How Rivers Cuomo & Kelsey Grammer’s Unlikely Musical Collab Album Happened

Paramount’s The Space Between featured quite the unlikely musical collaboration between Kelsey Grammer and Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo. Grammer, who plays a washed-up rocker named Micky Adams in the film, provides vocals for music that Cuomo wrote. The film’s soundtrack is now available and features six songs with Grammer singing, plus demos featuring Cuomo on vocals.

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“That was a little bit like, ‘Oh my God, pinch me,'” said director Rachel Winter of getting Rivers Cuomo on board. “Again, being a producer and sticking with projects. I’m not great about balancing art and commerce. So it’s not the best move in the world to take 15 years to make a movie because it’s not very cost-effective for my bottom line, but that effect is that I was able to assess this situation for so many years. Like what would be the best thing for a movie like this and came up with this idea: What if the fake singer-songwriter of Micky Adams wasn’t, God bless him, James Taylor, who was an actual singer-songwriter from that era. This is a movie set in the 90s, what if we had an iconic 90s singer-songwriter who looked back at his or her inspiration to create the music for Micky Adams, and that ended up being exactly the right recipe.

“I think because singer-songwriters always get their inspiration in the moment. You know, they’re not born, and then five minutes later, they have their inspiration. They are drawing from their own educations as musicians and what originally inspired them. So it was kind of held onto that concept and the fact that Tricia Halloran, our ridiculously phasing music supervisor, was able to help us get to Rivers. That was, I blew my mind. I still can’t believe that. He’s the nicest guy, such an amazing collaborator, and a genius with conversation. He was able with me, based on the script, based on lyrics I had just popped in there, create that music. I just don’t even know what to say about him.”

Winter also discussed Grammer’s underrated vocal and piano playing abilities.

“My [knowledge] of Kelsey Grammer’s singing and piano playing abilities basically was just ‘Tossed Salad and Scrambled Eggs’ from Frasier. That’s him playing and singing. Probably in the back of my mind, remembered that he had been on Broadway, but I certainly have never thought of him in that way. I think it was one of those things that casting was like, ‘Oh, you know, he plays piano and can sing.’ I was like, ‘Okay, great,’ but yeah, it really transformed, which I think is one of the best parts of the movie that it’s surprising and wonderful.”

RELATED: Exclusive The Space Between Clip – Kelsey Grammer Plays Washed-Up Rocker

The Space Between is now available via video-on-demand and digital.