Celebrities from all walks of life are revered and idolized by millions of people around the world. They are known for their roles in movies, television, and other forms of entertainment. However, on occasion some of these stars will break away and decide to do something else with their talents. Whether they are tired of their old routine or just looking for a new career path, these seven celebrities have carved their own niches in the music world. You may be surprised about who appears on this list as I will be judging their musical talents and current activity in the industry. Now without further ado, here are my top eight bands that have some of your favorite stars!
8. Coconut Records The indie electronic solo project Coconut Records, is the creation of actor/comedian, Jason Schwartzman. He began recording music under the name in 2006 and released his debut album Nighttiming in 2007. Surprisingly enough the albums second track “West Coast” gained significant popularity and has since become an indie rock favorite. In 2009, Schwartzman released his sophomore album Davy, that was heavily praised and put Coconut Records in the public eye. Despite the increasing fan base and popularity, Schwartzman did not actively tour his solo project and reverted back to acting and stand up comedy. While the project may never be active again, Coconut Records songs are frequently played on television and radio.
Recommended Tracks: “West Coast”, “Nighttiming”, “Any Fun”
If you are not a metal or WWE fan then this next band may be completely foreign to you. Fozzy is a heavy metal rock band that is fronted by professional wrestler and former world champion Chris Jericho. The band was formed in 1999 and has released six albums of original songs and covers. Starting out as a metal cover band, Fozzy gained popularity at a rapid pace in its early years which led to the on and off band becoming a full head banging outfit. With consistent touring around the world, playing at venues and festivals alike, the band has gained a solid following. Currently on a U.S. tour, Fozzy is previewing their latest album Do You Want To Start A War that was released this year. Catch them on one of their adrenaline inducing live shows before Jericho goes back to pile driving hapless wrestlers in the ring.
Recommended Tracks: “Freewheel Burning”, “Lights Go Out”, “One Crazed Anarchist”
Dead Man’s Bones is the indie rock duo of heartthrob actor Ryan Gosling and musician singer/songwriter Zach Shields and is a one of the more unknown bands on this list. The two started making music together in 2007 and their first self-titled album was released in 2009. While the band only features Gosling and Shields, the album was recorded with the Silverlake Conservatory Children’s Choir. This made for a very unique sounding indie rock album that was moody and heavily layered. With the backing vocals of the choir every track is anthemic and extremely well produced. The lead single “Pa Pa Power” has gained some recognition from music fans but for the most part many people do not know about the band, least of all the famous actor hidden behind it. There has been some talk of a new album being recorded but nothing has been officially announced. If it is anything like their last album you can be sure the public will take notice of this fruitful project.
Recommended Tracks: “Lose Your Soul”, “Pa Pa Power”, “Dead Hearts”
Happy, light and whimsical, are all words to describe the collaboration between actress Zooey Deschanel and folk rock musician M. Ward. Under the name of She & Him, the two friends began to make music together in 2006 and have since recorded and performed on and off. With busy schedules for both individuals they have still managed to tour and release four albums, along with another titled Volume 3 that will be released on October 28th. Playing primarily happy tunes about love and friendship the formula that makes the band is a simple and effective one. Deschanel’s sweet sounding voice goes perfectly with M. Wards guitar strumming and the occasional tambourine or piano. Having toured around the world, She & Him are making a name for themselves on the indie rock scene.
Recommended Tracks: “Why Do You Let Me Stay Here”, “In The Sun”, “Sentimental Heart”
4. Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers When two highly accomplished forces come together there can only be positive results. Seasoned actor, musician, comedian and producer Steve Martin is a jack of all trades, having won multiple Grammy’s for his insane banjo playing skills. In 2009, the Grammy Award winning band the Steep Canyon Rangers joined forces with Martin on a broadcast of A Prairie Home Companion. Soon after it was announced that Martin and the band would be going on tour around the country. Performing bluegrass and folk rock at a frenzied pace the amount of talent on stage between Martin and the band is incredible. Martin has been playing the banjo for years and frequently featured it in his various works along with a few solo albums that gained him recognition in the music industry. Teamed with the Steep Canyon Rangers, there is very little that can go wrong on record and on stage.
Recommended Tracks: “When You Get To Asheville”, “Rare Bird Alert”, “Tell The Ones I Love”
Before they were even considered to be a legitimate band the duo of Kevin and Michael Bacon had already been in the spotlight. Kevin Bacon is one of the most prolific actors in the business and has appeared in dozens of films throughout his career. His brother Michael is an accomplished musician and producer. The Bacon Brothers have been playing music together since they were kids, but they did not form a band until 1995. They have since released eight albums and are known for touring consistently around America. Grab your shoes and coat and go get some bacon, or at the very least patiently buy a ticket and see these two experienced musicians live.
Recommended Tracks: “Sooner Or Later”, “Grace”, “Philadelphia Chickens”
2. Tenacious D Comedy hard rock duo Tenacious D is one of the better known bands on this list. This is not without good reason as they have released some of the most memorable comedic records in recent years. Lead vocalist/guitarist Jack Black has been acting and playing music for years. His friend Kyle Gass also plays and sings the guitar as backup to the charismatic Black. Already a strong advocate for rock n’ roll, Jack Black loves to rile the crowd with his hilarious antics on stage. Despite the duos comedic approach to music they rock harder then anyone. Mixing metal and rock, Tenacious D is a hard hitting juggernaut of a band that has toured with top tier bands like the Foo Fighters and Motorhead. While they do not tour too often the band is still going strong and you can expect a new album and slew of shows in the future.
Recommended Tracks: “Fuck Her Gently”, “Tribute”, “Beelzeboss (The Final Showdown)”
The American rock band formed in Los Angeles, California is one of the most successful band with a crossover celebrity in the business. Lead vocalist and occasional actor, Jared Leto is the face of the band and has drawn large amounts of attention due to his powerful vocals and celebrity status. Having sold over 15 million albums worldwide the alternative rock band is a powerhouse live. Headlining massive festivals and venues the band is internationally revered. Their experimental rock is anthemic and filled with catchy hooks that can get the crowd moving and grooving. Thirty Seconds To Mars has received 84 awards for their work and are one of the most well traveled performing acts in the world. Out of all the bands on this list the music and showmanship are more focused on then the actual celebrity. This just shows how the band has grown and evolved over the years to become one of the best live acts around.
Recommended Tracks: “Stranger In A Strange Land”, “The Kill”, “Kings And Queens”