Little Joe Sure Can Sing
November 30, 2019 12:43 PM   Subscribe

You may know Joe Pesci as an actor (Raging Bull, Goodfellas, Lethal Weapon, The Irishman, etc.) but his main career & interests had always been as a singer and musician. At 16, he was friends with Frankie Valli and in 1959 had a hand in the formation of the Four Seasons. In 1968 he put up a collection of pop songs covers. After My cousin Vinny, came an album by Vincent LaGuardia Gambini (NSFW). His new album of evergreens just dropped yesterday. Much more about it at this Esquire article from today.

The Irishman at Fanfare.
posted by growabrain (13 comments total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
Huh! I had no idea about this, and now I'm fascinated! Thanks for posting!

(His music is quite good, too!)
posted by hippybear at 1:03 PM on November 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

Man, The Irishman is good, and Joe Pesci pulls his weight in it.
posted by Bee'sWing at 1:16 PM on November 30, 2019

Dude, this is an awesome post.
posted by WCityMike at 2:04 PM on November 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

Re: the Frankie Valli connection: Joe Pesci shows up as a character in Jersey Boys. "Yeah, that one," says the guy onstage. For some reason it seemed weirder to me to see Joe Pesci as a character in a musical than, say, Frankie Valli or any of the other Four Seasons.
posted by jquinby at 2:55 PM on November 30, 2019 [3 favorites]

I think he's funny.
posted by charlesminus at 4:57 PM on November 30, 2019 [3 favorites]

What jquimby said about Joe as a musical character too, I thought that when I saw it.
posted by jenfullmoon at 5:28 PM on November 30, 2019

This blows my tiny little mind. I love it.
posted by toastedbeagle at 5:29 PM on November 30, 2019

I’ll take this as an opportunity to plug the wonderful Bizarre Albums podcast, which did a great episode on Pesci’s musical career, contextualizing it beyond the novelty songs on the Vincent LaGuardia Gambini album.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 5:31 PM on November 30, 2019 [1 favorite]

Unfortunate that it's not mentioned in the Esquire article, but Pesci and gangster character actor supreme Frank Vincent (a.k.a. Billy Batts of "shinebox" fame) actually had a duo comedy / music act in the 1970. They billed themselves as "Vincent & Pesci." Even cut a terrible novelty record.

(They both also had supporting roles in a crummy low-budget movie called The Death Collector, which Robert De Niro saw by complete accident. That's how they were both discovered.)
posted by alexoscar at 7:00 PM on November 30, 2019 [4 favorites]

I'm seriously disappointed that neither this post or the article mention his amazing attempt at breaking into rap/hip-hop. Although, to be fair, it seems like someone has gone to great lengths to scrub the actual music video from the internet. It's only available via an ancient dailymotion upload.
posted by prosopagnosia at 1:13 AM on December 1, 2019 [4 favorites]

After listening to the "Pesci... Still Singing" playlist twice, I don't think I have to do a new Chet Baker FPP now, as I was planning
posted by growabrain at 2:48 AM on December 1, 2019

Whoa, autotuned to bits on the new album. Unless he was totally phoning it in in the studio this time around, I'm sure he'd sound OK without all the sweetening.
posted by emelenjr at 5:46 PM on December 1, 2019

Little Joe Ritchie, Pesci's stage name on his 1968 album, was probably a nod to the jazz singer, Little Jimmy Scott.
posted by jonp72 at 6:09 PM on December 1, 2019

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