Drew Galloway is here.
People can draw their own conclusions as to why that is. Chris Renfrew certainly has. At the end of the day, if he was used to his full potential in WWE, he wouldn’t be here right now. No one who’s 6 foot 6, can actually wrestle and happens to be built like a brick shithouse gets let go by WWE if they’ve been used properly. His look speaks for itself. The only born and bred Scot to wrestle at Wrestlemania. The only born and bred Scot to ever become WWE Intercontinental Champion. You all know the big man’s credentials, so there’s nae point in me continuing this literary fellatio. The point is, he’s here and there’s no denying it’s a hugely beneficial thing for an already prosperous Scottish Wrestling scene.
No matter what brought him back here, his timing could not have been better. After years of creative stagnation, and frustration at not being able to do what he loves the way he loves doing it…. Drew Galloway was released from the shackles, and within 6 months he has caused irreparable carnage on the Independent Wrestling scene he now calls home. The Evolve Title was taken from Chris Hero, the Danish Title has since been added to the collection, but the one that Drew no doubt holds dearest is the one that a few people might not be too happy if he still holds it after the Square Go. The ICW Title he nearly killed his best pal to win back after 7 years away.
Whilst there will be perhaps a polite majority backing Drew when he stands toe to toe with Chris Renfrew at the Square Go, there’s an extremely impolite vocal minority who would bleed for Renfrew. ICW is a special place in that regard. This isn’t a night out to the ICW diehards, its a way of life. Many people have invested a lot of energy and passion in to backing Renfrew in his pursuit of the ICW Title. As much as people are right in calling this a huge match for Renfrew, it is equally important for Drew. A match against someone who appeals to the hardcore ICW fans, in front of one of the biggest crowds in ICW history is a chance to bridge that gap. A chance to show the world he’s ICW to the fucking core. When he emerged at Spacebaws unannounced to knock 7 shades of humility out of Lewis Girvan, that was all the proof anyone should need that this place holds a special place in his heart, but I have a feeling the madness him and Renfrew create will last in the memory of ICW fans for years to come. No matter the outcome. Its been a bit spiky between them promo wise. Renfrew has already had his say on the match here. So I suppose I better turn the floor over to the man Billy Kirkwood describes as a “phenom” and a man my pal Dave refers to as “a big bittae a boay right enough”
Sit yourself down, pap your comfiest jammy bottoms on and settle in for an InterDrew with View Galloway…or eh…something like that, I dunno. Read the thing. All the good stuff is below this shite….
I usually start with the generic “how did you get into wrestling and what made you pursue it as a career” question, but we’re phasing that out. Getting to the questions that people really want the answers to, so what I want to know is: what kind of shampoo/conditioner do you use to get that remarkable shine on yer hair?
Hell of an opening question, same brand as Chazz Michael Michaels. It makes my hair shine like the Belt of Orion.
Popped for the Blades of Glory reference already. One line in. This is gonnae be good..
If anyone’s curious as to how I got into it, as with many, I was obsessed as a kid. A little more obsessed than your average kid. I was the kind of obsessive who sent to America for the inside secrets of pro wrestling volume one and two when he was ten and kept them in a briefcase as the book told me to keep kayfabe. I also read any magazine with inside secrets I could get my hands on: WOW, Powerslam, as well as, the internet scouring for schools. It took a couple of years convincing, but my parents allowed me to attend FWA in Portsmouth (a 12 hour train ride). Along with a friend, I started the journey and attended as many camps as high school and finances would allow before we started the modern-day Scottish wrestling scene. The rest is history.
Seriously though, your return to ICW was a huge deal. With the clip going viral on youtube. How much improvement have you seen in the company since you left it 7 years ago, and how much of a part do you feel you can play in taking the company forward even more?
It’s impossible to compare the two. With the involvement of a backer who believes in ICW, the documentary and the talent ICW grew into the premier company in Europe. It’s just unreal watching what it has become over the past few years, and I’m damn proud of the talent (no comparison to the ability of everyone now) and the company. My return was one of the absolute highlights of my career, my pipebomb, my mission statement, whatever you want to call it really showed the world the real me, and I’m glad it put focus and happened in ICW. I’m traveling around facing the best in the world and wherever I go, as champion, ICW goes and puts international focus on the company as well as almost 8 years in WWE while still being under 30. With the start of the on demand service, thats what I hope to bring to advance the company.
Thought I’d have a wee look online for any old photos of Drew in ICW, and found this. The white boots were rather fetching if I don’t say so myself
You’re working all over the place at the moment. Winning the Evolve Title from Chris Hero, and working all over the U.K. How has the transition been from working with WWE for so long, to back on the Indies with different companies that might require different things from you each night?
