trouble. Smothers says that he is not in the Klan
Smothers closes by saying how wrestling is the best business in the world and he would like to make it fun.
Final Thoughts: This disc was just as entertaining as the first. Smothers could take about wrestling for days, even if you would want him to stop.
One thing I took away at the end is how a battered and broke Smothers is reduced to delivering pizza and wrestling at indy shows to support himself at 50 years old. It is really just a sad reminder of what can happen to wrestlers when they finish their careers. Smothers said he had a few years in which he made six figures but that was it.
I recommend the shoot interview as it is entertaining and quick moving.

RF Video Shoot Interview with Tracy Smothers, Disc One

This video was released in 2013. It is a two-disc set
The first disc runs at two hours and thirty-six minutes long.
The interview was conducted by Brett Lauderdale
Smothers starts by saying that he grew up outside of Nashville, TN. He said that he first watched wrestling by seeing Nick Gulas’ territory then when Jerry Jarrett ran his company, he became more popular and ended up buying out Gulas’ territory. A few minutes later, he talks about how he would sneak out of his house at night in order to go watch the matches as his parents did not want him to go to the matches.
He played football and wrestling in High School and in College. Smothers jokes that he could have done better in wrestling if he didn’t always try to chase girls. Smothers then goes on about the girls he was chasing in high school and then about having to cut weight.
Smothers broke into the business while he was in college. He went to Carson-Newman. He was going to college to be a coach and a teacher. Smothers goes off about chasing a girl and how hot she was then talks about how he probably got a few concussions on special teams then cracked a vertebrae in his neck and tore up his knee too. He would see the wrestlers in the gym, like the Fabulous Ones, and saw how they were in great shape.
He goes ahead and tells a story about the Barbarian. Smothers left the gym as he was walking in and the next day, the guys at the gym told Tracy about the Barbarian’s workout routine, which was absolutely insane. That day, Steve Keirn called him up and said he needed him to work that night against the new guy. They told him that he had to work against the Barbarian and joked that he needed to go back to college. Smothers said he had only trained twice at this point and screwed up everything as the Barbarian was new himself.
When asked about the Fabulous Ones, who helped break in Smothers, Smothers said that he loved them and that the Fabulous Ones would train him while they were on the road. Smothers said that he and one other guy were the only ones that stuck around.
Smothers talks about how Tojo Yammamoto trained him too and said if Tojo trained people today, he would be arrested for murder. Smothers said he went to work for Gulas and got a $5 payout, with $3 of it in quarters. He worked in the ring with some guy who was also Green but started to shoot on him so Smothers beat the shit out of him then the whole dressing room ran out and broke it up. The guy also pulled a knife out against him but Smothers took it away .Smothers talks about how the Fabulous Ones told him to stand up to a fan or a guy taking advantage of you. Back to the fight, Smothers broke out and got into his car and drove away. He came back the next week and was introduced to Yammamoto and Gypsy Joe. Smothers said that Joe was a bad dude then talks about the incident between Joe and New Jack from several years ago when Jack shot on Joe, who was 73 years old at the time. Smothers said that Joe refused to work with Jack and was swearing at him then went on to say how a lot of fights Jack gets into is the result of everyone going up to his opponent and stirring up rumors how Jack is planning to shoot on them in the ring. Smothers then said how Joe was working in construction, at age 73, five days a week while wrestling Wednesday-Sunday at small shows in Nashville. Smothers said that he saw Joe a few days afterwards and that Joe was back wrestling.
Smothers goes on and on about various things that happened in Memphis, including how Randy Savage made him look great in an eleven minute match then ended it by suplexing Smothers onto the floor. Smothers said he thanked Savage after the match, who told Smothers to never thank anyone who suplexes you on the floor. Smothers also talks about how Iron Mike Sharpe and Koko Ware helped him out in Memphis.
After Memphis, Smothers went to work for Bill Watts. This was 1986. He was supposed to go with Billy Travis and Koko Ware but Travis decided to stay in Memphis as Koko came in a few months later. Smothers said that Terry Taylor gave him his first full-time job in wrestling.
