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Keanu Reeves: Hollywood stars who have also turned their hands to music

The Matrix star is unveiling a new album with his band Dogstar

Napa, USA. 27th May, 2023. Dogstar - Keanu Reeves performs on Day 2 of BottleRock Napa Valley Music Festival at Napa Valley Expo on May 27, 2023 in Napa, California. Photo: Chris Tuite/imageSPACE Credit: Imagespace/Alamy Live News
Keanu Reeves on stage with Dogstar. (Imagespace/Alamy Live News)

Keanu Reeves’ band Dogstar have announced they are returning with a new album and tour, posting on Instagram: “WE ARE BACK!!!”

The Matrix star has always been into both acting and music, and the band did well in the late 90s, even appearing at Glastonbury.

In recent years it is Reeves’ big screen work that has seemed to take centre stage, with films like John Wick and Bill And Ted Face The Music.

Read more: John Wick: Could Chapter 5 be back on the cards?

But now, 23 years after Dogstar last released an album, his music is back in the spotlight.

Reeves isn’t the only star with a music side hustle, with plenty working in the music industry when they aren’t on camera.

We have a look at some of them.

Jack Black

02 June 2023, Bavaria, Nuremberg: Jack Black, guitarist and singer, during the performance of the band Tenacious D on the Utopia Stage. About 60,000 visitors are expected at the open-air festival Rock im Park. Photo: Daniel Vogl/dpa (Photo by Daniel Vogl/picture alliance via Getty Images)
Jack Black is a guitarist and singer in Tenacious D. (Daniel Vogl/picture alliance via Getty Images)

Singer Jack Black has been in the band Tenacious D for almost 30 years and has long managed to successfully juggle his music and movie careers.

The 53-year-old has made plenty of films that have nothing to do with music but has also shot some that have showcased his talents, such as his 2003 hit School Of Rock and 2006’s Tenacious D In The Pick Of Destiny.

Black is often on the road with Tenacious D and the rockers have released four studio albums, with the most recent, Post-Apocalypto, out in 2018.

Best known singles include POD and Rize Of The Fenix.

Johnny Depp

HELSINKI, FINLAND - JUNE 19: Johnny Depp performs on stage with Jeff Beck (not pictured) during the Helsinki Blues Festival at Kaisaniemen Puisto on June 19, 2022 in Helsinki, Finland. (Photo by Venla Shalin/Redferns)
Johnny Depp performs on stage during the Helsinki Blues Festival. (Redferns)

Johnny Depp originally dropped out of high school because he wanted to make music, but when Hollywood beckoned he didn’t let go of his dream of being a rock star.

He has been in a string of bands over the years, including Pink Grenade, Rock City Angels and Hollywood Vampires – and played the guitar for Oasis’s Fade Away.

Last year he took to the stage in the UK with his late friend Jeff Beck, after winning his defamation case against ex Amber Heard.

The pair went on to perform gigs together and they even released a collaborative album.

However, Beck sadly died in January this year aged 78 after contracting meningitis.

Juliette Lewis

Juliette Lewis performs at Fleetwood Mac Fest at The Fonda on Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Rich Fury/Invision/AP)
Juliette Lewis is known for both acting and singing. (Invision/AP)

Juliette Lewis made a huge splash as a teenager in Robert De Niro thriller Cape Fear (1991) and was once one of Hollywood’s 'It girls'.

In the early noughties she formed rock band Juliette and the Licks and they released several singles and two albums.

At one point she went through a bit of a lull when it came to making films and later told The Independent: “I had to give up movies.

"That's what I had to do. All I wanted was a future that allowed me to make records - all this primal energy people respond to in me and my characters is in my music, ten times more."

Juliette and the Licks went their separate ways in 2009, although later reunited.

Lewis has also continued with her solo career, unveiling first solo EP Future Deep in 2016.

Macaulay Culkin

CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 13:  Macaulay Culkin of The Pizza Underground performs on stage at Riot Fest Chicago 2014 at Humboldt Park on September 13, 2014 in Chicago, United States.  (Photo by Daniel Boczarski/Redferns via Getty Images)
Macaulay Culkin was in The Pizza Underground. (Redferns via Getty Images)

Home Alone star Macaulay Culkin was a founder of comedy rock band The Pizza Underground, which parodied tracks by the Velvet Underground.

The band, formed a decade ago, became a bit of a cult favourite, getting attention for doing things like dishing out pizza at their gigs.

It wasn’t all plain-sailing, with the band getting booed off stage at a festival in the UK.

By 2018 they had gone quiet, and Culkin said in an interview that year that the Pizza Underground was no more.

Russell Crowe

AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 26:  Photo of RUSSELL CROWE; Russell Crowe and his band: 30 Odd Foot of Grunts, Mercury Lounge, Melbourne - Australia  (Photo by Martin Philbey/Redferns)
Russell Crowe said music is 'like an adrenaline shot' for him. (Redferns)

Crowe provided lead vocals for Australian band 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts, which charted with the single Mission Beat in 2004 and released three albums in the late 90s and early noughties.

It must have been quite a juggle for the star, because at the same time he’d found his sweet spot in Tinseltown and was churning out massive movies like Gladiator, Proof Of Life and A Beautiful Mind.

Crowe has suggested he will never hang up his mic as he gets so much from singing.

Australia’s Sunday Telegraph quoted him as saying earlier this year: “Music is like an adrenaline shot, rock and roll is my theatre, and instead of doing a season of Shakespeare in my time off like some actors do, I play music.”

Ryan Gosling

London, UK. 12th July, 2023. Ryan Gosling attends the ''Barbie'' European Premiere at Cineworld Leicester Square in London. (Credit Image: © Fred Duval/SOPA Images via ZUMA Press Wire) EDITORIAL USAGE ONLY! Not for Commercial USAGE!
Ryan Gosling is part of rock duo Dead Man's Bones. (SOPA Images via ZUMA Press Wire)

Ryan Gosling is definitely best known for the big screen, where he is currently starring as Ken in the hotly anticipated Barbie movie.

But what many fans may not know is that he’s also in a band called Dead Man’s Bones with his friend Zach Shields.

The rock duo got going in 2007 and unveiled their eponymous album two years later.

Read more: Ryan Gosling says house was filled with Barbie products before he played Ken

Gosling, 42, has managed to marry his two loves on some occasions, like using his song In the Room Where You Sleep in the soundtrack to 2013 film The Conjuring.

Watch: Keanu Reeves to release first Dogstar album in 23 years