Q&A with Headbanger Mosh
Chaz Warrington – better known to wrestling fans as Mosh, one half of former WWF tag team champions The Headbangers – will be appearing on Maryland Championship Wrestling’s Legends of Maryland Wrestling show tonight (7 p.m.) at The New Green Room in Dundalk.
I conducted a phone interview with Warrington on Friday.
How much are you wrestling on the indys these days?
I’ve gotten a lot more involved with doing more indy dates over the last five or six months. I just kind of took a hiatus. I started a family – I got married and I have a 5-year-old son. I kind of got the itch back and liked the idea of being able to do some shows on the weekend but still not be gone like I used to be.
So are you wrestling mostly on the East Coast?
Yeah, East Coast, but kind of wherever. I live down in Florida, so it’s a lot of stuff there. I got a shot coming up in Milwaukee in a few weeks. So it’s just weekend shots here and there.
How far into your career were you when you started wrestling on the Maryland independents?
It was just before we had signed with WWF.
What are some of your memories from those days?
A lot of good times. We got hooked up in Maryland because of Axl [Rotten]. Glen [Ruth, aka Headbanger Thrasher] knew Axl from a long time ago and I met Axl when we were in Memphis. Axl brought us in with MEWF [Mid-Eastern Wrestling Federation] and from there we kind of broke in. It was just good old-school fun. It was good, fun people who wanted to put on good shows, have a good time, and everyone had the same agenda. There were weekends where after the shows we would go out and hang out, but the main part was that the shows themselves were a lot of fun because everyone had the same objectives.
Do you think your time on the Maryland indy scene helped prepare you for going to the next level?
Absolutely. My whole career was a learning curve. There were a lot of people there like Axl and others who taught me different things, so that was huge.
What are your thoughts on the Legends show and seeing some of the boys you haven’t seen in a while?
I’m excited about it. I think it’s going to be fun. That’s one of my favorite parts of being gone for so long and now coming back into the mix – seeing the guys I haven’t seen in so long and sitting their reminiscing and talking about the old days. That’s what I’m really looking forward to besides just being in the ring and in the locker room with the same mix of guys from 10-15 years ago.
You were in the WWF during The Attitude Era and The Monday Night Wars when the company really picked up momentum and eventually surpassed WCW. What was it like being in the company at the time?
It was fun because, again, the guys in the locker room were fun. Stone Cold had that fun attitude. Undertaker was fun. Bret [Hart] was still there. Owen [Hart] was there, and he was a ribber, he and Davey Boy [Smith]. It just was a really fun atmosphere. Like you said, when I first got there, WCW was winning the war, and as we picked up momentum it made everyone want to go out there and put out an even better product than what WCW was offering.
I know you guys worked with The Road Warriors and some other big names in the business during that time. Do you have a favorite memory or match from your time in the WWF?
It’s funny you brought up The Road Warriors because that’s one night that was one my fondest memories. It was their first match back and it was our first actual week of doing house shows. Glen and I were going over every night on the house shows. We’re like, “Oh, this is great. We’re on TV. We’re going over, and maybe this is going to be time for us to take another step.” And then we show up to TV and see “Headbangers vs. Legion of Doom.” We’re like, “Well, so much for that.” But Hawk and Animal pulled us aside and said, “Hey, we sat down and talked to Vince [McMahon] for like an hour. He really likes you guys, he’s really high on you guys.” And we’re like, “OK, here we go. We’re getting buttered up before we get squashed.” And they said, “So, that’s why Vince wants us to do a double-countout tonight.” We’re like, “Really?” So we went out there and had an amazing match with them. They got an amazing pop and I had head-to-toe goose bumps when they came out. And then in that same night we found out we were going to be on our first WrestleMania and we found out that we were getting action figures. There were like three things that were huge for us in that one night.
Who came up with The Headbangers gimmick?
The legendary Jim Cornette. Glen and I were wrestling as The Spiders out in Arkansas. We wanted to go to Smoky Mountain, and Cornette wanted to have us in, but he said that he just didn’t like the whole Spiders thing. He said he didn’t like the masks or anything about it. We were like, “Look, we just want to come. We’ll try whatever.” He came up with the name and then he kind of gave us the idea. He went to a Danzig concert and saw these guys stage diving, which is kind of funny because I love that kind of music and I’ve been to those kinds of concerts, so I knew exactly what he was talking about.
I can’t imagine Cornette at a Danzig concert.
No, me either. But he was there and he came up with the idea. He said, “You guys are from the Northeast. You have these attitudes. You have the accents.” So he was the one who created it and we started it down in Smoky Mountain. At first we just wore shorts and boots and the Slayer T-shirts – which he brought and gave to us – and from there we went to a thrift store one time to buy some more stuff to wear in the ring, and we were like, “For the hell of it we should just buy skirts and see what kind of reaction we get.” And that’s how the skirts came to be.
You and Glen are going to be appearing at the upcoming Baltimore Pro Wrestling Expo together, correct?
Yes, it’ll be the first time Glen and I have been together for almost 10 years. I actually spoke to him on the phone [Thursday] for the first time in about three or four years.
When you went on your own after The Headbangers, you did the infamous Beaver Cleavage gimmick. It came and went pretty quickly. Is that something you think the WWF should have stuck with? Do you have any idea where it was headed?
At that point it was the Attitude Era, and everything they were doing was controversial. The old saying was “even bad press is good press.” They were going to start insinuating that I was having sex with my mother. That’s where the angle was heading. What happened was, as they were kicking that off, that’s when Owen had his accident, that’s when Sable left and filed her sexual harassment lawsuit, so they didn’t want to go that route with it anymore and that’s why it got killed. Everyone was like, “Oh, that was so dumb and so on,” but I’m of the attitude that I was having fun, I was getting paid, I didn’t care. To me it was a good opportunity. I would have been out there by myself and doing my own thing. But it wasn’t mean to be, so no big deal.
I’m guessing that Vince Russo came up with that gimmick.
I think Russo was involved, but actually where the idea came from was Gerry Brisco. The reason was, the very first passport I ever had, I think I was like 20 or 21 years old when I got it, and Gerry always joked around every time we were on the road that I looked like Beaver Cleaver in my picture. So he would call me that, and that’s when I guess Vince [Russo] came up with the idea of it. So I think it was actually a couple years in the making of people ribbing me and talking to me about it.
Do you still keep up on the business? Are you a fan of the current product?
Being a fan of the business – that’s tough to say yes or no. I’m a fan of old-school business. I believe in getting in the ring and performing and actually being able to tell a story in a match and not just going out there and flying around and doing a bunch of meaningless high spots. If I’m flipping through the channels and I see somebody I know or that I still talk to, I’ll watch it. If it’s two guys that I really don’t know or the match just doesn’t make sense to me, I can’t watch it and I turn it off.
For more information on MCW’s Legends of Maryland Wrestling show, click here.
For more information on The Baltimore Pro Wrestling Expo on Nov. 14, click here.