From rookie to Parent Trap and dozens of other big-screen hits, Dennis Quaid has been a Hollywood A-Lister for decades.
While his film successes have earned him an Emmy and two Golden Globe nominations, did you know he’s also a singer-songwriter, playing music ever since his grandfather bought him his first guitar? ?
Now he is on tour and playing this month on the central and south coasts.
“The only thing I guarantee is a good time, for people who come to see me play,” he told KCLU.
The shows are a mix of some of his favorite rock and roll classics and country standards, as well as his own music, all interspersed with stories about the songs and his movie career.
“The first song I tried to learn when I got my guitar at 12 was Light My Fire, which is a very difficult song for a beginner guitarist,” he explained.
“Johnny Cash was a big influence on me. He wrote stories, which I love to do,” Quaid said.
“Walk The Line has all the guitar chords you could [imagine]. It changes the tone so much. I learned guitar chords playing Walk The Line.”
He also spent time on the south coast filming a big screen biopic about 40and President of the United States – Ronald Reagan, whose final resting place is in Ventura County.
Quaid plays the lead role.
“Ronald Reagan was my favorite president. I voted for him, I think I was 30 at the time.
“I had a flat to rent at the time that I shared with a guy. He was like, ‘Who did you vote for?’ I said, ‘Ronald Reagan.’ He said, ‘You’re expelled from the hippies.’
“But I loved Reagan and voted for him twice.”
Quaid said he originally turned down Reagan’s role in the biopic before changing his mind.
“I felt a pang of fear in my back and that’s when I said yes. That’s usually when I should do something, when it’s out of my comfort zone. .”
He said there was more pressure playing a real character than a fictional one.
“Especially Ronald Reagan, he’s probably one of the most recognizable people on the planet.”
Quaid said he filmed parts of the film at the Reagan Ranch in Goleta.
“It’s not open to the public and it’s an amazing place. Much smaller than I would have thought. I realized when I went there that Reagan was a very humble man.
“The house itself where he had Gorbachev and the Queen of England came too, is probably 1,500 square feet in total.
“They had a king-size bed but it was two single beds pushed together. Their clothes were in the closet like they had just left and were coming back.”
Dennis Quaid’s live show arrives at the Forum Theater in Thousand Oaks on May 14 and SLO Brew Rock in San Luis Obispo on May 17.
Tickets for the tour are on sale now at DennisQuaidIsHere.com.