Evan Ginzburg: Professional Wresting
media and entertainment agent, producer, writer
Ginzburg official website
Then & Now
Evan Ginzburg is one of the world's most successful
and respected professional wrestling agents and
Producer of and appearing in Darren Aronofsky's
critically acclaimed film The Wrestler starring
Mickey Rourke, Marisa Tomei & Evan Rachel
He is also:
Producer of upcoming documentary Tiger Khan- Fire
in the Blood
Producer of upcoming documentary Alive Again
Author of Apartment 4B, Like in Brooklyn
Editor- Wrestling Then & Now Newsletter
Host of Evan Ginzburg's Legends Radio (Co-hosted
by Dr. Mike Lano)
Then & Now
REVIEWS ARE IN FOR APARTMENT 4B, LIKE IN BROOKLYN
From Fred Geobold, WBAI-FM 99.5 NYC
Evan Ginzburg has put into words the emotions and
experiences of growing up in the ever-changing Brooklyn
of the 60s and 70s: a Brooklyn that is
lost forever. We read several tales on the air and
theyre funny, poignant and most certainly memorable.
Review by Fred Argoff from Brooklyn Magazine Issue
This quote appears at the end of the introduction:
In adulthood, Ginzburg moved to a foreign country
(Flushing), yet his heart is still in Brooklyn. This
book is a reflection of Ginzburgs lifelong ties
to his beloved Brooklyn. It doesnt get any better
you were born in Brooklyn, it doesnt matter
how long you lived there. Whether you move away as
a child or as an adult, and wherever you go, you will
always carry a little bit of the borough around with
you. We offer this as a pathetic, tip of the iceberg
explanation for the waxing nostalgic of Brooklyn.
said, theres nothing better than a book recalling
ones childhood in Brooklyn. Why, Your Friendly
Local Editor could have written this-but he didnt;
Evan Ginzburg from Lenox Road in Flatbush did. And
for this we can all be grateful.
book has six chapters, and a look at their titles
tells hints at whats to come: Early Daze; We
are Family; Reading, Writing and Humiliation: Block
Heads; Boys and the Hood; Last Gasp. And theres
an appendix with photosincluding a stickball
picture that will be immediately familiar to everybody.
4B, Like in Brooklyn is available for $14.95 (plus
$2.50 postage and handling) from the author at PO
Box 640471 Oakland Gardens Station, Flushing, NY 11364.
You will be severely remiss if you dont send
away for a copy ASAP. If you come from Brooklyn, every
page will bring a smile to your face, because you
will have experienced many of the same things. And
if youre not from around here, well, at least
youll understand why natives feel Brooklyn is
such a special place.
Evan Ginzburg and Days of Brooklyn Past
From Wendy Zarganis,
Your Guide to New York: Brooklyn.
Author's Memoir Reflects a Brooklyn Long Gone
Brooklyn's cultural landscape is ever-changing and
those who remember "the old" Brooklyn are
few. One of those Brooklyn natives, Evan Ginzburg,
decided to preserve the Brooklyn he once knew in his
memoir Apartment 4B, Like in Brooklyn.
Queens College sociology class inspired Ginzburg to
pen his memoirs of growing up in East Flatbush during
the 60s and 70s. Says Ginzburg, "I was writing
how and why the neighborhood changed with all kinds
of statistics to go with it. The professor was incredibly
encouraging saying, 'Let's do something important
with this,' but my beloved father had just died and
my head wasn't on straight then." So it wasn't
until years later that Ginzburg gave in to the inner
voice urging him to write.
"It was always this nagging thing on my shoulder
- "I need to write about this." The "this"
was a Brooklyn that no longer exists.
Ginzburg grew up on 245 Lenox Road between Nostrand
and Rogers. A mostly blue-collar Jewish neighborhood
when Ginzburg's family moved there, demographics changed
dramatically in the 1960s.
changes in Brooklyn in the 1960s and 70s weren't natural,"
Ginzburg explains. "They were expedited by 'blockbusting.'
