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Look at the Pictures from the article! PICTURES

 

Tish's Note. Andi.. my friend and fellow LocoGirl was quick to point out to me that Mr. Taylor was in this Months Issue of Raw Magazine... Of course.. I rushed out to buy it So here is the article in its entirety.. Pictures included. Tish's comments are in italics.. (You didnt think I wouldnt have any did you?)

"The Red Rooster" Terry Taylor, is back in the World Wrestling Federation-not as a competitor, but as part of the creative team that helps put together federation television programming. Where has he been and why has he returned? And how is he qualified for this job?

In 1899, Taylor came to the World Wrestling Federation thinking that his career would finally take off (and breaking my heart in doing so because he left Louisiana) Bobby Heenan was going to be his manager, so Taylor thought that this would finally be his opportunity to shine. After comign here and wrestling a few matches, the Federation came up with a marketing idea for Taylor. he was to be "The Red Rooster" - a wrestler who dyed a red stripe down the center of his head, combed it up spikey like a rooster and would bob his head up and down and strut like a chicken. (I chalk it up to insanity on Vinnie Mac's part.. I still cringe at the pics My poor baby) Being a good employee, Taylor went with it and soon became the laughing stock of the fans and the other wrestlers. The fans would boo and tease him unmercifullyl. He couldn't show his face anywhere in an arena without fans ridiculing him about his new persona. After 18 months, Taylor quit the World Wrestling Federation and eventually returned to what was now called World Championship Wrestling. I was there at Taylor's first return match. It ocured at the meadowlands (now the Continental Airlines Arena) a strong Federation building right in the heart of World Wrestling Federation territory. The second the fans saw him, the "Rooster" chants would start and wouldn't stop. When he came out to wrestle his match, the roar was deafening. The bookers thought that Taylor was "tagged" with this career-ending gimmick and could never get "over," so they didn't allow him the push he deserved. Terry hated it that he was known as the Red Rooster and continued to hate it for the next eight years. he couldn't show his face anywhere without the "Rooster" chants. (Thats only because he didn't come here. Right here no one would have ever started that chant. He was our Terry. Mid-South's finest and we love him still) As his career had not really taken off significantly since leaving the Federation, Taylor believed that the Red Rooster character ruined any chance he would ever have to get "over" with the fans again. The matchmakers at WCW never allowed Taylor to do much because in their minds the fans would always think of him as the Red Rooster. Perhaps this shows how intelligent Vince McMahon really is. (Cant you tell who pays his salary.. If Vince would have been so darn intelligent he would have let Terry come out with his own gimmick)

Taylor Retired from wrestling an active schedule five years ago and worked behind the scenes at WCW. He trained many wrestlers, including Triple H. He also became part of the bookign committee, in that he was a big part of the decision-making process of what you saw happen on television and in the ring. I had the opportunity to speak with my old friend Terry Taylor on his return to the World Wrestling Federation. The following coversation took place on Taylor's first day back in the Federation offices.

DB: It was major news to those who follow the behind-the-scenes happenings in the business when you left WCW and came to the World Wrestling Federation. Many people were shocked, in fact, that Eric Bischoff would even let you leave. Can you talk about what happened?

TAYLOR: Absolutely. Here's the whole thing and I'm going to tell you the truth. On January 12, it came out in one of the "inside" dirt sheets and on the Internet that I had been talking to people in the World Wrestling Federation and that I was going to make am ove, or was considering making a move. It wasn't true, but sometimes that doesn't matter. On January 14, Eric Bischoff called me in and told me, " if you don't want to be here, I dont't want you here. If you're talking to the World Wrestling Federation, then you need to go." Well, I had not done that. I hadn't talked to anybody. You know , I had always been friends with Hunter and a couple fo other guys up there, but you know we'd say "hi" once a month. We don't talk about business. You know, we were friends. Never once did I say anything about making a move. I was happy there... I thought. Eric considered me his whipping boy. He had told people that and he told me that.

DB: I had heard that because of the power structure in place ther it was difficult for you to do your job.

TAYLOR: That's absolutely true. I was hired to write compelling television, with long-range goals and episodic story lines. But I wasn't given any criteria to do that. Eric wouldnt tell us what the main event would be for certain Pay-Per-Views. Try writing a TV show when you don't know where the story is supposed to go. A lot of people say that it was Hulk who changed things at the last minute, or kept things secret from us. That's wrong. It was Eric. It finally came down to Eric telling me, "If you don't want to be here, then go." And that was the final straw-being verbally abused and to be honest with you, under appreciated. (My poor baby!!!! ) I don't think he really knew what all I did there. I think he has an idea now what I did. But to make a long story short, I called Vince [McMahon] up next. Vince was so gracious and so accommodating... and so forgiving. I mean, let's be quite honest, my reputation before wasn't as good as it could have been. (can you blame him?? Two words.. Chicken cluck.. I'd have been hostile too) But we worked a deal out, and I asked if I could give him an answer in five days. My wife and I (Go ahead,,drive that stake in hard *EG*) talked about it and I was going to talk to Eric about it. But when I went to Eric to talk about it, he blew me off. So, thats when I told him, "Thanks for everything, but please consider this my two weeks' notice." I gave my notice at around 2 in the afternoon at Nitro and was told to go back to my hotel-that they didn't need me there. I talked to Vince at 3:05 p.m. and he todl me he wanted me to start right away. you know, in seven days my whole life changed. I was backstage at a WCW Pay-Per-View onc Sunday, gave notice before Nitro the next day, and was at a World Wrestling Federation Pay-Per_View the following Sunday, followed by a Raw Is War on Monday. I wasn't even home to discuss all this in detail with my wife and now she probably hates me, because we've lived in the same house for the last eight years, my son is a senior in high school, and now we have to pick up and move. (thats ok baby,, if she hates you now... just let me know.. :o) ) But this is a real dream come true for me. In my heart and in my faith, I believe that things happen for a reason.

