An Interview With Simon Cassidy

simoooo

When you talk about wrestling, casual observers pretty much see wrestlers and thats it. Nothing else has any sort of importance. The big guys with the muscles (and Grado…x) leathering each other, and occasionally things like referees, ring announcers, authority figures and the occasional bear get in the way. At Snapmare Necks we believe that PEOPLE make wrestling. The ones behind the curtain going up to Mark Coffey and asking if he’s got enough vaseline on his eyebrows and all that carry on. They’re the ones who matter. Then you have guys like referees Tam, Shaun and Eddie. Who add to the drama by taking bumps and bustin humphs (fuck knows what that means btw) and of course, the man we’re chatting to right now. The bold Simon Cassidy. The man whose name has become synonymous with this ring announcing game, and the only man you want anywhere near your companies mic, announcing names and the occasional match stipulation. He’s also fair decent at that commentary game, and he’s best pals with DCT, so that make’s him sound by us. Sound enough to interview, and sound enough to subsequently fire that interview on this here website. Read it. Love it. Learn about the Cassidy.


One – Fall!

I genuinely didn’t see that coming. Well done. Recently nearly decked it in a nightclub and a stranger ran over and shouted “ONE FALL!” True story.

Two – Now I’ve fully committed to making that joke (nae regrets), your interview will be a wee bit different from the others. Basically every question will have a number on it spelled out. Like so. Number three might actually be a decent question. I think we’ve lost our way a bit with this one tbh. I’ll round it off with a question pertinent to what we’ve spoken about so far, so aye….what’s yer favourite number?

This became about the relative merits of literacy and numeracy far quicker than I had expected…because that’s how all interviews go…right? Guys?! Anyway, I’m gonna have to say 3: a strategically sound number, like a pyramid: strong shape. Plus I feel that 2 has gotten a bit cocky in recent years. Have to take it down a peg.

Three – Seriously though, you’re the best in the country at this ring announcing game, and handy on commentary also. Was it always your intention to get into that side of wrestling as opposed to getting yer cunt kicked in?

Very kind of you to say, although personally I have a few bad habits which bug me that I need to iron out, especially when called in for commentary, but thank you.
Actually, a little known fact is that about 7 years ago I trained with the Scottish Wrestling Alliance back in their Linwood training centre, Area 52, for about five months. On a side note, you cannot begin to understand how much Damian O’Connor has done to improve that school and the standard of training since my brief stint as a trainee. It’s just night and day.
That being said, I was never under any illusions that I was going to become the next big thing: truth be told I just wanted to do anything involving a microphone, at the time I was under the illusion I could be the next Bobby the Brain, but announcer or commentator were pretty high on my list of ambitions.
One week I showed up to training and took a nasty bump off a back body drop and pretty much couldn’t move. While it turned out that the injury wasn’t that serious, truth be told it scared me enough to decide to abandon training.

Meanwhile, at Uni I hosted a few gigs around town and did a lot of radio, events coverage and interviews. Over time this led to me starting WrestleShark with a certain International Sex Hero who formerly had journalistic integrity and got to know quite a lot of the folk involved in wrestling. After a while Damo had apparently heard I did some event hosting and offered me the chance to MC one of their friends and family shows. That was only two years ago, so things escalated quickly after that.
That turned out to be a much longer answer than I anticipated. But here we are.

dctttttbullly

Simon Cassidy, a less tashed DCT, and Bully Ray the year he went out on Halloween dressed as an orange.

This is the site with the 8-10,000 word reviews of wrestling shows mate. Nae worries about answer length here.

Four – With the “One fall!” and “Its your fault” patter becoming synonymous with your name, do you feel like you’ve made a lasting impact with the fans? (if the answer is no, dont be fucking stupid…course ye have)

I always make the joke that I could be replaced by an enthusiastic answering machine, but I’d like to think that my unique mix of Bruce Buffer meets Darts Announcer by way of Glasgow has made a bit of an impact.
At the end of the day the entirety of my job is to make everyone that walks through the curtain sound like a million bucks: whether that’s the Barrowlands or a community centre in front of 15 folk (which has happened), I always aim for the “big fight feel”. After that, I really just have to get the hell out of there and let them do their thing. If people decide that they enjoy what I do and want to see me on shows then I’m very grateful.

Five – What are your aspirations in wrestling? With someone like yourself not involved in the in-ring side of it (well you announce folk in the ring, but you know what I mean) is there a goal in mind, or are you just seeing where this daft wrestling thing takes you?

