You may have seen this ginger kid on Disney XD’s “Zeke and Luther” as just a crazy character, but Adam Hicks is more than comedic relief on a children’s show. Adam is a true musician, songwriter, rapper, actor and revolution-starter, as you will see in the new musical movie, “Lemonade Mouth”.
Adam plays Wen, a teenager unhappy with his father’s too-young girlfriend. Wen is trying to find his way in a sports-driven high school where all music is shoved down into the basement along with detention and the school’s only lemonade machine.
Wen, along with four other teens trying to find their way, end up forming a band that stands for something. Thus Lemonade Mouth is formed inspiring others inside and outside the film.
Find out more about Adam Hicks right now…
Sandy Lo (StarShine Magazine): Hey Adam! How are you?
Adam Hicks: Hello! I’m good. How are you?
Sandy Lo: I’m good. Congratulations on all the success with “Lemonade Mouth”.
Adam Hicks: It’s so exciting, thank you!
Sandy Lo: What is it like to be part of this big musical?
Adam Hicks: It’s amazing! It’s a dream come true. “Lemonade Mouth”…We kind of bottled it all inside and just waited after making the project. And the waiting—it can get to you for sure, just because you want to see how the fans react and the numbers and everything… So it dropping, and it having such great responses, it’s really amazing… And the CD did super well on the charts, and just having that… This is the only project where I got to combine my music and my acting into one project and just for it to do so well is a dream come true.
Sandy Lo: Awesome. What was the process like? I presume you recorded the songs first, before making the movie?
Adam Hicks: What happened was… I was going for the role and Disney called me and said they would like me to write music for “Lemonade Mouth” –the movie. This was when I was still going for the role, so I was super happy that I was going to be able to write music. Then I booked [the role of] Wen on top of that, so it was like the ultimate success. It was so great! And the process was…Two or three days before we left for New Mexico to shoot, I got sent “Determinate”. That was the first song I ever recorded. They sent it over and I got to sit down and write to it in my hotel room. Then we went the next day and recorded it and after that we recorded “Breakthrough” within a two-day kind of thing. After that, we flew to New Mexico and then like two weeks before we were about to leave, they wanted to do a bonus track and a bonus scene for the DVD, and so I got to jump on that also.
Sandy Lo: That’s awesome—I didn’t know you actually got to write some of the songs, too. How did you get involved in rapping?
Adam Hicks: Rapping! I know, right? I have red hair and freckles! [laughs] Well, I’m from Las Vegas—it’s like a big hip-hop culture. Growing up I listened to all music. My dad is from Essex, London and he listens to Bowie, The Stones, The Clash, and all these great bands. At the same time, living in my century and adapting to the music—I love putting words together. So I just started—like my 4th grade talent show, I did a rap and my 5th grade D.A.R.E. essay, I did a rap in front of the whole school. I was kind of like the kid that everybody would be like “What are you doing? What are you trying to be good at?” [laughs] It was like that for a good couple of years until I started to get rhythm and understand beats and understand styles and kind of make my own style at the same time. And yeah, it adapted from there.
Sandy Lo: Awesome! What was it like working with the rest of the cast? You had a nice ensemble of Disney stars, basically.
Adam Hicks: Yes. The cast is the greatest! As far as picking the perfect cast, Disney really did their job. The thing that people don’t fully understand is that “Lemonade Mouth” is a band on screen and off screen. Disney hired musicians who are actors also. So we’d jam out on camera—we’d be doing the Madison Square Garden performance and then we’d go back to the hotel and then we’d jam out—our music, Lemonade Mouth’s music, whatever kind of music. And we’re just constantly writing. Everyone in the cast really brought their own flavor to the movie—which helped the movie so much. The script already did its job. At the end of the movie, you really know the characters—it gets into every character’s lifestyle. It’s just this process of seeing five friends—more than anything—come together, kind of the underdogs and sort of rise to the top. And all these issues they go through that I feel like a lot of kids anywhere can really relate to.
Sandy Lo: Right. I’ve seen the movie twice now and I really love it. Is there a sequel in the works? A tour, maybe?
Adam Hicks: Oh, wow, please! Please let that happen! Who do I ask? [laughs] It’s really all up to the fans. I know that’s what Disney goes by it. That’s what we’re looking into now. Seeing the movie drop and the momentum behind it and all these great responses… I feel like Lemonade Mouth’s job now is just to keep getting the word out. In the movie, we try to start a revolution and we do start a revolution. That’s what we’re trying to do on camera and off camera. So hopefully, we would love to tour—definitely.
Sandy Lo: Going from “Zeke and Luther” to “Lemonade Mouth”… What is the difference from filming a TV show to filming a movie?
Adam Hicks: It was different in so many ways. I feel like personally the biggest change was the characters. My character on “Zeke and Luther” is comedy-driven, a very zany, very outrageous character with no boundaries. Wen is more relaxed, chill, underdog, kinda rockery musical person. This was the perfect opportunity for my fans to also really see the transition in acting I was trying to accomplish. It was different in a lot of ways. On “Zeke and Luther”, we shoot two episodes [at a time]. You kind of work differently—fast; you might not spend as much time on scenes. With “Lemonade Mouth”, it was more relaxed. Definitely a completely different vibe.
Sandy Lo: I know I heard something about you recording a solo album. Is that true?
Adam Hicks: Yes, definitely. I’m working on music constantly. I have a song dropping for Disney’s summertime anthem. It’s called “Burning Up”. I’m recording that tomorrow. I have a song coming out on “Shake It Up” and the Jabberwockies dance to it, so that’s going to be awesome.
Sandy Lo: Oh wow!
Adam Hicks: Yeah!
Sandy Lo: Very exciting!
Adam Hicks: Yeah, and I just bought a studio and I’m working on it right now. I’m constantly working with great producers and getting songs done. That’s the ultimate goal.
Sandy Lo: Very cool. Let’s say a year from now… Where do you hope to be in your career?
Adam Hicks: Wow…It’s hard to really tell. Me, personally, would just love great success with Lemonade Mouth and my music and everything. Just be able to go out there and let people hear it. So a year from now…whatever life brings me. I’ve been working pretty hard. It’s been good so far, so fingers crossed.
Sandy Lo: Do you have anything you’d like to say to all of your fans out there?
Adam Hicks: All the fans… You are the reason why we have Lemonade Mouth. Love all your support. Thank you so much! You guys are everything to us personally—individually, and as a band—as Lemonade Mouth. So please just keep watching, check it out and let’s start a revolution!
Sandy Lo: Awesome. Thank you so much for speaking with me today.
Adam Hicks: Thank you so much! It was a pleasure!
Catch “Zeke and Luther” on Disney XD and look for replays of “Lemonade Mouth” on the Disney Channel and coming to DVD soon! The soundtrack is available for purchase on iTunes and all major music retailers.