Following in the success of last fall’s beguiling behind-the-scenes documentary All Male All Nude: Johnsons, acclaimed director Gerald McCullouch decided there was more gold to mine in his footage that followed the hunky Wilton Manors male strippers in the film.
McCullouch teamed with longtime collaborator Corey Tut to create a music video that channels the vibe of the documentary and stars the veteran composer/musician.
The result was a sexy, low-key music video – “Hey There, Superman” – featuring Tut along with two of the featured dancers in the film.
Tut recently told Billboard he’d had a “dry spell” in his sex life and he “felt like he needed someone to come save him from it.” Then, after seeing a photo of Henry Cavill’s Superman, he suddenly had an idea for a song.
Having followed the films of Gerald McCullouch, which include DADDY, All Male All Nude and the aforementioned sequel, All Male All Nude: Johnsons, I’ve always been struck by the soundtracks of the movies.
I remember thinking, “How can he afford to license all this great music?”
The answer is: he doesn’t. He collaborates with longtime friend Tut on the sexy sonic landscapes that accompany the films so artfully.
I reached out to Tut to talk on how he approaches scoring a film, collaborating with directors and how it differs from his pop music career.
Instinct Magazine: You’ve worked with Gerald McCullouch on three films now – two documentaries (All Male All Nude, All Male All Nude: Johnsons) and a narrative film, DADDY. Do you find you develop a ’shorthand’ in discussing the projects and what Gerald wants after a while?
Corey Tut: Gerald and I have been friends for decades and have been working on film projects together for almost as long so we definitely have worked out a shorthand over time.
Our first film was actually a short he wrote and directed called The Morning After. Then we did Daddy and the two dick docs. He has always been super supportive of my music and open to what I bring to the table so that helps the process.
IM: I understand you used some music from your catalog as well as new compositions for the new documentary?
CT: Gerald was shooting the Johnsons movie while I was writing for my album Into The Light. I knew we would be needing songs for the film, so I kept writing with strippers in mind. It was really fun to just write sexy stripper songs from a gay point of view.
We had a definite tone set with the first movie, so I just kept writing in that vein. I had written songs specifically for the first AMAN, but for the second one, I just handed Gerald a stack of tunes and then worked with him and Jimmy the sound designer to kinda shape them to the picture as we edited.
IM: Is there a difference in how you approach the music for a narrative film versus a documentary?
CT: Not really. I think the music should serve the film and help serve the director’s vision in telling the story, be it narrative or doc.
IM: Do personal attitudes or tastes come into play when you decide to work on a project?
CT: Yes and no. Of course, I always want to be excited about whatever I am working on but more than that I want to work with people I respect and enjoy. It also kinda varies from job to job.
If I am producing a record for an artist and they are wanting something that I personally don’t care for, it’s my job to help them execute their vision so that they are happy with the record they are putting out because ultimately it’s their name on the record, not mine.
The same goes for film work or any hired gun jobs. Now, when I am working on music that is just for myself as an artist, it’s a different story, obviously. Then I get to just follow my own muse.
IM: Did you write ‘Hey There Superman’ for the documentary? It’s such a perfect fit for the mood and the groove of the film.
CT: Surprisingly I did not. I wrote it when I was writing all the other sexy stripper songs so I knew it was in that milieu, but when Gerald found that he had shot footage of the boys at the club stripping in the Superman underwear, it became an obvious choice as one of the anthems of the movie.
IM: Can you share a film score that you think nailed it in terms of bringing what a film score should as a contribution to the film?
CT: I have been a huge Trent Reznor fan since the first time I heard Pretty Hate Machine back in the late ’80s and I think his transition into film and television scoring has been very interesting and incredibly successful. His songwriting has such an epic cinematic quality that I have always admired and I think it works brilliantly for the film. I will gladly watch anything he has worked on just to hear how he uses sound and music to further the film.
As far as upcoming projects, I am finishing up production on Peppermint’s new album, as well as working on songs for Kyle Mottsinger’s forthcoming album, and looking forward to starting work on my new album the beginning of the year.
Check out the sexy, chill music video for “Hey There, Superman” below.