Corey Feldman has never been a man to back down from a challenge. No matter if it’s brining his ambitious double album, ‘Angelic 2 The Core,’ to life, his now legendary musical appearances on ‘The Today Show’ or embarking on an ambitious nationwide summer tour, Feldman remains focused on bringing his music to the masses. While his ambitious endeavors are typically met with more than their fair share of skepticism, this multi-faceted artist continues to forge ahead, defy the odds and send the haters packing. Corey’s Heavenly Tour: Angelic 2 The U.S. continues the tradition of showcasing his all Angel Band, comprised of beautiful and talented young female artists, who have been handpicked by Feldman to realize his creative vision. The gifted girl squad is led by the masterful musical direction of Margot Lane, a seasoned professional of the music industry, and rounded out by Feldman’s wife Courtney Anne, a multi-instrumentalist who also sings, DJs and plays piano. Bringing a tour to life is no easy task, yet Feldman continues to stay laser-focused and more driven with every day. The results of his hard work and dedication are undeniable. With each passing moment, the buzz that is “Feldmania” becomes more infectious as Corey Feldman and The Angels continue to sell out venues and perform nightly to packed houses. Knowing that they pour their hearts and souls into each performance, fans from around the nation continue to flock to the ever-evolving shows for a rare chance to see a bonafide pop culture icon perform a intense retrospective of songs spanning his career. Jason Price of Icon Vs. Icon recently caught up with Corey Feldman as he makes his way across America to discuss the challenges he has faced along the way, the evolution of his live show, and what he has in store for us musically in the months and years to come.
I’ve been asking this question more often these days to people whom music has played a major role in their life. What does rock ‘n’ roll mean to you?
You know, it’s about something that moves the soul. If you can make music that moves you or moves other people in a way that is inspirational, motivational, or takes their minds away from negative thoughts, then that’s rock ‘n’ roll. It can also be an outlet to release your negative energy. It’s similar to the way some people might punch a punching bag or stick their head into a pillow and scream if things get to intense! Some people go for a walk. Some people go for a run. Some people just have to take a drive and get away for awhile. However, some people have rock ‘n’ roll as that outlet and it allows them to express that pent up energy and angst. Through music they can let that energy out in a positive, healthy way! It’s better than bottling it up because sometimes life gets too real and you need an outlet!
The past year has been very rock ‘n’ roll for you! You’ve released an album, turned the heads of music critics and fans in a very positive way and launched a very ambitious tour. What can you tell us about the impact the past year has had on you creatively?
Well, it’s been amazing! So far, so good! It’s kind of mind-blowing, being out here on tour. Every city we go to we have played to a packed house and people are loving it! The reviews have been incredible and everyone who leaves our show says they had a good time. Obviously, there are going to be the people who go there because they want to hate or are hoping to see a train wreck. They’re hoping it’s going to be a nightmare or a disaster or whatever. Then they get there and realize it’s a group of awesomely talented musicians and I don’t suck and my voice doesn’t suck! We’re up there doing our thing and then they don’t have anything to say, so they just leave. [laughs] It’s like a bunch of bullies showing up to a picnic but everyone at the picnic is having an amazing time but they think they are going to come in and convince everyone to stop having an amazing time. Then they realize they are far outnumbered and the positive outweighs the negative. What are they going to do? Sit there with their thumbs up their butt swearing? Okay, great. You’re gonna have a great time with your thumbs up your butt, swearing under your breath! The only people that are going to notice the difference are you and your butt! [laughs] Everyone else in the room is going to have a great time doing what they’re doing! That’s basically the way I see it!
You started out with a mini-tour earlier this year and have now hit the road for the summer. How has the show evolved and what can people expect from Corey Feldman and The Angels ‘Angelic 2 The U.S. Summer Tour’?
