Heated Conversations with Booker T
Episode 194: Royal Rumble, Jimmy Jacobs, Kylie Rae, and AQA
Release Date: Saturday, January 19th
Recap By: James Hayes
Booker T and Co-host Brad Gilmore welcome you to the show!
ROW on the Rise is the big show Booker is promoting. We got some of the young ladies from the show on this podcast today.
Speaking of the ladies, Booker and Brad start to discuss the new Women Of Wrestling promotion.
Booker says, “Just last night I checked out the premiere show of Women Of Wrestling and I tell ya, man… Brad interrupts, “It was pretty good.” Booker gleefully laughs, “It was awesome. It took me back to the day, just like Glow, almost back in the day with a little bit more juice. I tell ya it was actually a good show. I loved it.”
Brad informs us that the same guy that did Glow is doing WOW.
Booker says this guy has a hit on his hands. “The one girl I like is Eye Candy. Back in the day, you had Hollywood and Vine. You had Little Fiji. You had so many of them that you know them by name and by character. That is what is intriguing about this show. Have you seen this girl called The Beast? Do you remember her, the big black girl? She was a monster. Excellent show.”
Here is a clip from WOW.
Jimmy Jacobs Interview
Booker: Right now I got a special guest I want to talk to. What’s ironic is I know this guy but I don’t know him. Welcome to the show, Jimmy Jacobs, what’s going on?
Jimmy: This is what’s going on. Thank you for having me here in your studio, which is inside your gym and I have just been admiring this for the past day and a half. I have been gushing over how pristine and all the different features you have here. You really did a bang up job.
Booker: It’s been a work in progress. 2005, we started this thing. 2019 is going to be our best year and tonight it all kicks off with Rise. You are a big part of it. How did you get hooked up with Rise?
Jimmy: So, Kevin Harvey is a promoter. And I’ve known Kevin for like literally 20 years. I broke into the indie scene in 99, so when I got fired from WWE, I was a writer there I worked in Creative, I got fired in October of 2017, and Kevin was one of the first people to hit me up. He was like, “I got this thing. I’m trying to produce girls. I’m trying to make a new generation of girls.
Because WWE they are signing a lot of people. They are taking people away, so it’s very paramount that you have a pipeline, a way to create new stars on the independent level. Kevin is very cognizant of that. He says, “Hey man you got this experience, not just wrestling, but now you have the tv experience of teaching these girls how to work the camera and just the essence of tv.” So we have a weekly show we do that airs on the internet it’s RISE.com, you can check it out. We teach these new girls how to do all these aspects, not just the in-ring.
Booker: That’s the beauty of professional wrestling. I tell people all the time WWE can’t take everybody. Come on.
Brad: They are trying.
Booker: They try but they can’t. They are so many people that want to get into this business. I mean, literally, we get students that sign up here at Reality of Wrestling on a weekly basis. A lot of the time they get disgruntled because of the training, because of the school they join and what not. I got a certain philosophy. I had a kid call me last week, He said, “Is this Booker T?” I said, ‘Yeah, this Booker T’ I like to answer the phone for shock value. He goes, “Man, I’m looking to get in your school.” I’m like, ‘You want to get in then come on down.’ He says, “I’m looking to do something a little more extreme. Like jump off ladders. Go through flaming tables.” I said, ‘You can go on down the road and get that. There is another school if that’s the training you want.’ And they will go down the street and they will get that. First thing they do is take a bump off the top rope. Do a moonsault.
My thing is I teach students like a father and a son. When you a kid you look out the window and see your Dad, he’s out there cutting the grass. He’s pushing that lawn mower from one side to the other. Every other moment he takes a glass of water. Just for a break. He comes in and he’s sweaty. It’s been a pretty rough day. But, man, you cannot wait to be like Dad! You wanna go out there and cut the grass. YOU WANT TO DO THAT!
Finally, you turn 15 and Dad says, “Go on out there and handle that for me.” You go out there and handle it one time and you are like, ‘Man, what did I get myself into.’ I try to teach wrestlers like that. Before they take a bump they have to learn how to crawl before they walk. There are so many different elements to this game. There’s a problem with young people jumping out and what not. We teach a little bit different than that. You being in WWE… Before we move on I got to say something. I was around you in WWE for a long time… and I never heard you speak before yesterday.
(Book went into business for himself there a little.)
Jimmy: The only time we worked together you would do the kick-off panel. Sometimes I’d be on that panel and everything would already be written. You would be doing your walkthroughs. And you stand there in case anyone has a question but no one has a question. I would feel so useless.
Booker: I always wondered, ‘What does this guy do?’ First time I heard you speak you were pretty knowledgeable. He’s pretty astute. How’d you get the job hookup at WWE?
Jimmy: I worked the independents for 10 years in ROH. I wrestled all the guys there, your Kevin Owens, Seth Rollins and I were a team, Dean Ambrose, all the guys. My career plateaued and I’m not the best athlete. My in-ring was never my strong suit. It was my promo and creativity. It dawned on me my time in the business is not in the ring, it’s gonna be creative. I called Daniel Bryan and said, ‘I want to go to WWE. I want to be a writer and he and Joey Mercury brought me to the writing team Dave Capore, they said, “Here is Jimmy Jacobs he is a genius. He belongs on your team.” And that started the process going. I had to go through an interview and a writing sample and all that stuff. I had fun there.
