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Papa Voo



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I just read a few ratings on two books out there associated with Gordon Solie. 

I saw the one book was basically a nice slice of sweet, fluffy pie about the man  and his involvement in the wrestling business.

The other seemed to give some different perspectives on Solie and one person who read the book said it was basically a very positive spun book until the end when Bob Roop laid into him in one of the last chapters.

Anybody got the scoop on Solie?

What was he like away from the mic?

Did he have any pull at all within the business?  If so, how far did it go?


Last edited on Sun Dec 23rd, 2012 01:03 pm by Papa Voo

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Solie was a functional alcoholic. Good but not great announcer. Stayed around way past his prime.

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He was a self-important gasbag on the air.

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clawmaster wrote: Solie was a functional alcoholic. Good but not great announcer. Stayed around way past his prime.


We got to meet him at a Cauliflower Alley Banquet in the mid 90's in New Jersey and was dong pretty well with the drinks,so much so that he went up to his room,passed out and they had to wake him up for the Ceremony

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Did stay too long. Thought he was great with the early 80's GCW but I think he tends to be overrated because he was the first nationally exposed announcer.

Personally I like Lance Russell better (though I am not a fan of Memphis wrestling).

I like Mid-South through early 90's WCW version of Jim Ross better also. The pre-JR Ross.

I liked Caudle too though I'd put Solie ahead of him most likely.

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Alwats liked Russell more but would rank Solie at #2.  Don't care much about his drinking, it didn't seem to affect him much on the air from what I've heard of him.  Obviously he stayed around too long, him as a C team announcer on some of those WCW syyndicated shows were painful to listen to.  The absolute worst was when Schiavone was on vacation or something and he filled in on WCWSN to call matches with Heenan.  They had no idea how to interact with each other and it was the most brutal thing I ever heard outside of Art Donovan and Mike Adamle.  But in his prime, he was excellent and I'm not sure why he gets so much shit.  Russell got angles over better IMO, but Solie got moves over better than anyone.

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His best work was in Florida in the 70's imo. Also, did nice work for GCW on TBS. By the mid 80's you could see the fall off.

I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.

I don't think he had any pull in the business. I doubt that Graham let him make any decisions. I think he was the best for his era over a 10 year time frame. I didn't see Russell then so I can't make that comparison.

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Solie was great in the studio setting where his starightfoward style worked perfectly as a contrast to the wild pro wrestlers he covered. As far as announcing arena matches go just watch Starrcade 83, he was awful. He made the matches seem anticlimatic. One guy I always liked a lot was Rick Stewart of Central States.

Last edited on Wed Dec 26th, 2012 09:42 pm by King Solomon

TerryWWWF



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Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

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TerryWWWF wrote: Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

Well damn, he was doing it wrong all those years and everyone was too nice to tell him?  Amazing the business survived.

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TerryWWWF wrote: Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

He made a few hicks less embarrassed to mention to people they know that they like rasslin' because he made it sound so serious, so I'm sure that sold a few extra tickets

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3setsof10 wrote: TerryWWWF wrote: Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

He made a few hicks less embarrassed to mention to people they know that they like rasslin' because he made it sound so serious, so I'm sure that sold a few extra tickets

I think he sold plenty of tickets or he wouldn't have still had a job, much less a job in several territories simultaneously.  He definitely got over what needed to get for that time period and those markets.

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I would agree that his style may not have been the exact right match for a 25k super card event but he pushed wrestlers in a way that was believable. In today's world with no kayfabe it wouldn't work. In Solie's time, I think his approach was exceptional. This is all subjective and no one is right or wrong with their opinions.

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srossi wrote: TerryWWWF wrote: Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

Well damn, he was doing it wrong all those years and everyone was too nice to tell him?  Amazing the business survived.
First, fuck you and your attitude, but you already knew that.

There were a lot of horseshit wrestling announcers back in the day, including guys who were assigned to the show by a TV station. Some of them didn't know fuckall about what the job was supposed to be, and some of them were more concerned with being funny or trying to get themselves over. Bill Cardille was an example of that, aside from his slobbering worship of all things Bruno.

When you're doing "play-by-play" on TV, you shouldn't be describing what people are seeing because, well, they're fucking seeing it. The idea is to enhance what they're seeing with other information. In baseball or football, that usually means setting up the analyst.

Nobody gives a shit about the names of holds except for Meltzer and his disciples, and that's not the audience. The bottom line is to convince the marks that Dusty hates his opponent and there might be a riot when the two of them get together Friday at the Crapatorium, tickets on sale right fucking now. That's the idea, not correctly identifying a counter cross crotch crab.

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TerryWWWF wrote:
srossi wrote: TerryWWWF wrote: Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

Well damn, he was doing it wrong all those years and everyone was too nice to tell him?  Amazing the business survived.
First, fuck you and your attitude, but you already knew that.

