NME.COM

40 Music Moments On TV That Didn't Go To Plan

British music television in its golden age was a thing of beauty - particularly when things went a bit wrong. From the old classics of The Word and Top Of The Pops to modern mishaps, we present 40 chaotic performances, embarrassing interviews and artists hilariously trying to prove their rock 'n' roll credentials.

  • Did you ever call her Katie ‘Manure’?
    You’ve got to feel for Luke from The Kooks in his Popworld interview with Simon Amstell acting 'Sichiatrist'. He’d recently broken up with Katie Melua but Amstell just won’t let it drop. Squirming doesn’t even cover it and he looks like he could do with some actual counselling afterwards.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • L7 strip on stage on The Word
    LA grunge band L7 performed their storming single ‘Pretend We’re Dead’ on The Word in 1992 and lost their clothes – pretty much all of them – along the way. Ah, the golden days of music television.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Simon Amstell gives Beenie Man a banana
    Amstell strikes again, shaming the homophobic dancehall artist. Simon explained that he had just broken up with his boyfriend, and then asked for a hug. Beenie Man said no; Simon gave him a banana with his phone number written on it.

    Photo: Getty

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Vanilla Ice goes postal
    Vanilla Ice was invited to trash a VHS tape of ‘Ice, Ice Baby’ to signify how pissed off he was at hearing it ‘9 billion’ times. Instead he grabbed the baseball bat and trashed the entire set.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Streaker on stage with Slash and Ronnie Wood
    A naked man found his way onto the stage with these two old legends on Jools Holland causing Wood to drawl the immortal line, “what a huuuuuge knob.”

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Nirvana play ‘Territorial Pissings’ on Jonathan Ross
    Those punk rockers were to play ‘Lithium’ but played ‘Territorial Pissings’ instead before trashing the stage among crowd-surfing fans who’d bum-rushed the stage. “Available now for children’s birthday parties,” quips Ross.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Nirvana at the 1992 MTV Video Awards
    Another classic Nirvana telly moment was at the MTV awards. After endless discussions about what they’d play and MTV’s refusal of the band to play ‘Rape Me’, they started the performance with the first few bars before launching into ‘Lithium’.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Courtney Love gatecrashes Madonna’s interview
    “Courtney Love is in dire need of attention right now,” says a demure Madonna at the 1995 MTV Awards as the Hole legend throws makeup at her. That’s one way of getting attention.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • The McCoy Tyner Trio refuse to stop playing
    I mean, what else can you do when the spirit of jazz takes you? Despite Jools Holland waving a sign to say their time was well up – they played for ages – the trio ignored him and continued, going well into Newsnight's slot.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Avril Lavigne bums out hard during an Alex Zane interview
    Things start to get a bit frosty when Zane asks her what perfume she'd have and proffers his own preference, "sunflower.. oil". She glances around desperately looking like she'd rather be married to the guy from Nickelback. Oh, too late. It's probably the most awkward music interview of all time.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Sigur Ros NPR's Bryant Park Project
    To be fair it’s a lot to ask of an artist that they be amusing all the time as well as amazing at music. Sigur Ros just look like they’re in pain. And very unhappy with the phrase ‘hopelandic’.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Shaun Ryder on TFI Friday
    The Black Grape frontman has a right old potty mouth. Chris Evans even said he’d give him his shoes if he kept off the curses, to no avail.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 07 Nov 2014

  • Later Shaun took to the stage to perform ‘Pretty Vacant’ as Johnny Rotten. It’s impossible to count the number of swears and from that moment on TFI Friday was screened with a delay.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Lauren Laverne interviews Mark E. Smith on Transmission
    Never the easiest of rock stars to interview, Laverne deals with Smith’s adamantine curmudgeonliness and refusal to answer questions with anything resembling entertainment – in the traditional sense - with aplomb. ‘Don’t get funny with me,’ he says at one point in answer to a quip about his missus being in The Fall.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Have you ever licked a battery?
    During Britney Spears 'The Big Ones' on a 2003 Popworld episode, Amstell slipped the immortal question about licking a battery. It wasn't screened but rumour has it when Amstell asked the singer about diet pills she'd been pictured with she cried and walked out.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Shakin’ Stevens headlocks Richard Madeley
    Following an argument about whether Shaky was an ‘act’ or not, the Welsh singer wrestled Madeley on the sofa of Calendar Goes Pop, breaking the long-time presenter's watch in the process.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • The nadir of Robin Thicke
    Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke's VMA Performance in 2013 kept people talking well into 2014. Safe to say, Cyrus twerking on the old perv did not go down well.