If I could find a way to make a full-time living out of roaming the country, shouting people’s names, it would be absolutely incredible. And who knows, the way things are going, maybe it’ll happen. I’d also be lying if I said I didn’t want to be in WWE…but it’s hard enough to get noticed as a wrestler to make it over there, let alone a small, Scottish, ring announcer, so the chances of that are fairly slim. Just now, I’m really just going with it and seeing what happens: it’s been fairly awesome so far.
So I’m going to shoot for a more modest ambition: I want a Wikipedia page. There are surprisingly successful people who just don’t exist according to good ole Wiki: authors, scientists, individuals of note and value…so clearly, I should have one before they do. I’d also like to be sponsored to wear suits…because why not?! Would certainly get them seen in public often enough. Open to offers.

Six – You always look pure roastin in that suit. Have you considered announcing in a different suit? Perhaps the birthday variety?

Pervert, eh?

Moi?

But no, you see I love fine haberdashery. Bloody love wearing a suit, so I do. If that means I have to sweat bucket loads (see the first night of the Fringe tour over on www.InsaneWrestling.co.uk/OnDemand for evidence) then it’s a sacrifice I’m prepared to make. To professionalism!

Big Dante gien it.."Thish ish indeed a nice shuit, its a shame yuur so shkinny, I'd like to wear this shuit myself, or maybe I just wear you"

Big Dante gien it..”Thish ish indeed a nice shuit, its a shame yuur so shkinny, I’d like to wear this shuit myself, or maybe I just wear you”

Seven – If you’re wondering if question six is me hitting on you. It is. But anyway. You see a lot more Scottish Wrestling than most. Covering shows all over the country. Who do you think is going to take this vibrant scene by storm in 2015? (its DCT eh? yer gonnae say DCT)

I’m flattered, but spoken for. Actually I’m not…nor am I that flattered. It’s a little awkward now you mention it.

Oh you’ll be spoken for any more of that patter. Soon as he said “awkwardness” I got an insta-semi.

OK, so am I shamelessly biased towards my best friend of the past decade? Of course I am, but in all honestly I do think DCT is set to make a big impact in 2015. I think the thing a lot of people don’t realise is that he’s actually a very good wrestler, don’t let the moustache fool you. That coupled with being one half of Muay Tache (the greatest tag team of all time…go watch their promos. Do it. Do it now.) and the newest member of Polo Promotions, how can it not be the year of DCT? Although my mother is concerned about his hair and moustache…she recently seen him for the first time in ages and responded with “What’s he done to himself?!” But that’s not exactly relevant.

That being said, I actually think Mark Coffey still doesn’t get the credit he deserves in a lot of people’s eyes. The man was the Zero G champion for the better part of a year, beat Fergal Devitt, and then immediately went on to take the tag titles from London and Kendrick. Think 2014 was just the tip of the iceberg. (Who bad, after all?)
Lou King Sharp is another one that a lot of people mention, and there’s a reason for that: the boy is bloody good. Keep your eyes on that one.
Finally, Big Damo: not by any means a newcomer, but I think over the last couple of years as he has gradually become the Beast of Belfast, he has clicked with a lot of fans and has a presence and physicality that not many in the UK can match. Genuinely think he’ll be a very big deal by the end of 2015.

Eight – You’ve been part of the always entertaining Big Wrestleshark Show for a while now. Switching from a weekly radio show, to special podcasts. Where do you, Scott and Louise see that going in the future?

We switched from radio to podcasts for a couple of reasons. Firstly, we weren’t exactly hitting the prime time audience by broadcasting at 10pm on a Tuesday night. Second: the vast majority f ur listeners were just downloading the shows later on anyway…it also didn’t fill me with confidence when I looked on the station website and noticed that we were listed as “the Big Shark Wrestling Show”.

Hahahahah buckled at the idea of a big wrestling shark. Maybe we can book him against the bear?

The podcasts let us be a lot more casual and relaxed, plus we actually know the people we’re interviewing, so a lot of it is just having a chat with your mates: I’ve always preferred shows like that. Think Colt Cabana is probably the best at it. Not saying we’re shamelessly trying to steal Colt Cabana’s idea…but we’re shamelessly trying to steal Colt Cabana’s idea. Except Scottish. And insane.
Honestly, we’ve all been pretty busy over the last couple of months so it’s been harder to get the show out weekly like we’d like to, but we’ve got some big things in the pipeline. Guess you’ll just need to head over to http://www.WrestleShark.podbean.com or WrestleShark in the iTunes Store to find out. We interviewed Sting once.