He now tells a story about how he got into a fight in a small town in Louisiana. Smothers stopped at a store to get gas and was stopped by a black guy who asked him for money. Smothers was walking back to his car and saw three other guys on the side as the guy followed him out. Smothers said that he always kept a baseball bat in his trunk too. Anyway, the guy went to sucker punch him but Smothers stopped him then smashed his face off of the cement. Smothers said that he had about $1,000 in cash to last for two weeks because Watts paid you bi-weekly. Smothers said he was scared as he was just 21 years old. The three guys charged after him and Smothers took them all out by smashing their knees with his bat. He then jumped in the car and even tried to run over him over and left.
Smothers talks about the roster in Mid-South when he arrived. He said that Steve Williams was the baddest man in wrestling from 1983-1992. Smothers tells a story involving Steve Williams and Rick Steiner seeing a man in a car that was on fire in the road and went out and ripped the door off of the car and saved his life. He said that Jake was getting ready to leave for the WWF. Dick Slater was there and the booker before Terry Taylor took over.
He tells the story of how Dick Slater beat up Sting. It was the Summer of 1986 and Sting was teaming with Jim Hellwig as the Blade Runners, who were very green in the ring and hurting people too. Back to the story, Smothers said that Dark Journey was with Slater but the rumor going around was that Sting was fooling around with Dark Journey. One night in the locker room, Smothers noticed that Slater had his hands taped and was playing cards with Terry Taylor, who he hated, and was revving up as he was losing. Slater then got up and went after Sting and Smothers said you could hear an argument. Smothers said he heard from everyone that Slater ended up hitting him then sticking Sting’s head into the toilet and flushed. Smothers said that Slater beat the shit out of him and that Hellwig was going to come over to help out but Smothers saw Dick Murdoch knee him in the nuts then grab him by the throat. After the commotion, Slater came out and was still pissed, with Sting’s face paint on him and yelled at Smothers and DJ Peterson, who was also new to the business, and yelled that if they did not respect the veterans then they should get the fuck out of the business. Smothers said that after that, Sting started to become a better worker.
After Mid-South, Smothers ended up in Florida. He said that he teamed with Steve Armstrong against the New Breed. Smothers said that he traveled with Armstrong and Scott Hall at the time. He also worked a few shows for Crockett at the end of 1987 against the Midnight Express and Dusty told them that they were going to bring them to the territory to work the “B” shows, as Chris Champion of the New Breed got into a car accident and hurt his arm so he could not compete. After their matches, Smothers said that the Midnight’s got paid triple what they got and he and Steve were tired and homesick and ended up going home, walking out of the TV tapings they were scheduled for, which Smothers regrets and chalks up to being young and stupid.
Smothers went on to work for Robert Fuller in the CWA. However, Fuller brought in the Rockers after they got fired from the WWF and that knocked out Smothers from his spot. He said that after that, Jerry Jarrett would not sign him right away and Smothers worked in a tobacco field until Jarrett finally hired him. He said the Rockers did not last long at all and Smothers said that they got fired after Shawn signed “queers are people to” on the back of a kid’s shirt, who happened to be the son of a sponsor, so Bob Armstrong had to fire them.
The interviewer tells Tracy that he had to start shortening up his answers as he has a lot of questions to ask. Tracy apologizes and tells the interviewer to remind him because he has had 32 concussions and 9 mini-strokes in his life. That is terrifying. And later in the disc, Smothers talks about how he received a concussion from a back suplex while working in SMW then flew to Japan a day later and received another one when Terry Funk hit him in the back of the head with a chair.
He talks about how he got back into WCW with Steve Armstrong in 1990. He said that Kevin Sullivan, Eddie Gilbert, and Jim Cornette got them into the company. He said that Jim Herd was running things and they had a booking committee that including the three guys listed above and Flair. This lasted until Ole Anderson came in shortly afterwards. He said that Dusty changed their name from the Southern Boys to the Young Pistols due to the controversy of the Confederate Flag they had with their gimmick.
