Foreword by :Mick Foley ,
Foreword by :John Gibbons ,
Foreword by :Suzanne Alexander
Imprint:ECW Press - Toronto
Dimensions:9in x 6 x 0.71 in | 1.01 lb
Page Count:304 pages
Illustrations:24 24 photographs, colour , 60 60 photographs, black and white
A man with three different names ties together the stars of professional wrestling, country music, and the New York Mets.
John Arezzi was a lifelong Mets fan who dreamed of a job in baseball. In 1981, he took a job with the Mets Class A team in North Carolina. But Arezzi had another love: professional wrestling. He ran a fan club for the villainous “Classy” Freddie Blassie as a teenager, then progressed to wrestling photographer, and finally even stepped into the ring himself as John Anthony. Eventually he escaped to pursue a new life in altogether different world: country music. After adopting a new name, John Alexander, his many accomplishments include discovering both Patty Loveless and (decades later) Kelsea Ballerini. But wrestling is tough to shake …
In the 1990s, Arezzi hosted the pioneering radio talk show Pro Wrestling Spotlight. He also ran the first major conventions, assembling a wrestling who’s who to meet with fans. He promoted shows, both at home and abroad, and was a key figure behind importing lucha libre into America.
Mat Memories is Arezzi’s chance to hold the mic, and he holds nothing back — he names names and tells the untold behind-the-scenes stories: from the ring, the stage, and the diamond.
Tying together the stars of professional wrestling, country music, and the New York Mets is one man, John Arezzi. In a fascinating memoir, Arezzi brings the reader along on his wild ride, from a pioneering wrestling radio show to baseball’s minor leagues to working with Patty Loveless, Kelsea Ballerini, and Taylor Swift.
Sales and Market Bullets
John “Alexander” Arezzi is an entrepreneur who lives in Long Island and Nashville. He runs MatMemories.com and the Pro Wrestling Spotlight Then & Now podcast.
Greg Oliver is the author of 15 books, and the producer of SlamWrestling.net. He is the 2020 recipient of the James C. Melby Historian Award for his contributions to pro wrestling history. He lives in Toronto, Ontario, with his wife and son.
“John is a believer. He takes chances on people he believes in. I should know. For whatever reason he believed in me and put my show Headline Country on TV for 14 years. He’s an underdog’s best friend. Whether it’s baseball, wrestling or country music, he smells potential and opportunity like a bloodhound.” — Storme Warren, Sirius XM “The Highway”
“John Arezzi’s adventures in wrestling assure him a place in history. A pioneer of wrestling radio shows, the father of the modern fanfest/all-star convention, and even a wrestler himself, albeit briefly, John has a multitude of experiences and stories pertaining to his love of and participation in pro wrestling. I’ve even forgiven him—almost—for being responsible for letting loose wrestling’s greatest plague on an unsuspecting citizenry. What plague you ask? Read the book and see if he admits it!” — Wrestling personality Jim Cornette
“John Arezzi was there for the superfan of Pro Wrestling. From his radio show in NYC, to the Weekend of Champions conventions, he just knew what hardcore fans wanted. Then he just disappeared and I always wondered what happened to him. I never forget the people that were good to me on my way up and I'll always be grateful to John, who was one of those who was so good to me. That’s why I was excited to see John back on the scene and wanting to share his story with everyone. I'm really looking forward to John's book!” — Two-time WWE Hall of Famer Sean Waltman, a.k.a. Xpac
“This book is inspiring as it’s rooted in John’s character and offers life lesson after life lesson. Here’s an example: During my walk halfway across America to raise awareness for foster children aging out of foster care into homelessness, John enlisted his contacts and resources to facilitate a sponsorship with Red Roof Inn so my support car driver would have a place to stay each night — free of charge. John never mentioned it to me during the seven-month, 1,700 mile walk. I only learned he did this years later.” — New York Times Bestselling Author and Country Music Artist Jimmy Wayne
“John Arezzi was a wrestling superfan, which led to his many accomplishments in the business. He’s done it all! From newsstand magazine ringside reporter in the 1970s, to promoting the first wrestling conventions in the 1990s, to starting the talks to bring AAA Lucha’s foray into the United States, and helping bridge the relationship between AAA and ECW, John is first class. This book tells it all.” — Lucha Libre Legend Konnan