November 22, 2017
Arts & Entertainment
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  • During an April music tour, Brian Hardy visited the grave of 1950s music star Ritchie Valens in California.
    During an April music tour, Brian Hardy visited the grave of 1950s music star Ritchie Valens in California.
  • Brian Hardy enjoyed touring Hollywood Boulevard during a 10-stop music tour in late April.
    Brian Hardy enjoyed touring Hollywood Boulevard during a 10-stop music tour in late April.
  • Brian Hardy recently performed the song “Desperate Measures” on air at Kaotic Radio in California.
    Brian Hardy recently performed the song “Desperate Measures” on air at Kaotic Radio in California.

During WWE Hiatus, Brian Hardy Records Two Albums

Zach Sparks
View Bio
May 18, 2017

Whenever Brian Hardy is on the ropes, he needs only to muster the words of discouragement that were ubiquitous during his childhood. Peers told him he would never become a professional wrestler or musician, but now, he’s both.

Last fall, the 2008 Northeast High School graduate returned to World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), this time with brother-in-law Adam Armstrong as part of the Baltimore Blondes duo. During the Backlash pay-per-view event in September, Hardy was onscreen with AJ Styles.

“To me, it was crazy because I grew up watching AJ Styles on pay-per-view,” said Hardy, who made his WWE debut in 2012. “He was so mean to me on camera, but he was so nice to me off camera. It was everything it should have been.”

That return to WWE ended prematurely. Before a WWE event in Philadelphia, wrestlers participated in a tryout to see who would be selected to battle in the Wells Fargo Center. While the Baltimore Blondes were practicing for the tryout match, an accident ensued.

“Adam went to scoop me up for a body slam, and I was dropped head-first,” Hardy said. “When I looked up at the ceiling of the Wells Fargo Center, it’s that idea that all I could see was lights flashing. I thought I was going to die.”

Hardy rushed from Philadelphia to University of Maryland Baltimore Washington Medical Center in Glen Burnie, where he was diagnosed with a concussion. “At that moment, I decided to take a break from wrestling,” he said.

That break allowed Hardy to pursue his other passion: music. Hardy started playing music at age 10 because Maryland law requires applicants to be 18 before they earn a wrestling license, and he needed a way to spend his free time. His grandparents bought him a guitar and he taught himself the intricacies of the instrument at their Sunset Beach home. Six months later, he was accepting gigs over the phone and surprising barmen with his age when he showed up for the performances.

“They told me to run in the bathroom and hide in the stalls if the police came,” Hardy recalled. “I wasn’t playing at talent shows like most kids my age. I was playing at full-blown bars.”

Since his unfortunate and indefinite exit from WWE, Hardy has teamed up with his wife, Kayla, to start MOLA Records, an independent label recruiting musicians from all over the world. As a solo artist channeling the energetic, punk flair of bands like the Ramones, Green Day and the Clash, Hardy released one album already in 2017 and has started working on another.

“Road to Gotham” is an Adam West 1966 tribute-style album. Reflecting on the days when he would scramble to the TV to watch “Saved by the Bell” and the old “Batman” series, Hardy said he wanted to conjure some of those themes in song form.

The other CD, the 12-track “Desperate Measures,” is slated for release on July 8, Hardy’s 27th birthday.

“‘Desperate Measures’ is an album about the hardest times in my life,” he acknowledged, citing homelessness, falling in love and a childhood in a broken home as the muse for his songs. “I can’t wait for this album to be released to the public because they will see the darker side of my life. But I think after this, I’m going to write happier songs now that I’ve addressed the negativity in my life.

“‘Road to Gotham’ is more for people into comic books and cartoons whereas ‘Desperate Measures’ anybody can relate to,” he added.

From April 21-30, Hardy toured the East Coast and the West Coast, listening as fans in Greensboro, North Carolina and Anaheim, California echoed the lilt of his lyrics. The trip, which included his first visit to the Golden State, was affirmation of his ability and determination.

“So many people told me, ‘You’ll never go anywhere, you’ll never do anything, you’ll never go to California,’” Hardy said. “And I finally got to go to California.”

Hardy has two American Wrestling Association events scheduled on June 10 and June 18, and he’s the USW champion after defeating Tokyo Monster from Japan. He doesn’t see wrestling or music vanishing into an afterthought.

“People say I ping-pong between the wrestling business and the music business,” Hardy noted. “That’s probably true. It would be different if I wasn’t succeeding with them. But every time I leave one for a while and come back, I’m even better than before.”

For updates on Hardy’s music and wrestling careers, search for “Brian Hardy Music” and “The Baltimore Blondes” on Facebook.

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