Smothers said that Ole Anderson ran a tight ship and had Bob Roop as an agent, who was a tough guy. Smothers said that they did not have any heat with the veterans, who he joked that they liked working with them more than the Steiners, who Smothers said were in their prime and very, very stiff. Smothers said that some of the boys in the locker room were a bothered a little because Stan Hansen did not work stiff with them in the ring. Smothers then said that he heard that Lex Luger and Sting tried to get Ole Anderson fired and when that failed, Ole brought in Stan Hansen to work with them as a result to beat them up.
He is asked about Ric Flair. Smothers said he wanted everyone to have a good time and would get everyone drunk as he wanted them to have a good time. He said how Flair would get everyone from the owners to the janitors drunk. Smothers also said how Flair would tip the hotel shuttle bus drivers enough money to pick him and the rest of the lower card workers up at the Days Inn or Red Roof Inn to go to the Marriott, where Flair stayed. He said the next morning, Flair would be up in the gym using the Stairmaster for an hour. Smothers doesn’t think he slept more than four hours a night.
When asked about steroids, Smothers said that they were not talked about in the locker room but it did not become an issue until the WWF steroid scandal. Smothers said that WCW basically gave you two weeks notice as they would put in on the schedule for you to be the early, and only looked for cocaine due to the crack-cocaine epidemic.
Smothers goes off track for a bit to tell a story about PN News. They are in the dressing room in St. Louis as Stan Hansen came off of a plane from Japan and was in a mood. News was young and getting a push at the time and scheduled to face Hansen that night. Smothers said that Hansen would love to read the newspaper and wore thick glasses as his vision was quite poor. Anyway, News called Hansen an “old man” and the locker room went silent as no one answered Stan when he asked if News called him an old man. Finally, Sid Vicious tells Stan “Fuck yeah he said you were an old man” and Stan said that was what he thought he said and Stan beat the shit out of News in the ring as a result.
He talks about the Midnight Express and how Bobby Eaton was the best heel in the business at that time. Smothers said in the locker room, you knew the two best workers were Brad Armstrong and Bobby Eaton. Smothers said that Cornette was the one who laid out the matches and finishes and says no one studies the business more than Cornette. Smothers talks about the Freebirds and puts over Michael Hayes and Jimmy Garvin for their psychology.
Smothers is asked about The Undertaker, who started out as the Punisher in Memphis then was Mean Mark Callous. Smothers said that he was a natural in the ring. Back then, Smothers said he was a nice guy then makes a side comment about how he is not anymore. Smothers then said that he was a bouncer at a badass biker bar and part of the Hell’s Angels. He tells a story about the Undertaker dropping four or five guys in a row in a bar in Tennessee after they tried fucking with him then when the bouncers tried to intervene, Taker told him that he was going home and they all got out of his way as he left.
He talks about how he almost quit the business in 1992 after all of the turmoil in WCW but Jim Cornette convinced him to ditch the rebel gimmick and come to Smoky Mountain Wrestling. Smothers said that he did not get into the WWF around this time as Jerry Jarrett was there as a consultant and since Smothers had left him twice before in Memphis to go with Steve rather than to stay and tag with Jeff Jarrett. He gave Steve Armstrong a job as Lance Cassidy. Smothers also heard a rumor that in 1988, after Barry Horowitz gave pictures of Smothers and Steve Armstrong to Pat Patterson in hopes that he would bring them in but Shawn Michaels dogged them because he thought the following year that Bob Armstrong fired him to bring in Smothers and his son, Steve.
Smothers goes forward to 1996 and tells a story about the Undertaker. He talks about how he knew the Undertaker from when he first broke in but had not seen him since. In the locker room, the Bodydonnas and Kloudy were standing there and Smothers saw Taker go off on Kloudy about how people will do anything to get into the business. Smothers knew Taker to be smiling and joking when they were in WCW so he decided to crack a joke and ask Taker how long has he been dead for, referencing his gimmick. Well, Taker got up and was pissed and Smothers backed away. Shortly after that, Shawn came in and made a crack to Smothers about how he got a job with the WWF. Smothers knew he had heat with Shawn then tried to make a playful comment after Shawn brought up how he got fired by Bob Armstrong about Shawn being on top of the world now and not to think about several years ago and Shawn was pissed about that. He also said how Shawn had heat with the whole Armstrong family for years as a result but made amends was helped Bob Armstrong get inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.
