Brimstone Interviews & Postings
The Warned - Interview done by E.L. Farrell
To start, how about giving the fans your statistics?
6' 2" 275lbs, Dirty Blonde Hair and Green Eyes
How did you get into pro wrestling?
In late '96, I was looking through a wrestling publication and saw that a new school was opening in Queens, New York called "The Doghouse." I was drumming in a band at the time, and I was a close friend of Chris Hostile of another band, "Hostile Intent." We had spoken about trying to find a place to train, but it never came to because there wasn't anything close by. When I spoke to Hostile about it, he agreed to check it out with me. We both lived on Long Island, so we carpooled out to Queens where we entered this small, dingy, hole-in-the-wall which would eventually become our "home away from home." There was a huge line of potentials waiting to obtain information about signing up. We actually waited about an hour to get up to the two guys behind the table who had all the paperwork… Bobby Lombardi (a former worker, and owner of the LIWF/Doghouse), and Laithon "The Tower of Torture" (the head trainer). We were asked by Bobby, "So, you THINK you can be a wrestler huh?!" We signed on the dotted line, paid our tuition, and were told we would be starting in a couple of weeks. The rest is history!
Who were you trained by? What was your training like?
I began my training under Laithon, Homicide 187, and Low-Ki at the original location of the Doghouse. The Doghouse was the place to be, and we learned raw… Before we had the honor of setting foot into the ring, we were learning our bumps like men on a concrete slab! This was the school of hard knocks, and I was a proud member. Training was tough, but looking back I'm glad we had it as hard as we did! When you work harder, and pay your dues the way we did you respect the business more, and can handle situations that may arise in our world of pro wrestling. After making a few appearances taking the training reigns at the original Doghouse, "The Original" Gino Carusso (formally of WCW, now backstage at TNA) began training regularly at the newer location of the Doghouse. After beginning my training with Gino, I was hooked… he has been a trainer, a mentor, and a great friend over the years. When I left the Doghouse to pursue other avenues of my wrestling career I continued to train under the tutelage of Gino. Other notable guys who came down to assist in training were Sir Christopher Michaels, Crazy Clown, Magic, Dances with Dudley, Monsta Mack, and Low Life Louie.
Who was your favorite Wrestler or Wrestlers growing up?
The three guys that I credit for inspiring me are The Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, and Ultimate Warrior. A blend of those three icons make the Brimstone character what he is today… darkness, charisma, and pure insanity! Other workers that I enjoyed watching in my youth were Hulk Hogan, Bret Hart, Kamala, The Iron Sheik, Junkyard Dog, and Earthquake among others.
How long have you been a Pro Wrestler?
I've been in the business for 11 years… I guess time flies when your having fun!
You created Critical Mass Pro Wrestling, and the New York Wrestling Connection with your partner Mayhem. Tell us why you created theses organizations and some history about both?
I respected all my trainers and the boys I came up with, but I began feeling as though maybe it was time to move on from the Doghouse. I wanted to grow, and I needed to grow. I was an entrepreneur, and I felt that maybe opening a school and fed on my own childhood stomping grounds would be beneficial not only for those involved, but to basically expand the area in which all the Doghouse guys could be seen as well. We all know to be seen, is to be heard.
Money was tight, and although my partners Hostile, Mayhem, and I wanted to open a training facility the chances were slim to none. I still remember our initial attempts at opening a school… We scouted locations, we sat at my dining room table with pens and pads coming up with ideas, and training regimen based on the best of everything we had been taught from our trainers. At that point, it was still just a dream. In the meantime, we figured that we could start running some shows here on Long Island, and book all our friends and trainers from the Doghouse. I went to a bunch of different locations to see about where we could put on an event.
