About 2,000 miles exist between Hollywood and Nashville, but that doesn’t mean country singer and actor Christian Kane won’t do his best to be in two places at once. Being both is a dream he’s had for most of his life, so he’s not about to let distance interfere.
“I’m still the 15-year-old kid sitting on the side of his bed dreaming that all this stuff would happen, so you make it work,” said Kane, who has a starring role on TNT’s hit series “Leverage,” opposite Timothy Hutton. “It’s the only thing I’ve ever wanted to do. If you really want something, you’ve got to visualize it, and I’ve been visualizing it every day for years and years.”
He was born in Texas, but raised in Oklahoma on a steady diet of Toby Keith and Garth Brooks. The entertainment bug bit him while attending The University of Oklahoma, so he decided to ditch school to pursue acting in California … but not before telling his father.
“I thought I was going to get punched in the face,” Kane said. “But he was so supportive. I couldn’t believe that this man sitting across from me, my dad, believed in me so much.”
Things moved relatively quickly, no doubt due to his versatility as a performer.
“I was auditioning for a show that called for a musician, and I got the part mostly because of it. I actually owe my whole acting career to me being a singer,” he said. “I just consider myself an entertainer. Forty, 50 years ago in Hollywood, you couldn’t even get a deal if you couldn’t sing and act.”
A string of roles — including the films “Friday Night Lights,” “Just Married” and “Secondhand Lions” — soon followed, but Kane still longed for a serious music career that offered things acting couldn’t.
“You do a show or you do a movie, and you are never there with the people you did it for. You don’t know if they laughed, cried or even liked what you did, but with singing, it’s immediate,” he said. “When you are onstage, putting yourself out there, and if people are digging it, they feed it back to you with energy and this immediate response.”
He’s performed since 1998, but only had time to record one fulllength, self-released album in 2000 in all those years. But things shifted into a higher gear last year, when Kane was able to follow through with a true label debut, “The House Rules.”
“We have the best fan base, and they’ve waited patiently for us to get music out,” he said. “The biggest thing was giving the people what they were owed. They’ve stuck around and been faithful for so long, and that was a beautiful day because I finally made good on my promise.”
Kane remains as active as ever — “Leverage” returns this summer for season four — and he intends on making the most of both.
“Yeah, I’m busy,” he said, “but it’s a good problem to have.”