Cillian Murphy has revealed he almost went down the path of music rather than acting after bagging a record deal when he was a teenager.
The Peaky Blinders star, 44, was in a band called The Sons of Mr Green Genes which he described as being ‘influenced by acid jazz’, adding that they ‘were probably a bit late to the party with that sound’.
Speaking on BBC Radio 6 Music, Cillian explained: ‘I played in bands in my teens and then when I was about 18 or 19, we were offered a deal and it didn’t work out. So that was the end of the dream.’
The band got their name from a song on Frank Zappa’s 1969 album Hot Rats, and Cillian described how they sounded: ‘There was a lot of instrumental music and a lot of excessively long guitar solos and stuff like that.’
Despite the record deal not working out for them, Cillian and his bandmates have remained great friends – something he isn’t sure would have happened if they had made it.
‘It’s a treacherous industry, isn’t it?’, he admitted. ‘All the lads that I was in the band with, we’re [still] such good friends now, and I don’t know if that would have actually stayed the case if we’d have been put through the jaws of the music industry as youngsters.’
Cillian went on to discover his true calling was acting, and plays the lead role of Tommy Shelby in Peaky Blinders.
Speaking about the modern music used on the show, which is set in post-war Birmingham in 1919, he admitted he wasn’t sure about having the Arctic Monkeys or The White Stripes on the soundtrack.
He told Steve Lamacq on on BBC Radio 6: ‘I have to be honest I thought it was a terrible idea when someone told me first that it would be contemporary music against a period story.
‘I didn’t think it would work but then something happened where it just clicked and we always – you know the people that made the show – we always talked about whether a tune is “Peaky” or “not Peaky’.”
‘You just seemed to know whether it is and it’s really hard to define what that is but I think it seems to be an outlaw quality to the music.
‘So, that’s always been the sort of artists that have worked on the soundtrack and the sort of artists that are attracted to it as well.’
Cillian Murphy is hosting a 12-episode Limited Edition music show on 6 Music which begins on October 19.
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