Only a few elites can claim that their opening song will be performed live on The Grandest Stage of Them All. Intercontinental champion Big E will join that select group when Grammy-nominated rapper Wale sings him into the ring before his duel with Apollo Crews on night 2 of WWE WrestleMania 37 at Raymond James Stadium on Sunday.
The power of positivity enters Wale’s “Feel the Power” tune of December 4th. And three weeks later, he defeated Sami Zayn at the Christmas edition of SmackDown to qualify for his second intercontinental championship.
Sunday will mark Mania’s first live music performance since Joan Jett performed “Bad Reputation” for Ronda Rousey at WrestleMania 35’s main event. treatment than the former man of the New Day.
“He’s one of my favorite rappers out there, but even if I had my friend and someone who’s a big fan of wrestling, I was geeked just so I could get him to perform,” Big E told Bleacher Report. That he’s performing at home – Tampa is my home – is amazing. I’m so stunned. We’ve been trying to get Wale for years. We tried to bring him to Mania a few years ago, but things didn’t work out. I’m so excited about it and I know that he is too because it is a big dream as a big fan. “
Wale has long been part of the WWE family. In addition to hosting his own weekend get-togethers at WrestleMania over the years, he commented for 205 Live and appeared on SmackDown as the host of the New York-Usos rap battle in July 2017.
Meanwhile, Big E has never had a WrestleMania one-on-one match, so Sunday will be special for both him and his close friend. A request was made for Wale to be involved in the event and both parties immediately accepted.
Big E talked about how he doesn’t think Wale is getting enough credit for the work he has invested in building a bridge between the world of sports entertainment and hip-hop.
“One of the things I realized many years ago is that so many rappers like hip-hop heads that I really enjoyed were big, massive wrestling fans,” he said. “I thought,‘ Man, we should do a lot more to connect those two bridges. “I love it and that’s what he did: bringing culture to the WWE and I think it’s so doping.”
The intercontinental champion revealed that Wale had learned before him about the possibility of performing for him at WrestleMania. When the idea was quickly presented in the Big E text, he replied with a resounding “yes”.
Wale is usually busy during the WrestleMania weekend and is hosted by WaleMania, but this year will be different due to current circumstances. Instead, in addition to singing for Big E at the Show of Shows, he will focus his efforts on promoting his newly announced exclusive clothing collection in collaboration with FootLocker.
The clothing line pays tribute to world champions in black wrestling, including Kofi Kingston, Sasha Banks, Booker T and others, and is already available for purchase.
Getting back in front of the fans will be a surreal experience for both of you. WrestleMania will be the first big gathering of fans from WWE since the beginning of March 2020, so the live performance is planned on top of everything else just the icing on the cake.
“It’s almost like a reunion,” Big E said. “We’re all together again! On top of that, this is my home. This is my city. Born and raised here, we still live here, so it’s amazing. We’re just excited.” that we come back to do what we do.I think that’s the beauty of our job: just that live, almost unpredictability with the fans.I love that they have the ability to tell you if something is good, if something is bad, I love that organic response.I love that we get a chance to get back to him. “
Not only is Big E calling Tampa home, Raymond James is also where he played his 2003 high school football game. He continued to train at the Florida Wrestling Championships, which was a WWE development area from 2007 to 2012, located right down the street from the stadium.
His main ride on the schedule was nothing but toboggan rides. Despite winning his first IC title within a year of his arrival, his reign was largely forgettable and he was champion that year, appearing in the inaugural Memorial Battle King Andre Giant.
Everything, however, is happening for a reason, and now he has come into full circle with a championship defense against the Crews in what is being charged as the Nigerian Drum Fight.
WrestleMania has hosted a series of stellar intercontinental title matches over the years, from Ricky Steamboat against Randy Savage to Shawn Michaels against Razor Ramon. It can be argued that the Big E vs. crew is the most significant IC conflict in recent WrestleMania history due to the bad blood that has been brewing between them for months.
He hopes to further strengthen his legacy of champions by entering and exiting Grandpa from all of them on Sunday night with gold in hand.
“The lineage is amazing,” said Big E. “I hope to be worthy of some of the best who have ever done it and it’s something I don’t take for granted. I always want to remember what this championship means and the legends that made it I want to be worthy as if speaking in the same breath as they are It’s a steady, steady job He never rests on his laurels and never thinks it’s time for the coast It’s always something I try to remember So many greats it held and when it’s all said and done, I want them to consider me one of them. “
History has taught us that almost anyone whose output theme is a live performance on WrestleMania is less likely to come out on top, but with WWE superfan and hip-hop star Wale in his corner, Big E may prove to be an exception.
Catch Wale’s live music performance for Big E on Night 2 WrestleMania 37 this Sunday, streaming exclusively on Peacock in the U.S. and the WWE network everywhere else.
Graham Mirmina, aka Graham “GSM” Matthews, has specialized in writing sports and entertainment since 2010. Visit his website, WrestleRant, and subscribe to his YouTube channel for more content related to wrestling.