“Wow, This Is a Crazy Gig”: Kevin Bacon by Kenny Loggins

Kevin Bacon

Kevin Bacon wears Sweater, T-shirt, Pants, and Shoes Loro Piana.

Fresh off a fake camping trip, MaXXXine star Kevin Bacon returns to civilization to cut loose with the soundtrack king, Kenny Loggins.



KENNY LOGGINS: Hello. Anybody home?

KEVIN BACON: I’m here. Hello? I can’t hear you, Kenny.

LOGGINS: Now you can hear me, but you can’t see me.

BACON: Is it recording?


LOGGINS: This should be fun to watch later. Well, I want to start with a really important question, which is, Kevin, do you play pickleball?

BACON: You know what? I’ve never tried pickleball. How long have you been playing?

LOGGINS: Oh boy, six years.

BACON: Wow! So you were an early adopter. Have you had any pickleball-related injuries?

LOGGINS: Only my first day. I went for a big lob and I kept going, and they hadn’t finished building their court, so I fell over backwards into a hole that they dug for a palm tree.

BACON: Having seen you recently, you seem like you’re in phenomenal shape. And your voice just blows me away. It seems as strong as it ever was. How do you do that?

LOGGINS: I’ve been working on it. During 2020, I started losing my voice because I wasn’t using it enough, so I hired a coach. As we get older, things get drier and vocal cords are included in that. So like anything, it takes work.

BACON: Boy, you clearly have put in the work because it was such a pleasure to see you at that show. You sounded great. That was quite an experience, getting a chance to sit in with you on that song.

LOGGINS: That was really fun. We should do it again sometime. What have you been up to?

Jacket, Shorts, and Shoes Loro Piana.

BACON: Well, right now I’m down in Georgia where a lot of things are shot these days because of tax incentives. I’m doing a television series down here, playing a bounty hunter for the devil, so I’m doing a lot of fighting with demons. Last night at two in the morning, I was dragging myself out of an over-turned car, and then getting kicked in the head.

LOGGINS: For fun?

BACON: Yeah, this is what I do for a living. Sometimes I look at it, and I go, “Wow, this is a crazy gig.” But I really love it, and I love still being able to work. The show is a blast.

LOGGINS: Who’s making it?

BACON: The company producing it along with me is Blumhouse, which is famous for their horror stuff. We’re doing it for Amazon. As you know, I play music and write songs, but I’ve always been very careful not to mix my worlds too much, because I never wanted to go into an acting thing and say, “Well, because I’m in it, you gotta make it about music.” I always felt it would somehow cheapen both of them. But in this case, this is the first time I’m playing a musician.

LOGGINS: Of course.

BACON: I had a duo with my wife, who is now my ex-wife in the story. We cast an amazing actor and singer named Jennifer Nettles, from a band called Sugarland.

LOGGINS: I remember Jennifer.

BACON: Yeah, she’s just chops for days. We’ve written about four songs together, and two of them are going to be in the show. It’s not a musical. We’re not breaking out into song, but there is a musical element to it.

LOGGINS: Did you see Jeff Bridges’ Crazy Heart? He incorporated his love of music into a character. It did pretty good for him.

BACON: Oh, yeah. He was fantastic. He lives in your neck of the woods and just released a whole bunch of new music. Music is your life, and you’ve been so deeply ensconced in it for so long. When you see television shows or films that lack authenticity musically, is it hard for you to watch?

LOGGINS: What do you mean by authenticity? If the performers are horrible, and they’re playing to screaming audiences, that’s kind of obvious. But it depends on the character.

BACON: I guess more like, you’ll see something where they’ll go into the studio, and it’ll be nothing like what it’s really like to be in the studio. It’s sort of like a doctor watching ER or something.

Kevin Bacon

Sweater and Pants Loro Piana.

LOGGINS: I thought Daisy Jones & the Six was really well done. It was believable, even the collaboration moments. I was on the road for the first year of Rumours with Fleetwood Mac. I was their opening act, so I got to see the interchange of those characters.

BACON: Oh, wow! I did not know that.

