Bizarre Acting Roles by 20 Famous Musicians

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That's Mr. LaBeef in the top left corner, we presume.
It's a toss-up whether actors or musicians will go to greater lengths to make rent, but some musicians have even found themselves so hard up they've been forced to take an acting gig. Such is the case with the haystack-sized Sleepy LaBeef, who in 1968's The Exotic Ones appeared as the "Swamp Monster," a creature abducted from the Louisiana swamps to a French Quarter strip joint. After that, everything is fine until another dancer crosses Sleepy's favorite stripper and he starts killing people; whoever is sitting on the DVD rights to this masterpiece needs to reissue it right away.

The 25th person inducted into the Rockabilly Hall of Fame and dubbed "rock and roll's last living myth" by Rolling Stone in 2009, in his lifetime the 77-year-old LaBeef has also worked as a lumberjack, land surveyor and semi-pro wrestler. Luckily for us, he stuck to music and plays the Continental Club Friday night with the Wagoneers.

Just off the top of our head, it seems like the following musicians took their roles more for the opportunity to do something different rather than to put food on the table. Still, a hideous swamp monster is about in the same class as some of the parts these moonlighters have taken over the years -- but whether to amuse or torture themselves, we may never know.


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Kris Kristofferson
Mace Montana in Big Top Pee-wee (1988)
In the lesser of the two Pee-wee Herman movies (which nonetheless co-stars Penelope Ann Miller and Valeria Golino), the croaky country singer plays the proprietor of the traveling carnival that plops itself down in Pee-wee's backyard.


John Doe
A.P. Carter in Ring of Fire (forthcoming)
Doe, who infused punk rock with an ever-so-slight twang in seminal L.A. band X, is scheduled to appear as the patriarch of country music's most famous family in this made-for-TV Johnny Cash biopic. Co-starring as A.P.'s daughter June Carter Cash is Jewel, the Jewel, who has added her surname "Kilcher."


Reba McEntire
Heather Gummer in Tremors (1990)
Long before her pair of sitcoms, the down-home country diva made her acting debut as a rifle-totin' mama (married to Family Ties' Michael Gross) in this most excellent giant-worm action flick.

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Continental Club

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2 comments
Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah
Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah topcommenter

Bob Dylan did a pretty good reading of a can of beans I think it was in Pat Garret and Billy the Kid. Also did the killer soundtrack....

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