Actors Who (Sort Of) Secretly Rock
By Kipp Tribble Posted Feb 18th 2010 06:00PM
The rocking new persona of Frankie 'Malcolm in the Middle' Muniz should come as a shock to no one - as long as actors have earned a paycheck in Hollywood, there have been some looking for extra work in the musical side of showbiz. Muniz, 24, is now drumming for the unsigned act You Hang Up, and he's in good company. Veteran actors like William Shatner, Hugh Laurie, Russell Crowe and Steve Martin lead double lives as recording musicians. Welcome to the fold, Frankie.
It got us thinking of other actors who have made the leap. The list is long, so we're taking just a sampling of thespians who have recently stepped on stage and banged out a number or two. Check out these actors-turned-rockers after the jump.
Leighton looks like she has a new career. The 'Gossip Girl' star has now branched into the world of music and already let loose a couple of impressive tracks. Hooking up with Robin Thicke was a solid move for this song, so we'll keep listening...as long as she keeps recording.
Ed Westwick (with the Filthy Youth)
Let's keep the 'Gossip Girl' train rolling. The Ramones and the White Stripes comparisons aren't too far off with this track. Westwick once said, "I'm a showman. I wouldn't say I'm a rock star, though...All right, in my dream world, I am." His dream world is a reality, because hearing his music tells us he is a rock star. For real.
Zooey Deschanel (with She & Him)
It seems the '500 Days of Summer' star has some pipes. She has long been rumored to play Janis Joplin in an eternally gestating bio-pic, and she belted out some serious holiday tunes in 'Elf'. We like her style and her voice. She's got the stuff, so enjoy.
Brian Austin Green
Um, what? Yeah, apparently the on-again-off-again-on-again fiance of Megan Fox laid down some tracks in his past. The 'Beverly Hills 90210' star -- the original series -- made like Vanilla Ice and rapped his way into history. To be fair, his only album was released in 1996 - we acknowledge this is not exactly breaking news - but we can always hope he picks the hobby up again, right?
Okay, the reality show with her parents and their subsequent high-profile divorce are easy targets, but Brooke has got something going on in the music biz. So the world can back off. We fully expect her to continue recording, for better or worse. After all, she knows best.
He moved to LaLa Land to start his music career and somehow jumped into a successful acting tract. Nowadays, people know him as an A-list actor and the guy they hear in clubs. For our money, we can't get enough of the video...maybe because Ron Howard makes an appearance.
The 'Donnie Darko' and 'Saved!' star was an indie darling on the movie scene - now she's warming hipster hearts with her music. The actress began singing in 2005, and her hauntingly spare tracks are available on her MySpace page. "I'm not a technically proficient musician," Jena told Spinner in 2005. "It's like really outsider music in a way just because I don't know any structures."
She loves to do some Playboy. And her husband rides the line of pretentious and all-out villain. But she also can spin a tune or two. Her music hasn't exactly won commercial success, but Heidi isn't particularly concerned. "All my music has so much love in it and so much fun," she told us the day of the album's release. "The most important thing to me is that people feel good when they listen to it ... There's so much darkness in the world right now, I just wanted to bring some light and some fun into it."
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