Evolved is the key word when it comes to the tour. It’s definitely evolved quite a lot. We’ve really taken it to another level from a production aspect. I enjoyed the show we were doing before but it was a little bit disjointed. I decided along the way is that what makes this show fun is that it’s a time capsule. I think what inspired that was the initial promo video that we put out that shows different highlights and moments from throughout my career. That became the blueprint for everything else that we wanted to do. When we saw the reaction to the video from the fans, it was almost as if they were getting a shock treatment of reality like “Wow! I remember that! Oh yeah, he did that! Wow, he was there! He was part of that video, on that song and part of that album… I didn’t realize he has been so heavily connected in the music scene for as long as he has!” I think that was a re-awakening for so many people and gave them a chance to go back to their childhoods and see how long I have really been doing this! I think a lot of people think I popped up out of nowhere on ‘The Today Show’ and started singing out of nowhere and doing music! I’ve been doing this for decades and it’s been ingrained in pop culture for so long, it’s easy to forget a lot of the things I have done. I’m guilty of that as well. I mean, there are plenty of bands out there where I will remember one song from them. Someone will say, “Oh, do you want to go see their concert?” To which I say, “What else have they done? I only know one song.” Then you go to the concert and you know ten songs! It’s like, “Oh, I forgot they did this! Oh, right!”
Once I realized the audience was having that rebirth, if you will, around the pop culture of the music and the things I was involved in, that’s when I felt like we should craft a vehicle for them to take them through this journey. That’s what Angelic 2 The Tour has become, it’s divided into chapters. We still open it with the kind of video teaser video but then we dive right into the new album and then we start going back in time! It’s almost reversed chronologically as we start off with the new stuff but then we go backwards. We switch it up a little each night, of course, but generally we go right back to my very first film soundtrack, which was ‘Dream A Little Dream.’ That was really the first time I put music out to the world on vinyl and it was also my first film soundtrack. That was in 1989. We start there and then we go almost chronologically through all the different chapters of my life, whether it’s different film soundtracks I have been a part of, even if it wasn’t necessarily my own work, and we have tributes to some of my friends. We were doing a bit of that before, but we have now extended those tributes. One chapter that we have added and I know people will be excited about is the ‘Rock ‘N’ Roll High School Forever’ chapter. It’s a big part of the show now and is very cool!
I don’t know if you were able to check out of live stream last week but we previewed it there! That one was a surprise! We’ve done 3 live streams. We did one for the second or third show of the tour. It was a completely sold out show, so we said, “It’s a completely sold out show! Let’s do a live stream!” We did it and it went well but it was just for one song. Then, a few days later, we had played 3 sold out shows in a row. I said, “Let’s do another live stream!” So, we did another song! Then, we got to a venue called Sunshine Studios where we had the opportunity to do a live stream with a 4 camera shoot! Once I know they could do that, a 4 camera shoot, I felt it would be a great way for people to get a little taste of the show! I also like the fact that we didn’t do any advertising or promo to build up to it. We didn’t want a ton of people to see it because we want people to come out and see the live show but I figured we could just let enough people where a buzz could start and people could start spreading the word! That was the idea behind!
Any chance we might see a few more of the live streams popping up unexpectedly as you travel the land?
You never know! It’s a possibility!
You’ve assembled a very talented group of Angels for the tour. What have you brought out in each other creatively and what has it been like touring alongside them?
It’s a learning experience on all sides! The great thing is that everyone here is a serious professional and everybody wants nothing but a positive outcome. They all want to do the best that they can because they know this is a great opportunity for them. In most cases, this is the first tour for many of them. Then you have someone like Angel Margot, who is our musical director, who has been doing this for awhile and is very experienced! This is not her first rodeo! [laughs] However, like I said, for most of the other girls this is their first major U.S. tour. It’s a learning experience, but at the same time they are all perfectionists and want to be the best that they can be! Last night, our bus broke down and we got stuck at a gas station in the middle of Colorado. We happened to have the live DVD of our performance at Sunshine Studios, so we all sat in the bus last night and watched it. It was very educational and informative because as good as we may think we are or as evenly as the show seems to be flowing, we always notice our own mistakes or problems. We say, “Ok, I’ve got to make a note of that…” or “Oh, I messed up there.” When you are all able to sit down and watch it together, you can really dissect it and find your troubled areas.
