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Under the Black Hat

My Life in the WWE and Beyond
Narrated by: Jim Ross
Series: Slobberknocker, Book 2
Length: 9 hrs and 18 mins
4.8 out of 5 stars (53 ratings)

Non-member price: $26.32

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Publisher's Summary

From legendary wrestling announcer Jim Ross comes a candid, colorful memoir about the inner workings of the WWE and the personal crises he weathered at the height of his career.

If you've caught a televised wrestling match anytime in the past 30 years, you've probably heard Jim Ross' throaty Oklahoma twang. The beloved longtime announcer of WWE is already an icon to generations of wrestling fans, and he's not slowing down, having just signed on as the announcer of the starry new wrestling venture All Elite Wrestling. In this follow-up to his best-selling memoir Slobberknocker, he dishes about not only his long career, which includes nurturing global stars like Stone Cold Steve Austin, The Rock, and John Cena, but also about the challenges of aging and disability, his split from collaborator Vince McMahon, and the sudden death of his beloved wife, Jan. The result is a gruff, endearing, and remarkably human-scale portrait, set against the larger-than-life backdrop of professional wrestling.

Ross' ascent in WWE mirrors the rise of professional wrestling itself from a DIY sideshow to a billion-dollar business. Under the Black Hat traces all the highs and lows of that wild ride, in which Jim served not only as on-air commentator, but talent manager, payroll master, and even occasional in-ring foil to threats like Paul "Triple H" Levesque and Undertaker. While his role brought him riches and exposure Jim never dreamed of growing up in a small town in Oklahoma, he chafed against the strictures of a fickle corporate culture and what he saw as a narrow vision of what makes great wrestlers - and great story lines. When suddenly stricken with Bell's palsy, a form of facial paralysis that makes it impossible to smile, he stared down his greatest fear - being cast out of the announcing booth for good.

Picking up where Slobberknocker left off and ending on the cusp of a new career in a reimagined industry, Under the Black Hat is the triumphant tale of a country boy who made it to the top, took a few knocks, and stuck around - just where his fans like him.

©2020 Jim Ross (P)2020 Simon & Schuster

What listeners say about Under the Black Hat

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I wish there was another one

JR's first book was the first audio book I had listened to. I then mixed it up a little and came back to his second book a little later. I have to say that I have enjoyed these the most so far. JR's stories are incredible. He has lived a very interesting life and knows so many characters. I honestly can't see how many other people's stories can live up to this. Some of the situations that JR has found himself in are so unique and whacky, all thanks to the crazy wrestling world he found himself in. He has been dealt some very difficult cards, but has persevered through it all, and came out the other side an absolute legend. It's inspiring how tough this guy really is. I'd find it hard to believe that there are any better wrestling books than this. So if you're a fan, do yourself a favour and listen to this. Thank you JR for sharing.

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Truely Amazing and Inspiring

I never leave reviews but I always read the reviews before purchasing books. This was truly amazing, I always wondered about the other side of the wrestling world, and following JR's story and life was brilliant. He goes through so many positives and negatives yet he always seeks to improve himself. I loved every chapter of this book and have since bought his other book. I didn't realise what had happened to his wife, he was very open about it and it was truely heartbreaking. JR is simply a legend. I have a newfound respect for him and I will never take the criticisms of people the same again who complain about him. 100% worth the read. I hope he does similar with AEW.

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A Reason to Get Up and Never Give Up

Mr Ross narrates a love letter to his late wife. For those that listen and have listened to his broadcasts and podcasts, this is familiar content and in some cases ground well trodden. However, his portrayal of Vince McMahon backstage and his view of the inner workings of his former boss and the organisation were revealing to day the least. When he quoted McMahon as saying, "We're the same," he maybe didn't realise the accuracy. Both men constantly trying to prove themselves to their doubters and detractors, both seeking the approval of their late fathers but more importantly both trying to outrun shadows from their past. You become emotionally tied to Mr Ross and you feel with each word the all consuming love for his wife. It was a privilege to be allowed in.

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Amazing listen!

This book was so informative, interesting and at time, absolutely heart wrenching. The backstage stories are fun to listen to and the story of Jan’s passing is absolutely heartbreaking. Thank you Jim for this book, kept me entertained on quite a few drives and nights where I couldn’t sleep

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A First

I really Never leave reviews ever. But JR kills it on this. But Excellent book

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Touching

Hearing Jr speak with such passion and raw emotion about his wife brought me to tears

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  • Lewis Crew 7
  • 01-04-2020

JR Delivers Again!

