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People are ever-evolving surprises. Even the most under-the-radar celebrity has a magic trick up their sleeve.
Someone like perpetual funny stoner Seth Rogan is actually really good at pottery and has a ceramic brand called House Plant. Funny enough, the comedian who is known for his pothead tendencies now makes weed paraphernalia like ashtrays and weed stash jars. He also makes funky vases and other home decor. But Rogan isn't the only multi-talented celebrity. John Cena speaks Chinese, and it's always a little bit shocking when the former WWE star breaks out his bilingual skills.
But no one does multi-talent like André 3000. He had a fruitful career as one-half of the rap group OutKast. He's scored himself No. 1 hits and Grammys with his southern-styled gangster rap. But post-OutKast hype, the musician fell off the face of the planet and transformed into a wanderlust-bitten hippie, only ever being spotted in random places around the world in hand with a flute.
The former rap star has even just released his new album "New Blue Sun" which is entirety played on different woodwind instruments but primarily on the flute.
Ever wonder what other celebrities are secretly flutists besides Benjamin and of course, Lizzo? Check 'em out:
1 André 3000
The OutKast rapper, André 3000, has removed himself from the industry for more than a decade. He hadn't released music since the last OutKast album "Stankonia" which was released 17 years ago. But the recluse is back in the spotlight after years out of the public eye spent learning how to play the flute, traveling and featuring on other people's music. In his first-ever solo album "New Blue Sun," the rapper and now flautist, includes his playing on his cedarwood Mayan instrument — no raps. The musician said he started his woodwind journey with the saxophone but he switched to the bass clarinet which led to the flute. “There was something softer and smoother about the tone of woodwinds,” he said. “It just felt right to me.” He spent half of a decade trying to perfect his flute-playing and even tried writing raps but like his first song on the album states: "I Swear, I Really Wanted to Make a “Rap” Album But This Is Literally the Way the Wind Blew Me This Time."
2 Tina Fey
The writer, comedian and actress, Tina Fey moves through the film and television format as a behind-the-scenes juggernaut and an onscreen star. Most known for her shows "30 Rock" and "Saturday Night Live," Fey is also a low-key flutist. Fey played the flute for a year when she was in middle school, and it's made a reappearance in her career a couple of times. She said, "The last time I picked up that flute was [portraying] Sarah Palin on 'Saturday Night Live.' They asked if I could play anything on the flute. I said, 'I can play 'The Hustle.'" So she did. In the skit as Palin, she imitated the Republican politician's beauty contest skills. She also played the flute in a commercial for American Express.
3 Kenny G
Musician Kenny G is known for his extensive career as a smooth jazz saxophonist, composer and producer. He started playing the saxophone when he was just 10 years old. In the '70s the artist played the flute and saxophone in the Seattle funk band Cold, Bold & Together. Kenny G made it mainstream in the '80s after he was signed as a solo artist by Arista Records label president Clive Davis. His debut solo album "Kenny G" was met with positive critical reviews and it reached No. 10 on the Billboard Jazz album charts. Kenny G's sixth album "Breathless" became the best-selling instrumental album ever with 15 million copies sold worldwide. He's been nominated for a Grammy 17 times and has one win.
4 Gwen Stefani
Another prolific musician, Gwen Stefani said she used to play the flute when she was in the eighth grade. The No Doubt lead singer said she struggled to play the flute and piccolo in school.
"I took flute lessons when I was in eighth grade and I really had a hard time learning the flute, so I went on to get into marching band, and I pretended to play the piccolo for a while," she said.
But the singer said she “kind of learned how to play guitar. Enough to write a song. And I wrote a song called ‘Simple Kind of Life’ on the guitar. It’s the only song I’ve ever written completely on my own.”
5 Halle Berry
The "Catwoman" star Halle Berry is mostly known for her extensive career in acting. She even won the Oscar for best actress for the film “Monster’s Ball" in 2002. She broke barriers and is the most recent Black woman to win a best actress Oscar. The decorated actress also can play the flute: "I can play the flute! I played in high school," she said.
The most famous flutist in pop culture is Lizzo. Since blowing up in the pop music scene with her hit "Truth Hurts" in 2019, the singer-rapper-flutist never performs without her flute in hand. The musician was classically trained as a flutist for eight years starting at 10 years old. In college, she studied classical music with a concentration in flute at the University of Houston. She incorporates flute into most of her music and her personal flute, Sasha Flute, even has its own Instagram page. Last year, Lizzo made headlines for playing a 200-year-old crystal flute onstage in Washington D.C. that was lent to her by the Library of Congress. It was gifted to President James Madison in the 1800s by a "French crystal flute designer to celebrate his second term," she said. Lizzo was the first person to ever play the old instrument. She was met with immense backlash from angry conservatives questioning why she was twerking while playing the instrument. “I just twerked and played James Madison’s crystal flute from the 1800s,” Lizzo said. “We just made history tonight."