Brad: I saw you in the back, you were going over some stuff with the girls, little nuggets, what was the biggest thing you learned from WWE?
Jimmy: I didn’t always agree with Vince McMahon on things but I learned a lot from him. One of the best pieces of advice I got was, I had a promo for Bo Dallas and he had hurt some guys knee and he could barely walk. Vince looked at it and said, “These are just facts. Tell me a story.” And its story people identify with. So I came back with this story of a pet bird whose wing was broken, and he took this bird in and finally the wing healed and the bird flew. It was a great piece of advice. People want stories. That is something that I try to tell these newer guys.
Booker: You write it and you think it’s good, then he says, “This is not what I want. I see it like this.” Then you’re like, ‘Okay.’
Brad: Like a light bulb moment.
Booker: I been in the business now 28 years. 29 years it’s 2019. I see so many different perspectives. I think right now is the hottest the business has ever been. What do you think?
Jimmy: First of all I love professional wrestling. I love doing this. I am so grateful. It’s such a great time. The indies, the lower levels, are in such a swell. It’s becoming a beast. When I started in ’99, indie was hot because of the Attitude Era wrestling was hot, so it trickled down.
You could put Greg Valentine on the marquee and 600 people would show up, but now it’s different. It’s grassroots. The way media is consumed. You now have a whole new way to get media to people. Colt Cabana was a pioneer, The Young Bucks, what they and Cody did with All In was absolutely amazing. And now Double or Nothing coming in May in Las Vegas, you got the Khan Family backing it. It’s huge. 18 years after WCW closed… coming from a different place, this grassroots thing. Hopefully, this does well. ROH is paying well. Impact Wrestling is doing well.
Booker: We didn’t have WrestleCon back in the day. The last WrestleCon in New Orleans, I was on my way back from doing a signing and Trish Stratus and Lita walked in and said, “Hey Book, we are going to WrestleCon do you wanna go?” I go, ‘Yeah.’ I rolled over and a couple hours later I was like, ‘That was sweeeet.’ The business is paying off in so many different ways. Not only on television but you got MLW, ROH, so many companies. So, man, what’s your deal? Your ultimate goal?
Jimmy: For years the goal was, ‘Work for WWE.’ I’m so grateful I got that time there. I’m also grateful that time is over. It’s been a year and a half, it’s cool to just sit back and instead just enjoying the journey. I love being at these shows. I love helping young talent. I don’t need to take over the world I just want to enjoy the world right now.
Booker: What are we expecting to see with Rise, the expansion of women’s wrestling tonight?
Jimmy: It’s an all-time high. This is where it starts. New girls come and we help groom them. A third of the girls-women on the show tonight are from the seminars. A third are women we discovered. And another third are women that have been around, like Mercedes Martinez, been around for a very long time. And she’s in the main event tonight against one of your students. Kylie Rae, who is doing amazing. Wow. Wow.
Booker: She is blowing the internet up now. If someone needs help. How can they find you? You are a guru.
Jimmy: You can find me on Twitter.
Booker: Appreciate you coming on the show. Do your thing.
Here is Jimmy back when he wrestled. Check him with Ethan Page.
Booker says he has a prodigy on the show. Her name is Angela otherwise known as AQA. Booker wants to know how she feels about this Row on the Rise show tonight.
AQA: Thanks for having me. I’m really excited. I get to work with people that I never got to work with before so this is very exciting. I’m excited about what I get to learn so I’m just excited to be here.
Booker: You know there is a whole lot of talk going around about AQA. A lot of people like what they see. What inspired you to actually jump inside the squared circle?
AQA: It was the only thing that I found my place in. I didn’t fit in with any clicks. I wasn’t any good at basketball, softball, there was nothing I was good at. Wrestling was the only thing that was for me. It was to the point where I wouldn’t even go out with friends or anything I just wanted to stay home and watch wrestling. This will help me find out who I am.
Booker: Being in Reality of Wrestling you got a chance to come up. You got a chance to be Diamonds Champion. What is that feeling like?
AQA: It’s a surreal feeling. Once you go out there and you see those lights, and you see those people scream for you, it’s just a surreal feeling. It takes me to a whole nother level.
Booker: When I put my boots on I could do things Booker T could never do. I can jump higher. I can run faster. And I really don’t think just the normal person could do the stuff… When I put the tights on the adrenaline… If a mother sees her kid trapped under a car adrenaline can help her move that car.
They all agree.
Booker: What’s your ultimate goal for AQA?
AQA: To be able to tell a story that stands the test of time. I want people to say, “This is what made me want to wrestle” like other matches did for me.
Booker: Steamboat/Savage was that match for me. When I first saw Steamboat/Savage at Wrestlemania 3, I was like, ‘Good God! I gotta get some of this. IT’S OFF THE CHAIN!’
