Music instruments played: ‘Harmonica. The blues guitar: very badly.’ – Handwritten statsheet 1987

‘When I get tired of switching the channels, I write bad songs and play the guitar. I take it seriously, but I suck. I’d be a musician if I could, and I hope to play Chet Baker in a movie one day.’ – Film Review 1994

Your character was a musician in Johnny Suede—can you really play? ‘Not really, although I love to play around with it just for fun at home. But I’m pretty bad at it.’ – 1994

Is it true you’re a rock-star wannabe? ‘Yeah. I take it seriously but I suck. I would be a musician if I could but, oh my God, it would probably turn out like Don Johnson or something. You know those neighbors who play loud screeching guitar and you have to shout at them to turn it down? That’s me.’ – Sky Magazine 1994

I write really bad songs. I don’t know what else you could call them.’ – Sky Magazine 1994

Asked about his greatest passions, acting fails to get a mention. Instead, Pitt babbles excitedly about music. He owns three guitars but swears his main connection is purely as a listener. – Rolling Stone 1994

“I gave up the dream of making music professionally. I’m just not good enough. But sometimes I play at home, when no one listens, just like this. That’s fun.” – Cinema 1999

Lately, he’s been rising early to play his guitar, a pursuit he took up toward the beginning of the pandemic. He’ll come down to the living room, where he’ll light a fire and strum a bit. – GQ 2022

As his friend Spike Jonze, the filmmaker, recalls, sometimes Pitt makes music too: “The other day he came over obsessing over the song ‘Unconditional I (Lookout Kid)’ that Arcade Fire released two days earlier, and we sat and listened to it and played guitar and sang along to it a dozen times just to get to experience it inside out. I could feel the song spilling out of him.” – GQ 2022