In Hear This, A.V. Club writers sing the praises of songs they know well—some inspired by a weekly theme and some not, but always songs worth hearing. This week, we asked: “What’s your favorite song sung by an actor?”
Not wanting to cheat and write about a musician who happened to have a couple of acting roles—ahem, Josh—I scoured my iPod trying to find something that works. Rilo Kiley? Sure, but they hadn’t been actors for years. The Crazy Heart soundtrack? Haven’t listened to it in a long time. “Man Of Constant Sorrow”? Sung by ringers. Then I saw “Dirk Diggler” listed among the artists on my iPod. Specifically, it’s a 1:11 audio rip of “Feel The Heat,” the awesomely terrible song from Boogie Nights that Mark Wahlberg and John C. Reilly workshop in the studio during the height of their coke-fueled self-delusion. Wahlberg tunelessly sings, “The heat will rock you / The heat will roll you / Baby don’t you know my heat will move your soul? / C’mon c’mon c’mon!” Boogie Nights also features Wahlberg similarly caterwauling through a cover of Stan Bush’s “The Touch,” though that’s perhaps outshined by Reilly’s awesome dancing in that scene. (“You think the bass is taking away from the vocal?”) When Jimmy Kimmel’s band used “The Touch” as Wahlberg’s walk-on music in January, he headed over and sang. Too bad Reilly wasn’t there.