Today officially marks the start of a brand new era for actor and musician Tyler Posey. After years spent in various bands, the outgoing singer/songwriter is officially stepping out on his own to showcase his distinct brand of pop-punk-inspired music.
Front and center for the very first time, Posey is treating listeners to his bold new single “Shut Up” featuring alt-indie artist phem and none other than blink-182′s Travis Barker.
Discussing the new John Feldmann-produced track, Posey said, “From start to finish, this song really did feel like something special. I wrote the verses on a trip in an RV with my dogs and my friend and felt like it was progressing so naturally in a perfect way.”
He added, “I took those bones to John Feldmann and phem and when she went into the vocal booth to record her vocals, I was so stoked. I had been wanting her on a track but was too nervous to ask. It was an emotional session and then finally to get Travis to play drums on it is just literally a dream come true. I couldn’t be happier with the outcome.”
Diving further into the moving new song, the passionate performer spoke with The Noise all about working with an idol like Barker plus what he thinks the future of pop-punk will look like. To see what Posey had to say, be sure to look below. Afterward, make sure to stream “Shut Up” here.
How hard was it to keep it a secret that you made a song with Travis Barker?
TYLER POSEY: Fuck man, I mean, I’ve got blink-182 tattoos, they’ve been my favorite band since I was a kid and I’ve got posters of them on my wall that I’m looking at right now. It’s such a big deal for me. But like, I think in some way, it was easier to keep it private because it’s one of those things that you want to keep sacred. But at the same time, I’m super fucking stoked to release it. So it’s like, it hasn’t been that hard to keep it a secret because I’m just relishing in the fact that I got to play with him before anyone else knew. It’s just so fuckin’ cool.
How did the collaboration come together? Guessing John Feldmann had something to do with it?
Yeah, exactly. I’ve always been piquing his interest in getting like my favorite people to collab with us. You know, I’m like, “Hey? What is Mark Hoppus doing today?’ if I’m ever at the studio with him. So this kind of came about like that. I was like, “What’s the possibility of Travis getting on the track?”
And [Jonh’s] like, “Maybe the next album” because for some reason he thought sense this album I’m debuting just my name and kind of going solo, he thought [we should] keep the focus on that. But then, he hit me up one day after we recorded “Shut Up” and he FaceTimed me and he was in the studio with Travis. He’s like, “Hey, so you want Travis to play on a song?” I was like “What!? Yeah, of course but I thought you said no.” [laughs]
So Travis was like right there and he’s like, “What’s up, dude?” And I was like, “Hey man! Yeah, so ‘shut up.’ If you dig that track then please I would love for you to feature on it.” And he loved it so that’s how it started, kind of unconventional.
Had you met Travis prior to this?
I have, yeah. So Feldy lets me fill in on bass for Goldfinger whenever Mike Herrera can’t – which is like the coolest thing to put on my resume, like I’m the fill-in bassist for Goldfinger. So, [John] has this Christmas party (or he used to before COVID) and he does it at his house and he has this huge fucking Christmas party where Goldfinger and all these other bands usually play and he sets up a stage. And one year, Travis was playing drums [for Goldfinger] and there’s this one moment in “Superman” where it’s just bass and drums and I like locked eyes with him for as long as I could before he cracked a smile [laughs]. So yeah, we’ve met a couple times before. He was super stoked to be a part of this song and he’s just killing it with collabs lately so I was just honored that he wanted to work with me.
Yeah, absolutely dude. Like, I grew up in the punk scene so, for some reason, when I was a punk kid going to Warped Tour all the time I was really headstrong about maintaining being “punk” and I didn’t listen to anything outside of the genre. I was like, “Fuck everything else! I’m punk!” So it kind of took a little while to kind of break that. But that was like years ago so I love what [Travis] is doing with them. I think it’s fucking cool too that it’s putting – so like I’ve been in the punk scene forever and I’ve always played punk music, no matter what I write, it just comes out punk – so it’s cool that pop-punk is now making a resurgence with Barker and Machine Gun Kelly and Trippie and all these other people. I think it’s setting a cool precedence for punk bands that have been really trying to make it for years. So hopefully that happens.
It’ll be interesting to see what the future holds for pop-punk music thanks to people like Travis Barker and yourself who have a big platform and use it to help bring pop-punk music to a wider audience.