There were a lot of horseshit wrestling announcers back in the day, including guys who were assigned to the show by a TV station. Some of them didn't know fuckall about what the job was supposed to be, and some of them were more concerned with being funny or trying to get themselves over. Bill Cardille was an example of that, aside from his slobbering worship of all things Bruno.

When you're doing "play-by-play" on TV, you shouldn't be describing what people are seeing because, well, they're fucking seeing it. The idea is to enhance what they're seeing with other information. In baseball or football, that usually means setting up the analyst.

Nobody gives a shit about the names of holds except for Meltzer and his disciples, and that's not the audience. The bottom line is to convince the marks that Dusty hates his opponent and there might be a riot when the two of them get together Friday at the Crapatorium, tickets on sale right fucking now. That's the idea, not correctly identifying a counter cross crotch crab.


Then you never listened to Solie. He didn't call the names of all the moves like Joey Styles or someone like that. He described in great detail how the moves felt and the pressure points it affected, etc. and that got tons of guys over and made them seem like bad-asses, i.e. wrestlers who fans wanted to pay to see. It had nothing to do with calling names. Like already mentioned, maybe that wouldn't work today but it's absurd to suggest it didn't work for the 30 or so years that we know it did work.

Last edited on Thu Dec 27th, 2012 03:17 am by srossi

Hymie Itsu



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srossi wrote:
TerryWWWF wrote:
srossi wrote: TerryWWWF wrote: Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

Well damn, he was doing it wrong all those years and everyone was too nice to tell him?  Amazing the business survived.
First, fuck you and your attitude, but you already knew that.

There were a lot of horseshit wrestling announcers back in the day, including guys who were assigned to the show by a TV station. Some of them didn't know fuckall about what the job was supposed to be, and some of them were more concerned with being funny or trying to get themselves over. Bill Cardille was an example of that, aside from his slobbering worship of all things Bruno.

When you're doing "play-by-play" on TV, you shouldn't be describing what people are seeing because, well, they're fucking seeing it. The idea is to enhance what they're seeing with other information. In baseball or football, that usually means setting up the analyst.

Nobody gives a shit about the names of holds except for Meltzer and his disciples, and that's not the audience. The bottom line is to convince the marks that Dusty hates his opponent and there might be a riot when the two of them get together Friday at the Crapatorium, tickets on sale right fucking now. That's the idea, not correctly identifying a counter cross crotch crab.


Then you never listened to Solie. He didn't call the names of all the moves like Joey Styles or someone like that. He described in great detail how the moves felt and the pressure points it affected, etc. and that got tons of guys over and made them seem like bad-asses, i.e. wrestlers who fans wanted to pay to see. It had nothing to do with calling names. Like already mentioned, maybe that wouldn't work today but it's absurd to suggest it didn't work for the 30 or so years that we know it did work.


This.

The way I see it, the announcer's job is to get the wrestlers over and he had a knack of even getting jobbers over, atleast to a degree to make the match more entertaining. Russell was ok at this but nothing like Solie.

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Hymie Itsu wrote:
srossi wrote:
TerryWWWF wrote:
srossi wrote: TerryWWWF wrote: Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

Well damn, he was doing it wrong all those years and everyone was too nice to tell him?  Amazing the business survived.
First, fuck you and your attitude, but you already knew that.

There were a lot of horseshit wrestling announcers back in the day, including guys who were assigned to the show by a TV station. Some of them didn't know fuckall about what the job was supposed to be, and some of them were more concerned with being funny or trying to get themselves over. Bill Cardille was an example of that, aside from his slobbering worship of all things Bruno.

When you're doing "play-by-play" on TV, you shouldn't be describing what people are seeing because, well, they're fucking seeing it. The idea is to enhance what they're seeing with other information. In baseball or football, that usually means setting up the analyst.

Nobody gives a shit about the names of holds except for Meltzer and his disciples, and that's not the audience. The bottom line is to convince the marks that Dusty hates his opponent and there might be a riot when the two of them get together Friday at the Crapatorium, tickets on sale right fucking now. That's the idea, not correctly identifying a counter cross crotch crab.


Then you never listened to Solie. He didn't call the names of all the moves like Joey Styles or someone like that. He described in great detail how the moves felt and the pressure points it affected, etc. and that got tons of guys over and made them seem like bad-asses, i.e. wrestlers who fans wanted to pay to see. It had nothing to do with calling names. Like already mentioned, maybe that wouldn't work today but it's absurd to suggest it didn't work for the 30 or so years that we know it did work.


This.

The way I see it, the announcer's job is to get the wrestlers over and he had a knack of even getting jobbers over, atleast to a degree to make the match more entertaining. Russell was ok at this but nothing like Solie.


He even made Mike Jackson seem interesting.

