At tonight's AEW Dynamite: Fight for the Fallen, Sonny Kiss is getting a big opportunity in the form of a title match against AEW TNT Champion Cody. Before that takes place, Kiss did an interview with Sports Illustrated about his "Concrete Rose" nickname and wanting to give fans an authentic gimmick, rather than rehashing previous ones.
In regards to Kiss' nickname, it originated from Ashanti's 2004 album.
"'The Concrete Rose' sums up me as a person," Kiss said. "Ashanti's version of that was infusing her soulful vocals over a hip-hop beat. With me, it's very similar. I'm a very unconventional, avant-garde person, so it's a mantra I came up with as a teenager. It's when two things that aren't necessarily similar come together to make one awesome product.
"It's not exuding a masculine or feminine quality exclusively. I'm a little rough around the edges, but I'm also bubbly. I'm a fan of a lot of things, and that comes together like different qualities in concrete and a rose. It's basically two opposites coming together."
Kiss then spoke about how when he first started in wrestling, people tried to using gimmicks of the past to create his, but Kiss wanted to make sure fans would relate to him.
"When I first started wrestling, people didn't know what to make of me," Kiss recalled. "They wanted to make me like Adrian Adonis or even Goldust. But I wouldn't have thrived doing that. It wouldn't have been real, and people can see through fakeness. For me, I was either going to the top as myself or I wasn't. I'm not a gimmick, I'm myself. I don't want to do anything that isn't real.
"LGBTQ+ people are more than what you've seen in the past as 'gimmicks.' People need authenticity, and I'm that for them. If you're not authentic, how can people relate to you? I won't change, I'll always be me."
To hype tonight's match, Cody gave some props to Kiss on Twitter, but noted Kiss "doesn't stand a chance" at winning.