LOS ANGELES — Craven Moorehead knows heavy metal music even better than he knows his way around a porn set.
Call it his first love.
“A little background story... I have a tattoo on my forearm that says ‘Rock Star,’” Moorehead revealed. “I got two scholarships in high school to play music and I always wanted to be a guitar player.”
In many ways, it makes perfect sense that the veteran adult movie director and videographer is emerging as a go-to guy on the heavy metal scene to shoot high-end music videos. Moorehead’s latest creation is for the band Devil You Know and their aggressive new single “The Way We Die.”
The band is preparing for its European Tour with Five Finger Death Punch and Papa Roach next month and released “The Way We Die” as the first track off their forthcoming album, “They Bleed Red,” which will be available on Nov. 6 from Nuclear Blast Records.
Moorehead, who has directed more than 325 porn films during the past two decades and has done camerawork for hundreds of others, has solidified his reputation in the metal arena by shooting hit videos for Danzig and Hollywood Undead that have generated more than 20 million combined views on Youtube.
Last month he answered the call again, directing the rowdy new video that features Kaylani Lei, Joanna Angel, Annie Cruz, Lily Lane and Jessie Lee rocking with the band at a Hollywood strip club.
Moorehead said Devil You Know, which premiered "The Way We Die" exclusively on Loudwire last week, looked him up through a mutual friend that’s been doing their PR. The concept became a bit of a tongue-in-cheek homage to the classic “Girls, Girls, Girls” video as the action follows lead singer Howard Jones and bandmates Francesco Artusato, John Sankey and Ryan Wombacher as they kick back at the club surrounded by gorgeous starlets.
“Just beautiful women in a strip-club type setting,” Moorehead said. “When they called me up and asked me if I’d be interested in shooting it and I said ‘I don’t think that’s a far stretch’ and I told them, ‘I got you.’ So we rented a strip club up here and I called up a couple of my friends like Kaylani and Joanna and we got together at 2 a.m. at the club and they let us film from 2 a.m. to 11 a.m. and we knocked it out.
“The fans fucking loved it. They hung around while we put this thing together.”
Moorehead added, “Joanna brought a couple of her Burning Angel girls and Lily Lane is dating a friend of mine. It came together. I think the girls look really good and the band is happy.”
“I am very familiar to stripping to Howard Jones’ voice,” Angel said. “His music is always on rotation on my playlist when I feature dance. Me and the girls had a lot of fun doing this and I am so happy with how the video turned out. It's hot!”
Moorehead has shot about 10 videos in the past five years, including three for Danzig and two for Hollywood Undead.
“This year I’ve stepped it up,” said Moorehead, the 16-year porn vet from Laguna Beach, Calif., in Orange County who is known for his camerawork for Peter North.
Now he also shoots about five days a month with director StillsbyAlan for Girlsway while still holding down his regular shift with North.
Moorehead said before porn he played in a band and worked at Costco, breaking into the biz after a chance meeting with the living legend North at the gym.
“I got into adult just to buy amps and guitars to be a rock star,” he joked. “It was a girlfriend of mine at the time that recognized [Peter].”
Moorehead wasn’t a big porn fan at the time but decided to try his hand at camerawork. It turned out he was pretty good at it and the work has been pouring in ever since. Ironically, it has also opened a lot of doors for him to not only stay connected with the metal scene, but build a ton of street cred in the process.
His music videos for Hollywood Undead — “Dead Bite” and “Been to Hell” — have been viral sensations. Shot in 2013, “Dead Bite” stars RJ Mitte from “Breaking Bad” fame, Lisa Ann, Tera Patrick and Derrick Mears, who played Jason in the “Friday the 13th” reboot.
“Been to Hell,” which debuted in 2011, has nearly 12 million views alone.
Moorehead also directed a pair of videos for Act of Defiance, which features the former drummer and guitarist from the iconic band Megadeth.
“It’s awesome that people I’ve always looked up to my whole life are now giving me a call to come shoot their music videos,” Moorehead said, noting that Danzig has always been his favorite.
“I got my foot in the door by being a porn director. It’s been really good this year. Next year I’d like to take it to the next level and knock out maybe five next year. It’s something that I’m very passionate about.”