The real estate interests knock on people's doors
and scare them by telling them, 'The blacks are coming
in you should get out now.' Then the [real
estate] agents make a low offer on their house. Rip
them off. Theyd turn around rip off the black
family interested in buying the house by overcharging
them. Taking from both sides. They created an unnatural
flight to the suburbs. I remember on the next block
over [from him], a young white woman was murdered.
This was 1968 or 1969. Murders were few and far between
back then. Months of fear went by; of course everyone
thought a black guy did it. What happened? Turned
out that her white boyfriend did it. They were turbulent
times politically then as well. Martin Luther King
was just killed." Ginzburg says. And that that
aura of fear remained. The 'white flight' to the suburbs
family didn't leave though and ended up being one
of the few white families in the neighborhood. It
wasnt easy for Ginzburg, but there were always
some amazing experiences that Ginzburg held on to
for many years.
later, as an Adult Ed teacher, Ginzburg started teaching
Sandra Cisneros' The House on Mango Street, a book
about growing up in a Latino neighborhood in Chicago
in the 60s and it touched Ginzburg. "I loved
the format- very, very short stories that could be
read by either kids or adults and although there were
repeat characters, the stories didn't really flow
from one to another. But it told the story! Poetically
no less. And that, too, inspired me. So finally, after
literally decades of wanting to write my story, a
political writer/friend named Jeff Archer just shamed
me into it. 'Writer's write,' he'd tell me. That kind
of thing. Over and over again. And I sat down during
one summer vacation and wrote a story a day. Just
jumped in like a lunatic. Almost 60 stories in 60
days. It was like therapy. When I wrote that last
story about the day I moved from the block, I just
cried. It was like I was reliving it. I spent years
polishing it and production etc. al. and four or so
years later, here it is. But some of this is just
about the sheer desire of getting something you believe
in "out there."
memoir chronicles Ginzburgs Brooklyn
from getting hassled for his lunch money to playing
skully to watching the Ed Sullivan show with his music-mad
mother. "Mother wasnt not a groupie,"
Ginzburg comments, "She didn't sleep with musicians
but she did run around with Tito Puente." And
she enjoyed listening to James Brown and Motown instilling
a love of music that remains with Ginzburg. "Culturally,
I'm more like a 60 year-old black guy than a 46 year-old
Jewish guy," he says, "My tastes are more
Al Green and Marvin Gaye.
4B, Like in Brooklyn skillfully captures a Brooklyn
that is no more and is as engaging as it is nostalgic.
The cover is a close up of his old building. "The
building has a huge gate in front of it now, like
a fortress," Ginzburg says, "The photographer,
Bernard Ente, had to go inside to get the shot."
In addition to the cover photo, Ginzburg provided
personal photos of his family, friends and neighbors
that add to the books Brooklyn flavor.
who now lives in Queens, is especially nostalgic for
Brooklyn block parties. "Such a beautiful thing,
all cultures together, Jews, Trinidadians, all nationalities
together. It was a unique Brooklyn experience. You
don't see that in the suburbs. On Long Island, there
are people who literally never go into Manhattan much
less Brooklyn. They did the wife, kids, dog, cable
thing. It's fine, but to me, it's vacant culturally."
Ginzburg teaches and hosts a radio show on WBAI-FM's
Light Show (Wednesdays from 2-3pm, and www.wbai.com
on the Web). Ginzburgs diverse Brooklyn upbringing
made him open to reaching out to those who would maybe
otherwise get lost in the shuffle. Ginzburg books
talent that he find interesting, from big bands to
various pro wrestlers, comedians and porn stars. "Interesting
people who arent one dimensional," he explains.
He writes on his Web site, "I am proud to say
that we not only interview and report on the name
groups, but some performers who are virtually unknown.
From the latter, we have offered some of the most
astute interviews in the world. For some reason, the
lesser-known talent (not necessarily lesser-talented)
are more open with their words.
Instead of getting a pre-planned answer written by
a publicity guru for a big star, we broadcast the
real emotions and responses of those who have not
quite 'made it' in their field."