Our first show was to be held at the Hooters in East Meadow, New York. The show was being put together, and manned by Lord Clarence MacDougal, Hostile, Mayhem, and myself. We needed a name, and Hostile came up with N.Y.W.C., or New York Wrestling Connection. We thought it was a great name considering it was a way for all the New York workers to "connect" here on Long Island. The NYWC was born… The first event held in August of 1998 was entitled, "Hotter Than Hell." I worked out that the Hooters paid for the advertising, ring rental, and fed all the boys whatever they wanted (which everyone took full advantage of, each leaving about 10 pounds heavier!). Not long after I hooked up an event at a local theme park called Funzone. Things were good… I loved those times…
Thoughts about creating a fully functional Pro-Wrestling facility had still been running through my mind. While looking through the local Pennysaver one day, I noticed a classified ad for a newly sprouting Martial Arts School over in Hicksville, New York. They were looking for trainers for various forms of martial arts. I thought about it, and figured what the hell… I gave a call over to the place and spoke with the owner, and he loved the idea. I spoke to Hostile, and Mayhem to let them know that I finally caught us a break for our school! I said we will name it "Critical Mass Pro Wrestling, Corp." after our long time clique. I figured it was far enough away from the Doghouse to not cause a conflict, especially considering how causing a conflict was not my intention. I even contacted Bobby Lombardi out of respect to let him know I wanted to be considered the Long Island extension of the Doghouse. I asked Gino for his advice, and requested a break down of his normal training regimen, which he forwarded to me posthaste (I still have it to this day).
I began working at the school every single day, blood sweat, and tears. I built the walls, laying the foundation of what would become the training facility of our students. It was a pain in the ass… We worked for days, all day, and most of the night. Even when no one else could be there, I was there building… While we were still building the school, I came up with and printed out mini flyers in order to start gaining some interest in the school. I would personally go down to the Malls, WWF & WCW events at the Nassau Coliseum, Gyms, you name it; to hand out these flyers, and paper them on cars… LOL, I'm sure at one point or another every wrestling fan on the Island had a flyer on their car… I recruited my first two students over at the Broadway Mall in Hicksville. They were two Roberts, one who later went by the name of "Tek" and the other who is now well known as "Dickie Rodz". Not more than a few days went by and we had another two students join, "Tyler Payne" and "Brock Vendetta." Then a few days more produced "Nuke", and "Black Dawg Mack". A few more days went by and in walked "Maxmilyin" and "Suicyco". They were the first class of CMPW.
What Other Promotions have you worked for?
There are so many different promotions that I have worked for over the years… Pro Wrestling Revolution (NY), New York Wrestling Federation (NY), Wrestling World Wide, NWA New England (Connecticut), Ringside Wrestling (NY), Long Island Wrestling Federation (NY), Real Deal Wrestling (NY), Lower East Side Wrestling (NY), United Wrestling Alliance (NY-NJ), Intense Florida Wrestling (Florida), Unified Wrestling Federation (Florida), Mega Championship Wrestling (Ohio), North East Pro Wrestling (Staten Island), Combat Zone Wrestling, Millennium Wrestling Federation (New Jersey), Acid Pro Wrestling (Connecticut), and various other independent federations, and organizations.
You wrestled for Wrestling World Wide in 1997. Tell us about your time there?
I loved working for George Espada… He was one of the most up front promoters in this business! Wrestling World Wide was the first promotion I worked for outside of my training federation the LIWF. Almost every show was free, and outdoors. The crowds were always a minimum of 1,000 in attendance, and it was tremendous. My fan base grew immensely there. It was primarily a Latino based company, however the fans embraced the Brimstone character. My first match out there was a hardcore match: Critical Mass, Mayhem & Brimstone against The NY Bad Boys, Rocky Shore & T-N-T. Our match was one of the crowd's favorites, and after the show… my hands were exhausted from signing so many autographs. I worked for them all over New York in Queens, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Westchester- you name it. I was a household name in lucha libre on the lower east side! WWW was broadcast overseas as well, so I got a vast amount of exposure in South America. It's funny because I have worked a large part of my career representing a lucha based company, however some lucha fans do not consider me an official lucha because I never actually worked in Mexico. I eventually gained their Heavyweight Title in a match against One Man Riot Squad (Deacon Riot). The show was great, and it meant a lot to be given the opportunity to hold the fed on my shoulders.
You have trained a lot of wrestlers at Critical Mass Pro Wrestling. Name some of the wrestlers you have trained?
