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Solie's Tuesday Morning Report: EXTRA!

Volume 2, Issue 138
March 5, 1997

Two Solie's Exclusives!

The History of the Midnight Express: Part 6

by Ervin Griffin Jr.

The All-Time Wrestling Album: Part 1

by Jeff Yelton

The History of the Midnight Express

Part 6: The Face Days

After Chi-Town Rumble '89, The Midnight Express (Bobby, Stan and Jim) were looked upon as faces. Although their feud with the "Original" Midnight Express was over, their feud with Paul E. Dangerously was not!! In fact, Paul E. brought in a new tag team from the now-defunct World Class area in Texas. The team was the Samoan Swat Team (Samu and Fatu). Their first encounter with the SST was at the Clash Of The Champions VI: Ragin' Cajun broadcast from New Orleans, LA at the Superdome. Once again, the Midnights had an important match on an historic card (this card feature the famous two out of three falls NWA World Title match between then-champion Rick Steamboat and Ric Flair)!!! The Midnights, sadly, did not have a good afternoon this day as the SST dominated the matchup and went on to pin the Midnights.

Soon afterwards, the Midnights left the NWA and it was rumored that they would be headed to the WWF. That rumor would soon be shattered, however, when the NWA held a tournament to crown new NWA World Tag Team Champions. The previous champions, Mike Rotunda/Steve "Dr. Death" Williams, were stripped of the titles because of a controversial finish during a title defense against the Road Warriors at WrestleWar '89 in Nashville, TN on May 7. The Midnights made their return to the NWA during this tournament. They first defeated Butch Reed and some jobber to go on to the quarterfinals against the SST. In an upset, the Midnights defeated the SST with some assistance from the Road Warriors (the same men who brutalized them almost a year ago to win these same titles)!!! Sadly, the Midnights would be defeated by the Fabulous Freebirds (Jim Garvin/Michael Hayes) with some assistance from Paul E. Dangerously and Terry "Bamm Bamm" Gordy.

This would not be the end of the feud with the Freebirds or the SST. On July 23 of that year, the Midnights would team with the Road Warriors and Steve Williams to battle the SST and the Freebirds in WarGames/The Match Beyond at the Great American Bash in Baltimore, MD. The Midnights' team won this encounter when Hawk made Garvin submit with a neckbreaker. Once again, the Midnights had a big match on an historic card. This card also featured then-US Champion Lex Luger VS. Rick Steamboat, then-NWA TV Champion Sting VS. The Great Muta in their first ever meeting and then-NWA World Champion Ric Flair VS. Terry Funk in one of the wildest title matches ever!!! Off the subject, this is one card I would like to discuss at length one of these days. Anyway, the Midnights gained some measure of revenge against the Freebirds in this match but their championship woes continued. One could sense that a change was soon comming.

Next week, The Dark Side Returns

If you have any questions, comments, criticism or just want to talk about pro wrestling with me, please e-mail me at or

Ervin Griffin is a regular contributor to Solie's Newsletter as well as the Ringside Insider and other publications.

The All-Time Wrestling Album: Part 1

In my first series of articles for Solie's Vintage Wrestling page, I promised my all-time wrestling album. Here it is, in two parts. Please let me and/or Earl what you think about it.

My criteria is not necessarily to get the best songs possible, or Guns and Roses' "Welcome to the Jungle", used by the Steiners and Col. DeBeers would be on here as well. No, my goal is to find songs that properly define the wrestlers or the wrestling experience. Basically, if, when hearing these songs, you think not of who's doing it, but of the wrestler it's associated with, it works.


Side One: Killer Themes from Commercial Music

1. "Iron Man" by Black Sabbath (1971)

2. "Another One Bites the Dust" by Queen (1980)

3. "Freebird" by Lynyrd Skynyrd (1973)

4. "Bad to the Bone" by George Thorogood (1983)

5. "Sharp Dressed Man" by ZZ Top (1983)

6. "Hot Stuff" by Donna Summer (1978)

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7. "Tom Sawyer" by Rush (1980)

8. "Also Sparach Zarusthra"; theme from "2001: A Space Odyssey"

9. "Boy From New York City" by Manhattan Transfer (1981)

10. "The Dark Side" (1980)

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11. "Eye of the Tiger" (1981) by Survivor

12. "Pomp and Circumstance", in the public domain

13. "Born in the USA" by Bruce Springsteen (1984)

14. "Rock and Roll is King" by Electric Light Orchestra (1984)

15. "Sirius" opening by Alan Parsons Project (1984)

16. "Livin' After Midnight" by Judas Priest (1979)

17. "Stranglehold" by Ted Nugent (1979)

Jeff Yelton contributed the recent perspective piece on Shawn Michaels and last years well recieved article on the Wrestler's Entrance Music.

Here's an interesting email I received the other day:

Why do I continue to do this? Oh how I long for the good old days...

I guess I should introduce myself. My name is Billy Starnes, I'm 35 years old and live in Atlanta. (It's kind of scary to be only 35 and speaking of the "good old days".) I've been in the South all my life. It seems that professional wrestling is ingrained in the culture here. I have followed it to a greater or lesser extent for as long as I can remember. I grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina, where the NWA had a promotion that broadcast a show every Saturday on WBT-TV. The first wrestlers I saw were guys like Rip Hawk and Swede Hansen, the Minnesota Wrecking Crew, Johnny Weaver, Cowboy Bob Kelly, Nelson Royal, the Brisco Brothers, and on and on. Then I later began following Georgia Championship Wrestling on the Superstation. Ric Flair, Dusty Rhodes, Harley Race, the Masked Superstar, Nick Patrick's old man the Assassin, Mr Wrestling II. These are the names I think of when I think of "real" pro wrestling. I remember standing at the magazine rack of the local drug store and looking with equal parts amazement and revulsion at the photos (usually bloody) of competitors frozen in various contorted postures. While I have no love of continuous rivers of blood in every match, I do long for the competition I witnessed not so very long ago.

The catalyst that moved me to create this rant was last night's Monday night wars. Monday Night Raw shows what is arguably the best match the WWF has been involved with in years (Bulldog/Hart), but it is preceeded by a skit where Steve Austin is off-camera flushing a toilet ala Archie Bunker? GIVE ME A BREAK!!! Then on Nitro (a show which I admit a bias for because of it's lineage back to the old NWA) Roddy Piper is in the ring for ten minutes trying out (and getting pummeled by) a bunch of jobbers for a "team" he intends to front at Uncensored? How many times can McMahon and Bischoff shoot themselves in the foot before they bleed to death?

The only reason I watch the WWF is because I like wrestling and they sometimes have something that resembles it on their broadcasts. The nWo angle has had the greatest promise of any storyline in years, but instead of growing the plot, we see crap like the Piper tryouts or the 5000th Hogan-in-the-middle-of-the-ring-interview. Then to top it all off, they take the best pure wrestler they have, Dean Malenko, and turn him into a raving lunatic.

So, back to my original question...why do I continue to do this, "this" being watching pro wrestling. I'm beginning to feel that I may be as big a bonehead as Bischoff and McMahon think I am.

Billy, I think we all feel that way from time to time...

Anyway, that's the way I see it...

Earl Oliver,
editor Solie's Wrestling Newsletter

(Editor's Note: If you have found anything I have said here to be particularly offensive please read this disclaimer).

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This page is a personal tribute and is in no way connected to any of the wrestling promotions mentioned on it. It is dedicated to the Dean of Wrestling announcers, Gordon Solie.

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Copyright 1996 - Jump City Productions