People like Greenpoint musician, Ansel Matthews, a
6'7", 250 pound ex-football player. Says Ginzburg,
"His music is uncategorizable. He does this sensitive,
spiritual music that is so soothing I can't even explain
it. And he's the bouncer at the gigs he plays!"
Ginzburg says, "When youre out there doing
creative things, not just pursuing money, then interesting
things happen. Ive never gotten rich but Im
rich from experiences."
To order: "Apartment 4-B, Like In Brooklyn",
send check or money order to: Evan Ginzburg, P.O.
Box 640471, Oakland Gardens Station, Flushing, NY
11364. Price is $14.95 + $2.00 shipping.
Review by Tom Filsinger www.filsingergames.com
January 11, 2006
I'm pleased to announce that another excellent book
has come across my desk at Fed HQ. It's a book written
by old friend, Evan Ginzburg. Game fans will remember
Evan from his appearance at GalactiCon 2004 with Johnny
Valiant. He is the producer and editor of Wrestling
Then and Now newsletter and manages several wrestlers.
Evan has written an autobiography called Apartment
4B, Like in Brooklyn. God, how I love a good autobiography,
mainly because the best ones offer some universal
insights and concepts to ponder that stretch beyond
the life of the author. Evan's book does just that.
Evan grew up in Brooklyn in the 1960's and 1970's.
He saw his neighborhood slowly evolve from a traditional
ethnic immigrant neighborhood to a multi-racial neighborhood
populated by Blacks and Hispanics. Apartment 4B is
the story of a Jewish family adapting to these major
changes. And adapting is the key word. Evan describes
in graphic detail the pleasures and pains of these
adjustments. From being beaten up regularly for any
change in his pocket, to having his brand new bicycle
stolen in broad daylight, to tales of murder, cheating,
and degradation, it all seems like a painful and bitter
life lesson. And yet the book is free from real rancor
or hostility. Evan's world is a complex world where
his new friendships were very fulfilling, from playing
inner-city street games like Skully and stickball,
to going to the latest showings of Bruce Lee movies,
to identifying with James Brown as his hero, Evan
has carved a romantic vision at the same time that
his stories are frightening, dehumanizing, and sometimes
downright revolting. The book is written in a short
story format, making it easy to pick up and put down
at the drop of a hat. Not that it's easy to put down.
Evan's writing style is easily accessible with many
humorous touches thrown in to offset the sometimes
painful memories. As a child of the same time period,
I can identify with Evan's stories, the main difference
being that my family moved (ironically to a Jewish
suburb) prior to the inner-city upheavals that the
Ginzburg family endured. I saw the tip of the iceberg
when I lived in East Cleveland in the 1960's. Evan's
family stayed at Apartment 4B even when "white
flight" saw many other families moving out. Wrestling
fans will enjoy Evan's references to his love for
professional wrestling beginning with Bruno Sammartino
and many others. There's even a nice drawing of Baron
Von Raschke by Rick Knox in the book. Maybe Rick would
let us use it someday if we add the Baron to the Legends
game lineup. I heartily recommend Apartment 4B, Like
in Brooklyn. It's an easy read on a difficult subject.
Ginzburg's love of life and pop culture shine through
the tough times and his experiences represent a microcosm
for the shifting template of American culture in the
1960's and 1970's. Take it from me, a big reader of
memoirs, that this is worth picking up. The book is
available now through mail order at: PO Box 640471
Oakland Gardens Station Flushing, NY 11364 for $14.95
and $2.50 postage and handling (Add $5 for overseas
Review by Dann Leonard - Editor Betty Paginated (Australia)
APARTMENT 4B, LIKE IN BROOKLYN by Evan Ginzburg: What
could have been a wistful look back at one mans
childhood growing up in a culturally and racially
changing neighborhood in New York City, instead ended
up being a painful look at racism, petty crime, random
childhood cruelty and school bullying. Evan
the editor of long-running wrestling nostalgia sheet
Wrestling Then & Now is a good writer and
this short book of anecdotes certainly held my attention.
