Nicholas ‘RAS’ Furlong On ‘Pixels’ Song, Good Charlotte
Nicholas Furlong, better known as RAS, in between working on his solo work, teamed up with Good Charlotte and Waca Flaka to put together the theme song for new animated movie Pixels.
“I’m really excited about that,” Furlong told uInterview, talking about Pixels theme song “Game On,” explaining, “I had seen the trailer honestly like a week before I found out they needed music for the movie, and when I saw the trailer I was like, dude this looks like the coolest idea for a film. Like, why hasn’t anybody thought of this sooner.”
RAS worked with producer and songwriter Kojak on the track, who developed the music, while RAS worked on a chorus reminiscent of a Queen song. Eventually, the duo decided to get Waca Flaca and Good Charlotte on the track.
“Kojak was on the phone with me and he’s like, dude I got this weird eight bit sort of video game thing going on. And I was like, oh cool I’ve got this weird sort of like ‘We Will Rock You’ anthemic kind of chorus, and if we did it to some creepy piano chords I think it could be cool,” RAS said. “The only person that has the sort of energy we need in a song like this is Waka [and] someone at Kojak’s publishing company suggested Good Charlotte, and I was like you know what actually that could be really tight.”
“Game On” won’t be the last collaboration between RAS and Good Charlotte, as he’s working on the band’s new album with twins Benji and Joel Madden. As for when that album is coming out, RAS isn’t sure, but he’s excited for what the brothers are going to be putting together.
“The cool thing about them is they’re doing a lot of it independently,” RAS said. “They’ll obviously, I’m sure, partner with a major and somehow align, but I know they’re like whatever. There’s no strict timeline. They’re just going to put music out and go tour on it.”
Pixels hits theaters July 24.
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Honestly, it was probably one of the most easy going processes. The whole beauty of creating selfishly I think is really important for songwriters, producers, and artists. I think that songwriters and producers are artists in their own right and I think that there’s this sort of unsaid rule right in the industry where like when you’re a songwriter you’re expected to hold on to all your music and never let anyone hear anything right or “don’t show anybody,” and I just kind of got to a point where I was like, why? At the end of each year I would realize I have like three hundred songs just sitting here and like maybe five of them came out. The rest of these songs just sit in a dark room and don’t ever do anything. And so that song in particular, I felt this really cool vibe from that record and it was kind of special to me anyway because I started actually writing the song in St. Lucia, and there was just something about… I was down there and I was like I don’t need to write this song for anybody, I’m just going to write a song and the bridge that has the obvious Queen influence, using the funky bass line, and the 80s essence, just so much inspiration from so different walks of life and different genres, so on and so forth. It was an opportunity for me to really dig in and experiment without limitation. I think that when you’re working with other bands you’re obviously at the mercy of their sound and what they want to do, but also you have to consider the feelings and opinions of management and record labels. So with this, I was like nope if I like it it’s out. And I mean, also, I just started my own label as of this year and I think that it’s sort of a nice introduction to me being like, hey guess what I can release my own music and I don’t need to wait for anybody or anything. As soon as I’m ready to put it out and people are ready to buy it, then it’s there.
So that should be pretty fricken awesome. I’m really excited about that. It basically was just like, hey this movie is coming out and I had seen the trailer honestly like a week before I found out they needed music for the movie, and when I saw the trailer I was like, dude this looks like the coolest idea for a film. Like, why hasn’t anybody thought of this sooner. So, I was just like, man this sounds like it’s going to be great blah blah blah, and then I was with Kojak, the co-producer co-writer, and the two of us heard that they need a big theme song for the movie and they’re looking for something that’s really anthemic so we were like, OK. I was in the car, Kojak was on the phone with me and he’s like, dude I got this weird eight bit sort of video game thing going on. And I was like, oh cool I’ve got this weird sort of like ‘We Will Rock You’ anthemic kind of chorus, and if we did it to some creepy piano chords I think it could be cool. So we sort of merged the two ideas together when we got to the studio and so I sang the chorus and did the big chant and what not and then we had the song. So we sent it in and Columbia Pictures was like, we love this we want to get a rapper though and immediately I was like we need Waka Flocka. The only person that has the sort of energy we need in a song like this is Waka. He just has that undeniable rahhh. For a big action summer blockbuster film, I was like it just makes sense to have someone like that. So I called his manager and explained to him the situation and three days later I had Waka’s verses. Waka was on tour, but he stopped in the studio, did his verses and sent them over. And oddly enough, I work a lot with John Feldmann, who is a rock producer and Good Charlotte has been like secretly getting ready to put out a new Good Charlotte record. And so there was talk about who we wanted to get on the chorus, and originally Kojak and I were like Marilyn Manson, we should get Marilyn Manson to do it and you know that’s a really tall order. You can’t just go get Marilyn Manson, so we talked about it a bunch and so then someone at Kojak’s publishing company suggested Good Charlotte, and I was like you know what actually that could be really tight. If that was their return, announced through the movie and all that sort of stuff, and plus Benji and Joel are really awesome dudes, so it was cool. It all kind of came together organically. We were supposed to start working on Good Charlotte together and this sort of happened like really fast before we were supposed to get together so we started working together on Good Charlotte afterwards. It was sort of like our introduction, so I was like welp, hey guys you’re going to sing my song for this movie so we’re off to a good start I guess.
I’m not sure. The cool thing about them is they’re doing a lot of it independently. It’ll obviously, I’m sure, partner with a major and somehow align, but I know they're like whatever. There’s no strict timeline. They’re just going to put music out and go tour on it.
It was great. Avicii and Ash are just really great. I mean they’re very particular. They know what they want and they make it really easy for you to pull the best of your capabilities out of yourself you know. And so, the original demo was like a cool stripped down acoustic sort of folksy song right, and I sent it to Ash. I sent him an email first and was just like, yo dude I know we don’t ever talk and we’ve never hung out or whatever but I have this record and I’ve been thinking for multiple weeks where should I send this to? Who could sing this song? We had had actual discussions but there was at one point a country artist who was really adamant about taking the record, and I turned it down to give it to Avicii because I just felt that it would be a better representation of the song. And then it was cool that I sent it to Ash and Ash hits me back and says, dude I love this can you send us the file so we can start working on it. So I’m with my buddies in Los Angeles and we’re bouncing files and sending them over to Sweden and he’s working on the record and I didn’t really hear anything for like three months, and I was just like, ah s**t these guys have our files and no ones hitting us back and we don’t know what the hell is going on. So eventually one day I wake up and somebody sends me a link on twitter in like a DM and I open it and it’s like, “Avicii debuts new song.” And I think it was in Germany and it’s ‘The Night,’’ and I was like what the hell what’s happening. He must have a finished version of the song because what I’m hearing is different from what I’m used to hearing, and so it was funny because like maybe right after I watched the video I checked my emails and I had an email from Ash and it was the mix and I was like oh crap. So I listened to it, and it was obviously just really cool to see how they flipped everything. I gave them all these different unique sort of instruments and there was lap steel and acoustic guitars and bass and crazy big tom drums. It was cool to see how they incorporated everything and flipped a lot of stuff too.