20 Athletes Who Think They Are Singers

Zachary D. Rymer@zachrymerMLB Lead WriterJanuary 1, 2011

20 Athletes Who Think They Are Singers

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    Athletes are entertainers, there's no doubt about that. But there are a lot of athletes out there who aren't content to thrill people with just their physical abilities. And for whatever reason, there have been all sorts of athletes over the years who fancied themselves as singers and musicians.

    Some of them, such as Bronson Arroyo and Manny Pacquiao, have been surprisingly good in this regard. Others, like Barry Zito, not so much.

    So just for the heck of it, we have decided to compile a list of the top 20 athletes that have made the most memorable forays into music, for good or ill.

    Enjoy.

20. Coco Crisp

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    Coco Crisp made his musical debut on the 2005 album, Oh Say Can You Sing, alongside other baseball stars like Jimmy Rollins and Aubrey Huff.

    I can't say I'm a big fan of his entry titled, "We Got That Thing." It's pretty boring, as I'm afraid most rap is.

    Nevertheless, his baseball career doesn't seem to be going anywhere, so maybe he should think about getting serious with the whole music thing.

19. Aubrey Huff

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    I mentioned that Aubrey Huff was also featured in Oh Say Can You Sing, and here you go.

    Huff is singing John Michael Montgomery's "Letters From Home," and he definitely sounds the part of a country (or is it western?) singer.

    As a matter of fact, the more I listen to him singing, the more I realize that he's really not bad at all. Bravo, Aubrey. Bravo.

18. Bronson Arroyo

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    Cincinnati Reds pitcher Bronson Arroyo actually put out an album of covers cleverly titled, Covering the Bases, when he was still with the Red Sox back in 2005.

    Ever the diehard Red Sox fan, I immediately made acquiring the album a priority and I have to say, it's really not all that bad. He sounds just like Eddie Vedder.

    Besides, "Slide" is a personal favorite and Arroyo, more than anyone, does the song justice.

17. Jacques Villeneuve

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    Do race car drivers count as athletes?

    Sure, why not. After all, it's worth making the exception just so I can throw Jacques Villeneuve.

    "Accepterais-tu" was the first single he ever produced back in 2006 and he later released an album called Private Paradise in 2007.

    While his singing might not be impressive for the music crowd, it's not bad for an athlete.

16. Scott Spiezio

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    Remember Scott Spiezio?

    Of course you do. He's the guy who hit that majestic home run in Game 6 of the 2002 World Series against the Giants. He was also the front man for the garage band Sandfrog.

    This song takes me back to my days as a music journalist, when I would spend my weekends in San Francisco covering crappy bands that played this kind of music. Sandfrog would fit right in with that crowd.

    P.S. If you're a San Francisco musician and I wrote about you, I mean the word "crappy" in the nicest possible way.

15. John Daly

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    I always have to hesitate before I go so far as calling John Daly an athlete. Sure, golf is a sport. But generally speaking, athletes aren't slothful ogres that drink like fiends.

    Now that I've taken my shot, I have to admit that there are definitely worse singers in the world than John Daly. I suppose I am indeed a sucker for blues, but Daly would have me fooled if I happened to hear one of his songs on the radio with no introduction.

    So cheers, John.

14. Jimmy Rollins

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    I also promised you Jimmy Rollins and I shall now deliver Jimmy Rollins.

    While J-Roll's song "Wish List" is one of just two original songs on Oh Say Can You Sing (the other being Crisp's), it's a little lacking in originality.

    "In 1978 a star was born, in 2001 his career was on."

    Guess who he's talking about.

13. Ron Artest

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    This is probably a generalization, but it seems like every single player in the NBA has released a rap album at some point or another.

    That being said, I had a hard time not digging Ron Artest's "Fever." Not because it's a good song, mind you, but because the production values are actually pretty good.

    Love him or hate him, the dude is an entertainer.

12. Barry Zito

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    Barry Zito isn't much of a pitcher any more, since at this point his Cy Young season in 2002 seems like a rather distant memory.

    But Zito has always had a guitar in tow and it seems like he's never shy about whipping it out and singing a song.

    Unfortunately, he's just not that good. But don't take it from me. He does quite a good job arguing the point himself in the attached video.

