April 6, 2011
As a performer, there's
a goal I set out to accomplish
every time I step onto the
stage. Whether it's making
people cheer (or boo) in
the WWE, having people sing
along to my songs with
or engaging people
with my books, there's a
certain magic that comes
with knowing that you've
When I first agreed to do
'Dancing With the Stars,'
after two previous invitations,
I really had no idea what
I was getting myself into.
The concept of ballroom
dancing was as foreign to
me as a
and I had no expectations
of what I could or couldn't
do on the floor. Would I
actually be able to do it?
Could I entertain people
with my moves, my charisma
and my showmanship? And,
more importantly, could
I make them feel something
special while they watched
The first week I was
a jittery jitterson
and happy to get it over
with. The second week I
felt much more comfortable,
and I think
I surprised some people
with the lightness of my
footwork. But I still hadn't
created any magic.
That changed Monday night,
when I danced the rumba
to 'Let It Be,' by the Beatles,
as a tribute to my mother,
Loretta. She passed away
in 2005, after having traveled
a hard road for the previous
15 years of her life. But
she always supported me
in anything I did.
It's funny 'cause I don't
think she really understood
wrestling. She watched the
wrestling matches because
I was on, but she had no
emotional attachment to
what I was doing. But she
loved dancing! I remember
variety show that was on
every Saturday night in
the early '80s) with her,
and she was always impressed
with the Solid Gold Dancers,
a troupe of hot chicks (or
"gals," as she called them)
who would appear throughout
the show like a glittery
The Fly Girls.
Ann Inaba, represent, yo!)
"I would've made a great
Solid Gold Dancer," my mom
always said. And she would've.
My mother was beautiful
and sexy -- am I allowed
to say that about dear old
mum? -- with a dancer's
body and a great personality.
It's because of this that
I know she would be a HUGE
'DWTS' fan and would've
watched the show religiously.
She would've been so proud
of me for doing the show,
and that's one of the main
reasons I wanted to dance
for her. Doing the 'Let
It Be' performance was amazing
for me. To dance such a
routine to one of the best
songs by my favorite band,
for my mum, almost moved
me to tears.
What I didn't expect was
that it would move others
to tears. All I heard after
the show from family, friends
and pure strangers was how
they had shed a tear when
they watched Cheryl Burke
and I perform. They felt
what I was feeling. They
related to it. They empathized
with it. They were moved
The atmosphere in the studio
Monday night was electric.
There was magic in the air.
And, for the first time
since I began this journey
almost six weeks ago, I
felt like a dancer. Pure,
raw emotion that moves people
and provides them with a
magical moment is worth
more than any score. And
Team Chericho felt like
we scored three 10s when
it came to creating such
a special moment. As a performer,
that's all that I strive
March 30, 2011
A lot of a people have been asking me
why I decided to do 'Dancing With the
Stars.' There are many reasons, and
the feeling I had Monday night when
I finished in first place was one of
I finished in a three-way tie for first,
but that's nitpicking now, isn't it?)
a case of the
in week one, I was ecstatic with
in week two.
I really felt in the groove, in the
pocket and in the moment. I also felt
like I was wearing a World War II army
helmet with all of the goop and greasy-kid
stuff that was squelched (fun word!)
in my hair.
But that's part of the fun of 'DWTS,'
isn't it? Every day is a veritable Halloween,
where everyone can wear as much spandex,
rhinestones, guyliner and hair products
as they want and still look somewhat
cool doing so. It's the epitome of show
It was also gratifying to hear the judges'
positive comments, especially when Bruno
Tonioli upgraded me from a "dancing
beast" to a "dancing gazelle," which
I assume means I have much better posture
and stepping qualities. Next time I
party in the Serengeti, I'll make sure
to check out some gazelles.
It was also good to hear Len Goodman
say that, while he was expecting me
to be a plodding lump farting across
the dance floor, he was pleasantly surprised
at how light on my feet I was and how
effortless I looked. While I've made
a career off of low expectations, being
light on my feet could be my secret
weapon. It's actually one of the most
important qualities of a good wrestler,
and I was a good wrestler.
But now I am transforming into a dancer.
I am the Black Swan of 'DWTS'! I may
be a little beefier than Natalie Portman
(and not as pretty), but you get where
I'm coming from.
This transformation was evidenced by
my 7-year-old son Ash's reaction to
my performance. You might have seen
him -- the cute little blond guy in
the dapper suit who was sitting between
two hot blondes (my wife Jessica and
WWE diva Maryse) in the front row of
the audience. He was holding his arms
up in the air and screaming as if he
was signaling for a field goal in the
world's most exciting football game.
Ash has always appreciated my wrestling
career, but he never really paid too
much attention to my matches. However,
after the 'DWTS' show, he ran across
the room and jumped into my arms with
the biggest smile on his face. He said,
"You were awesome, Dad! You've got nothing
to worry about. All my friends are going
to vote for you! You were great!" My
So that's the real reason why I decided
to do 'DWTS' -- I wanted to have my
son sit in the front row and tell me
I did great. As a father (and a dancing
gazelle), it's a moment I'll never forget.
March 28, 2011
I've performed in front of crowds
of up to 70,000 people for more
than two decades, but last week
I experienced a whole different
animal. Something so foreign,
so terrifying, so intimidating
that, beforehand, I was as nervous
as a 12-year-old girl meeting
Justin Bieber for the first
Yes, kiddies, I was about to
make my ballroom debut on 'Dancing
With the Stars'!
After rehearsing incessantly
for more than three weeks with
my partner Cheryl Burke, it
was finally time to do the first
show. My dress rehearsals had
been a bit shaky -- performing
my routine in the
'DWTS' studio was scary. Suddenly
the guy who had a so-called
advantage because of years of
performing live was behind the
Sure, I'm as calm as a cucumber
when it comes to wrestling or
performing with my band
but ballroom dancing? Are you
crazy? I'd never done that before.
I was a complete novice. The
whole experience was as foreign
to me as
stand-up comedy is to The Situation.
I spent the day of the premiere
hanging in my trailer, listening
to Metallica and getting mentally
in the zone. (Yes, 'Enter Sandman'
and 'DWTS.' Somehow I think
Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich
would appreciate the irony.)
When my costume was ready, it
helped a little to put it on
and get into character. It made
everything more real. I got
the idea for the leather vest
-- pleather, actually -- from
the old Mel Gibson movie
'The Road Warrior.'
Although it also had a gay biker
/ Village People–type vibe to
it, as well.
That night, after 90 minutes
of waiting in the "celebriquarium,"
I was so amped up and high on
nervous energy (and whippets),
I would've bum-rushed the dance
floor and started cha-cha-cha-ing
during the commercial break
in Hugh Hefner's face. I couldn't
have waited any longer.
When I hit the stage, all my
nerves went away. The energy
from the crowd and the sound
of the orchestra helped me become
Chris Jericho: The Performer!
I was once again at home.
The routine went well, the judges
were fair, and I ended up being
ranked number five for the night.
Not great, not terrible, but
solid ... good even. It was
a cool place to be after my
Now that I've gotten my feet
wet, I have some confidence,
which can be a dangerous weapon
for someone like me. So, bring
on the quickstep, baby!
Until next time, I'm MC Hammer