Scott Bakula Explains To William Shatner Why He Never Sang On Star Trek Enterprise

Scott Bakula and William Shatner didn’t talk a lot of Star Trek on the episode of Shatner’s Raw Nerve which aired last night, but the pair of former Trek captains did have an exchange involving singing on Enterprise and Red Shirts. Details below.


Shatner and Bakula Talk Star Trek Singing and The Enterprise Experience

It was a meeting of the captains of the orignalStar Trek and Star Trek Enterprise on last night’s episode of the Bio Channel chat show Shatner’s Raw Nerve. William Shatner and Scott Bakula started off with Bakula talking about how his start in musical theater, and how when he moved to Quantum Leap he worked in his singing on the time-travel series (see below). Then Bill turned the subject to Star Trek with this exchange:

William Shatner: On Star Trek you never sang?

Scott Bakula: No we didn’t get there.

William Shatner: Why didn’t they let you sing?

Scott Bakula: We all thought it would happen at some point and we were all looking forward to it. We only – I shouldn’t say only – we had four seasons.

William Shatner: That’s one more than I had [laughter] Four seasons is like a lifetime. It took you four seasons to work up to the idea that maybe you could sing as Captain Archer?

Scott Bakula: I don’t know what their thoughts were about it. We got so wrapped up in other story stuff that it seemed really inappropriate while I was trying to save the entire human race and the planet and start the Federation that I took an episode off to sing. It would be like – ‘and then he went off to play golf’.

William Shatner: Did you enjoy the experience?

Scott Bakula: I am in awe of the whole thing. Did you dream you would grow up to be a Star Trek captain? No…I loved the show, and loved you guys, and would love to be on the ship with you – not in a red shirt. [laughter]  But I never thought in my wildest dreams that I would be connected to it.

We don’t have video of the Star Trek exchange (yet), but Bio has a clip clip of Bill talking to Scott about his singing.

Click to see at

The Scott Bakula episode of Shatner’s Raw Nerve repeats on the Bio Channel Saturday, March 5th at 8:30AM and Tuesday March 8th at 3:30AM. The Bio Channel also puts full episodes up on the official site, but the Bakula episode is not yet available. Later this season Bio will air episodes with Shatner interviewing Star Trek’s Walter Koenig and Next Gen’s LeVar Burton. 

More to come with Bill and Scott (and others) in "Captains" documentary

There was not much Star Trek talk with Scott Bakula on Shatner’s Raw Nerve, but that is likely because last June the two had already shot an extended chat on the subject for the documentary The Captains. The new doc directed by Shatner will have him chatting with Star Trek’s captains and others in the world of Trek. The Captains is still in development but should be released later this year. TrekMovie should have an update on this exciting project in the coming weeks.    

Shatner and Bakula spotted filming Captains doc last summer

Scott sings "Imagine"

From the Quantum Leap episode "The Leap Home Part 1" from 1990 – jump to 5:00 minute mark to get to the singing.






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o.O singing?

I never realized that the format of the Shat’s show involved sitting so awkwardly.

You rarely see people interviewed in a posture where they could be, for example, making out.

Bakula’s voice is fantastic!

Scott is a Hell of an Actor. The Episode on Leap when he leaped back home was a very touching one. I think he did great at being Capt Archer and i for one would love to see him once again sit in the Chair for another series but set in the Romulan War on the enterprise.

Come to think of it, we have a number of singers associated with Star Trek, don’t we?

Mr. Shatner, yes, of course, with his album that included the kitsch-tastic rendition of “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds”….

Mr. Nimoy with that album I’m trying hard not to remember…. also apparently made into a contemporaneous video….

Ms. Nichols, also a singer….

Ol’ Yellow Eyes, of course — and we all know who he is….

And Scott Bakula, too, apparently.

Croonsters all. I’m sure I’m missing one or two.

Hopefully, the writers of the Star Trek won’t be tardy about getting the alternate timeline Captain Kirk to do some singing, maybe with a guitar in hand. I suspect that Kirk, coming from an Iowa farming background, might be a bit partial to a little country pop/rock… A suitable song could be composed for the occasion. Rumour has it that Chris Pine can sing and play guitar. See. Done.

Oh, Bob and co, so much to do and so little time…but you’ll make it, I’m sure. We’re right behind you.

We’ve had some talented singers in “Trek”: Bakula, Shatner, Spiner, Picardo… Which ones am I missing?


Cirroc Lofton at one point attempted a rap career. Tim Russ put out a couple of records. He plays the guitar.


Nichelle Nichols, Leonard Nimoy, James Darren and I am sure they are still more…

The Bakula segment of The Captains is probably pretty good or they wouldn’t have gotten back together on Raw Nerve. I wonder if Shatner asked any other or all of the captains to be on Raw Nerve too?

Avery Brooks likes to play jazz.

Oh yeah, James Darren. How could I forget James Darren? And Robert Picardo.

A musical bunch, Trek people.

