While researching a fun post about one hit wonders of the 70’s, I noticed songs from several actors on the list. It made me curious. Which came first, the acting fame or the singing?? I set out to find some intel on these people.
Easy Come, Easy Go by Bobby Sherman
I’m starting with one of my teen crushes, Bobby Sherman. Bobby was a singer long before he was an actor. It wasn’t unti his role as shy, stammering Jeremy on Here Come The Brides that he was rocketed to superstardom. Eventually, after guest-starring on an episode of Emergency, he left the acting spotlight and became an EMT. Here he is, with that killer smile, singing Easy Come, Easy Go.
The Night the Lights Went Out In Georgia by Vicki Lawrence
My friends and I were just talking about this song a couple of weeks ago. We decided it was the ultimate in cheesy 70’s music. Vicki was an established comedienne and actress long before she made musical history with her one and only hit song. Fun fact: the musicians playing in the song are the popular studio musicians knows as The Wrecking Crew. I found a great video of Vicki and Reba McIntyre singing the hit, which Reba covered in the 90’s.
Don’t Give Up On Us by David Soul
David Soul gave up a professional baseball contract with the Chicago White Sox to study political science, then traveled to Mexico, where he learned the guitar and his passion for music was ignited. In the late 60’s, he appeared on the Merv Griffin Show as the “Covered Man”, wearing a mask while he sang because he wanted to be famous for his music, not his looks. He then did a lot of guest appearances on various TV shows before landing a role as Bobby Sherman’s brother Joshua on Here Come The Brides. After that, in 1976, Don’t Give Up On Us came out. So this one is tricky. First he was a musician, then an actor, then a musician. Here’s the very emotional video:
Makin’ It by David Naughton
David Naughton was the darling of the late 70’s as the Dr Pepper guy. I saw his acting chops recently when watching the 1980 Disney movie Midnight Madness (about an all night scavenger hunt) which has become something of a cult classic. Check out his dance moves on this video of the theme song from his TV show, Makin’ It:
Rainbow Connection by Kermit the Frog
Who knew that a frog could be so talented? SInging, dancing, and playing the banjo!! I get tired of the drama with him and the pig, appreciating more the moments when he is mentoring his fellow muppets. Here is one of my favorite inspirational songs, from The Muppet Movie, performed with emotion as only a frog can:
King Tut by Steve Martin
Capitalizing on the popularity of the King Tut exhibit on tour around the country, this song introduced a whole new generation to Tut Uncommon. This wild and crazy guy is crazy talented. First as a comedy writer and comedian, then as an accomplished actor, an author, and in the 21st century as a musician, Here he is in a Saturday Night Live clip of the song:
I’m Easy by Keith Carradine
Keith is an accomplished actor, singer, and songwriter who came by his talent honestly as part of the Carradine dynasty. The talent line did not end with him; his daughter is actress Martha Plimpton (who was in the movie Parenthood, with Steve Martin.) He has acted with his father John Carradine and his brothers Robert and David. The role I remember him for most is an amazing guest starring role in Criminal Minds as the psychopathic serial killer Frank Breitkopf. Of his musical talents, his brother David has said that Keith could play any instrument he wanted, including the bagpipes and the French horn. Keith won an Oscar for writing the Best Original Song I’m Easy, from the movie Nashville. Here he is performing the song:
All I Need by Jack Wagner
Jack Wagner started on General Hospital as Frisco Jones in 1983, as part of supercouple Frisco and Felicia Jones. Music factored into Frisco’s role early on, as Frisco was part of the band Blackie and the Riff Raff (Blackie was played by John Stamos.) One of the head honchos at GH hooked Jack up with Quincy Jones, and then his song, All I Need came out in 1984. Here he is performing the song in a scene from 2013 at the General Hospital Nurses’ Ball:
She’s Like The Wind by Patrick Swayze
I remember seeing Patrick for the first time as Darryl Curtis, brother and surrogate parent to all the Greasers in The Outsiders. I was hooked; I was always a good girl and never would have gone out with a Greaser, but I could see there was more to him than his hair product. He became famous in other movies like Dirty Dancing, Roadhouse, and Ghost. She’s Like the Wind was oginally written for a different film (Grandview USA) and was inspired by his wife, Lisa. Check out the video:
Forever by John Stamos
John Stamos played not just one fictional rocker, but two. As Blackie Parrish, he rocked out on GH in his band, Blackie and the Riff Raff. I wasn’t familiar with him then; I was a Guiding Light girl from a very early age. When I first saw him perform, it was as Jesse Katsopolis on Full House, as frontman for the band Jesse and The Rippers. They struggled for fame throughout the series and had one big hit, Forever, a cover of a Beach Boys song written by Dennis WIlson. On the show, they produced a video that featured background vocals by Carl Wilson, Mike Love, and Bruce Johnston. In the style of true 80’s excess, here’s the video of this song: