Top 10 Misguided Singing Careers By Actors11.07.10 # Top Ten # 6 Comments
Ah, those poor wee actors and actresses. They get whisked around in chauffeur driven luxury sedans, provided with all the bottled water and fruit baskets they can stuff into their perfectly sculpted guts, have young fans screaming their hysterical lusty desires at them, told how fabulous they are by all manner of sycophantic money-men, TV presenters and general fame-clingers, and then, one day, someone in a suit with a briefcase full of money tells them they can sing.
It’s not their fault. We can’t stay mad at them. Not until we’ve actually seen and heard them trying to sing. After that the anger takes several weeks to dissipate, and the phrase “limelight fancying famewhores” seems to hang in your mind…
10. ROBERT DOWNEY JNR
I’m going to go easy on RDJ. He’s a good pianist, and his voice ticks the boxes for a housewife-pleasing schmaltzmonger. This is bad music done competently, and as you will see from the rest of this list, it could be a whole lot worse.
It is typical though of a Singing Actor that the song is schmaltzy over-emotional crap. RDJ would never be in a film as gratingly sentimental as this song, and that tells its own story. If I can combine Thom Yorke’s words with those of Wesley Snipes in White Men Can’t Jump (perhaps for the first time on the written webpage), anyone can play guitar but that don’t make it a biscuit.
In other words, being able to hit a note is more likely to make you an annoying aunt at a wedding than Bruce Springsteen.
9. RUSSELL CROWE
The problem with actors trying to be singers is they’re used to projecting emotions, and so they’re always cringingly earnest. Russell Crowe is a perfect example. Fine actor, and clearly he’s genuinely interested in the value of music and songwriting as opposed to wanting another outlet for fame. And he’s a Nick Cave fan, so he’s got taste. But he sounds like Ricky Gervais in The Office (that’s the original Office to you Americans), which is never a compliment for a musician.
8. EDDIE MURPHY
Not long after he put a banana in the tailpipe, Eddie Murphy became so powerful he managed to get a singing career off the ground. ‘Put Your Mouth On Me’ was one of his biggest hits, banned from a number of radio stations for being too obviously about something it shouldn’t be. Murphy wasn’t so much his own man on stage as a Prince impersonator with Wall Street trouser braces. If you can find anything in the universe more 80s than this video, you’ve done well -
7. KEVIN BACON
You know when you’re round at someone’s house, maybe a young married couple, and the wife starts saying what a great musician her husband is, and he denies it modestly at first, but eventually he’s persuaded to pick up his acoustic guitar, and suddenly his unemployed friend who had barely said a word all night but smells strongly of weed and pepperoni has a pair of bongos in his lap, and they launch into a half hour set of earnest Pink Floyd covers that makes you want to kill yourself, but only after you’ve killed his wife for marrying the dumbass? This is exactly that, except it’s Kevin Bacon, and he’s at a rally for senator John Edwards. Why Edwards wanted to disenfranchise his audience quite so much isn’t clear.
6. JOE PESCI
Funny? Funny how? I amuse you?
Yes, Joe. Yes you do.
5. BRUCE WILLIS
Ah. Bruce. Brucie. Big Ol’ Brucie. Blind Boy Brucie. Howlin’ Bruce. What is there so say, except how dare a multi-multi-multi-millionaire pampered and sycophanted Hollywood thespian try to get away with singing the blues? I hope that working men and women in Detroit and Alabama and New Orleans and New Jersey start knocking on the door of Bo Diddly Bruce’s mansion to offer to explain the blues to him. Perhaps he’ll be good enough to let them use some of his many luxurious lotions and unguents to soothe their work-chapped skin.
4. COREY FELDMAN
The thing to remember with this is: many well-employed music industry professionals told him he was a great singer, and several well-employed choreographers told him he was a great dancer, and people put up enough money to make this happen, fully expecting to make even more money out of it. That tells you all you need to know about the music industry.
3. STEVEN SEAGAL
I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that Seagal actually has a pretty good voice, for a cheesy MOR crooner. It’s just that it’s Steven Seagal. Looking at you, and singing gently about his emotions, and how he really really wants to do sex things to you. And that, aside from the terrible song, is enough to horrify. Watching this video is like being sexually abused by an uncle. I imagine.
2. MR T
Two words. Mr and T. Alright, one of those is only a letter, and the other is only two letters. But you’ll forget all about that once you’ve watched this video. There is not a single thing I can add. It is perfection.
1. WILLIAM SHATNER
Shatner gets number 1 for a special reason – he’s actually so bad, he’s really really good. His version of Pulp’s Common People with Ben Folds is at least as much fun as the original. Now sit back and bask in the glory of Captain Kirk speak-singing about being a working class lad from Sheffield and the hypocrisy of the middle class art student who wants to sleep with him (whether or not this art student was green skinned is not mentioned). So, so bonkers, the world is a far better place for its existence.
Billy Bob Thornton, Keanu Reeves, Burt Reynolds, Gwyneth Paltrow, Patrick Swayze, Leonard Nimoy, Scarlett Johansson, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Milla Jovovich, David Hasselhoff, Crispin Glover, Clint Eastwood, Johnny Depp, Heidi Montag, Lindsay Lohan, Joaquin Phoenix