Jim Johnston On WWE Politics And Being Released After 32 Years With The Company

Former WWE music composer Jim Johnston recently spoke with Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated for an interview promoting his new website, JimJohnston.com, that will feature new music. Featured below are some of the highlights.

On working with WWE from 1985 until 2017: “There were some politics and people I wasn’t wild about it, but I suppose that is to be expected in any corporate environment. I was pretty disillusioned where the company was going musically. Although I believe they are talented guys, I thought the themes were becoming commoditized and formulaic. Too many wrestlers had themes that didn’t tell a story about the character, it just felt like music that coincidentally played when a wrestler walked out, as opposed to something that tells the story of the character.

“In the big picture, I’ve written as many angry songs about guys coming to beat you up as I had in me. I think I’ve covered that genre. The end and the change was shocking at the time, but I hope it works out for them. I’ve been writing a ton of music since and I’m actively putting together the next chapter in my life.”

On the people who have enjoyed his work and the feedback he has received: “It is incredibly humbling. People have sent letters and emails that were so emotional that they made me tear up. I am grateful for every kind word.”

On not identifying as a pro wrestling fan: “Just because John Williams did the scores for E.T. and Star Wars does not automatically make him a giant fan of aliens or space travel. I would categorize myself as a non-wrestling fan. I see the appeal and there are times when I could get really excited about it, but I wrote music for what I was hired to write. I threw myself into what I was writing.”

Check out the complete Jim Johnston interview at SI.com.

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