The list of men and women that I have trained or had a part in training is pretty vast. Some are still in the business, while others have left. During my tenure at CMPW, I had the pleasure of training some tremendous workers who are going places in the industry. I was the first person to teach Livewyre (Mikey of WWE's Spirit Squad) his chain and bumps. I remember when we first met at an event dedicated to the victims of 9/11. We spoke at length, and when he came down to the school and began his training I knew he was going to be something special. He was eager to learn, and every time I had the opportunity to open up early, or stay open late for him to work with me one-on-one I did. Another student of mine that is coming up is Precious Pat Buck who was training with me under the name Ru Starr. He is currently over at OVW preparing for the big time. Dickie Rodz is still with the NYWC and is the Heavyweight Champ over there. I hear that he is one of the head trainers of the NYWC now alongside another former student Dan Barry. I am currently working with Johnny Ova, who was also a stand out student at CMPW, over at PWR (Pro Wrestling Revolution). Ova is currently being mentored by Ted DiBiase, and is one of the top guys on the Indy circuit. Johnny Ova is one of the three owners of PWR, the other two being Bobby Riedel, and Demolition Blast (Carmine Azzato). Some of my other favorites were Nuke who has retired from wrestling due to an injury, Spyder who last I heard was still over at NYWC, and Black Dawg who stars as my sidekick in The Borderhounds comic and is a very close friend to this day.
What Titles have you won so far in your career?
I held the LIWF Tag Titles with Chris Hostile, the WWW Heavyweight Champion, NYWC Tag Titles with Chris Hostile, then again with Mayhem. The NYWC Heavyweight Champion, and the NYWC Hardcore Championship.
What's the worst you've been hurt in the ring?
Knock on wood- the worst that has ever happened to me is a fat lip from a stiff kick (Nick Saint Baby!). Lumps, bumps and bruises… A bruised right kneecap, and a chipped elbow bone. I've been quite lucky thank G-d! Have I taken a hard chair shot that's slapped me silly? Of course, who hasn't… but I have really been lucky enough to stay safe for the larger part of my career!
What is your most memorable professional moment?
That is really hard to narrow down. I think making my official return to the ring after taking a short break; in front of a crowd of five hundred plus, was one of my new most memorable moments. Most guys will say winning this title, or winning that title… for me, I feel that the fact I had the chance to change many people's lives for the better in the ring makes so many things memorable. My biggest accomplishment is watching some of my former students go on to bigger and better things. When I brought a few of my students out to Earthquake's school that was in Sanford, Florida to meet my trainer and mentor Gino years ago… That was an extremely memorable moment because I was able to present my trainer with my students and that made me proud! That same trip 'Quake called me over and requested I be his partner as a Natural Disaster the following day at a show. Although the following day happened to be September 11th, and the plans were changed it was still an honor to have been asked by a legend in the business to be a part of a legendary team (even if just for one night).
You have appeared on Television a number of times. You appeared as semi-finalist on the original "Wanna Be A WWF Superstar" on the MTV Network. Hosted by Mick Foley and Carson Daly. Tell us more about this?
