06/16/1999 AT 12:00 AM EDT
Hobbled by leg irons and bound in handcuffs, Harry Connick Jr. was dragged into a prison lockdown unit to do his time: two days. The actor-crooner was doing research for an upcoming role as an inmate when he was put in prison clothes and restrained for his trip to Camp J, a solitary unit at notorious Louisiana State Penitentiary. An unshaven Connick, who had planned to do three days in solitary, signaled to get out a day early, saying "it was too quiet" and "the food wasn't too good," said Warden Burl Cain. "The inmates didn't know who he was," Cain said. "They nicknamed him 'Youngster.'"In return for the cooperation, Connick (whose father is the District Attorney of New Orleans) agreed to do a concert for the inmates next spring and to help raise money to build chapels in state prisons.