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Music is part of our daily life in different ways. It stimulates our brain, releases us, activates us, or makes us remember. The influence of music also has a great effect when performing any sporting activity, helping the athlete to mitigate the feeling of fatigue. Sports and music are natural complements to one another, and the combination of the two disciplines creates a perfect harmony.
Did you know that Bob Marley used to be a football player? or that the Spanish singer Julio Iglesias was Real Madrid goalkeeper before he became a musician?. In these two cases, music has turned them into legends. However, there have also been athletes, such as Kobe Bryan, Pelé, Floyd Mayweather Jr., among others who have tried it but their music career has not been remarkable at all.
In this article, we have highlighted seven famous athletes that turned into musicians during or after their successful sports careers.
The one-of-a-kind NBA player Shaquille O’Neal became a singer in 1993 and has released four rap albums. The four-time NBA champion has not left the music, since nowadays he is Djing and performs at festivals as a diesel DJ, with a lot of success.
Puerto Rican-born MLB outfielder Bernie Williams was a five-time All-Star, four-time World Series champion, and 1998 AL batting champion. In 1996 he made his professional debut as a jazz musician, but it was not until 2006 when he retired from baseball. His second album, Moving Forward, released in 2009 was nominated for a Latin Grammy Award.
Damian Lillard is one of the game’s premier point guards. His leap into music has propelled Lillard to become one of the NBA’s best rappers, singing under the pseudonym Dame D.O.L.L.A. He released his first single, “Soldier in the Game” in 2016, and to date, Lillard has released three studio albums, with his most recent one, Big D.O.L.L.A.
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The Golden Boy of Boxing, Oscar De La Hoya had a prolific boxing career where he was named by The Ring magazine as the Fighter of the Year in 1995. In 1997 and ’98, he was also regarded as the world’s top pound-for-pound boxer. As a musician, De La Hoya had a No. 1 hit on the Latin chart, a Bee Gees cover of their song, “Run to Me.” His album, Oscar De La Hoya, was nominated for a Grammy in the Best Latin Pop Album category.
Tempered great tennis player John McEnroe used to launch some impressive tirades against the refs that made calls he didn’t agree with. During his career, he won seven Grand Slam singles titles. ABut McEnroe fans know him for his musical talents. McEnroe learned to play the guitar from his friends Eric Clapton and Eddie Van Halen, and he formed a band with his wife, rock star Patty Smyth, called The Johnny Smyth Band. The two toured through the 1990s.
Canadian race car driver and multiple world championship winner debuted as a singer-songwriter in 2007. He released an acoustic-pop-rock album called “Private Paradise”, featuring himself singing and playing the guitar. Jacques Villeneuve bought his first guitar and started writing songs in 1996, at the beginning of his Formula One career.
The former Real Madrid and PSG Spanish player is a fan of Reggaeton and current Latin rhythms. The sports player made the leap to music in 2013 and created the group called “Big Flow” with which he has already released several songs. Jesé Rodriguez´s nickname as a singer is Jey M and has performed some songs with controversy. He has also several collaborations with Dominican composer and singer Henry Méndez.
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