Nine – Who were your wrestling idols growing up, who maybe influenced your decision to get into the business?

This is a bit of a strange one, obviously I’m not a wrestler so I can’t really comment on who I try to emulate or who I base my style on, but as a wee boy I was a fan of the Ultimate Warrior, recall having a fairly serious disagreement with my big brother when I had the audacity to cheer him over Hulk Hogan.
Comfortably my favourite of all time has got to be The Rock. Say what you will about his recent returns, but he was the man. I remember being quite upset a couple of years ago when CM Punk was better in a promo they had together…I didn’t think that was allowed.

Ten – You’ve been the regular ICW announcer for about a year and a half now. Tell us a wee bit of what its been like being involved in ICW and all the shenanigans that come with it? (Am I fishing for funny stories about the tour here? perhaps)

ICW is precisely as mental as you would assume. In fact, you’re probably underestimating the pandemonium. It’s been amazing.
Naturally, what happens on tour, stays on tour. But, without going into specifics, the following things have happened. I have: been chopped by three ICW champions while topless and covered in vodka; seen “society in a bag”; had to make an extremely hasty exit from a hotel room because reasons; got stuck under Paul London’s bed; watched as a girl has “slut dropped” onto a colleagues face in the middle of a club; had a slice of pizza launched in my face; been elbow dropped while unconscious; accidentally broken into a London hotel; gone deaf, blind and dumb; incited some Dutch strangers to spontaneously undress at 9am. I have also witnessed Jackie Polo wandering into the chill morning because he had run out of people to annoy…but he came back.
Genuinely can’t list half the ridiculous nonsense that has taken place, all I can tell you is that if you try and look up the hotel we stayed at in Liverpool you will notice that it doesn’t exist anymore. That’s not even an exaggeration: it’s literally gone. Roll on round two!

Mon Simon, smell ma fingers...get them fuckin smellt ya wee tert

Mon Simon, smell ma fingers…get them fuckin smellt ya wee tert

Eleven – Last but not least, tell us anything you want. Anything important coming up for Simon Cassidy. Perhaps the launch of yer new named branded curling tongs “Cassidys Curlers” or like…I dunno. Something wrestling related. Cut a promo on the pretenders to your announcing throne.

Well, I do believe in good grooming…and I bloody love cheap plugs!
Well the big news that I haven’t officially told anyone yet is that on 31 January I’ll be making my first appearance as the new Ring Announcer for Premier British Wrestling: which I’m really very excited about.
I’ve also just confirmed that I’ll be coming back to the Scottish Wrestling Alliance throughout 2015: they were the ones who gave me my start, so it’s awesome to be back working with them!
After that, in the next couple of months, I’ll be returning to Pro-Wrestling Elite and British Championship Wrestling who regularly knock it out the park and have some amazing shows lined up for the next couple of months, strongly recommend anyone to check them out!

Pride: The Spy Who Pinned me is on February 7th and if you haven’t checked these shows out yet, they are always great fun and very family friendly. Get on it!

Then of course there is ICW and the Insane Entertainment System Tour which looks absolutely amazing, and may be the cause of my premature death! Seriously, if you’re reading this you’re on the internet anyway, just open a new tab and buy your tickets now. There’s a lot of dates and they’re selling fast! Finally, I suppose, just wrapped filming the second episode of ICW Rewind for the On Demand service looking at Grado vs Mikey Whiplash which should be crackin’ when it goes online.

It was recently pointed out to me that I now MC for pretty much all the major promotions in the West of Scotland…which is fairly amazing. So, I guess it could be time to expand: take over the world, one-fall at a time.


Cracking interview there. Thoroughly enjoyable stuff. Simon gave me permission to cut things out as he felt he went on a wee bit, but I cut fuck all. Never cut unless someones talking pure and utter shite, or slinging out racial abuse to Persians. That’s not on. Persians are sound as.

Follow Simon on Twitter here
Check out the Big Wrestleshark Show here
Contribute to Snapmare Necks here…if you so wish

Credit to David J Wilson for the images. Photoshopped out most of the sweat patches on Simons suits anaw. He’s a good man. 

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