LOGGINS: In the intensity of those relationships and how Stevie [Nicks] and Lindsey [Buckingham] had recently broken up, there was still a lot of tension. I also toured with Delaney & Bonnie back in the day. Do you remember them?

BACON: Sure.

LOGGINS: They did not get along at all, and we’d be on the same bus. Bonnie would be sitting in the back with the whiskey, doing her Janice Joplin thing. But I remember one night during a Fleetwood Mac show, Lindsey walked over to Stevie and kicked her in the leg.


LOGGINS: How much are you guys touring?

BACON: Well, when I finish this show, we’ve got a bunch of dates in June and July, and some more in September. I probably have about 20 or 30 booked now.

LOGGINS: That’s a lot.

BACON: Yeah, and I love it. There’s a part of me that wants to have some part of my creative life be live.

LOGGINS: Have you thought about live theater?

BACON: I started out as a theater actor. Even when I was doing Footloose, I was going back to the theater all the time. It’s the butterflies. When I play a show, I know what the process is. My guitar’s been tuned, but there’s always that moment right before you go out where you’re like, “Anything could happen. There’s no take two here.” Making films and television is more akin to being in the studio, and playing out is more like doing live theater.

LOGGINS: Yeah. I need to be super prepared. I have to rehearse the crap out of everything and drive my players crazy. And then I know that the band is super tight. I need to know that I can do anything and make any mistakes and it doesn’t matter, because they’ve got me. My whole career I’ve given myself permission to make mistakes. From time to time, I’ve played a show where we’ll start the song and I’ll go, “Wait a minute, let’s start that over. Let’s get this groove right.”

BACON: People like that. You always think they’re going to ask for their money back, but people actually appreciate the fact that it’s live.

LOGGINS: And that it’s human.

BACON: Exactly. That’s the thing. It’s nice to see that given this super digital world we live in, that live music is doing really well, that people are going to shows and buying tickets, and want to sit there and experience it with other people.

Sweater and Leggings Loro Piana.

Kevin Bacon

Sweater, Leggings, and Shoes Loro Piana.

LOGGINS: In most cases, legacy acts are doing the bulk of the touring. The young acts are having a tougher time getting live gigs.

BACON: Maybe it’s too early to retire.

LOGGINS: Retired sounds similar to really tired. And I’m really tired of airports and hotels, and I just got married, because I’m still a young guy at heart. When it comes to the naivete of love, I’m still in it.

BACON: That’s awesome. As you know it’s the 40th anniversary of Footloose, and it was such a big part of both of our lives. I recently went out to the high school in Utah where we filmed it.

LOGGINS: Was that your breakthrough role? The first one that really brought you to prominence?

BACON: Yeah. I had done Diner that was popular with critics, but it wasn’t a breakout hit. So yeah, Footloose was the one. It was life-changing.

LOGGINS: How old were you when you made that?

BACON: I was about 23 or 24. I was afraid that I wasn’t going to be able to pull off playing a 17-year-old, so I asked the production to secretly enroll me in the high school and I went in as a transfer student.

LOGGINS: How long did you do that for?

BACON: Just one day. I spent the day as this character, Ren. I made him from Philadelphia since that’s where I was from. My character in the movie was from Chicago, but I was afraid somebody was going to go, “Oh, I’m from Chicago. Where did you grow up?” Honestly, it was kind of a terrifying day, being this city kid, coming to this rural place and being tossed into this huge high school.

LOGGINS: Did you take any classes?

BACON: Yeah. I took classes and there were girls whispering about me, and there were some guys trying to get tough with me. Had you worked with [screenwriter and songwriter] Dean Pitchford before Footloose?

LOGGINS: We’d cowritten a couple of songs. I would lean on him as a lyricist. He actually wrote the lyrics to “Don’t Fight It,” which was a duet I did with Steve Perry. I was incredibly lucky that he handed me his screenplay. I started to read through it and I thought, “Well, it’s not Gone with the Wind, but it’s pretty cool.” I really wanted to write for a movie, so this was an opportunity.

Kevin Bacon

Jacket and Shorts Loro Piana.

