Actors with outside talents are exploring their
opportunities in the music industry
American actor Jason Shwartzman is best known for his roles in Hollywood films such as “Rushmore,” “Darjeeling Limited” and “I Heart Huckabees.”
Before Shwartzman hit the big screen, he was the drummer-songwriter for “Phantom Planet,” a southern California alternative rock band that’s best known for making the theme song “California” for the Fox TV series “The O.C.”
Shwartzman now has a solo indie-pop music project from Los Angeles called “Coconut Records,” which he started in 2006.
Coconut Records released its first album “Nighttiming” in 2007, which features the hit song “Westcoast,” and released its sophomore album “Davy” in 2009.
Jada Pinkett Smith
When the American actress isn’t acting, producing or directing, she becomes Jada Koren, the lead singer for the heavy metal Los Angeles band “Wicked Evolution.” The band, formerly called “Wicked Wisdom,” formed in 2002. Adorned in black leather and heavy eyeliner, the head banging Smith sings lyrics such as “I crave your pain because it’s my only friend,” from their song “Bleed All Over Me.” “Wicked Evolution” has toured with the heavy metal band “Sevendust,” the band has also performed in the 2004 Britney Spears’ Onyx Hotel Tour, as well as, the 2005 Ozzfest. It released its album “Wicked Wisdom” in 2006.
Canadian actor Ryan Gosling hasn’t had official training in acting but is now well-known for his roles in Hollywood films like “Young Hercules,” “Remember the Titans” and “The Notebook.”
Gosling’s musical calling came before his acting career, taking off when he joined “The All New Mickey Mouse Club” in 1993 when he performed with the young Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera.
Gosling’s musical talent re-emerged in 2007 when he released a solo recording called “Put Me in the Car,” which he made available to download.
In 2005, Gosling met Canadian actor Zach Shields and their mutual fascination with ghosts eventually led to the formation of their folk-rock band, “Dead Man’s Bones.” The duo went on to release their self-titled first album in 2009. It consists of haunting songs about ghosts and other creatures that go bump-in-the-night, and it features the Silverlake Conservatory Children’s Choir.
The Golden Globe and Grammy nominated American actress is best known for her roles in films such as “Almost Famous,” “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” and “500 Days of Summer.”
Deschanel is also a musician and singer-songwriter, a talent that has bled into her acting career as Deschanel sings the theme song for the new Fox sitcom “New Girl.”
On the set of the film “The Go Getter,” Deschanel met Portland-based guitarist and singer-songwriter, M.Ward, and the encounter eventually led to the formation of their indie duo “She & Him” in 2006.
Deschanel is the lead vocalist, as well as a pianist and ukulele player for “She & Him,” while Ward plays guitar and assists in producing the albums.
The track “In the Sun,” from the feel-good album “She & Him: Volume Two,” has cheery lyrics such as “well alright, it’s okay, we all get the slips sometimes.”
Their first album, “She & Him: Volume One” was released in 2008 and was followed by “She & Him: Volume Two” in 2010.
The duo has also released “A Very She & Him Christmas” in 2011.
Chrissy Shane/Staff Writer
Chrissy Shane can be reached at email@example.com.