I just felt quite depressed afterwards. For every
story about Evans parents, his wacky friends
playing stickball or reading comics is countered by
an unpleasant tale of being mugged in the street by
black kids, beaten up by a gang of Puerto Rican teenagers
or being forced into an all-white class at school
for his own protection from the non-white students.
All forms of racism anti-black, anti-white,
anti-Hispanic, anti-gay, anti-Jew, hell
anti-Jehovahs Witness are addressed and
the overall picture is a very unflattering portrait
of 60s/70s multicultural America. Apartment 4B is
available through mail order from Evan at PO Box 640471,
Oakland Gardens Station, Flushing, NY, 11364, USA
for US $14.95 and US $2.50 postage and handling (add
US $5 for overseas orders). It can also be bought
by credit card at www.evanginzburg.com and www.wrestlingthenandnow.com
Two Sheds Review
Julian Radbourne (England)
Ginzburg's second book, Apartment 4B, Like In Brooklyn,
is an autobiographical book, as Ginzburg looks back
at his childhood years, of life growing up in East
a tale of a child growing up in the 1960's and 70's,
at a time long before kids found their entertainment
with video games and mobile phones, and they found
enjoyment by playing ball games in the street and
in backyards. Things certainly were a lot easier and
simpler back then.
it's a truly enchanting tale, as Ginzburg tells us
about his parents, a mother who looked after house
and home, and a father who worked fourteen hours a
day, six days a week, as a New York cabbie, estimating
that he's driven over a million miles during his life.
also tells of the many influences in his life, which,
of course, also involve professional wrestling, and
learning Spanish along the way while watching Lucha
Libre on television. The story of his first ever visit
to Madison Square Garden, to watch his hero Bruno
Sammartino, was also enjoyable.
it's the stories of his friendships and encounters
with other kids in the neighborhood that make this
book. While not wanting to go into to much detail
here, there are tales that will make you laugh and
cry, and even though these events took place over
thirty years ago, and you knew things would turn out
fine (otherwise he wouldn't have written this book),
you couldn't help but root for the guy during some
of the more troublesome moments.
In conclusion - a highly enjoyable read here. Ginzburg
manages to the sense of the era perfectly, and after
finishing the book, I began to wonder if Ginzburg
ever got back in touch with any of the friends he
made in Brooklyn, and if he found out what they're
The Fevered Brain of Radio Mike
We should tell you about a book we just finished reading,
APARTMENT 4B, LIKE IN BROOKLYN. Its filled with
vignette after vignette about growing up in Brooklyn
in the Late 60s and Early 70s. It was like reading
about Radio Mike growing up in Central California,
only this is much, much more interesting. Its
a rather quick but very entertaining read. You should
go visit, http://www.evanginzburg.com
and tell Evan we sent yall over. You should
read the book too, if you
like these sorts of things.
Baby Boomer Head Quarters www.BBHQ.com
This is a frequently amusing nostalgic series of essays
about growing up in Brooklyn in the 70s. It is a little
cutting edgy, but as such it captures the spirit.
CULTURAL ICONS LOVE APARTMENT 4B, LIKE IN BROOKLYN
Apartment 4B, Like in Brooklyn- his book is
a very realistic, easy read about growing up in New
York and reliving times of a bygone era. Once you
pick it up you wont be able to put it down.
-Handsome Jimmy Valiant (Professional Wrestling Legend)
I must say that from the time I picked up the
book till I finished it that it has made me
think about how I not only see people but how I treat
them and what I say to them. The book was just POWERFUL,
a tool if you will on how one can be affected by words;
light hearted and painful all at the same time. I
was laughing and crying all at the same time. I have
not picked up a book that had this kind of impact
on me since I read Truman Capote. Thank you just doesnt
seem to be enough.
-Seka (Adult film Legend)
Ginzburg official website
Then & Now
managed and collaborated with
Valiant - website
- profile - interview
Great Yankee Promoters, by Greg Tingle
Great Aussie Promoters, by Greg Tingle
Journalists & Agents
Man Australia does not represent Evan Ginzburg