Mike Martin is the guitarist for the heavy metal band, All That Remains. He and I had a chance to talk and I didn’t ask one question about music. He loved that. We talked about his love of sports, the WWE and Aaron Rodgers (okay, not totally his love of Aaron Rodgers, since he’s a New England Patriots fan, but you’ll see what I mean).
Where did this love of sports come from?
My parents were watching it when I was little, and I just immediately got hooked. Plus, I was always outside. I was one of those kids who was always outside playing baseball with his friends, or basketball or whatever we could get our hands on. So it probably just all started from there.
So you played sports. Did you play competitively?
I played baseball for 10 years, all through school, but I didn’t go to college, so I didn’t play any college baseball.
Who were your favorite teams? Who did you look up to?
I’m a real Massachusetts guy. Well, it’s the best time of year for a sports fan in Massachusetts, so it was the Red Sox, Celtics, Patriots and Bruins.
I had some bandwagon teams too when I was little, because there was a time where Boston sports weren’t so good. I’m a big Michael Jordan fan, so I was on the Bulls’ bandwagon for a while.
Okay Mike Martin, you’re a Massachusetts guy? I’m a New Yorker, this interview is over. Only kidding, I was so tempted to hang up on you or start talking smack, but the truth is, I’m a Green Bay Packers fan.
I have no problem with the Packers, so we don’t have to argue. (Laughter) I actually like Aaron Rodgers. He’s a great player to watch and he just looks so cool and down to earth to hang out with.
Do you have one sport that you watch more than the other?
For first and probably second place it would be hockey and the Bruins, but other than that, baseball, basketball and football, I don’t miss any of the games if I can help it.
I want to watch the Celtics games, but it depends on the situation. Actually, we parked our bus at the hotel, and the hotel’s blocking our satellite, so immediately I thought, “Oh, man. I can’t watch the Celtic’s game. This sucks.” We found a restaurant next to the hotel, so if we have time to do it I will watch. I can’t tell the tour bus driver, “Don’t leave yet, I want to finish watching the Celtics’ game.” (Laughter) You make do with what you have, basically, and look at your phone a lot.
When you’re traveling, you don’t have the best Wi-Fi, you never really know what the service is like. Streaming can get rough, depending on where you are. So it’s just all the inconveniences that come along with traveling. You better get used to it, because they don’t go away.
I love how, in another interview, you said that you can’t talk sports with the other members of All That Remains. That if it isn’t Harry Potter, they aren’t interested. LOL
Yeah (laughing), I love to tease them about it, because I’ll put a game on and they’ll start asking “who’s playing?” “who’s winning?” in this sarcastic tone because they don’t really know or care.
You watch the UFC occasionally, and you’ve said you like Brock Lesnar, who’s now with the WWE, but he’s not doing a heck of a lot there either. He shows up every now and then. What do you think about that whole Lesnar thing in WWE?
I think he’s the smartest person alive, because he’s got that superstar, rich guy schedule, where he can make five or six million bucks a year, and he only has to show up for 10 or 15 dates. I don’t know anybody that would get offered that situation. You have to be a complete moron to turn that down, so it is not like I could blame them. I’m such a fan, I would like to see him every week, but what am I going to do? You know, he’s not going to listen to me. (Laughing)
WWE just announced that they are seriously thinking of calling RAW’s July’s pay-per-view, where he defends the title, Great Balls of Fire!
Wow, that would be a new title for sure.
I’m not a huge fan of his, and I think it’s because of the reason you just said. It might be great for him financially, but he does not have to really defend this title. What other superstar do you know that doesn’t have to defend their title?
He’s pretty much it, you know. I guess John Cena can get away with that schedule, because he can go and do movies. They’re not going to tell him no, they’re going to let him do whatever he wants. I think Lesnar just kind of sits back and does what he’s told. I just like him, so I think it’s a little bit more special that he doesn’t show up as often. I think it makes it a little bit more like an event, you know?
Chris Jericho’s band, Fozzy, is opening for you at one of your concert dates. What’s your relationship with him like?
The first time I ever met him, he gave me his phone number right away. We’ve played a few shows with Fozzy now. He’s just super cool, and I love what he does on TV, too. He’s hysterical. He’s such a nice guy.
His storyline lately is hilarious. We have this running joke in my house that anybody that ever wants to help us we say (in Jericho voice), “Oh, you didn’t make the list!”
I never thought something like that was going to catch on like it did. That’s art. He can make anything into a huge catchphrase kind of thing. Everything works for that guy.
What’s your favorite storyline right now? Or your favorite wrestlers right now?
Another guy that I actually got in contact with is Seth Rollins. He’s a huge music fan, so we got in touch through CM Punk, back when CM Punk was still wresting, so me and Seth started talking. I’m such a mooch for free tickets every time those guys go out on tours (laughing). So yeah, Seth Rollins would be one of them, and I think Kevin Owens is great. There’s so many new guys too.
I just know that Wrestlemania was a little disappointing, but I think everybody kind of builds that up in their heads too much. I still love when the old guys come back, too. I’m a huge Triple H fan.
It’s so funny to call Triple H an old guy now. But I actually disagree with you on that Wrestlemania! I thought it was one of the best Wrestlemanias I’ve watched in years.
The Undertaker, the ending thing was really cool, and dramatic, but the match was so bad, because he was in such bad shape.
I actually was embarrassed. It was really, really bad. You could tell he was just doing anything he could just to get through it. Yeah. There was a lot of good stuff too. Even that cruiserweight match with Neville. That was great.
That was a fabulous match.
I shouldn’t say it was all bad. I think I just build it up in my head too much every year. All of my snobby wrestling friends, we’ve been watching it for our whole lives, so nothing’s ever good enough for us. So we do complain.
Then you wonder how they’re going to outdo the last something spectacular that they did. I know that Shane McMahon gives me a heart attack every time I watch him.
Well, I’m older now. When I was a kid I used to watch him and, now that I’m older, I keep thinking of his kids in the audience and hope that nothing goes wrong because of them. It’s weird.
What’s been the most exciting thing in sports for you lately?
You can’t deny that the New England Patriots 5th Super Bowl victory was the most impressive thing ever. On tour, I bring five Patriots’ t-shirts. We’ll be in Atlanta on Tuesday and I’ll wear one of them because Atlanta blew that huge lead in the Super Bowl, so I’m sure I’ll get things thrown at me that night (laughs).
My first love was the Red Sox and seeing them come back from an 0 – 3 deficit with the Yankees in 2004 was a magical year for me. Then the Cubs last year. If a team is in the middle of the season and it doesn’t look like they can win, fans give up. Even I’ve done it, saying that there’s no way the Bruins will make it out of the first round, but they didn’t, haha. But every team right now is in a rebuilding process so it’s going to get good again.
We hope to bring Mike Martin back for more chats on sports. He’s on tour now, so it gives him something to look forward to on his downtime, right?!
Mike Martin Info
For more information on All That Remains, including their upcoming tour dates, visit http://allthatremainsonline.com/. Be sure to follow them on Twitter at @ATRhq and follow Mike Martin at @mikemartinatr .
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