As noted, Elias recently appeared as a guest on Edge and Christian’s podcast, E&C’s Pod Of Awesomeness for an in-depth interview.
During the interivew, Elias spoke about previously feeling frustrated with his character in WWE.
“There definitely were times that I had issues, but when I first started doing the Drifter in NXT, I remember I just wanted to sit in the back turnbuckle corner and strum the guitar,” he said “I thought that would have been the coolest thing; I wouldn’t have to sing or say anything I kind of thought that it would be mysterious and cool.”
The WWE Superstar also spoke about first being approached with the idea of singing a song that would insult the live crowd at shows. He talked about first doing it at live events and how it was well-received by fans.
“One time I went to Largo, Florida and Terry Taylor came up to me and asked if I could sing a song tonight and I said, ‘OK, about what?’ He said that I should sing about the crowd,” Elias explained. “I came up with a song that night and the song kind of clicked right off the bat, so I evolved it from there. I started asking, at the time, ‘Who wants to walk with The Drifter?’ I would then tell a little story; it all really started at NXT, even though the NXT audience didn’t really get to see that side of me too much; the live events crowd definitely did see that.”
He also spoke about Paul “Triple H” Levesque telling him about how his character would be a better act for the WWE main roster than NXT.
“Triple H has told me specifically from the very first time when he saw me, he said that it would be a better main roster character than NXT. It never really clicked with the NXT audience the way it has. The way I see it, I took my live event act in NXT and brought it to the main roster,” he said. “They saw the live event act and said let’s put that on TV. On NXT, I would sing songs, but wouldn’t even do that, plus it was very dark and cryptic, but this is the kind of stuff I was doing on live events in NXT before being called up.”
Elias also talked about the differences between the live crowds in NXT and on the WWE main roster.
“Since I was an independent wrestler, you always wanted to be on Monday Nights, or SmackDowns, PPV’s, and all that stuff, but I have to say, when I was in NXT I was absolutely set on that I had to have a TakeOver match, I wanted to be featured on NXT,” he said. “Yeah, I know the audience is more of a hardcore based audience, but in my head I believe I could have done that as well, but they had other plans. When I was in NXT I was all in with NXT and wanted to be on all the Take Over events and all that stuff.”
Check out the complete Elias interview from E&C’s Pod Of Awesomeness at Art19.com.