American actor Johnny Depp wowed fans over the weekend when he performed an impromptu gig with English musician Jeff Beck during the latter’s ongoing tour of England.
On May 29, several social media users uploaded videos of the actor rocking the stage with a guitar. According to sources, the duo sang their 2020 duet Insulationa revamp of the John Lennon classic from 1970.
They also covered What’s going on by Marvin Gaye and small wing by Jimi Hendrix.
Johnny Depp is not only a great actor but also a guitarist
Many Johnny Depp fans are aware that before acting, the star aspired to be a musician. He even testified on the bench about his early musical ambitions, noting that he was not enjoying as much success as he wanted, which prompted him to move on to acting.
Depp has been an avid guitarist since the age of 12, when his mother gave him his first instrument. In an interview with people magazine in 1994, the star revealed he used music to distract himself from trouble, saying he “locked himself” in a room and played guitar.
When Depp first arrived in Los Angeles, he was focusing exclusively on his music career, until his good friend Nicolas Cage persuaded him to become an actor. However, he is still part of the group called Hollywood Vampires, which he formed in 2015 with Alice Cooper and Joe Perry.
Johnny Depp’s passion for the guitar has been praised by many. His bandmate and friend Alice Cooper revealed that more than an actor, he sees Depp as a “guitar player” and defended him for “trying to be a rock star”. While talking about the Mistress Carrie podcast he said:
“He just made an album with Jeff Beck! He’s a much better rock star, and it’s in him, he was a guitarist long before he was an actor. So when he gets on stage with Joe Perry, he can exchange tracks with Joe, and Joe says, ‘Yeah, he’s good.’ And I can totally trust Johnny to take any lead up there.”
Jeff Beck, a British guitar hero, rose to prominence in the 1960s with the Yardbirds and collaborated with David Bowie, Mick Jagger, Stevie Wonder and ZZ Top. He has six Grammys and has been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame twice.
But being a good actor, as in Depp’s case, has also drawn a lot of criticism for the star, who is constantly questioned for his guitar skills. Speaking to New York radio station Q105.7, Cooper defended his bandmate, Depp, saying he’s “as good a guitar player as anybody”, who is recording his gig with Jeff Beck.
“If you play with Jeff Beck, the greatest guitarist of all time, that says a lot about your guitar playing.”
Additionally, over the years, Johnny Depp has also performed in studio recordings with Marilyn Manson and Aerosmith.
It was not only his bandmates, but also other legendary musicians who recognized his talent.
Blue Oyster Cult singer Eric Bloom revealed in an interview with Radio Forrest that he was amazed at how good Depp was on the guitar.
“I did this show with them (Hollywood Vampires) at the end of 2018, over Christmas – with Alice, and yes, it’s surprising, I didn’t know he was (Depp) a very good guitar player.
Moreover, he added that the Pirates of the Caribbean The actor is also very “pleasant” and “approachable” compared to other Hollywood stars.
At the MTV Movie Awards in 2012, where Johnny performed alongside the Black Keys, Joe Perry praised bandmate Depp, calling him “a bold musician and a bold artist with passion.”
Black Keys vocalist and guitarist Dan Auerbach also said:
“He’s legitimately awesome on guitar.”
On a personal level, Johnny Depp is involved in a libel lawsuit with his ex-wife Amber Heard. It started on April 11 in Fairfax, Virginia.
Johnny Depp alleges she defamed him in a December 2018 Washington Post op-ed, in which she claimed to be a victim of domestic violence.
Although Depp is not named in the story, his legal team believe there is a “clear implication” that he is a domestic abuser, which they say is incorrect.
Depp is seeking “at least $50 million” in damages. Amber Heard has sued Johnny Depp for $100 million, seeking immunity for his allegations.