BACON: So that was the first movie where you wrote the theme song?

LOGGINS: No, my first one was Caddyshack. That was “I’m Alright.”

BACON: Ah, for some reason, I had this idea that you had already cut that and that they put it in the movie.

LOGGINS: No, you see that a lot these days where they’ll pull something off of somebody’s album, because they don’t have to pay anything for it. Then they put in the movie, and then maybe it breaks through, maybe it doesn’t.

BACON: Yeah. A lot of times in movies, you use a pop song because people already have an emotional connection to it, right? It’s like putting “For What It’s Worth” in a ’60s movie—it’s going to feel quintessential. Whereas introducing a brand-new song to an audience and having them dig that song from hearing it once, to the point where it actually becomes a hit, that’s a much heavier lift. And you’re one of the few people who’s been able to do that multiple times.

LOGGINS: Yeah. It’s part luck, and obviously I was ready for it. I’ve done my homework as a songwriter. But what happened was the movies allowed me to write in a style that I didn’t normally write in, because at that point, I was leaning towards blue-eyed soul. And then when I saw these movies, I thought, “No, I’ve got to put something more fun in it,” especially Caddyshack. The chorus of that song is one chord. It’s D7, D, D7, D. I’ve never written anything like that.

BACON: Yeah. I wanted to ask—the Footloose record is just wall-to-wall ear candy, like that crazy guitar lick that nobody can play. Where did the production ideas come from?

LOGGINS: When you get in the studio, you get your ideas from the things that have influenced you as an artist. So the twangy guitar thing, I was leaning back to my Duane Eddy memories. Then my favorite drum groove at the time was Bowie’s “Modern Love.” So I just changed it to an eight-bar phrase instead of a four-bar phrase. You want that thing you hear in your head. When we finally got around to recording it, my drummer was leaving the studio, and he turned to the bass player and said, “Well, that’s the last time we’re going to have to listen to that piece of shit.”

BACON: Oh, boy, was he wrong. [Laughs]

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LOGGINS: Yeah. Thank god. But the whole breakdown, of course, is classic rock.

BACON: It’s just so simple, and it’s just so great.

LOGGINS: The thing about songs for movies is that when they hit, they become inextricable. Like when I finally met Tom Cruise after all these years, just before he started filming Top Gun: Maverick, and I said, “I hear you’re cutting the sequel. Is ‘Danger Zone’ going to be part of it?” And he said, “You can’t do Top Gun without ‘Danger Zone.’ And I hope that Top Gun 3 has ‘Danger Zone’ in it, too.” I thought they’d want something more modern, and I suggested cutting it again with the Foo Fighters. We never did.

BACON: Oh boy. I want to hear that. I’m in the new Beverly Hills Cop 4, and—

LOGGINS: Are you a bad guy again?

BACON: Yeah, I’m the bad guy. Spoiler alert!

LOGGINS: Are they using the Harold Faltermeyer theme song?

BACON: Of course. They have to, it’s such a signature for that movie.

LOGGINS: Like Ghostbusters with that song.

BACON: Right. Do we have that anymore? I wonder if songs coming to life from movies is more of an ’80s and ’90s thing.

LOGGINS: Yeah. I did a piece for Funny or Die, where I knock on the door of a record executive, and when he opens it he yells, “Fucking Loggins!” Well, that became my nickname to the twenty-somethings, and so I go to a wedding reception and they all yell out, “Fucking Loggins!” It’s like, “Oh, this is another birth. I get another generation here.”

BACON: Well, my prized possession is my “Fucking Loggins” t-shirt.

LOGGINS: We have to make a “Fucking Bacon” one.

BACON: I don’t know. It doesn’t have the same ring to it. Well, it’s great to see you, man. Thank you for doing this.

LOGGINS: I hope I get to see you on the pickleball court soon.

Sweater Loro Piana.


Grooming: Beate Petruccelli using Le Mieux Skincare.

Set Design: Sinclaire Reddings.

Fashion Assistant: Chloe McDonald.

Set Assistant: Nasheed Jones.