DB: Did Vince ack you about what duties you had performed at WCW?

TAYLOR: No, we didn't talk about that.

DB: Well, he must have known for him to be so receptive to you, someone must have filled him in on what you are capable of, as far as being creative and producing interesting television.

TAYLOR: I don't know that. I would hope so. I didn't even think about that part of it. I thought he was just enraptured with what a wonderful person I am. ( I dont know about Vince,, but I am).

DB: No, thats not it. Anyway, what are you going to do here? Who will you be working with?

TAYLOR: My position is to help on the wrestling end; and to complement the two most successful writers in the history of wrestling-Vince Russo and Ed Ferrara.

DB: I'd like to add that the person you're workign for is teh same person that I'm working for-Vince Russo. I can't say enough good things about him...

Taylor:[Laughs] He's been very good to me and I'll do anything he wants me to do to help. I appreciate that they added me because, lets be honesty, why mess with the most successful sports entertainment show ever?

DB: Why do you think tehy added you to the mix?

TAYLOR: Because of my in-ring wrestling knowledge. And maybe because the year that I was in charge of WCW"s booking, the World Wrestling Federation never won a Monday night's rating. And when Eric took me off the committee on August 28, WCW hasn't won a Monday night since. I'm not saying it was just me, but I know I had alot to do with that. I don't want to sound arrogant, but you know, it's true.

DB: Nowadays, because of the Internet we get immediate feedback on the news from fans and insiders. Good or bad, there's always a cross-section of opinion on whats happening. The report of your quitting WCW and coming to the World Wrestling Federation was considered very major news adn it was pretty much unanimous that everyone thought that this was WCW"s loss and the World Wrestling Federation's gain. There was an ourcry of support for you from the fans on the Internet. What do you think about that?

TAYLOR: Well, I don't know how people know all that I do and what happens in the locker room, but they do. I have AOL (IM ME ANYTIME!!!!!!!) and Prodigy. I get on there and read what people say and I appreciate their support. The support from my friends down there when I left was terriffic and the support I recieved up here from teh staff was also incredible. It was pretty emotional. Let me say that Vince Russo and Ed Ferrara had nothing to do with me being here - They don't know me from Adam_But they've been really god about letting me pitch in. I'm on the support team. I did everything at WCW for a year and a half and I would love the opportunity just to help and not, you know, change the world.

DB: Do you see more of a team spirit here than you did at WCW?

TAYLOR: {Laughs} You have no idea. IT's a night and day difference, and I don't want to knock WCW. It's just that it's so much more positive at the World Wrestling Federation. Everybody's cheerful and they're happy to be doing what they're doing. I'm not saying that there arent personality confilicts and disappointments and all that, but that's life. Things happen. But I see, from Steve Austin all the way down to the young up and commers, it's a real team effort here. I like that. It's a bunch of guys rowing the boat all in the same direction. And it's not because they're being paid millions of dollars. It's because they're part of something that is good and because of that they have a chance to earn more. There's no question, after seeing both sides of the fence, the World Wrestling Federation is the greatest wrestling organization in the world.

DB: Don't you thing that's the reason Paul Wight refused to re-sign with thema nd waited until he could legally come to the World Wrestling Federation to wrestle?

TAYLOR: I don't know if you know this or not, butr I trained him, too. I'm very fond of Paul Wight. he very easily could have been the biggest star in the wrestling world down there. He could achieve that up here. You've got the buggest star in the business in Steve Austion... also The Rock and Mankind and the Undertaker and a bunch of guys. I mean, Paul Wight could slide right in there against any of them and get a huge Pay-Per-View buy rate or get a huge televisionr ating. They really know what to dowith superstars here. And the group of younger guys they have here in the World Wrestling Federation are the next generation of THE Superstars of the business. The Talent development here is the best I've ever se4en. And everyone knows it.

DB: Without naming names, I hear that the cream of their young talent wants to come up here too.

TAYLOR: I was flabbergasted by that thing, too. They all know that here they will have a chance to show what they have without someone holding them back because they show to much talent or they have a personal problem with someone in the office. I've made just about every mistake you can make in this business, and hopefullyl, I'm in a better position now to help advise the younger guys and help this company. I'm a team player and I'm here to do whatever they need.

