It’s probably about 10 years since I made the oh-so grown up televisual transition from Nickelodeon to Trouble. I swapped Kenan and Kel for Blossom, Sister Sister for Saved By The Bell and Sabrina The Teenage Witch for In The House (OK, I didn’t strictly stop watching Sister Sister and Sabrina, they were good shows, but you see the point I‘m trying to make…).
Last month I was asked to write a piece on TV pin-ups from my teen years and the research was the best part. I’m still torn between Saved By The Bell’s Zack and AC Slater, Winston from Sweet Valley High got hot and Joey Lawrence is nothing without his hair, but one person that really caught my attention was former love of my life Scott Whyte AKA Chris Anderson from City Guys.
After four years on the cast of City Guys and a variety of successful films under his belt, Scott has shown the world what a great actor he really is, but during my research I found out that he’s also a very talented musician. This man just gets better and better, I had to find out more!
He acts, he plays guitar, he has Yorkshire roots and great hair.
Ladies and gents, meet Scott Whyte…
Hello Scott, well haven’t you grown in to a gorgeous young man! How are you?
Well, thank you very much for the compliment [blushes]. Things are great. I can’t complain.
We were all in love with you on City Guys, do you ever miss those days?
Ah thanks. It’s funny, one of the many projects I have in my life right now is to transfer all those episodes of City Guys from VHS tape to DVD, so I’ve been spending lots of time watching and revisiting memories from the show. I honestly do miss those days. The cast and crew were so nice to see and deal with on a daily basis. I don’t think I have any negative memories about the whole time working on the show.
We bet you had girls throwing themselves at you..
Surprisingly not as a many as you would think, or that I would have hoped for [laughs]. On the subject of simply meeting people that watched the show, I probably get recognized more nowadays for City Guys than I did at the time as the age range for that show was early to mid teens. Now all those people are in their early to mid 20s, so I see them out at clubs and bars. Back then they were all in school.
Is there a Mrs Whyte on the scene?
No Mrs Whyte, unfortunately.
How would I win you over?
I’m a pretty laid back guy. Things that really win me over would probably be very basic and simple. Being able to carry on a conversation, being witty, and being able to hang with friends and family of mine. Not always going 100 miles a minute is nice too, I don’t need someone who’s wanting to party like a rock star 24/7.
So how do I win you over? [laughs]
I think you just did. How do you feel about English girls?
English girls are great. My grandmother was from Yorkshire, Huddersfield to be exact, so I learned to love ‘em from an early age [laughs].
We’ve been following your film career, you’ve been in a few scary films. Reeker gave us nightmares for a few nights, did that not happen to you whilst filming?
Reeker actually did give me a few nightmares while shooting. I was alone out in the middle of nowhere filming it, and there were a few nights that were a bit odd. I definitely went to bed with the TV on quite a few nights while filming out there.
What’s your favourite genre to watch and to act in?
I love to watch comedies and action films. I guess the same goes for films I would act in. I still would love to work on a classic western cowboy type film and a WWII film, those are on my ‘to do’ list.
Which actor/actress would you love to work with next?
Johnny Depp has always been on the list. I think I’m gonna put Christian Bale on there too. Harrison Ford would be a dream come true, I’ve always been a fan of Indiana Jones. As far as actresses, I don’t really have a list.
Tell us about Scott Whyte : The Musician…
Scott Whyte the musician is a guy that just loves all styles of music.
I’ve been playing guitar for 15 years now, been in quite a few original and cover bands. Written some, played lots, and continue to live and grow in that field.
Who are your biggest musical influences?
When I started playing guitar it was all about Slash (Guns n Roses), then I quickly added Eddie Van Halen to the list. Lately it’s been Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, John Mayer and John Frusciante (Red Hot Chili Peppers). Oh, I gotta mention Hendrix too!
Is music more of a hobby for when you’re not shooting films, or would you love to tour?