Yeah, dude. That’s kind of how I met and got involved with all these punk bands. I was kind of vocal about them on Twitter like a long time ago, when I used to use Twitter a lot. I would just be listening to punk music and would just post a picture of it ‘cause I wanted the kids to know about it so that’s kind of how my involvement got started. Like State Champs hit me up and I got in good with them and rode with them on Warped Tour. Then I met Knuckle Puck and Neck Deep and just all these huge punk bands kind of brought me into the world and then it was kind of an easy transition once I started releasing my own shit. So I’m super thankful that they welcomed me with open arms and that I am, you know, part of this like, showing people the way of the punk [laughs].
So going back to “Shut Up,” how would you say this song differs from your previous projects like PVMNTS and Five North?
I think with every album, every artist says “we try to evolve” and for me it’s just always been this progression. It hasn’t really been anything that I’ve been trying to have happen, it’s just sort of happened naturally. So I think anything that I put out will always have that element of it sounding a little bit different, a little more mature [and] grown up. So I really like the song, it’s polished. I love that phem is a part of it. I think it adds this kind of dynamic that I used to think my music writing was missing lately. I just think that it’s more mature. Like I said, I can’t really step out of like pop-punk world 'cause it’s in my blood, that’s how I write. So it’s not too different, it’s just a more sort of mature vibe than I guess I was doing before. But like, with my last band Five North with Feldy, we really tried to experiment and kind of push the envelope a little bit. So we had like weird synth sounds but it all kind of worked because we always kept it like this pop-punk melodic sort of drive with driving verses and vocals. So it’s kind of like the same vibe but just, you know, more mature. Long story short [laughs].
Is it nerve wracking for you to to put your name strictly on things now as a solo artist as opposed to having a band?
No, I don’t think so. I think I’ve always sort of viewed myself as a solo songwriter. It’s just, like, growing up in the punk scene, you know, you always had a band name and for the longest time I was part of bands that everybody, sort of, had an opinion and we all would song-write. But for what I’ve been doing lately, it’s just been me so it felt right. It’s more of like an experiment at this point. You know, I don’t know how it’s gonna be received, but it kind of frees me up to be a little bit more creative artistically. Whether it’s writing, filming something. I just feel like it’s the right move.
This song seems to makes sense as a Tyler Posey solo song considering how personal and open it is. Was it challenging for you to be that candid writing these lyrics?
No, no it wasn’t. I’ve always viewed music as a kind of therapy. You know, it’s just sort of been my outlet. As much as fuckin’ everybody says that, it holds true. So I’ve never really held back when it comes to writing music. Like, I’ve gone through a bunch of shit. My mom died like six years ago so I’ve written about that a bunch of times. So I’ve never really been one to struggle being open when it comes to writing lyrics. But this one, this one definitely is a heavy song. Like I got sober during the pandemic because I was just abusing a little bit too much and going too heavy and couldn’t seem to get out of this cycle. So I was sober for a while, but like, I was just kind of dealing with an ex and kind of using that to lean on as sort of a new drug. So it’s kind of what the song is about. But yeah, it’s just coming together at a really vulnerable time in my life but it’s never really been too hard to be that open. I think that people deserve to know that everyone is going through the same shit that they’re going through – even if it’s just one person.
For people who can relate to this song, is there any advice you can offer to them? Maybe how you felt when you were writing it?
Fuck [laughs]. My advice for somebody who’s listening to this song – I don’t know dude. Life is fucking weird. Sometimes you try to do the things that you think are going to lead you to the right path but it feels like it’s not. So I think that everything happens for a reason, as corny as that it. Like, if there’s some bad shit that happens, the reason is [because] you learn from it. So I think that’s kind of the model for this song. Whether it’s good or bad, you’re gonna learn something from it and you’re hopefully going to grow. It’s just up to you if you want to grow from it.
That’s a great way to put it. So lastly, not giving away too much, should fans be expecting more solo music from you moving forward?
Yeah, absolutely! So this is just a sneak peek. I’m going to be releasing two EPs. We were going to do a full album but we just split the album in half and we’re gonna do two EPs. The first one is called DRUGS and is all about my experience becoming sober, why I got sober and the shit that happens during that. Then the next EP, they’re both going to be 7 tracks, I’m gonna release it later on in the year. So there’s gonna be a bunch of shit coming out. This is kind of like the new course of action for releasing music for me, it’s all going to be under my name.
That’s exciting! Guess there really isn’t much else to do during a pandemic so it makes sense to write and release a bunch of music.
Yeah dude, exactly. So I’m going to try and get some visual content out too. Start doing some videos, I’ll be filming the music video for “Shut Up” soon. So just going to keep on that course.