It’s what I was born for, and the transition was like a duck being allowed back in the water. I have so much self belief as I live this, and was blessed with a marketable look. I love wrestling, all the styles the world has to offer, and the best talent. The biggest reward is the reaction of the fans to my matches/ promos. I appreciate all those who believed all along, but I read and hear all the time I had no idea you could perform at that level. Or even better, Drew is so much better now… that match with Hero was barely a couple of months from my release. I’m fortunate with people giving me the opportunity and believing in me to show what I can really do just being myself.
It also leads to opportunities for mind boggling spots like this with guys like Richochet
Your WWE release came at a time where you were working on TV regularly with 3MB, and seemingly the group was getting some good crowd reactions at the time too. Were you shocked to be let go?
Just like you mentioned, we were on everything and receiving good reactions in that sense. It was a shock, definitely had some petrol left in tank. On the other hand, to transition to a serious role once again, it would require time off tv to shake off 3MB image and I’ve been fortunate how amazing things have progressed since I’ve been gone.
Wee bit of a double question. You recently main evented Wrestlecade 2014 with Matt Hardy in front of 3000 people. Was it strange working with someone you’ve feuded with in WWE in such a different environment? And how did a North American crowd of that size compare to 1,200 Glaswegians at the Barras?
300 Glaswegians can make as much noise as 10000 people from any country. It wasn’t strange at all, it was awesome. It was such a stacked show, Hardy and myself main evented and tore the roof off. It’s great when you’re in with someone so talented and you barely have to speak beforehand even if it’s a last man standing match.
Fear and Loathing 7 was a huge night for ICW, and you took the title back after a 7 year absence, ending Jack Jesters over year-long reign. How special was that match and that moment for you personally? You seemed overcome with emotion at the end.
It was possibly and likely the biggest moment of my career. The build with such a close friend/ the reality of it all and having such a hands on approach to the story was fantastic. It meant so much to both of us professionally and personally. It was two years to the day since my mother had passed and outwith the story we both dedicated that match to her and her memory. It was very, very emotional to us, my family, and many fans in attendance.
BCW is one of the first places you made your name, and they recently packed out East Kilbride and Kilmarnock as part of the 2 night No Blood, No Sympathy show. How impressed are you with the growth in BCW since you started there all those years ago?
Again, like ICW, BCW has grown due to the talent level growing so much over the years. It’s incredible and I’m proud of Graham and my return selling out the Kilmarnock Grand Hall for the first time for wrestling, 15 minutes from my home.
What is the ultimate goal for you in wrestling now? We’re obviously all hoping to see you here for as long as possible, but with the impact you’ve made already, you must be on the radar of the big American companies again, and perhaps NJPW.
I’m focused on the immediate goals. I’d be lying if I said nobody has spoken to me, but I’m enjoying myself with no contract and I’m so lucky to be working all the time at such a high level. Here’s the immediate goal, like I said before, ICW on television.
If you’d like to know what kind of things you’d be likely to see if ICW does get a TV deal, here’s Drew kicking his pal Wolfgang in the face
If you had to pick one person, who would you say has been your biggest influence in wrestling to date?
There’s so many to mention. In WWE, people like Finlay, Regal, Undertaker. FCW really shaped my style especially working with and forming a relationship with Finlay when it comes to thinking different from everyone else.
You were one of the first people to attempt to make a career out of wrestling in Scotland. How difficult was it back then to learn your craft, compared to now where potential trainees have multiple schools to choose from?
Like I mentioned, there was about two schools at the time. Both in southern England. It was not easy at all, I saw it as easy at the time because I had such tunnel vision but there was a lot of travelling, money and hard work that went into making it back then. These days, with the talent so advanced in the UK now, there are many options for people to at least learn the basics…of course many shouldn’t even exist which is an unfortunate case across the globe.
You’re good pals with Alberto Del Rio, who has also recently left the WWE. Since you didn’t get the chance in WWE, what are the chances of you two working together on the Indie scene in the near future? A match between you two would be a belter.
Thank you. He is doing amazing also and we’re both damn proud of each other for it. We got some things lined up, watch this space.
You’re very vocal about your love and respect for pro wrestling. So I simply wanted to ask, in your own words, what makes professional wrestling so special?
It is the greatest form of entertainment for me. An escape for many, guilty pleasure for others, the highlight of the week and family time for others. For me, I was always going to do it. Like an artist, I see every match and promo as a blank canvas and I can paint any story I want. All I care about is telling the best story and making people believe in an era where people know how wrestling works but still attend as they want to believe. I can make them feel every emotion I desire if done correctly and that is an incredible ability. We are actors, stunt men, story tellers, fighters and we have one take. If you learn to relax in the ring and don’t worry so much about moves it’s the best place to be in the world.