That was a fun, yet stressful day! First off, when we were all approached with this deal… we were under the understanding that it was a legit deal, and we had a major opportunity in front of us. Probably about a thousand workers showed up via invitation to the MTV building in New York City. It was quite a site… we were given nowhere to get changed so many of the workers were sitting getting themselves undressed and dressed right there on the street! Myself and a few other guys I knew ran across the street to the Deli to make use of their bathroom to change in. We waited there for HOURS!!! So many people were complaining, asking what was taking so long. Finally… they started letting us into the building itself, which was a fiasco! Once inside, you had to go through security. Then you went up the escalators to a prep area where you signed release forms for MTV, and WWF. They took Polaroid's of each person to see how photogenic you were, and asked a bunch of questions. After finishing up with these folks… about a quarter of the people received a sticker with a number on it, and three quarters of the people got sent away! I was one of the guys who got a sticker… I went into the next room, and down a long hallway where the MTV crew had us cut promos. I made it to that point with my partner Mayhem, Rexx Rockwell, and my good friend Lord Clarence MacDougal. Considering I was representing our tag team "Critical Mass," I requested that Mayhem and I do the shoot together to which they agreed. We cut the promo, and I was pulled aside by one of the producers for the show. She told me that I had a choice; she said that they all loved my performance and wanted me to continue… but it would only be me because they were passing on Mayhem. So, I could stay or I could go… they wanted for me to stay, and I did. I went into the next room from there with the ten or fifteen remaining workers who made it there as well. Rexx, MacDougal, and I hung out waiting for the next step. The camera crew came in along with a few producers, and congratulated all of us for making it into the semi-finals. We were then asked to cut another promo that if picked would be used on WWF Superstars Sunday morning show. I cut my interview, which did make it onto Superstars. After cutting it, I got a round of applause from my peers, which was a great thing especially after such a long day! Finally, we thought we would be paired off with each other to have the opportunity to have a match on TRL, live television. Unfortunately, it did not work out that way! MTV's insurance policy would not cover us working each other in their studio. We were all in a bit of shock and wondered what the hell they expected us to do? They called us in a couple at a time, and they had a dummy lying inside a boxing ring and wanted us to "wrestle" the dummy! I went out with Rexx, and we beat up the big bad dummy in front of a screaming live audience, and Mick Foley. The highlight was when Mick called me over while Rexx was doing his thing. He told me that I looked really good, and I was impressive (albeit working a lifeless thing). Everything just seemed better after that. He asked to see us do a spike piledriver, so we did, and when our time was up we went backstage. I was standing talking to a few of the guys in the band "Lit" who were also scheduled to appear on TRL. As they were going on, Mick was coming backstage with Carson. Now, I'm not saying Carson Daly is a bad guy… but that day he really had his head up his ass! He was rude, and did not even bother speaking to any of the boys in the back. Mick on the other hand spent some time with a few of us. Another friend of mine John Shane had made the semi-finals as well, and formally introduced us. I must say, of all the people in this business… Mick Foley is one of the nicest guys I have ever had the pleasure to meet! All in all it turned out to be a good day. I was on TRL, as well as MTV News, and WWF Superstars. It would have been nice to win, but in actuality… the prize was nothing more than a pair of tickets to Wrestlemania. Looking back, it's probably better off that I did not win…
You also appeared on The Ricki Lake Show along former WCW performer Stevie Ray of Harlem Heat in August 2001. Why were you on the show and what was it like to meet Stevie Ray?
I was asked to be on the Ricki Lake show to speak out against Backyard Wrestling. I've taken a stand against the backyarders because they really have no idea of the danger they are in. As many people I'm sure are aware, we as professionals with training get injured in the ring, while these kids have no idea of how to protect each other, and it worries me! Let's be honest, most of us have all at one time or another "wrestled" as kids in the living room, or on the lawn… it's every young wrestling fans dream to imitate their favorite star, and their moves! However, many of today's youth are literally killing each other thinking that Vince McMahon is going to come knocking on their fence offering them a deal. I have had the opportunity over the years to encourage some of these kids to get into the ring, and learn the right way. When I went onto the show, I was originally supposed to be on the panel itself, but there were so many backyard kids there that I agreed to sit in the audience with a handful of my students, at the time, and former business partner. Once the segment was over, Ricki walked me into the backstage area with my small entourage. I walked with a couple of students, Stevie, and myself into the green room where the backyarders were hootin' and hollerin' amongst themselves. The second they saw Stevie Ray and I walk in they all got silent quick! It must have been surreal for them considering they were now face to face with us. I offered them some advice behind the scenes, and my number before leaving them. Stevie Ray was a great guy, we agreed on the whole aspect on being against what these kids were doing. Aside from that, we really did not talk all that much more. It was a great day that I will always remember… if I was able to help even one person, it was a success!
You had a career in music performing as the drummer in a number of bands. Are you still involved in the music business?