    Photo: Getty

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • At The Drive In nick Robbie Williams’ furniture on Jools
    At the most tragic ‘Sing When You’re Winning’ stage of William’s musical career he had the impossible task of following At The Drive In’s electrifying and chaotic performance. His face after they nick his chairs is priceless.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Rita Ora backing track fail
    Who knew Rita Ora couldn’t really sing live?! On This Morning 2012 her backing track cuts out at the end starkly showing she mimed the whole thing. Cue an embarrassed gurn and weird clap.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • RATM v Limp Bizkit
    Rage Against The Machine bassist Tim Commerford was not keen on Limp Bizkit winning the MTV award for best video in 2000 so he climbed up a massive structure to protest. As you do.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Pink f*cks the system with explicit t-shirt
    Pink was asked by CD:UK to change the lyrics of her song “Just Like A Pill” to clean up the swearing. She did this, but also removed her top on stage to reveal a t-shirt with the phrase ‘you f***in' bitch”.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Nicki Minaj pisses off the Catholics at the Grammys 2012
    Nicki Minaj's Grammy performance angered the Catholic League. She arrived with a man dressed as the pope and obviously wasn't wearing a buttoned-up habit.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Method Man’s failed state dive
    OK, it’s on YouTube not the traditional telly box but Method Man’s attempt to stage dive is too good to ignore. His fans are not so loyal, and he ends up on the floor.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • The cringiest Major Lazer interview
    iHeartRadio interview Major Lazer at Lollapalooza and Diplo’s group could not seem more bummed out to be there. Cringe central, with the trio smirking to each other like teenage boys at the interviewer's banal questions.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Sinead O’ Connor rips shit up on SNL in 1992
    Sinead O’ Connor changed the lyrics of Bob Marley’s ‘War’ to lyrics about child abuse and the Catholic Church instead of racism. She then got out a photo of Pope John Paul II and ripped it up in front of the camera.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Travis ate all the pies
    Congrats to Travis for distracting the audience at TOTP from their tragically boring song, ‘Sing’, with a pretty spectacular food fight.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Katy Perry’s cake mishap
    You know what they say: never work with children, animals and… cake. At the MTV Latin America awards a few years ago Perry brought out a cake which she slipped in repeatedly.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • The Smiths take the piss on TOTP
    Lots of bands protested at being made to mime on Top Of The Pops but The Smiths at least did it with imagination: Morrissey sang into a bunch of gladioli instead of a microphone

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Lil' Mama gatecrashes Jay Z and Alicia Key’s big moment
    This is bizarre. Towards the end of ‘Empire State Of Mind’ at the 2009 MTV Awards, Lil’ Mama appears on stage. Jay Z subtly but awkwardly waves her off but to no avail and she poses with them at the end.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Eels trash toy instruments Back in the 90s Eels made waves with their amazing first single ‘Novocaine For The Soul’. They performed it on TOTP on toy instruments which they destroyed at the end.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • No, no, no, no, no, no!
    Another Jools ‘lol’. The Drive-By Truckers jump the start line and begin playing too early during the acts’ introduction. Holland managed to wave them to a stop.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Christina Aguilera shocks CD:UK viewers
    One of 2002’s pop song, ‘Dirrty’, came with a pretty oo-er aesthetic. The Agster didn’t hold back for her morning UK TV performance wearing bare-butt chaps and a bikini top. Parents of course complained.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Axl Rose struggles to sing
    Guns ‘n’ Roses played a medley at the 2002 MTV Video Music Awards ruined only by Rose’s dodgy, out-of-breath singing.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Ashley Simpson’s SNL disaster
    You’ve got to feel for her. Apparently Simpson’s band started playing the wrong song and she wasn’t able to sing along so just… did a weird hoe-down jig and walked around awkwardly.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Slash profanes on CD:UK
    Cat Deeley interviews the axe hero on Saturday morning show. What you don’t want while eating your oats is hearing Slash talk about blow jobs, but that’s what he did.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Adele at the BRIT Awards 2012
    James Corden’s career never really recovered from cutting off Adele’s Album Of The Year speech. He got a firm middle finger from the singer and a bunch of snarky column inches.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Simon Amstell pushes Preston too far
    Surely there hasn’t been a greater interviewer in popular culture brave enough to get so close to the bone you’re almost at the marrow as Simon Amstell. His digging about wife Chantelle caused the Ordinary Boys singer to storm out.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 06 Nov 2014

  • Madonna and Britney’s MTV Snog
    An iconic moment on music television and failed attempt to resuscitate Madge’s career. It happened at the MTV VMAs in 2003 and feels strangely tame over a decade later.

    Photo: Getty

    Added: 07 Nov 2014

  • Pete Burns v Mark Lamar
    Ribbing and a bit of tension is pretty normal on Never Mind The Buzzocks but Pete Burns wasn’t having any of it. A pretty weird and awkward exchange between the guest and presenter.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 07 Nov 2014

  • The Vines live meltdown on Letterman
    Oft cited as one of the signs of Craig Nicholls’ breakdown, it’s a raucous rendition of ‘Get Free’ before he somersaults all over the place and bashes up the drum kit.

    Photo: Press

    Added: 07 Nov 2014