Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Movie Stars, Please! Leave Those Guitars Alone!

You know, it must be nice to be a rich n' famous actor. Like, say, Kevin Bacon. A star like him gets to do a lot of cool stuff.

Like what? Like, for example, be married to a stone-cold beauty like Kyra Sedgewick. Very cool. Like, be paid a gazillion dollars to play make-believe. Very cool. Like, have a nifty pop culture game named after you ("Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon"), which basically ensures that people will remember you for years to come. Like, make a handful of fair-to-middlin' films ("A Few Good Men", "Tremors", my personal favorite, "Quicksilver" and a musical involving feet which you might have heard of). Like, just work when you feel like working. All very cool things, for sure.

But in some ways, being a rich n' famous star must NOT be cool.

Like how? Like having a lot of down time between projects. Leaves a dude particularly vulnerable to dangerous pursuits like. . .what? I'll bet some of you Kindred Souls said "drugs". Maybe. Some of you might've said "alcohol", "sexual debauchery", "extreme sports" or "dumbass political/religious beliefs". All very uncool stuff, I agree. But none of them are what Brother John had in mind.

I was thinking of "the movie star's vanity rock band". Chills tumble down my spine just typing the term. It's a horrific practice that has claimed some of Hollywood's most talented thespians.

Kevin Bacon has a lameass rock band he plays in with his brother that's called, uniquely enough, the Bacon Brothers. From the ten seconds of Web research I did, I guess the band has played far and wide to audiences. . .who were probably very pissed off when they realized Kevin was not going to sing "Footloose".

No, I haven't listened to more than half a song by the Bacon Brothers. No, I'm not going to, 'cause I don't need to. I'm not, because over the course of my 35 years, I've already:

* Bought and listened to "The Return of Bruno (1987)" by Bruce Willis.

* Bought and listened to "Living the Book of My Life (1986)" by Philip Michael "Miami Vice" Thomas.

* Watched and, therefore, listened to most of the later episodes of "Happy Days" and "Joanie Loves Chachi", in which I endured the musical stylings of non-singers Anson "Potsie" Williams, Don "Malph" Most, Erin "Tone-Deaf" Moran and Scott "Tuneless" Baio (1970s-1980s).

* Watched and, therefore, listened to most of the desperate, later episodes of "The Brady Bunch", in which the kids don Vegas-style costumes, boogie on down to the local TV station and belt out some of the lily-whitest "rock" music this side of Donny & Marie. If you were, like me, unlucky enough to see the Saturday morning cartoon version of "T.B.B.", then you were exposed to even more of this audio torture (1970s).

It happens time after time. I guess there's just something about mass adoration, obscene wealth and double-digit orgies that leaves a gaping hole in a TV or movie star's soul. A need to express themselves in ways acting can't provide. A need. . .to rack up even more fame and fortune than these dorks have already dumbassed their ways in to. Shhheeesh! What a bunch of shameless glory-hogs.

I don't know much about Kevin Bacon, beyond what I listed above. He's an okay actor; I've enjoyed many of his films. On interviews I've seen, he seemed like a pretty down-to-earth guy. But then I saw the new Hanes underwear commercial Kevin made. At various points in the ad, Kev is seen carrying and strumming a cherry-red guitar. If I was Kevin's manager, at that point in filming, I would've pulled him aside, smacked him upside the head and taken the 6-string away from him. Just like a parent would do to a child fiddling with a toy Junior had no business playing with in the first place.

Why can't these people recognize the limits of their talent? Most normal people do. The plumber doesn't throw down his plunger one day and decide that he's a gourmet chef. The carpenter doesn't drop his hammer and declare himself a concert pianist. A pro basketball player doesn't quit hoops and take up baseball to. . .oh, wait. That's the other humble guy in Kevin's jockey shorts ad.

Stars, why don't you ever figure it out? No club owner's booking your band for its music. Audiences in the dozens aren't flocking to these clubs for tunes scribbled on the blank sides of script pages between scenes. They're doing it because the singer/guitarist/bassplayer/drummer/whatever is That Guy/Girl From (Insert Hit Movie Title Here). Why do those record companies gamble on an album? Same reason. In the end, all that's left is fodder for D-List dweebs on VH1 to giggle at on "I Love the 1970s/80s/90s. . ." No matter how much you long to be a rock star, having yourself photographed holding a guitar doesn't make you one. No more than standing in front of a jet fighter in a flight suit made Dubya any less of a draft-dodger.

Kevin, Bruce, Billy Bob Thornton, Juliette Lewis, Lindsey Lohan, Jack Black, Gary Sinese, Kevin Costner, Jamie Foxx, Potsie, Joanie, Greg, Marsha, Peter, Jan, Cindy, Chachi. . .PLEASE, folks. Have pity on our poor eardrums. Take up golf, painting, model airplane-building, knitting, stamp collecting, whatever, Trevor.

Just put the guitars down. Down, all the way down, and step out of the recording studio. There, doesn't that feel better? Now, be good celebrities and go get yourselves some liposuction or something. Anything. But stay away from the guitars.

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Anonymous /jq said...


Lay-off Billy Bob, he was in his band way before he got remotely famous. If his fame brings some dough to his old buddies, all the better for them. Plus, his band isn't half-bad.

Also, granted he doesn't play guitar, but to me, the obvious "movie-to-music" disaster crown belongs without any contest to William Shatner!!!! I thought he'd be worth mentioning.

Next week, will you write about the models who turned into horrendous actresses?

5:06 PM  

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