Top 10 Actors Who Rock
By Pauline France
When you think of Hollywood’s biggest TV stars, you may not associate them with making music. But the truth is, some of these actors are just as good at playing instruments as they are at playing roles on the big screen.
We’ve put together a list of 10 multi-talented actors who can also slappa da bass, wield a guitar, or even pick the banjo. Tell us who your favorite actor who rocks is on our Facebook page, or shoot us a tweet to @fender.
Once a child actor in TV series 3rd Rock From The Sun, Joseph Gordon-Levitt has transitioned into a serious actor, starring in films like 10 Things I Hate About You, and the more recent Inception. This young talent has been in bands since the age of 6 and can rock out to Nirvana, too.
You’ve seen him in The Squid and The Whale, or maybe you know him as Harry Dunne from Dumb and Dumber, but Jeff Daniels hardly lives up to his blockheaded character in real life. With over 30 years of guitar playing backing him up, this comedian has got some wicked finger picking chops. Oh, and he can also sing!
This actress epitomizes genuine talent. Not only can she act, she can also sing, play the keyboard and the ukulele – exceptionally well. She teamed with M. Ward in the band She & Him, too. So next time you see her in Yes Man, or (500) Days of Summer or who new television show, New Girl, remember she’s a heck of a musician.
Best known for his roles in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, The Devil’s Advocate, and The Matrix, Keanu Reeves is also a bass player. He’s played in a few bands, including Dog Star and Becky.
Jared Leto’s career as the frontman for 30 Seconds To Mars has spiked to massive stardom. The actor/musician’s band is set to enter the Guinness Book of World Records next month for playing the most shows (300!) in support of an album during its active cycle. The trio released This Is War in 2009, and has been touring nonstop since then.
When one thinks of Steve Martin, the Three Amigos, or maybe The Pink Panther come to mind. But, bluegrass banjo? Not necessarily. However, this master comedian is also a professional banjo player with some serious skills. Martin even won a Grammy last year for best bluegrass album.
Academy award-winning actor Jeff Bridges’ career as a singer and guitarist took off during the set of 2009 film Crazy Heart. Bridges recorded five songs to the movie’s soundtrack, and was offered a record deal shortly thereafter. Listen to a track off his 2011 eponymous album below.
It’s no secret that comedian and late-night TV show host Conan O’Brien loves music. Not only can he make people laugh incessantly, he can also sing, compose music and rock the guitar. Watch him below during his Legally Prohibited From Being Funny on Television Tour.
Johnny Depp had a burning desire to be a famous musician during the early stages of his career. He ended up landing a gig as an actor instead, and has since then graced a multitude of people with his characters ranging from Edward Scissorhands to Captain Jack Sparrow. Watch him wielding his guitar onstage below.
Richard Gere needs no introduction. The world-class actor recently made headlines worldwide for auctioning his collection of over 100 vintage guitars to support humanitarian causes. Gere, a trained trumpeter and a self-taught pianist and guitarist, raised nearly $1 million. Click here to watch a video of the items that were up for bids.