At that time, artists were competing with so many labels. There were more major labels, and then there were the labels under them. Each label had two or more artists with that priority. Some of the other artists, as I was later educated, were tax write-offs. In my case, the bad news was my timing. I didn't feel in control of the situation. Being so young, I wasn't in the driver's seat. When I was signed to Polygram, Jerome Gasper, the Executive VP of A&R—Urban, was being weeded out. So, where could I go from there since he had signed me?
The same situation occurred when I went to Arista Records a couple of years later. Dave Jurman, who pursued me, ended up leaving to go to CBS. A lot of political stuff went on when they released my single, "Pick up the Pieces (to My Heart)." The song was at #11 on the club charts. I got a call that it was about jump to #9 when an in-house source at the label informed me that Lisa Stansfield was now the artist to be pushed. She already had a following abroad with "All Around the World," so I got bumped. Suddenly, there was a lack of funds.
Around that same time, you played the role of "Shana the Rock Star" in Teen Witch. The movie starred Robyn Lively and was about a teenager who inherits witch powers. For this role, you also co-wrote and performed two songs from the movie: "Never Gonna Be the Same Again" and "Finest Hour." Tell me how the role came about.
The Weir Brothers wanted a young rock star for the role. They believed I was the next big thing and took a chance on me. Subsequently, they asked me to come to L.A. and write towards the movie. I sat with Larry at the piano and came up with a melodic idea and lyrics. They had this humongous house in Encino. It was a great experience.
Had you done any acting prior to Teen Witch?
I had done a couple of other television roles. I did a movie with Frank Stallone; but it was horrific. I was in a pink bikini the entire time. Then, I played a superstar by the name of "Virgin" in a TV movie with Valerie Harper. But theatrically, Teen Witch was kind of my debut.
How do you feel about the movie's loyal following two decades later?
It wasn't a hit at the time. But I recently snuck into a revival event at a Soho theater. Everybody was telling me I should go to this event, where people go to watch the movie and sing along to the songs. I was curious. In the meantime, Larry Weir and I had reconnected. We had fallen out at one point. But we put our differences aside, and actually wrote another song together. He was telling me that the movie was going to be redone, and that he also wanted to bring it to Broadway. So, I decided to quietly go to this showing. I let the organizers know that I was there, in the event that there were any questions in the Q&A session that I could answer.