Between leaving WCW and going to Smoky Mountain, Smothers worked security for some country music stars and worked as a bouncer. He said as a bouncer, guys would give him shit for getting let go from WCW and got into a lot of fights. Smothers said at that time, he considered getting his CDL to become a driver for one of the groups but still wanted to wrestle and Cornette was calling him, encouraging Smothers to not quit the business.
In Smoky Mountain, Smothers talks about some of the towns and their crazy hillbilly fans. He talks about wrestling against Brian Lee with Sherri Martel as his valet, calling Sherri the best valet of all-time.
While working for Smoky Mountain, Smothers would also do tours of Japan. After about two years in SMW, Ricky Morton, who was helping Cornette, told Tracy that he did not think they had a spot for him in the company, as he already spent two years at the top of the card. Tracy suggested that they move him down the card and he pointed at a young kid to work with, saying that he could get him over. That kid happened to be Chris Candido. Smothers said that Candido worked his ass off and Ricky asked Cornette, who approved the idea. Smothers said that worked ladder matches.
As far as pay in Smoky Mountain, Smothers said that faces were allowed to sell gimmicks at the shows and had a better deal. He said that he would give the heel he worked with 10-20% of the gimmick money because they were the reason people would buy his stuff, to help pay for some of their expenses.
He is asked about Chris Candido passing away. Smothers said that he cleaned up and was working his ass off and made him want to get back into wrestling as at that point, Smothers was a bounty hunter and repossessing cars. Smothers said how Candido was upbeat and that Dusty Rhodes hired him for TNA and was going to do the Hardcore Homecoming as Smothers gets misty-eyed as he recalls his friends like Candido and Brad Armstrong passing away. He said that whenever a friend of his in the business passes away, his mind gets on the business and that he can hear their ring music and says it is almost a supernatural event.
Smothers is asked about his matches against Brian Lee in SMW. He calls him a good strong kid and when asked why he did not make it, Smothers said it was all due to drugs and that Lee himself would tell you the same thing. Smothers said that he recently spoke with Lee who is now working in construction after losing a ton of weight due to his use.
He is asked about the Gangstas coming to Smoky Mountain. He said that their first day, they had legitimate gang members from the hood in the parking lot of the show, which was in the middle of a KKK area. Smothers said he is not into racism and that we all bleed red and are god’s children but that day, a cop came up to him and said that there were twenty “n*****s” in the parking lot and they were not going to let this go on and the cop asked him if they were wrestlers so he said that they were then after that, New Jack cut the infamous O.J. Simpson promo and afterwards, Ricky Morton told Cornette that they could draw money with them.
Still speaking about the Gangsters, Smothers said that New Jack was at a show that featured an all white audience then cut a promo in the ring saying that they were the Gangstas and they were black then proceeded to rub his arm and told the crowd that it will not come off. At another outdoor show, Tracy was scheduled to team with Tony Anthony against the Gangstas and saw that two independent wrestlers, who were rebels, jumped up on the apron and started yelling racial slurs at the Gangstas so Smothers whipped one of them off of the apron then beat the shit out of the other one as he did not want the Gangstas to go after them as he calls Jack tough but said that Mustafa was dangerous and they had gimmicks in the ring with them.

Final Thoughts: After a slow start , this disc really picked up. Smothers talks an awful lot to the point that the interviewer had to tell him to shorten his answers on a few occasions. Honestly, Smothers could talk all day long.

His stories about Smoky Mountain Wrestling were very good. Also, Smothers does not appear to have a knack for making sensible decisions. I’m sure the fact that he has had 32 concussions does not help. He seems like a nice enough guy but you could defintely tell that he has had some sort of head trauma.

When watching this disc, expect a lot of talking and side stories as Smothers can stray off topic. Luckily, the stories he tells are good.