Zema Ion recently spoke with Do Androids Dance. Here are some highlights from the interview.
Portraying a DJ as a professional wrestling character would be all about you cashing in on a trend. However, when was your initial introduction to electronic dance music? “My initial introduction to dance music came at the age of 11 from a Gap commercial. There was a song in the commercial and I thought it was amazing. Turns out it was “Busy Child” by the Crystal Method. I heard this electronic beat, and when I found out what it was, I went out and bought [1997 album] Vegas by the Crystal Method. [Intriguingly enough] it was one of the first albums I ever owned. I played the shit out of that cassette tape. I really loved it. From there I got into The Prodigy‘s [1997 album] The Fat Of The Land.”
What about your DJing do you feel best motivated your development as a professional wrestler now that you’re back in TNA? “When I started DJing, I thought at first that “this is going to be really good for wrestling.” Everyone in wrestling comes from a different background. Whether it is from wrestling on the independent circuit, the NFL, reality television, bodybuilding, or being a supermodel. I thought that if I really do good and develop at DJing that maybe this could be something to set me apart, a background for me that isn’t just being an independent professional wrestler.”
How did your return to TNA as a DJ come to pass? “I told TNA a year ago that I was trying to be a DJ. They thought it was cool, but it was left there. They didn’t understand it, but they kept hearing more and more about [my development]. Recently, they did a segment on TV where Robbie E and Jesse Godderz were celebrating their tag team title win and had a DJ with them in the ring. After the segment was over, they loved the idea of them with a DJ, but not the DJ they had that night. He didn’t look the part. They liked the idea of [the Bromans] with their own DJ. Robbie E mentioned to the TNA office staff “hey, maybe we should use Zema Ion. He is an actual DJ.” TNA replied “oh that’s right, we knew that!” Robbie, Jesse, and I have similar personalities, so me teaming with them is a no brainer. This past weekend they gave it a test run. They gave me little direction, and it was creatively in my hands. Eventually I’ll have my own custom DJ booth, and I got them to install lighting based off of the lighting at Echostage in DC. They’re totally behind this. They feel like whatever makes this look authentic is what they want.”
How would you best describe the character of DJ Zema Ion, the character you’re now playing for TNA? “They want me to be this over the top and obnoxious DJ. So I basically try to channel every stereotype that I can think of that would make a DJ annoying. We did a backstage segment where I named every annoying cliche in the dance music world that’s “required to be a superstar DJ,” including “only playing songs off the Beatport Top 100? and “having rave girls with green hair and severe daddy issues.” That type of stuff. My character is to play a DJ that thinks he gets it, but really doesn’t have a clue of what he’s talking about. That’s basically what the whole character is.”