Music is the heart, but film has been the way.
Although better known for his starring roles in films such as The Goonies, Stand By Me, The Lost Boys, and many more, you may be surprised to know that Corey Feldman has been an aspiring musician for the past fifteen years.
While we were initially drawn to Feldman because of our interest in his new ‘concept’ album, Still Searching For Soul, it was impossible not to touch upon his film career. However, his passion for music was the prevailing topic of our conversation. Armed with a plan for the future, he is set to follow nothing but his heart.
How has the response been to your album?
The response has been phenomenal. We [Corey and his band, Truth Movement] are very excited. It seems that a lot of people are excited about it. Some people who have taken the time to sit and listen to it and then dissect it have responded well. The thing that we are excited about now is the fact that we are getting a lot of radio attention, which is nice. We have about forty stations that I’ve done interviews with that have picked up the single [and] we have MTV online talking about it.
We did the Gong Show, Extreme Gong, which I did as a joke, and in the end we got like forty-five hundred calls on live television from people who thought it was great. [Forty-five hundred] is the most calls they’ve ever received for an artist, as well as the most that were positive calls. That was pretty overwhelming and we’re happy with that.
When did you realize you wanted to be a musician?
About fifteen years ago.
What kind of music did you write then?
Well, it is kind of a funny story. I started writing when I was a little kid. What I used to do is listen to top forty pop songsand try to dissect what the words were. I would write them all down and then rearrange them like ‘Weird’ Al. That is how I started writing music and then shortly after that I tried to put my own songs together. Eventually I got to record my own song in ’86 and from that time on I never stopped.
How did you hook up with Vegas Records?
I actually met them through Drive-Thru Records, which is another independent label here in Los Angeles. [Drive-Thru Records] couldn’t handle [my record] at the time. Therefore I decided maybe they could introduce me to some people because they knew a lot of independent labels. So, they hooked me up with Vegas Records.
You say your album is a ‘concept’ album. What or who influences your sound?
Who would you say we sound like?
Musically, it reminds me a little of Pink Floyd.
That’s probably the strongest connection. We kind of like to think of it as a Pink Floyd for the ’90’s. We’re trying to bring back the ‘concept’ album. We’re trying to tell a story; something people can get into and become a part of. That’s what the whole Truth Movement concept and idea is all about; actually having a movement, something people can get into like they did in the old days.
We used a lot of the sounds from the ’60’s and ’70’s with contemporary technology and dance grooves. It’s kind of a blend of the two. I think now is a good time for it because we have gone down all the other avenues musically that you could go down.
It doesn’t seem the like the ‘concept’ album has made much of a comeback since the ’60’s and ’70’s.
Exactly. The thing is that if it is brought back around, it’s usually by the same old bands. It’s Page and Plant or Pink Floyd, but nobody has ever tried to take that sound and incorporate it into what is happening today. So, we’re trying something different and hopefully people will try to understand and grasp it.
We heard you on the Howard Stern Show. He didn’t seem very receptive to your album.
He was playing ten seconds of sound effects and he tried to judge based upon that. You have to understand that Howard does what he does for humor. He is looking at it [and asking] what is going to make the best radio orthe best gimmick. He’s not thinking about the fact that I take this very seriousl and it is a career for me. It is something that I hold true to my heart. The last thing that I want is for people to take it lightly or think that it is some kind of a joke.
Do you hope to influence as many people with your music as you did with your movies?
I hope to influence more. With movies you’re just a character saying written words, but as a musical artist you have the opportunity to actually express yourself. You can get what’s inside you out there to people. I think through all my experiences in life I have a lot to say about what I’ve learned.
With music, as opposed to film, there is no real middleman between the artist and the person who buys it. With acting, you do a movie and, if the [film studio] likes the movie, then they release it. If they release it theatrically, then how much promotion will they put behind it? And will America ever find out about it or will they not go to see it because of bad reviews? There is just so much political bullshit involved, whereas with music it’s kind of like, ‘Here’s what I’m doing’. I put it down on tape and then I find someone who is willing to put it out there and as soon as they put it out you can buy it. If you like it and enjoy it, then great, and if you don’t, that is okay too. At least it is there and it’s an option.
Why did you choose to go with an independent label rather than a major one for your album release?
I stayed away from the larger scale companies because Vegas Records is getting Still Searching For Soul out on a nationwide distribution. As far as advertising and promotion, I think people are hearing about it. It’s not going unnoticed. I don’t know what else could be achieved, other than money for a huge tour, which helps, but at the same timethe bureaucracy and the politics involvedhave shied me away from the big conglomerates. I can go directly to buyers and no middlemen. In a big company, you can just get lost in the shuffle [because a big record label has] so much on their plate. They put out fifty albums a month and they never follow up with any of them. You have a label like Vegas and they get a project like this and it is the most important thing in the world to them because they have a major label act on a small, independent label. That gives them the opportunity to really get behind it. [Vegas Records] can put everything they’ve got into it and roll the dice and see what they can make out of it. I’d rather be a big fish in a little pond than a little fish in a big sea.
We heard you have a movie coming out.
I did a small, independent film called Fortune Hunter, which I did over Thanksgiving. It was a cute little family movie I did for fun.
Which of your movies was your favorite?
Goonies, because I [had] the chance to work with such wonderful people as [Steven] Spielberg and Richard Donner and that was pretty awesome. Plus, I got to meet so many people like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and Pee Wee Herman. Those were the kind of people who were hanging out around the set. It was just cool to be a part of it. It’s a classic.
What are your plans for the future?
We’re just trying to put a tour together.
We’d like to shoot a couple of videos and possibly a ‘rock concept’ movie version of the album. I’d like to do a tour for a year and a half, then get back in the studio. Eventually, I’ll get back into the film arena and do one of those in a few years.
So, you’re interested in focusing on music for a while.
I want to give it the time to play out and allow it the opportunity to come to full fruition. I think to duck out now would just be shooting myself in the foot. Plus, I want people to take it seriously and I know they are going to take it seriously if they see me taking it seriously. So, if I’m constantly juggling myself between films and music, which is what I’ve done for the last fifteen years, then I’ve really never given it the opportunity to see what it could possibly do. Now I’ve decided to put movies on hold and take the time to give music what it deserves. I think the music deserves the time and attention it is getting. Why distract myself with other things?
Are there any artists with whom you would like to perform?
David Gilmour (Pink Floyd), Roger Waters (Pink Floyd), Paul McCartney (Beatles), George Harrison (Beatles), Billy Joel, and anybody reputable besides that. (laughs)
Do you listen to any new bands?
I listen to Radiohead. They go back to the trippier kind of sounds and try to put it into a ‘concept’ format, but they don’t really tell a story. It’s more kind of bits and pieces. There is a ton of great stuff out there.
Yes. But a lot of great new music is never heard.
It’s a shame. There is so much great music out there that never gets heard because the radio doesn’t want to play it or the record company isn’t behind it. Radio stations these days are ridiculous. There were some stations that we talked to that would only play the single if I did an interview for them because they considered that payola. And I’m like, ‘That’s the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard.’ A lot of great music falls by the wayside and we hope that doesn’t happen to us.
Anything you’d like to add?
On the music front I’d like to say that if there are any skeptics out there that think I’m doing this as a joke, I’m not. And if you don’t believe me, go pick it up for yourself and be your own judge.
+ interview: charlie craine & sam conjerti +introduction: charlie craine editor: alissa shugats