If New Jersey was a person.
Tony Soprano's second in command, Silvio usually operates behind the scenes -- unlike the actor playing him, who operated as upfront as you can get. Silvio was played by Steven Van Zandt, whom you might recognize as the guitar player from Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band. Musicians act on TV shows all the time (did you know Hodor is a club DJ?), but what's surprising is that Van Zandt never auditioned for the role. Or at least, he never knew he was auditioning. David Chase, the show's creator, happened to be watching the 1997 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony when Van Zandt introduced the Rascals. The Rascals were an Italian-American rock group from New Jersey, so Van Zandt decided to really ham up the presentation when introducing them. Heavy accent. Funny words. Dude talked with his hands like he was rapping in ASL.
When Chase saw it, he reached out to Van Zandt about playing Silvio. "That's perfect for the complex drama I'm creating," he presumably proclaimed. "And this must be a good idea, because I'm only extremely drunk!"