11. Macho Man Randy Savage

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    If race car drivers count as athletes, than so do professional wrestlers.

    And if Macho Man Randy Savage wasn't already awesome enough, he went and put out a rap album in 2003. Why did he choose rap? Well, apparently it was because he knew he couldn't sing.

    I'm going to stop talking now and just let you enjoy the music.

10. Tony Parker

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    If you saw him out of uniform, San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker could easily be mistaken for a French pop star. He's French, he's handsome and he shacks up with beautiful women.

    Well, that's because he is a French pop star. He released an R&B album called TP not too long ago and one of the tracks was No. 1 in the French charts for a week at one point.

    Not my cup of tea, really. But then again, I don't speak French, so I suppose it's not meant for me.

9. Roy Jones Jr.

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    You know you're dealing with a true lack of creativity when you hear a lyric like, "This is my album!"

    Thank you for that, Roy Jones Jr. After all, I for one always love it when the artist reminds me that I'm listening to their album.

    So yeah, Jones Jr. probably should have stuck to simply knocking people out instead of rapping about it.

    In addition, "Who Wanna Get Knocked Out" just seems like a blatant ripoff of the LL Cool J classic, "Mama Said Knock You Out."

8. Chris Webber

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    Chris Webber is probably one of the most all-around talented big men to come along in the last 20 years or so.

    There, now that I have complimented him, I reserve my right to say that his 1999 album 2 Much Drama really sucked.

    I can't tell whether it's funny or sad that Webber saw fit to go all emo by rapping about how hard his life was at the time.

    Right, because making millions of dollars a year and getting to go home to Tyra Banks is a real drag.

7. Oscar De La Hoya

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    Oscar De La Hoya's self-titled album was released in 2000 and it featured songs written by Diane Warren and the Bee-Gees.

    It was released through EMI and was ultimately nominated for a Grammy.

    If ever you needed proof that the Grammy's are a joke, well, there you go.

6. Manny Pacquiao

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    Manny Pacquiao has a resume that makes other professional athletes look like huge underachievers. Not only is he the best boxer in the world, he is also an accomplished politician, actor and musician.

    Pacman has put out two studio albums in the last four years and has starred in four music videos. Simply put, he's legit.

5. Mike Tyson

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    Phil Collins singing "In The Air Tonight" is practically unbearable.

    Mike Tyson singing "In The Air Tonight," on the other hand, is utterly brilliant.

    True, you could say that Tyson technically doesn't think he's a singer and should thus be disqualified from this list. But come on, his cameo in The Hangover is just too awesome and it never gets old.

4. Kobe Bryant

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    I don't know about you, but I can only make it about 30 seconds into Kobe Bryant's song "K.O.B.E." before I start laughing hysterically.

    If ever there was a player in the NBA that didn't need to pursue side projects such as a rap album, it's Kobe. It makes sense that someone as silly as Ron Artest would do it. But Kobe? Say it ain't so.

    However, the fact that he has Tyra Branks providing background vocals is worthy of a few points.

3. Shaquille O'Neal

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    You didn't think I was going to leave Shaq off the list, did you?

    Indeed, Shaq's most notorious rap is rather NSFW, so instead I present to you "(I Know I Got) Skillz."

    Man do I hope he's referring to his basketball skills. If not, he's clearly in denial.

2. Deion Sanders

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    Out of all the athletes that have dabbled in music throughout the years, you could argue that Deion Sanders is the most talentless member of the bunch.

    I will confess that I've never sat down and listened to the entirety of his 1995 album, Prime Time. I daresay that you can find out everything you need to know about Deion's musical talent—or lack thereof—in "Must Be The Money."

    For one, he's not singing. Heck, he's not even rapping. He's just talking about how much money he has in a really annoying voice.

    Oh well, at least his career on the field was pretty good, to say the least.

1. Carl Lewis

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    The International Olympic Committee voted Carl Lewis as the Sportsman of the Century in 1999.

    Let's just say that it's a good thing singing isn't a sport.

    And this video just doesn't make any sense. Why is he lifting weights? Why is the audio out of sync? Why is he carrying on with that little old lady in the big sunglasses?

    Never mind. Now that this list is complete, I'm going to stab myself in the ear.

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