Pop & Hiss

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Far East Movement cracks the top 10 again, releases short film for 'Rocketeer'

February 9, 2011 |  2:03 pm

Deadening any discussion about it being a one-hit wonder, downtown L.A.'s Far East Movement has scored its second top 10 national hit with the Ryan Tedder-collaboration "Rocketeer."

At the moment, metaphors of flight seem apt for the Cherry Tree/Interscope signed group, whose "Like a G6" topped the Billboard Hot 100 last fall. But unlike the Walt Disney-produced box office turkey that it shares its name with, FEM's "Rocketeer" has racked up sales of 668,000 units, an impressive figure to stack up alongside "Like a G6's" triple-platinum sales.

"Rocketeer" is currently positioned at No. 9 in the Billboard Hot 100, No. 8 on the Digital Songs Charts and No. 6 on Power 106's playlist, and the Koreatown-bred group recently released the "LA Dreamer Short Film" for the song, featuring a more stripped-down and less glossy version of the hit single.

According to a statement from the group: "When we did the song Rocketeer off our 'Free Wired' album, it was inspired by how we grew up in Downtown LA as LA Dreamers living on a dream and never knowing where it would take you. We wanted to paint a portrait of where we live, from where we started, to the free wired mashed up community of dreamers that make up LA.

"We linked up with our neighbor, DPD of Transparent Agency, and went around with a camera to capture our home... then hooked up the same sound setup of old mics and amps we first used to rehearse on, and recorded this live remix in the old backroom to give it a sound like when we first started making music. Made this for dreamers world wide."

The video underscores the group's slow and steady grind -- as depicted in this 2009 Times feature. What appears as overnight success is the result of both stylistic evolution, pop savvy and a decade of tirelessly rocking every venue in Los Angeles. Accordingly, the "LA Dreamer" film is a paean to the band's hometown, including the Santa Monica Pier, Korean barbecue restaurants, Melrose Boulevard and  downtown Los Angeles. Even Snoop Dogg, Los Angeles' rap patron saint, makes a cameo.

With an appearance on "Conan" last Monday and promises of a marquee soundtrack placement, the group has lived up to the hook of its song. It's hard to get much higher than this -- unless Snoop helps the band out in that category too.  

-- Jeff Weiss