And I love music.

If you think about it, many talented people have talents and interests in more than just one area. This even crosses the so-called left-brain / right-brain divide. Mathematicians, for example, may seem far too nerdy to enjoy music, but many seem to appreciate the sheer elegance and intellectual appeal of Bach. I suspect as well that there are plenty of scientists and engineers who have hobbies you wouldn’t expect, such as participating in rock band, etc. Call it a hunch, but I’ve seen many references to similar things.

Brilliant people are often brilliant in more than one area. Which, given the plethora of talents we see in Trek folks, is a pretty big credit to Trek.

It also means that cutbacks in music education in public schools, which I think can inspire intellectual development in unexpected areas, is short-sighted and unfortunate. But that’s another story.

Vaughn Armstrong and a few other Star Trek alumni sing at Star Trek conventions.

So Star Trek is no stranger to singing.

Bring back Archer!!!

Scott sang in “Cat’s Don’t Dance” too. I watched that movie a couple weeks ago and did a double take when I saw his name.

Don’t forget Anthony Montgomery also has a rap album

I think Chase Masterson sang in her movie “Yesterday Was A Lie”.

There’s a great video of Avery Brooks and Frakes singing “Aint Misbehavin'” at some con somewhere.

Wow! So many!

That rumour about Chris Pine? This song is called someday Came Today, performed by Chris Pine…

Anyone for a cuppa and some chocolate cake?

I sometimes sing in the shower.

Here’s another one – in one episode of DS9, Nana Visitor sang “Fever” — pretty awesomely!

I really wish the writers of Enterprise had let more of Bakula’s personality into Archer’s character. I’ve seen him be charming, funny, and likable in other roles, but Archer was just soooo stiff.

Letting Trek actors sing leads to garbage like “The Picard&Data Variety Show” debacle!

#20 OK Chris with-no-last-name

I have read that Chris Pine once said that he sang in the shower as well…:)

I liked Archer, and the way Bakula played him.

About the youtube link I just posted. If you have already watched the video, it has scenes from Star Trek ’09. Listen to the words.

(I believe this song was composed for Chris Pine to perform in an Indie movie that he made just prior to making Star Trek.)

He has a nice singing voice, imo.

at 12

You are correct in saying that there are many people who have varied interests, some almost at conflict with their professions.

I take myself as an example, a scientist who competes in paintball tournaments and plays competitively every weekend.

We did not know anything about Enterprise when it first screened here. The drawcard was actually Scott Bakula. We had liked him in Quantum Leap and so wanted to see what he would do in this new series. When we realised that it was actually Star Trek taking place in the time before the TOS series with Kirk and co., we were even more keen to watch Enterprise. I liked most of the Enterprise series.

27 – I remember being pretty excited about Enterprise too, for all the reasons you state, and SO ready for a change after Voyager. Well, the pilot was underwhelming. The uniforms, the frakkin’ baseball caps! (They faded away pretty fast as I recall). I think I stayed with it 1st season, and then never came back.

I saw a few 4th season episodes, such as “In A Mirror, Darkly”, which were very interesting. If they had a 5th season, I’d have wanted to see more of that Constitution ship.

Dont forget Rene Auberjonis, also a singer as well, both in movies and on Broadway.
How can you forget his great performance as Chef Louis singing Les Poissons in Disneys the Little mermaid.

Also you left off the James Darren as well.

Rene also had a great song in the broadway show City of Angels

I would love to see a Bakula cameo in the next ST picture.

Shame that Shatner on Enterprise episode didn’t work out. Having him turn out to be Chef was a better idea than having Frakes in the galley. I mean we’ve seen the why Riker scrambles eggs!

*Bah* 32. “I mean we’ve seen the WAY Riker scrambles eggs!”

Scott Bakula is a class act so will be good to see that episode of Raw Nerve in full!

And that is one of my favourite episodes of Quantum Leap :-)

#2 – I disagree about the seating on Shat’s show. I think it’s more accessible, more personal, than any arrangement I’ve seen on interview shows. Sure, we get interviewed for jobs by guys sitting at desks, but is that natural for other conversations? Nope.

It’s one of my favorite things about the show, to be honest. Ah, the varieties of opinion! Viva la difference! IDIC and all that….lol

Of course, you are right about something: It’s a GREAT setup for making out. I need one of these in my bachelor pad (next to my groovy etchings…haha).

Forgot about that Captains docu. Want to see it.

Scott Bakula seems like such a genuniely nice guy…to the point where he wasn’t believable as “Evil Archer” in the Mirror, Mirror episodes. Really liked the concept and most of the execution but some of his scenes are unintentionally funny…..IMHO.

Wonder why he didn’t turn the tables on The Shat and ask him why he couldn’t come to terms for a guest appearance on Enterprise. He could have had a HUGE impact on ratings and possibly save the show. But as I recall, Shat wanted too much money. Seems like pretty self-serving behavior given that the franchise and it’s fans made him a multi-millionaire. Oh well. Time for me to get over it, I guess.