DB: I know you're a team player based on what I've seen you had to put up with in your career. That brings us to teh Red Rooster.

TAYLOR: I'll tell you a story about that. I spent nine years of my life arguing with fans, family and friends that wrestling wasn't legit, and I spent years trying to get Terry Taylor "over" as a legitimate name. I did the Red Rooster for 16 months. The last time I did that character on television was February 1990. I think it was common knowledge that I was uncomfortablw with that character and that's why I left teh World Wrestling Federation. But you know, more people know me as the Red Rooster than EVER knew me as Terry Taylor. So, if you talk about marketability and recognition and all that, Vince McMahon was right. He was smarter than me (NEVER) and he knew it. That character could have worked, but I probably talked myself out of a position. It's a gimmick that obviously wokred because people still remember it and call me"Rooster". It was a heat generator and it worked. It got a reaction from the fans and that's what you're lookign for. Vince had foresight and I did not. He's a visionary. I've been through enough to where I see that now. (I really dont like the self depricating side of Terry. The gimmick was stupid,, it made him look like a fool and I hated it. Terry was an incredibly talented athlete who could never live it down. Vince may have foresight, but this gimmick did not fit this man.... I'll never think of him as The Red Rooster... and I hope that seeing some of the stuff about Terry Taylor on Ladies Love Wrestling Too.. you will see him as something other than the Rooster also)

DB: What World Wrestling Federation Superstar catches your interest?

TAYLOR: I am absolutely facinated by Goldust. I think that when Dustin is doing Goldust, he really is Goldust. That's what Vince is good at. He took a guy who was in the shadow of his father-a cowboy- not really knowing who he sould be or what he should be and went so far the other way... I mean, when Goldust first came out he shocked the wrestling world. I absolutely love that character and we're lickign our chops to see how far Goldust can go with the character. I also want to mention the "Dead Man"-the Undertaker. He's one of my favorite guys. He's got probably THE best character and THE best entrance in the history of the business. There's absolutely nothing like it. When that bell tolls, the crowd just erupts. Once again, Vince McMahon was a genius to match this particular character to Taker's real personality. And it's a testament to the Undertaker's ability to go out there and pull it off. And he's one half of the most talked-about match in history, which was the "Hell in a Cell" against Mankind.

DB: How does it feel to be working with your old friend Jim Ross?

TAYLOR: Good! I like J.R. He and I kind of started together. And from what I hear people are always saying, "I loved that Mid-South Wrestling"-which he was as big a part of as anybody. We both kind of got our start there,(and boy do I remember those days.. Those were the best of times and I'll never forget the fun I had then!) and it's funny because he's the best at what he does. I'm not going to go into everything else that he does, but he's probably the best announcer in the history of the game. I've played the "Three Faces of Foley" video over and over just to hear Ross call Mick's fall from the top of that cage. He gives credibility to what he's calling and he genuinely loves what he's doing. He calls it just like a true fan. I think that's why people love him.

DB: Terry, have you ever seen anything like the way the business is now? could you ever imagine in your wildest dreams that every show would be a sellout- that every television tapign is a monster event with the ratings breakign all-time viewing records?

TAYLOR: Well, it took and incredible effort to get where we are now and to keep it. And to be honest, teh viewers are more discriminationg, intelligent and harder to pleasen ow than they have ever been.

DB Do you think the shows can get too"out there"? At what piont do you think we should "pull it back a notch, " so to speak?

TAYLOR: I think the fans will tell us through their viewing habits.

DB: Do you think we have any responsibilty to police what we do to some extent?

TAYLOR: Absolutely. I think people want to be entertained, and with the World Wrestling Federation's cutting edge and new attitude, they break new ground every week. Anytime you take a chance on anythign in life, some people are going to appreciate it and some aren't. Some things are going to work and some aren't. Vince McMahon and his creative team have been incredibly successful dancing on that fine line. IT's the best time in the world to be a wrestling fan. WCW hasn't won a rating on a Monday Night since the last week in August 1998. They see what the World Wrestling Federation is doing and they're changing the way they do things. In the meantime, the World Wrestling Federation is always changing, too. It's a very competitive business. I don't know who is going to write all teh creative stuff for them, but I dont care either.

DB: In closing, Terry, is there anything you would really like to say?

Taylor: (Yes.... I love Louisiana,, and I love Tish ;o) J/K guys!!!!!) I just want to make it abundantly clear how fortunate I feel I"ve been in my career and my life. And the good days are still to come. I'm very positive and I"m just happy to be in the World Wrestling Federation. I don't mean to sound corny or anything, but I know a lot of guys my age who are out of the business doing things that they really don't want to do and just living day-to-day. I am so happy that I wake up every day excited about working I mean if I was unhappy I should kick myself in the ass! I love this job and will be doing everythign possible to help keep the World Wrestling Federation the top promotion and the top-rated television show in the business.

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