WWE’s CFO$ Talks Going Retro To Create TJ Perkins’ Theme, The Creative Process, Which WWE Star They’d Like To Work With Next

Bill Pritchard

WWE.com recently spoke with WWE songwriters John Alicastro and Mike Lauri, also known together as CFO$, about creating WWE Cruiserweight Champion TJ Perkins’ new entrance theme. The two talk about working with Perkins on the track called ‘Playing With Power’, the creative process, gaming influences and more; you can read a few excerpts below:

Have they wanted to a retro / 8-bit entrance for a WWE Superstar? 

ALICASTRO: I have literally wanted to write a video game-style song since I first started playing music. From when I was 10 years old, I was so inspired by that style of music. It was the soundtrack of our childhood, and when we were given the opportunity to do this, it was a dream come true.

LAURI: It’s all about that 8-bit pallet. That’s what the foundation of T.J.’s theme is, with a rock track happening over it. Utilizing those sounds isn’t something we typically get to do, which makes it exciting. Instead of using more common instrumentation, we got to delve back into those chip sounds from the 80s.

Why TJ Perkins was the right fit for this song: 

ALICASTRO: We got with T.J. and started talking. We realized that we shared a lot of interest in the same games – [we] grew up playing a lot of the same games, and currently play the same games. We bonded over that and talked about the game soundtracks that inspired us. That gave us the general vibe we wanted to capture. We then got in the studio and the song just started pouring out of us.

What was the reaction to seeing the complete entrance with song and graphics at WWE Clash of Champions? 

LAURI: We loved it. It really fit what we had in our heads when we were writing it. Of course, it always takes the talent – T.J. in this case – to really bring something like this to life. What we love about it is that it’s so different. It’s something the fans aren’t used to seeing or hearing. I think that’s why, so far, the reaction has been really good.

What other WWE star would they like to work with on an electronic theme? 

ALICASTRO: We’d love to work with Xavier Woods. We’re big fans of UpUpDownDown and watch it all the time. We’d love to do some 8-bit themes for him, maybe create a soundtrack for the channel!

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