5 Weird Music Careers Of Marvel Movie Stars
Sometimes it's hard to imagine the actors of the MCU doing anything else. They've just been at it so long. Robert Downey Jr. used to be best-known as a massive Brat Pack fuckup, but who even remembers that now? He has played and probably will play characters other than Iron Man? Is that even legal? Apparently so. Even weirder, a few Avengers have made forays into music as well. Who keeps allowing people to do more than one thing? It's madness!
Brie Larson's Tiny YouTube Channel Featured Her Teenage Rock Tunes
Behold the official Vevo channel of Oscar winner Brie Larson, who starred in two different billion-dollar movies this year and has six million followers on Instagram ... but fewer than 10,000 subscribers on YouTube. Let's see why:
Now admittedly, these four videos were recorded when she was 15, and were any of us good at literally anything at 15? The video above, shot for Sessions@AOL, shows the title track from her album Finally Out Of PE. The world wasn't ready for lyrics like I play guitar / But in your class / That won't get me far / Please give me a "C" / So that I can be / Finally out of PE. As much as this might speak to the pains of gawky teens everywhere, I'm not sure this is an accurate look at how school works.
Despite closing with a song featured on the soundtrack of Barbie And The Magic Of Pegasus (a film with a bigger box office gross than Endgame, if my research is correct), Finally Out Of PE sold just 4,000 copies. Today, when recounting her rise to fame, Larson doesn't even mention her attempt at a music career, probably hoping to forget it. "I wanted to wear sneakers and play my guitar -- they wanted heels and windblown hair," she says when pressed.
Jeremy Renner Made Fans Listen To Him Sing, Whether They Liked It Or Not
Jeremy Renner is best-known for playing the most powerful Avenger, and that's why he found himself on Jimmy Fallon, singing about his powers. But somehow, this didn't start an intense investigation into his singing resume in films like The Assassination of Jesse James, North Country, or the forgotten Love Comes To The Executioner:
Finally, fame got to Renner's head. He released an app called "Jeremy Renner" so fans could keep tabs on all things Jeremy Renner, in case it wasn't enough to follow Twitter Jeremy Renner, Instagram Jeremy Renner, and Facebook Jeremy Renner. And of course, he chose to make it a music app. As in, he listed it under the "music" category, and every single time you opened it, it would forcibly play 42 seconds of Jeremy Renner singing "House Of The Rising Sun." Here he is singing that at an event, and listening to it once is fine, but only if everyone involved has given their express consent:
The Jeremy Renner app also had Jeremy Renner in-app purchases, allowing fans to buy "stars," with the price of 200 stars being $1.99. In buying these stars, you received absolutely nothing, other than the questionable thrill of seeing your name rise on a list of fans who had also bought stars and presumably never taken a financial education course in their lives. It seems Jeremy Renner (the man, not the app) eventually had a crisis of conscience, because today the app is gone.
But soon Renner's singing career will be a secret to no one. He's set to appear in the animated film Arctic Justice: Thunder Squad. It's one of those cartoons starring anthropomorphic animals voiced by a roster of inexplicably big names (James Franco, Alec Baldwin, Anjelica Huston, and the most excitable of the bunch, Tommy Lee Jones), most of whom probably sent in their lines via Skype. But Renner plays the lead, and he has written and recorded the entire soundtrack himself. The movie comes out later this year, so let's go look at the two trailers:
Wait, that's not a trailer. That's just four seconds of footage looped about 27 times. Maybe the next one will be better ...
That's just vague words that mean nothing and footage that looks it was ripped from a PlayStation 2 game no one liked. Let's just hope that Renner's soundtrack ends up being the Grammy- and Oscar-winning smash that we all know it CAN be.
Anthony Hopkins Hates When You Bring Up His Creepy '80s British Hit
Anthony Hopkins says he's been writing classical music his whole life, no big deal. He wasn't quite smart enough to go to music school, so he had to settle for acting, but he kept making his own compositions. After years of this, his wife finally got him to collect all that filthy sheet music he'd been leaving around the house and record it all as an album. He even got an orchestra to play it all.
Luckily for us (but definitely not for Hopkins), this classical album gave everyone a chance to dredge up something else. Something that maybe should've been left buried: His 1986 pop single "Distant Star."
You know the outro of "Thriller," read by Vincent Price? It sounds sort of like that, if it was being sung to you from your basement by someone who had followed you into your house. But Hopkins dearly wishes everyone would forget it, saying he'd thought it was going to be in an ad or something and was just a joke, and he had no warning when it wound up charting in Britain. Whenever reminded of the song, he dismisses it as a novelty recording gone wrong, adding, "This was before the internet, so they put it on the radio." Unfortunately, we now have the internet and (barely) the radio, so this song will live forever.
Peter Dinklage Sliced Open His Head In A Punk Band Called Whizzy
Before he ever appeared on film, Peter Dinklage sang in a New York band called Whizzy. He describes it as "punk-funk-rap," so perhaps it's for the best that we don't have any recordings of performances to share. But Whizzy drummer Jimmy Angelina has shared some photos of the group on Facebook:
During one show Whizzy played at CBGB, things got a little too rock 'n' roll on stage, and a band member's knee slammed into Dinklage's temple. But despite taking a pro wrestling finishing move to the fucking skull, Peter didn't quit for the night. He patted at the wound a little with someone's used napkin and went on playing as blood dripped all over the stage. The injury left him with a scar that even today runs from his eye right down to his neck.
The image of a maimed artist later served as the basis for Dinklage's MCU character Eitri, and the accidental cutting and scarring of his whole face was also dramatized in the HBO documentary "Blackwater," which was expanded into the series Ken Burns' Game Of Thrones.
Scarlett Johansson Started A "Superpop" Girl Group
The same year Iron Man came out, Scarlett Johansson was releasing an album. Sort of. Anywhere I Lay My Head consisted almost entirely of covers of late-era Tom Waits songs, which confused a lot of people. Even when reviewers said she didn't actually sing particularly well, they still found themselves pointing out that this wasn't the sort of thing a Hollywood star usually does. Plus, the album contained exactly one original song. It was called "Song For Jo," with "Jo" referring to someone other than Johansson. That probably made more sense before she acquired the nickname "ScarJo" (a name that she hates ... because it makes her sound like a pop star).
Also, David Bowie features on two tracks. Johansson and Bowie met at a party, and soon she learned that he'd recorded vocals for two of her songs, because that's the sort of thing that just happens when you're famous. Anywhere I Lay My Head was followed in 2009 by Break Up, an album of duets with some guy named Pete Yorn. Listen to the song "Relator" from Break Up, and I bet your first reaction will be "Hey! I bet this album went gold in France." Because it did.
But that was nothing compared with the next initiative Johansson planned. In 2015, she unveiled The Singles, a group consisting of herself, someone from Haim, and three others. "The idea was to write super-pop dance music written and performed by girls," she said, "ultra-pop but also a little ironic, a little in on the joke." Just check out this song from them about craving candy, and maybe also sex:
While there's of course nothing wrong with lyrics like I don't know about no fast cars / Only sweet things like candy bars / You make my mouth water yum yum pop / Gimme them lips, I can't be stopped, you may have a more serious question: "Really? No one had made a band called 'The Singles' before Scarlett did?"
The Singles formed in Detroit in 1999, and had an established professional presence by 2015, so they went ahead and issued a cease-and-desist letter against Johansson's band. And that appears to have been the last anyone heard of the supergroup. Until now. And every single time from now on, when the internet needs something to make fun of.
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