Here are 25 rock stars who have opened their traps without thinking first. By Dan Stubbs
In typically outspoken form, Morrissey once said the murderous actions of Norway gunman Anders Breivik are “nothing” compared to the evils of the fast food industry. “We all live in a murderous world, as the events in Norway have shown, with 97 dead,” said the singer onstage in Warsaw. “Though that is nothing compared to what happens in McDonald’s and Kentucky Fried Shit every day.”
50 Cent made a right numpty of himself a while back when he made crass comments about the Japanese tsunami via Twitter. “Wave will hit 8am them crazy white boys going to try to go surfing,” he wrote, before admitting he’d written it for “shock value”. Here are a few other ill-advised/dumb pop star outbursts…
Roger Daltrey, The Who: “There is certainly more in the future now than back in 1964.” He gives Einstein a run for his money.
Nicky Wire: “In this season of goodwill, let’s pray that Michael Stipe goes the same way as Freddie Mercury pretty soon.” Jaws dropped at a 1992 gig at London’s Kilburn National Ballroom. He later explained, “I don’t detest REM or Michael Stipe, I was just trying to put across the point that there are so many diseases in the world. Everything gets misconstrued when you’re on stage.”
Britney Spears: “I get to go to lots of overseas places, like Canada.” Geography isn’t the girl’s strongpoint – she once said she’d like to do musicals “somewhere small, like London or England,” and on another occasion said, “I’ve never really wanted to go to Japan, simply because I don’t like eating fish, and I know that’s very popular out there in Africa.”
Johnny Borrell, Razorlight: “Compared to the Razorlight album [Bob] Dylan is making the chips. I’m drinking champagne.” This was at the height of his ego. Oddly, a career frying chips is now a very real possibility.
Noel Gallagher: “I wish they would catch AIDS and die.” He takes the rivalry with Blur’s Damon Albarn and Alex James too far in a 1996 Observer interview. The Britpop wars didn’t get any uglier than this.
Geri Halliwell: “Thatcher was the first Spice Girl, the pioneer of our ideology.” The singer explains why she and the rest of the Spice Girls decommissioned so many Welsh coal mines in their ‘90s heyday.
Bono: “I could go onstage, unzip my pants, and hang my dick out, and people would think it was some statement or something.” He bemoans his fame in a US interview from 1989. We can all interpret the statement he’d be making.
Christina Aguilera: “Where is it being held this year?” On being asked if she’d be attending the Cannes Film Festival.
Damon Albarn: “If Kurt Cobain had played football, he’d be alive today. I know it sounds like the most ridiculous thing, but if you play football, you’d know what that means.” He muses on ways the Nirvana singer could have stayed on the right track.
Brett Anderson: “I’m a bisexual man who’s never had a homosexual experience”. He clears up the question of his ambiguous sexuality in a 1992 Melody Maker interview – kind of. The comment prompted the band’s openly gay drummer, Simon Gilbert, to state that he was “a bisexual man who has never had a heterosexual experience.”
Liam Gallagher: “I’m not frightened by [extra-terrestrial life]. I’m as smart as them. Probably thick as fuck, aren’t they? Big goggly-eyed big heads, man, they haven’t got a fucking clue. I’d do their fucking heads in, them aliens, man. They’d be like, ‘Farking hell, farking hell! Let’s get back to Planet Knob.” Explains the past 14 years of alien invasion-free security.
Crispian Mills: “[The swastika] is a brilliant image.” The mystic musician reveals his admiration for the ancient Indian symbol appropriated by the Nazis. Coupled with some ill-judged comments about democracy “not working,” Kula Shaker’s career soon bombed like a Lancaster.
Lee Ryan, Blue: “This New York thing is being blown out of proportion… What about whales? They are ignoring animals that are more important. Animals need saving and that’s more important.” He talked about 9/11 in September 2001, to the horror of his bandmates. Ten years later, he’s representing us at Eurovision – let’s hope it passes without a major diplomatic incident.
Beyonce: “Acting is easier and smoother than singing – it’s less drama.” She gets a little confused.
Angus Young, AC/DC: “My fantasy [guitar] would be a cannon that shot sperm at the audience.” He thinks big. What’s even crazier is that German techno-metallers Rammstein actually have one.
Cyndi Lauper: “If you have intercourse you run the risk of dying and the ramifications of death are final.” So she doesn’t always wanna have fun.
Cher: “I’ve been up and down so many times that I feel as if I’m in a revolving door.” She tries and fails to locate the word ‘lift’.
Celine Dion: “My child was not only carried by me, but by the universe.” So what was the umbilical cord attached to, Celine?
Bob Dylan: “I hate to see chicks perform. Hate it… Because they whore themselves. Especially the ones that don’t wear anything. They fucking whore themselves.” He let rip on female singers in a 1987 Rolling Stone interview. Presumably, this viewpoint led to some interesting dinnertime discussions with his ‘60s paramour, singer Joan Baez.
Bill Wyman, The Rolling Stones: “It’s all right leaping about the stage when you’re 20 but when you get to 25 it gets a bit embarrassing.” He would live to regret these words. He’s still at it 44 years later.
Alanis Morissette: “Thank you, Brazil.” She addresses her Peruvian audience in 2003. “I don’t remember saying that, I think I was drunk,” she later told a press conference. Words by Dan Stubbs
Bryan Ferry: “The Nazis knew how to put themselves in the limelight and present themselves. Leni Riefenstahl’s movies and Albert Speer’s buildings and the mass parades and the flags – just amazing. Really beautiful.” So said the Roxy Music man in an interview with German newspaper Welt am Sonntag. He later apologised.
Brian Harvey, East 17: “If it makes you feel better, and gives you something to do at the weekend, and you go out and have a good time, I don’t see why not, because life’s too short.” He extols the virtues of ecstasy during a 1997 radio interview in which he boasted he’d taken 12 pills in one night. The singer was swiftly ejected from the London-based boyband.
Bobby Brown: “You can expect Bobby to be Bobby. If Bobby ain’t Bobby, Bobby just can’t be Bobby.” Bobby has an existential pause for thought. Words in this gallery by Dan Stubbs