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Chad & Jason Hart Discuss Their Father’s New Memoirs/Book, Gary Hart’s Lasting Legacy In World Class Championship Wrestling, & If They See A Forthcoming Induction Of Their Dad Into The WWE Hall Of Fame
The sons of the legendary manager “Playboy” Gary Hart, Chad & Jason Hart, were the special guests on this week’s live edition (08/17/09) of Monday Night Mayhem (presented by ReelWrestling.com), hosted by The Big Mosh & Blade. You can feel The Mayhem live & in streaming audio every Monday night (at 8PM ET/7PM CT), exclusively on The Monday Night Mayhem Radio Network (www.MondayNightMayhem.com, www.ITunes.com. www.AudioWrestling.com, www.MySpace.com/MondayNightMayhem).
Gary Hart’s autobiography/memoirs (“My Life In Wrestling…With A Little Help From My Friends”) is now available exclusively through www.PlayboyGaryHart.com. This special reflection on the life & career of World Class Championship Wrestling’s “Playboy” (as part of “The Summer Of Mayhem 2009”) is now available for free in Windows Streaming Media, or via The Mayhem’s official Podcast On ITunes:
Chad & Jason Hart/Monday Night Mayhem Interview (MNM Streaming Audio): www.mondaynightmayhemarchives.com/waxfiles/081709.wax
Chad & Jason Hart/Monday Night Mayhem Interview (MNM Podcast On ITunes): http://www.mondaynightmayhemarchives.com/aug09/081709.mp3
Here are some of the highlights of Chad & Jason’s joint interview, provided by The Mayhem’s official correspondent, Paterson From New Jersey:
As many long-time fans of Monday Night Mayhem are aware, The Big Mosh & Blade have had the privilege & the honor of keeping the legacy of World Class Championship Wrestling alive over the past three years since the release of the phenomenal DVD documentary “Heroes Of World Class,” produced by Right Here Pictures & directed by Brian Harrison. While growing up in the business & during the “glory days” of WCCW, both Jason & Chad Hart saw their father achieve worldwide success. While the “Playboy” was in rings across the globe (including inside the confines of The Dallas Sportatorium), many referred to Gary as one of the most-hated managers in the industry, while at the same time, one of the most beloved. Mosh & Blade asked Chad & Jason about being Gary’s sons & their memories of growing up in a wrestling family. “It wasn’t really that much different. I didn’t see it different, because it was what my dad did for a living,” said Jason. Chad added, “Growing up as sons of one of the top heels in all of wrestling, there’s definitely times when it was scary & very exciting being the son of Gary Hart, because me & my brother both loved wrestling very much, and it was cool. Leaving the matches with my dad, a lot of times my dad would have us ushered out by other people, because the heat was just unbelievable leaving the arena.”
During his career, Gary did not spend much time with his children, and that is the reason he left the business his job, as mentioned in his new book. “In my opinion, when boys get to be early teenagers, that’s when they really need a father. A mother is there, but for boys, when they become young men, they really need a male role model in their life to make them into men. By the time my dad had retired (early 1990), he walked away from the business for us. We didn’t get to see him much, because he was always on the road, so that has everything to do with it. He was there for us always, everyday from the time we were ten years old. He was a great father, still is…” said Chad.
The last time Gary was on The Mayhem in December 2007, he mentioned that World Class Championship Wrestling was not entirely about the Von Erich family, but the success of the promotion was also as a result of the hard work & dedication of the rest of the locker room. He thought it was disrespectful to the other amazing wrestlers of WCCW to think otherwise, and he was a advocate to push that point to the fans. “Oh totally right,” said Jason. “If you’re a fan of the Transformers, you could remember when the Decepticons went away, and they fighting the other aliens. It wasn’t as cool. And what if Luke Skywalker didn’t have Darth Vader. What were they fighting against?” Chad added, “That’s wrestling. As hot as the NWO was, Eddie Guerrero, Chris Benoit, & Chris Jericho were having the best damn matches on the card, period. Jim Ross even spoke about in the heyday of Hulk Hogan & Andre The Giant, they were drawing the crowds, but the Intercontinental Champion were the ones having the best matches. You can’t have one without the other.”
The lives of many wrestlers from World Class were cut short way too early including the Von Erichs (David, Kerry. Mike, & Chris). In addition, several of the performers that Gary Hart managed went away way too soon as well. How did Hart feel about all of the tragedies in WCCW? “Dad’s relationship with guys like Gino & the Von Erich brothers…they weren’t like employees to him or just guys he worked with. Wrestling is odd like that, because the guys you are with, those guys are your family, so when Gino passed away, David passed away, & the others, it was like losing a family member. And it was very noticeable. Dad wouldn’t talk about how he felt about things that really bothered him. He would just be quiet & very somber for a while,” said Jason. “What’s done is done like my dad was saying. If he could change something, it would be to bring back those guys. That’s what he loved those guys, and they were like family,” added Chad.
In the WWE Hall Of Fame, several managers have been inducted to this point in time, including: “Classy” Freddie Blassie,
Arnold Skaaland, The Grand Wizard, Captain Lou Albano, Bobby “The Brain” Heenan, “The Mouth Of The South” Jimmy Hart, “Sensational” Sherri Martel, & Mr. Fuji. Many worthy individuals, such as Jim Cornette, Paul Heyman, & others are worthy of consideration, but have not been given the call just yet. With all that “Playboy” Gary Hart brought to the business, he is without a shadow of a doubt one of the names that fans, journalists, & those within the business today would love to see enshrined in the WWE’s Hall. “That would be absolutely wonderful if that was to take place. Me & my brother have a deep respect for the WWE. The tribute they had for my father…they don’t do that for just anybody. And so the respect they showed for my dad & the tributes they had for my dad, it meant the world to me & my brother that they did that. With my dealing with the WWE, they treated me with total respect, it had nothing to do with me…it had to do with my father. So that would be wonderful if they would want to put my dad in the Hall Of Fame. Whatever they decide to do no matter people say, the WWE is a classy company,” said Chad who was getting choked speaking about the tributes. Jason added, “If they continue to be the custodians of history as Bill Watts calls them & presenting World Class in a positive light (how they do on the 24/7 & DVD’s), I think if that’s done, then that’s all you can ask.”
More is contained in this exclusive interview with Jason & Chad Hart, as they discussed more about their father’s life & career in professional wrestling, including Gary’s greatness in pushing numerous wrestlers & getting them over (including how instrumental he was in The Great Muta’s transition from Japan to the United States), how & why he always protected the business (even after his managerial career was over), as well as his lasting legacy in the business. Courtesy of The Monday Night Mayhem Audio Vault, you will be able to hear some classic audio clips from Gary’s prior two Mayhem appearances (from November 2006 & December 2007, less than four months prior to his untimely passing). We honor the life of one of the true legends in our industry & one of the most-feared managers in the history of pro wrestling, “Playboy” Gary Hart.
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