I absolutely loved the music business, and I learned a lot from being in that spectrum of entertainment. I still enjoy getting behind my drum kits and playing, but being in a band again is not in the cards for me. The issue is that when in a band, you are in a four or five-way marriage! You need to rely on everyone else to succeed. I did well with the three major bands I had played with: Image, Who's Laughing Now, and Bugsy. WLN and Bugsy had a huge following, and we opened all over the place for big acts like Anthrax, Biohazard, The Deftones, Korn, etc. I actually just bumped into Evan (of Biohazard), and his wife Tera (Patrick) not too long ago at an event in NYC. We talked a bit, and caught up on some old times. It's good to see some of my old friends, and acquaintances from way back when. Just like any industry, out of site out of mind. I miss the music days, but entertaining a crowd as a front man is really where it's at.
Tell us about your persona "Brimstone" and the comic book "The Borderhounds" which the "Brimstone" character features in?
In the ring, the Brimstone character is a dark entity that embodies destruction. Brimstone is a no nonsense character who will normally go out and dominate a match. Although I am a "heel", most of the time the fans flip it and make me the face. I'm a tweener, which for the most part is similar to Demolition, Road Warriors, Steve Austin, etc. I've been compared to The Undertaker on many occasions, however my whole persona is completely different.
The Borderhounds is an amazing creation! I am so excited about this comic because I feel it can do big things. The Brimstone character in the comic is based heavily on the in ring Brimstone, however a little more laid back. I am flanked by my real life sidekicks Black Dawg, and Luscious… two of the biggest latino guys you will ever meet! The book was written by Marcello Carnevali (Lord Clarence MacDougal) co-written by myself. The pencils are being done by Sajad J. Shah, and the inks are done by Allen "Vandal" Chickering. We have a tight knit team, and I am really looking forward to getting it out. You can check out the site for more
info at www.theBORDERHOUNDS.com.
What holds and moves is Brimstone best known for?
My finisher is a fan favorite… it's a move I created called XiBalba (Entrance to Hell), and normally when I set my opponent up for it the crowd gets amped! I do a double chokeslam sit out bomb called the Smoke Bomb, a spear called the Attitude Adjustment, and a mean wheelbarrow german suplex called Hell's Bells.
Who are your favorite opponents to wrestle?
Since working with PWR, I have enjoyed working with some of the up and comers there. I took Jesta on back in February at "Battlezone" and I had a great match with Nick Saint at "Spring Beatings" on March 24th. Some of my favorite matches have been with my former students because I've watched them grow into well-rounded performers. The tag match between myself and Mayhem, against Johnny Ova and JD Lishus is one of my favorites to look back on. Nuke and Dickie Rodz were phenomenal as well. We did a Critical Mass / Revolution angle years ago which was a lot of fun! It would be great to be able to work against some of these guys now to see how far they have come…
Do you have any Hobbies or interests outside wrestling?
I'm a family man to be quite honest. I enjoy spending time with my Fiancé and my two children. One of my favorite pastimes is going out into my backyard to my pond to watch my fish and relax. I think I may spend too much time back there, considering I have named most of my 17 Koi!!!
I'm always down for a good western movie or video game (I'm a mark for the game GUN). I also enjoy playing old school board games (I know there is a video or two out there of me winning Mousetrap or losing Sorry). We play a killer version of UNO that everyone who has played it gets hooked! Karaoke… yeah I said it! I could go on forever, but I'll spare you…
Whats your opinion on WWE or TNA?
To be completely honest, the only reason I have watched in awhile is to see some old friends like Homicide, and Low-Ki (Senshi) on TNA. My kids are young so I really do not want them watching too much WWE specifically because it is very adult oriented at this point. I personally watched WWE again for a bit while they had Mikey in the whole Spirit Squad angle. It's impossible for me to watch as a fan anymore, so I really have no major opinions to share.
Any last comments you'd like to make?
Sure… Please check out the comic book site at
www.theBORDERHOUNDS.com (the message boards are now open),
and my site at www.entrancetohell.com (the Brimstone site needs a major update, please bear with us!!!).
Also, anyone interested in training in the Long Island, New York area should check out PWR (Pro Wrestling Revolution). The head trainers there are Demolition Blast (Carmine Azzato), Johnny Ova, and Bobby Riedel, and I work with them on Tuesday and Thursday nights to lend my knowledge in the training process.
I feel that any potential wrestler will get a well-rounded professional wrestling education at PWR, and I give them my stamp of approval. I want to thank you for your time, and the interview!