Brad: What was the match for you that inspired you?
AQA: Well it wasn’t the match that inspired me but one of my all-time favorites was Triple H vs Undertaker. Also Ric Flair vs Shawn Michaels I was on my feet. I could not sit down during that entire match.
Booker: I thought she was going to say Triple H vs. Booker T Wrestlemania 19. I lost that one. I went down in flames. I thought you were gonna say…
AQA: I like that one too. It’s on my list. (Clean it up.)
Booker: We got Mercedes Martinez tonight. Hopefully, that will be that memorable making moment. Can you dig that, Sucka? Now, roll up out of here and get ready for your match.
Kylie Rae Interview
Booker tells us Kylie Rae is a three times Diamonds Champ, and that she has done it here so big the first night she stepped in the ring she became Diamonds Champ.
Booker: Welcome to the show, Kylie Rae. What’s going on?
Kylie: Thank you for having me. It’s been quite a journey since I started here.
Booker: Talk about the journey. It seems like just yesterday and you’ve come so far in such a short amount of time. I see you on everything. Every show Kyle Rae is showing up on.
Kylie: It’s crazy. I feel like just yesterday I had my first match. I was training for almost 2 years and I never had a match before. I come down here and after a month I’m thrown in with the sharks, so you guys having that faith in me just goes to show how great a school Reality of Wrestling is. I feel like that’s where I found myself. It’s been happening so fast I haven’t had that chance to process it all. March of this year will be my 3 year anniversary and I feel like I still have a lot to learn.
Booker: It’s all building blocks. You gotta have your playbook. You gotta know where you going when you get the keys. It’s the little things and you picked it up very well. Kylie Rae is one of the ones that stepped up. Check out your local websites. What’s trending? Kylie Rae.
Brad: Chicago Tribune.
Kylie: They did an article on me. That’s the paper I used to read growing up. Them doing an article on me is overwhelming. I just wanted to make my parents proud. That local article. That’s how I made it. I’m big time now!
Brad: You are. You are a superstar.
Brad: You are from Chicago. Why did you come down to see Book, of all people?
Kylie: I heard so many great things about it. And I’ve always heard so many good things about Texas Wrestling, and of course the all-time great Booker T.
Booker: No. One of the greats.
Kylie: Let me get the brown off my nose.
Booker T: Top Five. I’m just hovering.
Kylie: It was a no brainer. Houston, the city is amazing. I love Reality Of Wrestling. It will always be my home. It was a no brainer.
Booker: You’ve done very well. How was your WWE try out?
Kylie: Probably the three hardest humbling days of my life, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world, and I would do it all over in a heartbeat. You have those moments, ‘Wow, I’m here at the Performance Center.’ Think of the hundreds of thousands who have never stepped foot there and that’s why you are there. It was amazing. That’s pretty much what it sums up to be.
Booker: Who you got tonight?
Kylie: I got Mercedes for the main event.
Booker: I screwed that up.
Kylie: It’s a big elimination match.
Booker: Tell me about your opponent. Have you faced her?
Kylie: Never even locked up with her. She is amazing. She gonna give me a run for my money.
Booker: Tonight you will be tested. When I met Bret Hart I wanted to work him. Mr. Perfect? I wanted to work him. Ric Flair? I didn’t want to work him, but I had to. Go out there and do it. You’ve always been a main eventer, so go out there and do it one more time. Roll on up outta here.
Kylie: Thank you very much. I appreciate that, Booker.
For the Shotzi Black Heart interview and more Royal Rumble breakdown hit the link at the top.
Before the Final Bell:
Royal Rumble Title match
“I don’t care that John Cena says he’s got the fire again. He said he has, “Ruthless Aggression.” He can talk a good game. His rapping days is over! My time is now. Your time is up. These young guys like Finn Balor are coming in and stepping up.”
(Balor is 37. Cena is 41.)
Booker continues, “It’s gonna be a whole different landscape in the near future. Finn Balor has got that spot. The first ever Universal Champion will be taking on Brock Lesnar, a guy who can snap you like a twig. Pop you like a pimple! Finn Balor is going to have to be on his bicycle. Finn Balor will have to be ready for whatever in a match like that because it can be a long following morning trying to get out of bed. I’m saying that from experience. I got my eyes closed while I’m saying that. My little girl rubbed my leg and I was like, ‘Owww!’ She said, ‘Daddy what’s wrong?’ I told her, “Don’t touch that spot.” She goes, ‘Daddy what happened?’ I go, “I put my boots on.”
Rating: 8.0 out of 10
Overall Observations: That’s more like it. A nice rebound from the last few shows. I especially enjoyed the interview with the female wrestlers. Nice one!
See ya next week!
Based out of New York, James Hayes is an independent filmmaker and podcaster, currently working on a true crime series focused on African American crime. When he needs a break from the seriousness of true-crime he turns to pro wrestling. James has 27 years of following the sport. Here is a link to his film credits https://www.imdb.com/name/nm2026980/, as well as His Twitter @JamesHa34395813.