Origins of Front Row MMA
FRMMA (Front Row MMA) began in May 2011 when Clayton and Sam (Ammo) started recording a series of podcasts about the UK and international MMA scene. Adopting the skull with headphones as a logo the pair discussed MMA with a unique style adding their own thoughts, opinions and experiences, while taking the piss out of each other at the same time. The entertaining podcasts began to add international MMA news, welcome guests to the show and featured interviews with Bellator's Jimmy Wallhead, UFC's Vaughan Lee and hall of fame legend Randy Couture. Within the first year, podcast specials became popular where the show focused entirely on UK based promotions and their events; as did the regular feature on Sam's progress and preparation for his first bout inside the octagon. Releasing more regular podcasts, adding news to the FRMMA website and social networking sites, attending UFC 138 and extending the FRMMA team wrapped up 2011 and made way for the future of Front Row MMA.
Before things even hit the airwaves of iTunes, Clayton started with an idea, however without cash he didn't get very far and whoever he talked to laughed at the idea except for Sam; who threw a load of money at the equipment and the pair started recording podcasts. Ammo noticed that Clayton had no support from anyone and put his hand in his pocket to help him out. He didn't think he would enjoy it but after a few shows he really settled down and began to be comfortable behind the microphone. After Ammo's first MMA fight he decided to take some time off and as Clayton needed help on the podcast he asked Shawn to help fill the role. Shawn was more than happy to join the team and became the next person for Clayton to abuse weekly on the podcasts.
Towards the end of 2011 Jason was added to the team after his job on one of the podcast specials. Being a long time supporter and listener he was excited to become part of FRMMA and began building on the expanding news team.
The Age of Technology
2012 saw the team expand to include Steve (The cockney American Canadian) on the podcast and behind the microphone as Front Row moved into the realms of video content and properly launching Front Row MMA TV adding to some of the earlier videos of AMMO getting kicked in the nuts. Capturing interviews and event highlights became the staple of FRMMA throughout the year which was also capped when Clayton and Shaun returned to the UFC for the Fuel TV card meeting Dana White in Hooters, Nottingham.
The Front Row MMA podcast saw more interviews and a few live callers including Ben Cartlidge who unleashed a rant about people within UK MMA buying Twitter followers as the total downloads for the podcast surpassed the 100,000 mark in September. The website team saw some guest writers and bloggers including US based female fighter Sarah Moras who ran a blog up to her Invicta FC debut. The FRMMA team increased moreover with correspondent reporters and regular event reports from Nathan Hyland (London) and Jonathan Millard (Wales).
The year was topped with an interview with Quinton Rampage Jackson who slapped both Steve and Shaun before departing and our first full Web TV series, Grumpy Old MMA which gratefully received positive comments and feedback throughout the UK MMA community leading into 2013 and a new look website.