Veteran WWE music composer Jim Johnston has shared that Vince McMahon was told by his father Vince Sr. not to implement theme music for wrestlers. At the time, Vince McMahon Sr. believed that entrance music would kill the wrestling business.
Jim Johnston is the man behind the most iconic WWE theme songs such as that of The Undertaker, Stone Cold Steve Austin, Randy Orton and many others. He also composed Mr. McMahon's "No Chance" theme song, which the chairman of WWE used for the majority of his on-screen appearances.
During his interview with Chris Van Vliet, Jim Johnston told the story of when Vince McMahon wanted to incorporate music after he purchased WWE from his father.
"And so one night, I saw this guy I had seen a lot of times and he said, ‘Didn’t you say you write music or something like that?’ And then he explained that he worked for WWE and he was the Art Director for them. He had been asked to put together a video for a [cable TV convention], and he said, ‘I can stumble through and put together a video but I have no clue how to put music to it. If you wanna give it a try’ so I did, met Vince [McMahon], Vince and I inexplicably hit off tremendously well and this is early on when there really wasn’t entrance music. No, not ‘there really wasn’t,’ there wasn’t entrance music," said Jim Johnston.
Vince Sr., however, was against the idea, believing that entrance music for wrestlers would result in the demise of the wrestling business.
"Matter of fact, one of my favorite stories was Vince’s father, when Vince bought the company from his dad and he wanted to put music in and his father told him, ‘If you put music to this program, you will completely kill this business.’ So, big miss by dad right there," added Johnston.
Vince McMahon's idea was a tremendous success, as theme songs would go on to significantly define each character in WWE.
Jim Johnston slams WWE and AEW for having really mediocre entrance music
Jim Johnston also called out two of the biggest wrestling companies in the world, WWE and AEW, for having mediocre theme songs.
He stated that the disconnect between the characters and their music is one of the reasons why there is a lack of big stars.
"I think the music now in WWE and in AEW, I think it’s — sorry. I think it’s all really homogeneous and really mediocre and doesn’t have anything to do with the characters and I think that’s why there are less big stars. I don’t think that there are no potential big stars in the rosters, hiding there. I mean, before Steve Austin was Steve Austin, he was The Ringmaster and there are lots of stories like that is that these people need the right storyline, the right costuming, definitely the right music to lift them up because typically the music is serving multiple masters in a way," added Johnston. (H/T POST Wrestling)
Jim Johnston undeniably deserves to be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame for the incredible work he has done in the wrestling industry.