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srossi wrote: TerryWWWF wrote:
srossi wrote: TerryWWWF wrote: Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

Well damn, he was doing it wrong all those years and everyone was too nice to tell him?  Amazing the business survived.
First, fuck you and your attitude, but you already knew that.

There were a lot of horseshit wrestling announcers back in the day, including guys who were assigned to the show by a TV station. Some of them didn't know fuckall about what the job was supposed to be, and some of them were more concerned with being funny or trying to get themselves over. Bill Cardille was an example of that, aside from his slobbering worship of all things Bruno.

When you're doing "play-by-play" on TV, you shouldn't be describing what people are seeing because, well, they're fucking seeing it. The idea is to enhance what they're seeing with other information. In baseball or football, that usually means setting up the analyst.

Nobody gives a shit about the names of holds except for Meltzer and his disciples, and that's not the audience. The bottom line is to convince the marks that Dusty hates his opponent and there might be a riot when the two of them get together Friday at the Crapatorium, tickets on sale right fucking now. That's the idea, not correctly identifying a counter cross crotch crab.


Then you never listened to Solie. He didn't call the names of all the moves like Joey Styles or someone like that. He described in great detail how the moves felt and the pressure points it affected, etc. and that got tons of guys over and made them seem like bad-asses, i.e. wrestlers who fans wanted to pay to see. It had nothing to do with calling names. Like already mentioned, maybe that wouldn't work today but it's absurd to suggest it didn't work for the 30 or so years that we know it did work.
He sucked so badly he was the lead announcer for Florida, Georgia, and Continental at the same flipping time. He did call it like a legitimate sporting event, but do not think he did not discuss angles and the such.  He did, just not at the expense of calling the match.  He would have people come out and call matches with him and that was for no other reason that to talk about angles and feuds.  He let the wrestlers apply holds to him so he could accurately describe what they felt like.  He was such a hack that Leroy McGuirk tearfully told Gordon that he appreciated the way he called matches because he could see them even though he had been blind for over ten years.  I mean different strokes and all, but he was a great commentator. 

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TerryWWWF wrote: Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

That's colour's job.  Play-by-play is to tell everyone exactly why Rey Mysterio has a chance against Khali even though it appears obvious he doesn't.  Or why Miz can get out of Ziggler's sleeper as it's not cinched in.

Although I doubt even Einstein could explain how Cena's STF is meant to incapacitate.

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I can't believe we are still debating this. Why don't we discuss the great work Gene Okerlund did in the AWA?

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I thought that Solie was outstanding as an announcer in Georgia. I think that he struggled as an announcer when it became expected for the announcers to shill the upcoming PPV at every possible moment, often at the expense of the match going on in the ring. Solie was a wrestling announcer, not a pitchman.

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kargol wrote: TerryWWWF wrote: Ultimark wrote: I really liked how he called a match. By the book without the hyperbole associated with today's announcers. Called it as a serious sport.That's exactly what you're NOT supposed to do. You're there to get over the angles and wrestlers, not dazzle everyone with your knowledge of holds. The announcer doesn't have to be over the top, but his job is to sell tickets.

That's colour's job.  Play-by-play is to tell....
everyone exactly why Rey Mysterio has a chance against Khali even though it appears obvious he doesn't.  Or why Miz can get out of Ziggler's sleeper as it's not cinched in.

Although I doubt even Einstein could explain how Cena's STF is meant to incapacitate.

We're on the same side, but trying to use that logic above is trying to apply 2012 rules to 1970s and 1980s tv.  A lot of wrestling shows back then (in fact, a lot of SPORTING events) did not use the traditional pbp guy and color guy.  That's a somewhat recent (let's say the last two decades) formula in tv that's become the norm.

Trying to squeeze Solie into that equation isn't fair.  Solie was so fucking good, he sort of transcends that concept.  He could call the match AND get the angles over.  

I grew up in the Midwest and saw a lot of AWA and WWF stuff.  Didn't really get exposed to Gordon until I started renting the PWI Lords of the Ring tape and watching Pro Wrestling This Week.  I didn't know what to make of him at first because he had a unique style, but the dude was credible, classy and treated wrestling like it was a real sport.  This is the kinda dude that's been missing from wrestling for, hell, what? 25 years?  Maybe since the Jim Ross WCW period.

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The STF is a legit shoot hold that was once used by Loo Thez.

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Ultimark wrote: Why don't we discuss the great work Gene Okerlund did in the AWA?
Mean Gene was great at interviewing Hulk Hogan in the AWA.

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I was kidding. I have basically no knowledge of the AWA except for the Apter mags. The stuff on ESPN was crap imo. I probably missed the prime years.

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Ultimark wrote:
I was kidding. I have basically no knowledge of the AWA except for the Apter mags. The stuff on ESPN was crap imo. I probably missed the prime years.

Yeah. I kind of feel bad for you. It was a great 3 months to be a rasslin' fan.



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