Eddie Murphy is known for his talent with acting through his voices and characters–he can impersonate anyone, and he can easily become a completely different person. This comedian is also a singer with four albums to his name, so could the star have other hidden talents?
Eddie Murphy can play the piano. Murphy has been a musician since his teenage years, though he’s focused more on being a professional actor and comedian throughout his career.
Read more below to find out about Murphy’s talent for the piano as well as other musical instruments, why he chose to focus on acting and comedy, and his recent return to the world of music.
A Man of Many Talents
From a young age, Murphy was always interested in becoming famous, and has always had the talent to do it. Aside from his comedy, Murphy is a musician, though not one in the public sphere.
He did release three albums very early on in his career before he decided that he would stop releasing music–though that didn’t mean he’d stop making it. “If I never sell another record, I’ll still write two or three songs a week… I’ll do that ‘til I die,” he said.
He’s well known as a singer, but what about his instrumental skills? He plays both the piano and the guitar, though he prefers to play the guitar over any other instrument.
The film is more of a tear-jerker than the comedies that Murphy is known for, but keeps his lesser-known talents of music and jazz in the picture. “It was something I hadn’t done before… Here I was just a character. And I’ve done a lot of different characters,” he said, reflecting on his decision to play the role.
Watch the YouTube video below for a quick shot of Eddie Murphy playing the piano at the end of an episode of Saturday Night Live.
So what made Murphy stop releasing music in the first place?
Acting vs. Music
In the entertainment industry, acting and music can overlap, but stars are usually mainly one or the other. There are actors who sometimes sing and musicians who sometimes act, but not normally entertainers established in both areas equally.
Murphy recognized these categories and wanted to avoid them early on in his career. “I think people put me with Bruce Willis and Don Johnson and people who put out records in the 80s. People put me in that category of actors singing. I don’t want to be in that category so I stopped putting records out,” he explained of his decision to stop releasing music.
For Murphy, developing all of his different talents is important. “I don’t know a creative person who can do just one thing. Whatever you get known for, that’s how you pay the bills, that’s the one that you wind up doing and you don’t nurture the other thing.”
“I just never stopped nurturing the thing that I was doing since I was a teenager. I never stopped playing guitar and I never stopped writing,” he said.
And while he did stop putting out music, he never stopped making it, even having a recording studio installed at his home in Beverly Hills so he could continue doing what he loves.
He’s also talked about how his acting has inspired his music. “All my music is really, really different. I can go in different directions. I think it’s because of my ear. I think it’s from doing impressions.”