Good Ole JR gives insight into a legendary career! Never a dull moment. Was very excited that JIm Ross was the voice for this Audio book. I did not want the book to end!! Thank you for sharing. We love you!!!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Monique Camacho
  • 19-10-2020

TREASURE

We don't deserve JR. He is societal gold. He's a Hall of Famer in life.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 16-10-2020

Amazing

Just Amazing! The inside to the wrestling business and heart of this book blew me away!

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  • Jerome Chavez
  • 10-10-2020

I love this book

I love this book and Jim Ross I grew up listening to JR and watching wrestling. this Autobiography is wonderful and tells the real story of behind the scenes at WWE and the life of the Great JR. I even enjoy how its read by the Author. It makes it much more entertaining JR is a great Narrator and story teller.

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  • Brian Saylor
  • 09-10-2020

Good Book For Wrestling Fan

Definitely Recommend for the wrestling fan who grew and listened to Good Ole JR, and still does on AEW.

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  • Mike G
  • 28-09-2020

It's JR!

great book, even better than the 1st. The story at the end about what happened to his wife, is truly heartbreaking. Jim has truly paid his dues in life. this book is more than 5 stars..

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  • Anonymous User
  • 19-09-2020

JR Still Has It

intertwining a love story for wrestling with the heartbreak and love story of Jan, amazing.

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  • K.T.
  • 14-09-2020

GREAT!

Just a GREAT book! Listened to it at work and couldn't turn it off! I highly recommend it.

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  • Eric BVD
  • 13-09-2020

Nothing like spending time with good old JR ❤️

What an amazing life story. Thanks for sharing the tale and being the voice of my childhood.

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  • Paul Frehley
  • 13-09-2020

Simply amazing!

What a wonderful story. His story will bring you laughs, joy, tears, and all of the above. JR really has a gift of story telling and his journey was a great listen. This story however is a love story between him and his dearly departed wife Jan. It brought tears to my eyes at times hearing about their love and devotion, and the chapter about her death was hard to listen. You owe to yourself to listen to this amazing man's journey and triumphs. I loved every minute.

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  • theryanwatkins
  • 28-07-2020

10/10

10/10 one of the best wrestling books ever. meltzer would give this book 7 stars

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  • David Brady
  • 16-10-2020

Jim Ross is a natural auditor.

Jim Ross, such a great story teller both in wrestling and in his writing. Thank you JR.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Micheal Costelloe
  • 15-10-2020

exceptional

it bought back so many great memories and it was gripping from start to finish

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  • Andrew Hill
  • 13-10-2020

Insight from one of the top people in the Industry

Finished this audiobook in a couple of days. A lot of the stories would be already familiar to a wrestling fan to some extent, having seen them played out on your TV screen during the 90s and 2000s, but having the insight on these events from a man in the position J.R had within WWE gives a newer understanding.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-10-2020

Excellent

Funny, emotional, revealing. Throughly enjoyed this as it was filled with nostalgic moments and like a return to my childhood

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  • Mr Gary P Lovelock
  • 02-10-2020

A Peek Behind the Curtain

An excellent book for any wrestling fan that tells the story of what happens backstage and an insight to Vince's mind. The fact JR reads his own words makes this all the better and he had me completely engrossed from start to finish.

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  • Steven
  • 18-09-2020

love it

get slobenocker then this is a amazing addition . brings back the voice of my child hood as it is also read by good old JR

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  • D. Marshall
  • 07-09-2020

You know it's going to be a slobberknocker

Just great listening if you are a wrestling fan. JR certainly pulls no punches in this book. A fascinating listen and of course made all the better by having Jim himself narrate. If you have read or listened to Slobberknocker you really have to give this a listen.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 28-08-2020

Excellent Follow Up

Interesting insight into JR's time at WWE and ultimate departure. I learnt a lot about his life and personality. The narration is great as you would expect from JR, it's like listening to an old friend. Definitely would recommend for any WWE fan.

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  • Jon Burkitt
  • 25-08-2020

Still the voice of Wrestling

If you love JR and the period in wrestling to which he was the defining voice, calling the action and emotion in the squared circle, this and Slobberknocker, are essential reads/listens.