The first thing you need to know about Jim Belushi is
that he’s a performer. Not an actor, not a comedian, not a singer, but a
performer. Which is pretty much all those things put together and multiplied
by two or five or something. The second thing you need to know- and this is
in some ways more important than the first thing- is that he has absolutely
no shame. None. Zip. Zero.
Add those two things together and you have a pretty good
working definition of that most indescribable of qualities known as
presence. And, as anyone who’s spent two minutes with the guy knows,
Jim Belushi’s got it. Big time!
So here’s this guy, this presence, disregarding any and
all warning signs and diving into life headfirst. From the live stages of
Second City and Saturday Night Live, to the soundstages of "About Last
Night", "K-9", "Mr. Destiny", "Return to Me," and, most recently, starring
in ABC TV's breakout comedy series of 2002 "According to Jim", he has taken
everything life’s thrown at him and hit it out of the park. And, by the way,
he's been having a blast.
Speaking of "According to Jim", the hit series happens to
be very heavily influenced by the Sacred Hearts. Jim Belushi and the boys wrote and
recorded the music for the show, and John and Tony are regular members of
the cast. Who the hell are John and Tony? We'll get to that later.
So anyway, one day Dan Aykroyd asks him to join the Blues
Brothers Band as Brother Zee- a possibly daunting proposition, even for Jim Belushi.
Sure, he’d been on stage for years, but comedy and theatre are one thing
(well, two things) but it’s not like he’d ever fronted a blues band before.
However, in order to be completely shameless, one is
required to be completely fearless, which Jim Belushi, of course, is, so he takes a
beat, looks at Aykroyd and says the same thing he’s been saying all his
life. "Yeah, what the hell…why not? Sounds like a whole lotta fun!"
So, to get ready to play with the Blues Brothers, Jim Belushi
crashes rehearsals of the House of Blues’ own band, The Sacred Hearts. He
sits in with the band, laughing, acting, singing, dancing, in a word -
performing. As it turns out, Jim was right because those rehearsals were "a
whole lotta fun." So much fun, in fact, that for the last seven years the
band has been Jim Belushi and the Sacred Hearts.
They’ve played for Al Gore, Governor Gray Davis and many
other politicos. President Clinton is a really big fan and since one of
these days he’s going to be out of a day job, he’ll probably want to sit in
(Jim says he’ll consider it). They play all the House of Blues venues, all
the casinos, many benefits and hundreds of corporate events for the Fortune 500 companies.
Word on the street is if it’s going to be a tough audience, get Jim Belushi
and the Sacred Hearts . . . a butt hasn’t been born that can stay in a chair
through their first set.
Jim Belushi sings, talks, flirts (again, completely
shameless), dances on table tops and does at least one back flip every show.