Have you heard Hugh?
Hugh Laurie's been getting a lot of attention. He's turned from a man with a limp who can put on a decent American accent, to a man with a guitar who can put on a decent American accent. The difference is that Hugh Laurie is pretending to be a doctor in House, whereas on his album Let Them Talk he is playing himself.
Are his efforts worthy of the wall-to-wall press coverage he has enjoyed? It has been extensive. Spread before him have been the country's most popular radio and TV shows on which to plug his product, plus articles galore and some nice gigs. This is the sort of promotional tour normally reserved for established acts with a batch of platinum-selling albums on their CV. So how come Hugh got so lucky? I mean nice chap and all that; but isn't he just another middle-aged bloke with a musical hobby?
Let's face it, the world has probably not woken up to find a new musical genius in its midst. He is good, but there are better. Some, like him, are new acts, but they will receive one percent of the media coverage afforded to the ex-Cambridge Footlight. But then Hugh is in Susan Boyle territory.
That is someone who can sing, but whose back story is even better. Susan Boyle's is well known. She was cast as the odd-ball spinster who could hold a note but was trapped within her circumstances. But then a handsome Prince with a t-shirt and high-waisted trousers came along and kissed poor Susan and turned her into a pot of gold.
If anything Hugh Laurie's story is even better. He morphed from that comic buffoon Bertie Wooster on ITV, into one of the most highly regarded (and paid) straight actors in America. A Brit who's shown the friend we most want to impress that we can mix it with in their league. What's more he's cracked America by pretending to be American (just like Dominic West, another old-Etonian actor, did in The Wire). Nice one Hugh, we never doubted you.
And just to prove it we will give you as much media coverage as you like for your side projects.