” Billy Corgan is into wrestling. This seems to be a joke to most people with a music blog/tumblr/snapchat of cassette tapes they listen to. He has written multiple hit rock records at the almost last possible moment in time that someone could do that. He was a suburban Chicago kid who willed himself into a rock star/music press combatant as the face of The Smashing Pumpkins. After years of playing the heel in popular culture is Billy making a face turn?
Corgan currently is the creative director for the Chicago-based independent wrestling federationResistance Pro Wrestling (ResPro forthwith) along with Jacques and Gabriel Baron, who are brothers. What separates the almost three-year-old group from most local indy feds is an impending unscripted reality show on AMC. On Friday July 25th, I attended “The Mob Rules” at The Barn at Arabian Knights Farm. Three hours of independent wrestling in a barn about an hour outside of Chicago and Billy Corgan? Tough to pass this up. I should note I received a complimentary ticket from ResPro ring announcer Zach Thompson.
A quick confession, initial versions of this article suffered from major drift. I wanted to talk about the actual wrestling show and less about Corgan. I took photos, notes, and tried to interview people like an honest to god journalist. No matter what I did the article was not coming together.
I needed a concept for this sprawling double album. Enter Brian Eno’s “Oblique Strategies”. Eno devised a series of cards (or a website in this instance) meant to inspire musical creativity with vague (or oblique if you went to a better college than I) statements written on each card like “consider different fading systems” and “abandon normal instruments.” I find them incredibly useful in writing. If Eno can draw almost listenable music out of Chris Martin and Bono, certainly he can help me write about wrestling. Each of the following headings is an Eno strategy…”