Thursday, August 16, 2012

Old School Lane's Nickelodeon Tribute: Interview with Bryan Hearne

Bryan Hearne was one of the cast members of All That who came in during "The Relaunch Era". Around the 6th season of All That, the popularity of the show began to wane and it was temporarily cancelled. So when the 7th season began two years later in 2002, they decided to start from scratch and hire 7 new teens for the show. He was known for his characters such as The Unborn Fetus, Zigfree the Taxi Cab Driver, and Mr. Flopples, the bunny mascot. He left the show around Season 9 and was replaced by R U All That? contest runner up Ryan Coleman. He appeared in a few movie and TV roles such as Hardball and Third Watch before quitting acting and focusing on his rap career. Today he's part of a rap group called the Crown Holders alongside his partner Jeffrey Wood going under the name Comodity. 

Kevin and I had the chance to interview Bryan so I hope you enjoy it.

Kevin- What were some of your favorite shows growing up?

Bryan- I'm an old soul. Been this way since birth. Shows that sparked my interest as a child were Seinfeld, Fraiser, and Friends

Patricia- At what age did you know that you wanted to get into acting?

Bryan- Acting was kind of thrust upon me at an early age. I started at 3. I didn't know that it was something I loved until I was faced with a decision that gave me the option to quit. I was 10. Stuck with it. 

Patricia- Who were your influences?

Bryan- At that time? Eddie Murphy, Denzel Washington, Will Smith, Don Cheadle, Wayne Brady. In no particular order. 

Kevin- Were you a fan of All That before you decided to audition for the show?

Bryan- I was. It was one of those shows that, as children, we didn't know that new episodes weren't showing anymore. So I jumped at the opportunity to be apart of it when it was presented.

Kevin- What was the audition process like for All That?

Bryan- I auditioned once. Sent a tape to California from New York, and before I knew it, was on at a dinner with the executive producers.

Patricia- What were some of your favorite sketches?

Bryan- Sugar & Coffee, because seeing it live was beyond entertaining, and the audience reaction was adorable. Know Your Stars, because we always gave real reactions to the obnoxious assumptions made by that announcer. Comin' At Ya, because we really filled that contraption with all of that nasty crap. And Crazy Cab Driver, because that was one of the first characters that I brought to the show.

Kevin- Who were your favorite guest stars/singers on All That?

Bryan- Usher, Tom Green, 3LW, Christina Milian, City High and David Arquette.

Kevin- Have you met any of the other Nickelodeon stars at that time?

Bryan- Y'know, other than the All That cast, there was only Nick Cannon, at that time. I did meet him. He's a cool cat. 

Patricia- Which cast members did you get along with the most?

Bryan- I loved them all, but if I had to pick a top 3, I'd say Jamie-Lynn, and then I'd shout out my fellow Libras, Kyle Sullivan and Lisa Foiles. 

Kevin- What is your favorite Nickelodeon show?

Bryan- Right now? iCarly. Those kids really grew into their own comedic skins. 

Kevin- Have you ever heard of the song "The Message" by Grand Master Flash? If so, what did you think of it?

Bryan- I was JUST listening to this song on Saturday afternoon, out with my fellas. I love that song. It's a classic. 

Patricia- What made you decide to change your career from acting to singing?

Bryan- Hip Hop had always held a special place in my heart. I actually started writing raps at age 9. I saw my leaving All That as an opportunity to start recording. It was all uphill from there.

Patricia- How did you come up with the name "Comodity?"

Bryan- When I started recording songs, I went under the name "Holl E Wood". It was atrocious. A commodity is something that everyone wants to become, so I thought that if I start in the game as a commodity, I'd grab some attention. It worked out pretty well.

Patricia- How did you and Jeffrey Wood meet?

Bryan- Jeff and I formally met through a mutual friend. We had been seeing each other at auditions for years, but my first time actually speaking to him was at his studio. We recorded a song together, and we were friends ever since. We were the Crown Holders two years later.

Kevin- Which rap and hip hop artists inspired your style of music?

Bryan- In no particular order. Jay-Z, Eminem, Mos Def, Nas, Lupe Fiasco. Many many more. 

Kevin- Older rap and hip hop songs were about life on the streets and the struggles of living a life of poverty, gangs, and the neighborhood. Do you think that today's rap and hip hop artists sort of lost the true message of those song genres?

Bryan- I do. Rap has taken a totally different turn, but the Crown Holders plan on changing some of the ways of this genre of music. We want to bring a new positive outlook to Hip Hop. It's time. 

Patricia- Alright. Thank you so much for taking the time to interview us Bryan. 

Bryan- Thanks again.

For more information about The Crown Holders, check out their website at Also follow Bryan on Twitter @BryanChrstopher. 

That's all for now. Hope to see you around Old School Lane soon. Thanks for reading.

-Patricia and Kevin

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