I would love to experience what touring is like. I would certainly love to take a few months of my life to go on the road and solely focus on music to take in that experience. Acting and music are my two loves and I make time for both. I certainly wouldn’t call music a hobby.
Any plans to come over to the UK?
No plans set in stone to tour yet, however I am working with an amazing singer songwriter (and actress) named Chantelle Barry. We are currently working on a full album for her, which I am playing lots of instruments on and helping to produce. It’s been lots of fun and a great learning experience. Hopefully something will come out of that which will allow me to visit England. Or perhaps I’ll just go there to hang out with you all!
Sounds good to us! You seem to have a great and varied collection of guitars. Which one is your favourite and why?
My favourite guitar, which I use day in and day out, is a very beat up 1963 Fender Stratocaster. It just sounds great. I got it from my friend Jim Foote of music works in Lawndale, CA. He is well known in the musical community for working on guitars and equipment used by great musicians like Slash, Lenny Kravitz, Michael Landau, and Albert Kim. Jim has been there since I started playing guitar, has been a great friend, and a huge inspiration in my musical career so it’s great to be playing something that was once his. My close friend and amazing guitarist Kirk Fletcher gave me the pickups for it, which just sound amazing. It’s the best guitar I own. This thing takes quite a beating and never goes outta tune.
When it comes to great guitars I own on a collectors standpoint, I would have to say the most coveted would be my original 1960 Les Paul Standard. They are known as the Stradivarius of guitars. It sounds amazing, not to mention these guitars, known as ‘bursts’, were played by some of the best guitarists of all time. It sounds like all the great classic albums that have inspired me over the years, bands like Led Zeppelin and Cream.
In the UK we have a lot of actors, especially soap stars, who try their hand at being a musician – very few of them manage to pull it off. You’re actually a really talented musician. Would you ever consider giving up the acting to become a full time musician?
If my life travels down that path I wouldn’t deny it, however it think I will always be acting. That’s not to say I might not spend a year or two in the music world, then drift back over to acting and so on and so on. But I don’t wanna be one of those actors that tries to be a musician. If I’m gonna do it, I’m gonna do it right. I want to be acknowledged in the musical community, not just be one of those one hit wonder actors.
You’re looking great at the moment, you’ve got a sort of Keith Urban-meets-modern day Billy Ray Cyrus look going on, it’s a compliment I promise, is that the look you were going for?
[laughs a lot] I’ll take it as a compliment. I’m just always changing my look, so this is kinda my flavour of the month, or perhaps few months. I guarantee I didn’t consciously think to myself: what would Billy Ray Cyrus and Keith Urban look like if mixed? Although I do see that concept in myself now that you mentioned it. [laughs]
I was worried that might not go down too well! Are you still in touch with any of the City Guys cast?
I do talk to Wesley Jonathan (Jamal) and Dion Basco (Al) from time to time. The rest of the cast not so much, not that I don’t want to. It’s just that life happens and people drift apart.
City Guys +10: The 10 year reunion. That’s a show we’d love to see!
I’ll see if I can make it happen. I have some reunion concepts running through my head, perhaps stuff I’ll throw up on YouTube.
How does acting in sitcoms compare to film?
Sitcom acting is more of a machine, you know where to stand, you have rhythms in your speech, you basically have to keep that machine going at all times and be on all the time to keep the audience’s attention. Film acting is different in the sense that you are given freedom to move and be more spontaneous. And you have the time to let the audience see you have a conscious thought. It’s not all pre-programmed.
What are you plans for the immediate future?
Sleep [laughs]. I have a few projects that I am attached to that are trying to get off the ground. Friends and I are trying to get a TV show concept and a few films off the ground, that I would have roles in, perhaps even a producers credit in one or two of them.
Music wise, my first priority is to finish up this album with Chantelle Barry. After that I have recorded a few classic country songs with my good friend Kevin Vanhook who wrote and produced a bunch of films I have been lucky and honoured to be part of. Then perhaps I’ll work on recording my own songs.
Describe Flecking Records in three words…
YOU GUYS RULE!