Again, because we don’t do the same show every night, we are still very reliant on the venues. Unfortunately, we aren’t playing amphitheaters, stadiums or arenas, so we don’t have a giant crew. We have people who are wearing multiple hats like production manager/tour manager/costume designer, etc. Multiple people are wearing multiple hats! What that means is that we are a bit at the mercy of the venue that we go. We are always hoping that they have the technology that we need and the wherewithal within their staff to be able to help us create the show that we need to create, usually with very little time to set things up. Because we are doing 5 or 6 shows a week, we are on the road a lot and get to the venue just in time for load-in and sound check. That gives us 2 hours to set everything up and then they open the doors. For us to put up our lasers, bubbles, smoke, screens, projectors is quite a challenge. We have all these major things that we need to get set up. Plus we have to do the stage plot, make sure all the musicians instruments are in tune and do a sound check and line check, so it’s a lot of work to get done in the very small amount of time and before you know what the show is on!
The point is that doing what we are doing is like boot camp for musicians! We are literally grinding it out! What I can tell you, is I spent 5 years literally scoping the entire United States and beyond, to find the most competent and talented group of female musicians that were all attractive, and who were all dedicated to their careers. It took five long years to find the perfect group! You’ve seen different incarnations of it over the past five years from the performances at Bonnaroo, to the performances on ‘The Today Show’, to where we are today! It has evolved and I can say for sure, 100%, that right now we have the best group of Angel musicians that I have ever had the pleasure of working with! These girls are amazingly talented! If you haven’t had the opportunity to see the solo from Angel Jiménez yet, but she does “Eruption” by Eddie Van Halen! Find me another 21 year old female guitarist who can play that song note for note, spot on, and I will lick your bootstraps! [laughs] It doesn’t exist! We found the only one! I’m proud to say that we have that level of amazing musicianship with this group. I’m also proud of my wife, Courtney, who when we started this adventure was a Playboy model. She went from being a Playboy model, which are a dime a dozen, to a woman who focused and honed her craft as a DJ by studying at the Ministry of Sound in London, and then went on to further develop her skills as a pianist. She has also trained her voice, has become an incredible singer, and is singing lead throughout the show! That’s huge stuff! She has really developed as an artist and has come a long way from where she started! For me, the best part of the show outside of the highlights I which I enjoy, is watching the girls do their individual moments. It’s spellbinding to see these young girls with so much talent perform! Our drummer, Marisa Torres, who is incredibly talented as a drummer. She is 20 years old and she is out there playing a 2-hour set! At the end of her 2-hour set, we give her her solo where she breaks it down and sings Alanis Morissette while playing drums! It’s amazing, and she sounds just like Alanis Morissette! Find me another touring band that has that kind of talent! It’s doesn’t exist! We’re no joke! We’re bringing the real deal to the table every single time! These girls are hardcore, true, dedicated musicians and it’s mind-blowing. I’m am honestly blessed to be working with such an amazingly talented group of girls! Yeah, there are mistakes and we’re not perfect. Nobody is perfect but I think we are getting better and better with each show. I really believe that by the end of this leg of the tour, we will be out there and be able to step to any massive act that has been touring the country for decades!
You are clearly in a great creative space right now. Where do you see yourself headed musically in the future?
We don’t plan on this tour ending anytime soon! In fact, we are already looking at another leg in October in the United States. We’re also looking at Canada and international dates as well. The big picture scope of all this is having it become my first world tour. The plan is to launch Corey’s Heavenly World Tour beyond Corey’s Heavenly U.S. Tour. The idea would be to play the UK, Canada, Asia, Australia and more. We literally want to take this tour all over the world, which will keep me quite tied up for another year to year and a half, just touring this album. With that said, I like to keep multiple things going at the same time and I’m not one that likes to lie low, as we all know! [laughs] On the music front, I have just started planning the 25th anniversary re-release of my my first album, ‘Love Left.’ I’ve actually been working with Don Dokken, who has recently become a friend of mine. He is helping me pull up my old 2” tapes that we used back in the day when we used to record on tape machines. He’s just recently gone through this process with his own albums, so he has been holding my hand a bit and leading me through the process of baking the old tapes and trying to get the music back off of them to get it in a state where we can remix and remaster the old material. That will also allow me to pull up some material that was never released to the rest of the world. I’ve got all of these old recordings on this 2” tape. The idea is to release some original songs that have never been released, like the original version of ‘Rock Us Danny’ from ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll High School Forever’. That song went through many incarnations before it eventually ended up in the film. Even the version that ended up in the film is something I don’t have a copy of. What I do have is early versions of that song, along with others, that have never been released.
Basically, we want to put together my first ever boxed set, which would be a 2 or 3 CD/DVD set with live concert footage, behind-the-scenes making of type stuff, unreleased tracks, previously released tracks that have been re-recorded using today’s standards. So, we are going to reproduce some of the tracks, go back in and recut some of the tracks from the early days and more. It’s a very big project! My plan is to do this congruently with the tour. We would tour for awhile, I would take a month off, go back into the studio to work on that and then go back on the road. The goal is to, by the end of next summer or early fall, to be able to release that album and a re-mastered re-release on the anniversary of it’s original re-release.
Beyond that, we will be starting work on the new Truth Movement album as well! One of the main writers for Truth Movement is Jon Carin, who is very busy with his Pink Floyd duties! He has spent the last 30 years going back and forth between David Gilmour, Roger Waters and Pink Floyd. Him and I are still very good friends. As a matter of fact, I just saw Jon and the gang for their most recent “Us and Them” tour, which is incredible by the way! I was speaking with him and the plan is, once he is finished with his tour and I’m done with mine, we are going to go back in the studio and start working on new material for the new Truth Movement album. That will be a few years down the road before you see or hear anything from that but at least it’s in the works!
Beyond all of that, there is still my film side! I have a TV movie of the week about The Two Corey’s which I helped produce and write. That will be coming to Lifetime in September of 2017. I also have a film on the way where I play a tranny vampire [titled ‘Corbin Nash’]. It’s a film noir vampire movie and I believe that is coming out in October around Halloween. My plate is very full, as usual! [laughs]
You are getting to do something many people will never do in traveling our country. Along the way you are meeting the people and seeing everything without a filter. What’s your take on the American Dream in 2017?
That’s an interesting question. I think it’s still alive and well. However, it’s not just about The American Dream. I feel the concept of The American Dream has become very corrupt. I think it is all about the universal dream of making something of yourself, achieving your goals and leaving yourself open to opportunities, whenever they may arise. With the America that we are living in right now, the American Dream has been corrupted. I think there is a universal dream were we all want some type of center and to know everything is going to be okay. We just want the world to get along and we want the politicians of the world to stop taking advantage of us every time we turn our backs. It feels like every time we look away just for a moment someone is trying to take care health care away or changing the laws in a way that is not beneficial to the people. That’s not a good feeling!
It starts with staying true to yourself. You have to be selfless and give to others. If we all focus on that a little bit more, I think it will help us achieve all of our dreams. We all should be working toward living a peaceful life where we can all be engaged and enjoy each other. The way things are going right now, a lot of people are living in fear. That’s why think it’s so important to spread a positive message. You know, everybody told me I couldn’t do what I’m doing right now. The whole world came against me and said, “This is not possible!” The whole world was mocking me, yet somehow we’ve made it possible! It’s not The American Dream so much as it is about self-awareness, self-realization, and self-fulfilling prophecy. If you want something bad enough, you can make it happen! That’s the overall message that we are here to show! Look, it’s never too late to give yourself a second chance. It’s never too late to chase your dreams. It’s never too late to go for whatever it is you want to do. I think what we are doing here can be inspiring to everybody. Everybody thought I was going to be a punching bag, but I came back and now people are taking it very seriously. We are selling out shows night after night and are reaching the biggest audiences we have ever reached! People are having the greatest time and sharing the experience with their friends, which is wonderful! It’s all about self-fulfilling prophecies and giving people the opportunity to pursue their dreams!
Well said, Corey! It is definitely awesome to see the tide turning in your favor and see you inspire so many people with your work!
Right on, man! We look forward to seeing you at one of the shows very soon! Thanks for your time today, Jason! I appreciate it!
For the latest information on tour dates on ‘Corey’s Heavenly Tour: Angelic 2 The U.S.’ and beyond, visit Angelic2theCore.com or www.CoreyFeldman.net. Follow the continuing adventures of Corey and the Angels on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Jason Price founded the mighty Icon Vs. Icon more than a decade ago. Along the way, he’s assembled an amazing group of like-minded individuals to spread the word on some of the most unique people and projects on the pop culture landscape.