Very well put. Also gives you the chance to share a beer with your younger self. Not many professions offer that do they?
You’ve been busy since coming back to Scotland regularly. In addition to all the wrestling shenanigans, you were involved in the filming of the second ICW documentary on the BBC; Insane Fight Club 2. With the air date finally announced for the 21st of January, what can we expect from the second documentary? Please tell me Grado calls you “big man” a lot, and there’s at least one scene where yees compare 6 packs.
Haha, that’s a whole separate show we’re working on, but seriously I’m not going to ruin it for anyone. I’ve seen it and was blown away. The team and everyone involved did an incredible job. The people in charge really are amazing, they believe in ICW and in entertainment you really need someone in your corner. I will tell you one thing, Grado is laugh a minute as always.
We spoke to Renfrew recently about the match between you at the Square Go. He had some choice words. So I suppose its only right that we finish off by opening up the floor for you to respond?
We’ve both had many choice words for each other and here’s the bottom line. Each one of us believe every single word we say and thats what makes a true champion. If you don’t believe in your own shit as so many don’t and you can feel when thats happening, nobody will.
Renfrew claims his goal was never to be in WWE or TNA. He’s right, I was fired up, but if I remember correctly I stated he didn’t make it in America or ANYWHERE ELSE because he wasn’t good enough, not WWE. Not a swipe at anyone else, that sir was a direct hit. Now lets take a step back and be honest for a second as I DISSECT Mr.Renfrew’s comments. When he started wrestling, which was not that long after myself, ICW was only a metaphorical sperm swimming in Mark Dallas’ head, hell, there was barely a Scottish scene. This line caught my attention, “I didn’t want to be an indian, I wanted to be a chief, create something here”…come on Renfrew even you couldn’t look me in the eye with a straight face and say that. WWE maybe not, but I know just like everyone that takes the chance to persue wrestling that you had goals of traveling, taking wrestling as far as you could. Then over the years reality set in. You bet your ass its your first choice, ICW was your savior not the other way around and you should kiss the ground every day for Dallas & everyone that helped create ICW what it is today, I know I do.
Now heres the thing that may come as a shock to everyone. If I was an ICW fan in Glasgow….I would be a Chris Renfrew guy. Much like myself in very different ways he lives outside the box and is extremely driven. He is smart, just like he says, and knows exactly how to get under peoples skin as well as entertain and twist things to his gain. ICW is the perfect environment for someone who knows their strengths. “Im gonna finger all your sisters”, I’m laughing just typing it. He knows his strengths and most important he knows his audience to get a reaction like he does at times. Don’t hit me with any bullshit of that being the goal, just be honest, perfect situation/ made the absolute best of it. Renfrew is also very tough as proved against Hardcore Holly and gets it, that makes him dangerous to my title. However, as much as he likes to expose his opponents weaknesses his arrogance causes him to underestimate his opponents at times, especially regarding their intelligence.
I’m fully aware I’m walking into a situation where he has a strong following and has the NAK behind him, each show brings bigger challenges and this is one of the toughest. We both have to win, I lose much like my match with Jester the train stops, Renfrew loses an entire year with the case and all the highlights destroyed. For those who believe and get what I’m trying to achieve, thank you. Its only been six months back, but each week brings new challenges, long flights across the globe and driving forward in the name of pro wrestling and my goals. At the top of that list, getting ICW on TV. Don’t ever question what I’m trying to achieve or my love for my country. I’m traveling everywhere competing against and beating the top talent in the world while ICW pushes an on demand service. What comes of this? Drew from ICW, Drew from Scotland, Drew who has people talking….what does that bring to the the table? Renfrew representing Scotland from Scotland is great, but ICW deserves a world platform and I’m the one busting my ass the give it that.
What can everyone expect from Drew Galloway and Chris Renfrew at Square Go????…VIOLENCE!!!!!!
Something a bit like this maybe?
Huge thank you to Drew for doing this. If you fancy coming to the Square Go and you don’t have a ticket, tough shit. It sold out ages ago, but here’s a few reasons why you should be very excited about Drew vs Renfrew if you aren’t already.
Also if you’re interested in backing the site, go here. Please don’t though. It’ll mean I have to do a lot more interviews, reviews and assorted other nonsense and no one needs that in their lives.
To keep up with Drew, do the usual social media things.
All credit as usual for the incomparable Mr David J Wilson for the images (aside from the one with Drew holding the belt)