The Art of Wrestling with Colt Cabana
Episode 289 – C.W. Anderson
Release Date: February 18, 2016
Report by Chris Davidson
-C.W. Anderson offers a career retrospective, including time in ECW and the WCW Power Plant
-Colt Cabana announces new episodes of Pro Wrestling Fringe podcast coming soon to Howl.fm
0:00 – Introduction
8:57 – Song of the Week
12:53 – C.W. Anderson Interview
18:27 – Anderson talks getting into wrestling
26:41 – Anderson talks early career
34:02 – Anderson talks the WCW Power Plant and ECW tryout
42:25 – Anderson talks ECW and his name
49:08 – Anderson talks WWE
55:09 – Anderson talks his future
59:07 – Colt wraps up the show
0:00 – Introduction – Colt opened the show joking that some listeners may have gotten excited seeing a guest whose first name is two letters and starts with a “C”, but C.M. Punk is not today’s guest, C.W. Anderson is. Colt reminisced about an early event where Punk wrestled Anderson and talked about Chad Collier going from wrestling to being a magician, as well as other wrestlers who are no longer wrestling full time. Colt announced that because of the strong response to last week’s Howl episode, Howl ordered three more episodes of Pro Wrestling Fringe. To follow up on Tom Magee, Tyson Kidd told Colt that Magee and Bret Hart actually wrestled two matches, and the second was atrocious. Colt ran down his hectic travel schedule over the last two weeks, including a match with Colonel Robert Parker.
8:57 – Song of the Week – The song of the week this week is “Sputnik Monroe (Took a Big Bite out of Jim Crow)” by Dick Deluxe.
12:53 – CW Anderson Interview – C.W. Anderson started off talking about going bald at a young age and Colt asked if being bald made people respect him more and call him “sir.” Anderson said that at 25 he was asked to train and people have called him “sir” even though at that point he had no idea what he was doing. Anderson talked about being respectful, but that he doesn’t care if people are polite, as long as they don’t call him “Chris.” Anderson discussed the origins of C.W. Anderson and talked about his former Little League coach being his first manager. Colt and Anderson both discussed fans calling them by their first name and how it bothers them.
18:27 – Anderson talks getting into wrestling – Anderson was drafted by the San Diego Padres in 1989 as a catcher, and had a very strong arm for a catcher. Anderson recently got clocked through a baseball at 81 mph. Anderson grew up watching Saturday Night Live instead of wrestling, of which his brother was a fan. Anderson said that wrestling fell away when he got into baseball, but he didn’t go play for the Padres so that he could go to college. Anderson talked about growing up in a predominantly black town in North Carolina and leaving to go to college. While playing college baseball, Anderson hyperextended his arm and had to move back home, where he met a promoter and got into the ring for the first time. Anderson started wrestling in 1993, but always says he was trained at the Power Plant, which wasn’t until 1998.
26:41 – Anderson talks early career – Colt asked how the “vibe” was on those early North Carolina shows. Anderson remembered one show where he had a knockoff Razor Ramon gimmick named “El Chico.” Anderson was then offered the Anderson name, similar to Ole and Arn, and showed a great deal of respect for the history of the Anderson name. Anderson discussed his early career tag-teaming with Pat Anderson, and doing a top rope leg drop because he was a fan of Bobby Eaton. Colt and Anderson discussed how high spots such as that used to be huge finishers, but now they open matches and barely get a cheer. Anderson trained Lodi, who told him to go to the Power Plant where he developed as a wrestler and made connections in the business.
34:02 – Anderson talks the WCW Power Plant and ECW tryout – Anderson talked about going to the Power Plant and seeing the “corruption” when guys on contract were getting to train and get paid a lot of money. Anderson ended up helping train wrestlers that WCW wanted to put on TV, such as Chuck Palumbo, Elix Skipper, and Lash LeRoux. Anderson was then told by management that, while he was a good worker, he didn’t have the look they wanted for WCW. Anderson went into the training at WCW and how much he enjoyed trying out different things in the ring, but he eventually ended up trying out for ECW. Anderson’s friend Toad got an opportunity to try out for ECW and he went along with him just to “politic.” Eventually, Anderson got into the ring and wound up being seen by Paul Heyman and joining ECW that day. Anderson credited Toad, who is no longer in wrestling, for helping him achieve his success since he pushed him to put himself out there.
42:25 – Anderson talks ECW and his name – Anderson said that he is not outspoken and whenever Heyman would try to negotiate a contract, Anderson didn’t have strong negotiations. Anderson said that he ended up signing away his rights to be in the ECW video game. Anderson talked about eventually getting a push and starting to make more money, but being afraid that if he asked for anything, he would be fired. Anderson talked about getting threatened to be fired because of his theme music, but nothing came of it. Anderson touched on WWE trying to change his name to not be confused with C.M. Punk and the CW TV network. Anderson said that a lawyer from ECW called him to try and get him to stop using C.W. Anderson, until Heyman verified that he had been using the name prior to ECW.
49:08 – Anderson talks WWE – Anderson signed with WWE for $35,000, but didn’t end up doing anything. Arn Anderson put him over, but he ended up wrestling just one match on TV against C.M. Punk, where he got in trouble for tapping too early. Anderson said that WWE was trying to get rid of him, and Michael Hayes was looking for something wrong in his work so that Vince McMahon could get rid of him. Eventually, Anderson hurt his back and left WWE and went back to Japan.
55:09 – Anderson talks his future – Anderson credited his wife to pushing him to go back to college and to start selling t-shirts, which paid for his honeymoon. Anderson talked about losing a lot of weight, and said that catching his ex-wife in bed with another man was the catalyst for him losing it, since that was the lowest part of his life. Anderson plugged his social media and ended the interview.
59:07 – Colt wraps up the show – Colt encouraged fans to find Anderson and tell him they liked the show and plugged his recent appearance on the Sklarbro Country podcast. Colt plugged his website, social media, and upcoming events, then thanked C.W. Anderson, his sponsors, and tech help. Colt thanked his fan Amanda who brings him care packages, and promised to wrestle in San Francisco before signing off.
SCORE & REVIEW
Score: 7.0: After a week without a standard interview, The Art of Wrestling returned with another strong episode of the podcast. C.W. Anderson had some fun stories from ECW and the Power Plant, and great chemistry with Colt Cabana to make this a breezy episode to listen to. From the beginning of the interview to the end, Anderson established himself as someone who has been around long enough to give a unique spin on the wrestling business. This episode didn’t have any breaking news, but was a good enough listen if you’re a fan of Anderson or of ECW in general.