Actors step into the shoes of so many people on the big screen, but we rarely get to see them performing as themselves. We’ve gone back through the careers of our favourite actors and actresses, to find their secret musical journeys. From folk-rock and country to R&B and electro-pop, these movie stars have truly blown us away with their creativity and talent!
New Girls’ Zooey Deschanel along with M. Ward makes up the folk-rock duo She & Him. Featuring Deschanel on vocals, piano and ukulele, the duo’s first album Volume One dropped in 2008. The pair then released five studio albums, including two Christmas ones. Who would have thought?
The Big Little Lies and Mad Max star Zoë Kravitz told Rolling Stone in 2014 “Lolawolf is what I choose to do with my free time.” For those who don’t know, Lolawolf is Kravitz’s band with Jimmy Giannopoulos (on drums) and James Levy (keyboards) who play R&B and electro-pop.
Taylor Momsen aka Gossip Girl‘s favourite little sister Jenny Humphrey has been the front girl for rock band The Pretty Reckless since 2009. Taylor loves being involved in every step of the writing and performing process of music, and we are loving the rock vibe on her.
The Avengers star Scarlett Johansson has had quite the music career we weren’t aware of. In 2008 her debut album Anywhere I Lay My Head, was released featuring 10 Tom Waits covers and one OG track. Later in 2015 she formed a band with Este Haim, Holly Miranda, Kendra Morris and Julia Haltigan called The Singles. The super-pop dance group released the song Candy, inspired by the Grimes, Bangles and Go-Go’s.
We all know the talents of Ryan Gosling from La La Land, but in 2009 Gosling released an album called Dead Man’s Bones. As part of the band Dead Man’s Bones (coincidence? We think not.) Ryan Gosling and Zach Shields combined their mutual love for creepy things and created a D.I.Y. album featuring a children’s choir.
In 1982, the British New Wave group Seona Dancing, featuring Ricky Gervais on lead vocals, released two singles before realising their talents lie elsewhere.
Robert Downey Jr.
In 2004 Robert Downey Jr. released his debut album The Futurist, telling The New York Times he had some hesitation being an actor and putting out an album. Don’t worry Robert, we have faith in you.
In 2003 Lucy Hale was a top-five winner on singing competition for teens, American Junior’s. Hale then turned to acting and had her big break as a lead in Pretty Little Liars. In 2014 she returned to music, releasing the country album Road Between.
Despite a few failed attempts, it’s clear these actors feel like they can be themselves when they’re performing. We loved learning about the musical talent of these stars and how it influenced their career and can’t wait to see where their musical journeys lead next!