Every Trek captain sings and sounds good except for Kate “cough, cough” Mulgrew, resident chain smoker!!!

Jeri Ryan also sings. She did some on Voyager and she has a beautiful voice.

If you haven’t heard Bakula sing “big”, find the soundtrack album for QUANTUM LEAP and the track “Medley from Man of La Mancha”. Bakula’s got some pipes, man.

Video (of sorts) on YouTube; just the music, no visuals. There’s visuals from the ep but not in English, oddly:

Why the hell do the actors in ST think we want to hear them sing in the series? Can you think of anything more cheesy than Brent Spiner singing “Blue Skies” in one of those dreadful TNG films.

Seriously, who ever thought it would be a good idea to have any of these characters sing in any version of Star Trek?

Is it any wonder that the series crashed and burned until Abrams and co. revived it?

Scott Bakula sang impressively during his memorable guest appearance in an episode during the 4th season of “Boston Legal”. Unfortunately I can’t find a Youtube clip anywhere, but he was simultaneously playing the piano in a bar during a “non-date date” with Candice Bergen’s character Shirley Schmidt. Bakula’s character was a now-married ex of Shirley, although to all intents and purposes he had an open marriage.

Bakula played one hell of a lawyer in that episode, on the opposite side of the trial to Alan Shore (played of course by the excellent James Spader). It was one of the few instances when the usually quick-thinking/fast-talking Alan was shown to have met his match. Bakula was surprisingly good as a brilliant, charismatic attorney with a razor-sharp mind and, although the morally-ambiguous character obviously wasn’t a deranged psychopath like “Mirror Archer”, Bakula was still very good playing against type and he managed to pull it off very well indeed.

I miss Quantum Leap. Not only was it a great show, it showed off Bakula’s amazing ability to play so many diverse roles.


You got that right, Harry! You’d think they’d have learned their lessons after Uhura’s fern-dance debacle in “The Final Frontier”!

Everything I hear about Bakula on Enterprise has always been good. His co-stars always said he was a class act and just an all around good guy. I almost wish he got a cameo in the next Star Trek movie just so he could get a proper send off other than “These are the Voyages…”

I’ve been watching Enterpise lately and like the way Bakula portrayed Archer over the 4 years. At first he is naive and wants to be an explorer, but as the series goes on he learns quickly the cold hard facts about space exploration, and that not everyone is your friend. During the Xindi year he resorts to torture a few times to try to save Earth and in the 4th season episode “Home” you learn how that affected him and the regret he feels. Then he has to deal with additional threats that eventually leads to making new friends and enemies. I thought Bakula did a good job of showing the evolution of his character over the years and would have loved to see how he handled the Romulan War on screen. As it is, the only insight we get on that is the continuing novels.

#41 I hardly think seeing one or two of the actors also sing and/or play an instrument caused Star Trek to “crash and burn”. I am not really into the crooney lounge singing type thing, so some of the singing shown in the various episodes wasn’t really my thing, but others I know really liked it, because they like that type of music.

I doubt that it is the actors who necessarily put themselves up to sing and/or play an instrument. I suspect it might be fans who find out that an actor may also have some musical talent and want to see them perform. Why not?

It is not all work and no play on the Enterprise. I think that much of space will be a lot of nothing/not much of anything and even going at warp drive, some time will elapse between one interesting star/planetary sector and another. I could think of worse ways of spending time than honing a musical talent.

There is a man in our midst right now (Chris Pine) who needs to be encouraged to share his vocal and/or instrument playing talents with audiences in the next movie. This is a now, happening thing. The others, good though many of them were, had done their thing. Chris Pine is yet to do so…

No discussion of singin’ Star Trek captains is complete without this video:

Brooks is quite the crooner.

I’ve never seen the problem with singing. Of course, it depends on realism even in fantasy. I loathe musicals. Honestly. I think the two I like that qualify are The Blues Brothers and Little Shop of Horrors. Both crossover appeal into comedy and action or sci fi/horror.

In drama though. Songs play a bit part. I mean conception, births, marriages, deaths… it’s all tied into the lyrics of songs. Having somebody’s favourite piece of music played at a funeral, which is more likely to a pop song these days.

In Star Trek why wouldn’t that still happen? You’d get somekind of disasterous catastrophe, with crewmen trapped below decks – in fear that they’ve been left for dead and singing to boost morale and ensure if anyone else is still alive, they know they’re there.

Heh, didja notice that folks on Raw Nerve have to sit in a dual chair with the Shat that is shaped as the letter “S”?

How long before a Star Trek Sings! album comes out? With all the Golden Throat Classics by Shat & Nimoy (Bilbo Baggins!), then Spiner, Nichols, Picardo and now Bakula.

If Trek was produced by Disney as a kids show, everyone would have had to sing as well as act….;)

# 2, I think that’s either two chairs forming the letter S or maybe one big couch/chair? most likely for Shatner