The following are probably better known for other things than being in a band. But they were (or are). Did you know that this lot also had musical credentials..?
1. Ricky Gervais – Seona Dancing
Although Ricky Gervais’ iconic David Brent character loved the idea of being a pop star, there may have been a reason that Ricky gave him musical aspirations… Long before The Office, Ricky was in 1980s synth duo Seona Dancing. They didn’t bother the top 40 though, as their single Bitter Heart was their most successful and only got to No 79 in the charts. There was also no sign of that famous David Brent dance.
2. Russell Crowe – The Ordinary Fear of God
Some filmgoers were surprised to hear Russell Crowe belting out tunes in Les Miserables. But Russell’s no stranger to music. He was part of Australian rock band 30 Odd Foot of Grunts (abbreviated to TOFOG) since it formed in 1992. Russell performed lead vocals and played guitar for the band, which in 2000, performed shows in London, Los Angeles and at Stubbs in Austin, Texas. In 2005, TOFOG dissolved and a new band emerged: The Ordinary Fear of God which shares the TOFOG abbreviation. The Ordinary Fear of God performed a sold-out series of dates of Australia in 2005 and in 2006, returned to the US to promote their new release My Hand, My Heart with another sold-out US Tour.
3. Jamie Oliver – Scarlet Division
Jamie Oliver and his friend Leigh Haggerwood formed Scarlet Division at the age of 13 in 1989. Jamie was on the drums with Leigh on keyboards. During the 90’s, they played gigs throughout the UK until Jamie got discovered by a TV producer that led to the success of his first love, cooking. When Jamie appeared in cooking show, Oliver’s twist, Leigh composed the music for the show including Just the Start, the theme tune performed by Scarlet Division. Sony Music signed them, but their song Sundial only reached 42 in the charts, so wasn’t enough to stay on in the music business and Jamie was advised to quit the band and the other members did the same.
4. Hugh Laurie – The Copper Bottom Band
Hugh has played the piano most of his life and in 2011 he released New Orleans Blues album Let them talk which became a global hit. Following that success Hugh released his second album Didn’t it Rain in May 2013 with the musical support of his band, The Copper Bottom Band. The release of the album was followed by a major UK, European and US tour.
5. Patsy Kensit – Eighth Wonder
In 1983, Jamie Kensit auditioned his sister Patsy, then 16, for the job of lead singer in his band, Spice. After a line-up change in 1984, they renamed themselves Eighth Wonder. It wasn’t until 1988 that they had UK chart success with I’m Not Scared which got to No7 followed by Cross My Heart which got to No13. Although the band’s success quickly waned after that.
6. Michelle Collins – Mari Wilson and The Wilsations
Following her performance in the 1978 video for the Squeeze song Up the Junction, Michelle joined Mari Wilson and The Wilsations as backing singer Candide. The band spent 18 months touring the country and working with other popular artists of the time such as Marc Almond and Level 42.
7. Damon Hill – The Conrods
F1 driver Damon formed punk band Sex Hitler and the Hormones with some friends while at school. His Formula One success later meant that he got the chance to play guitar with several famous musicians, including George Harrison. After his retirement from the track at the end of the 1999 season, Damon devoted more time to music and formed his own band, The Conrods. The band was active between 1999 and 2003 and played well-known cover versions of hits from famous bands including The Rolling Stones,The Beatles and The Kinks.