After finding success as the former front-man of Sick Puppies, Shimon Moore is now focusing his efforts on helping others through his music. Together with former bassist of Rap Scallions Chris CIemence and Russell Ali, he's formed Screaming At Demons.
Working alongside acclaimed photographer Nigel Skeet, who set up a project called Homeless Rockstars, the band has recorded and will release a single next month to support the cause, titled "Rockstar". Taking time out of his increasingly busy schedule, Moore kindly agreed to this EXCLUSIVE interview with our staff writer Rebecca.
PopWrapped: Looking back at your time with Sick Puppies, what was it that made you want to form another band?
Shimon Moore: It's what I do!
PW: What was it about Chris Clemence and Russell Ali that made you want to do it with them?
SM: I've known Russell since the first week I arrived in LA 10 years ago. We go back, and had been meaning to work together over the years.
He is hands down the best musician I've ever worked with. Chris and I met at a party and hit it off immediately. Once we jammed and had a great chemistry, we wrote some songs and it just made sense to have him be the final member and make it a "band."
PW: Do you think your time with Sick Puppies has given you more of an understanding about what it is that you want to do in terms of your musical career, or is Screaming At Demons just a new chapter in your story?
SM: Definitely the former. We are all thinking about how to take our collective band and musical histories and make the most evocative music possible. We are all also very business minded in our approach at how to sell and market our music. Chris especially has a good handle on that.
PW: What made you get involved with the Homeless Rockstars project?
SM: Nigel called when it was first picking up momentum and asked if I would write a song for the campaign. I decided to also drive up to Redding, California and shoot the video for the cause, just like I did with the “FREE HUGS CAMPAIGN” a few years ago. Ultimately we became involved because my old friend asked.
PW: Do you think bands and artists today do enough to help those in a worse off position than themselves? What would you like to see the music industry do more of to help in that capacity?
SM: I think it depends on the individual, but for the most part, every artist I have come in contact with who I have respect for is affiliated in some way with a charitable organization.
PW: Tell me about "Rockstar". What's the story behind it?
SM: Homeless Rockstars is a movement that was started by my old friend Nigel Skeet. He has developed a program that gives the homeless hair, make up and a photo shoot that makes them feel like a "Rockstar". After they have gone through this simple process their confidence is restored and they are connected with members of the community who then give them a Rockstar Interview, which is specifically designed to extract their humanity and aspirations. The final piece of the puzzle has a way of taking care of itself. After this process is complete, members of the community are helping the homeless onto the next phase of their life and welcoming them back into society. It's beautiful to watch, and you will see it in the "Rockstar" video.
PW: The song and video are due out next month, so what are your promotion plans for it?
SM: The launch for the video will be happening on October 6 in Hollywood CA and will be premiering on our VEVO channel at the same time. We are promoting it all day every-day. But the best part is that so many people are helping to promote the Homeless Rockstars cause because of how life changing it can be.
PW: Do you enjoy making music videos? What was it like making this one?
SM: I do. This one was very exciting. I didn't get a chance to sit down while shooting for 3 days. And on the final day Jessie Valley (Rockstar #1) took me into the swamp where she use to live when she was homeless. I was down in the mud getting the right angles to create the right mood while still being respectful of her journey. It was very eye opening.
PW: What do you want people to take from the song in terms of its message?
SM: That everyone has a story and everyone has a reason for being on this earth.
PW: Social media and the internet is all but a necessity for everyone today, but do you ever think a project like the HR one would have taken off like it has without it?
SM: Not at all. It would still have provided for the people of Redding and been a worthwhile thing. But social media has made it possible to get things out on a global scale with little marketing budgets. If it touches people, it will spread organically because people want to know about it.
SM: Chris is more on top of it. I'm more of a content creator and a visual person. The second half of the ride has always been more of a challenge for me.
PW: What are your future tour/performance plans with SaD? Can fans expect to see you out on the road, perhaps hitting up Europe, in the near future?
SM: Definitely next year! We are very much looking forward to taking this sound to Europe ASAP. No plans yet but we are working on it!
PW: Finally, are there any other plans/projects in the pipeline you can tell me about? What's next for you?
SM: Right now the focus is on promoting and releasing “Rockstar.” We have the next 2 singles ready for release. We will be planning their release after October 6.