Charisma, charisma, charisma. That’s what being a good front person is about. The people on this list – topped by Liam Gallagher – have it in spades. But not on this list. So who are the people who would be better off running a tiny village library than fronting a stadium-filling rock group? Here’s our pick of the most rubbish people ever to thrust themselves in front of a microphone stand.
10Paul Heaton, The Beautiful South
Dear Paul, we get your “unassuming, guy next door schtick,” really we do. But the whole “couldn’t pick you out of a police line-up” got more and more grating, the bigger the middle-of-the-road colossus that was The Beautiful South got.
9Roy Stride, Scouting For Girls
You’ve no idea who this person is, do you? Which is not a surprise. “Roy Stride” is, apparently, the chipper guy from Scouting For Girls’. Which means that in a world of indie landfill, he’s the one sitting at the very bottom of the pit. Playing a piano.
8Travie McCoy, Gym Class Heroes
Travie’s main crime is that he’s so damn anonymous. With a distinctive look (a million tattoos and piercings) but sadly with absolutely nothing to say, he’s the ‘inoffensive rap guy’ who crops up on bland pop tracks (‘Billionaire’, Taio Cruz’s ‘Higher’) to make them… more bland and inoffensive. He was reduced to changing his name from ‘Travis’ to ‘Travie’ to make him seem more interesting, which says it all really.
7Patrick Stump, Fall Out Boy
We loved the Fall Out Boy dynamic. The way Pete Wentz trolled about like he was the singer (which most people assumed he was). There was an element about this horseplay which seemed to be his way of saying: “Ok guys, I know our singer’s pretty dull but, look, I’m doing star-jumps on stage, so you won’t notice!”. In comparison to his cartoon punk preening, P-Stump was as fun as a slice of emo-pop toast (made of rye bread, obvs).
6Mark Knopfler, Dire Straits
The original gangsta of AFOMFT (Anonymous Frontmen Often Mistaken For Teachers). See Number 9. Marky Mark’s problem was a distinct lack of anything approaching conviction or, you know, consciousness. “Money for nothing and your chicks for…zzzzzzz.“
5Fred Durst, Limp Bizkit
The ‘top half’ of this list delights in singers whose all out terribleness centers on multiple levels of annoyingness. Mr Durst is no exception, from that silly voice he rapped in to that awful red cap he took to wearing, it was a struggle to watch him and not think this was the crack of doom which signified the death of all music, for all time.
4Chris Martin, Coldplay
But, Mr Alan McGee, wouldn’t it be more interesting if they did wet in the bed, in some sort of off-the-wall, fringe Berlin performance art kind of way, instead of looking ‘high on life’ whilst flailing about in bright paints and last season’s All Saints collection?
3Johnny Borrell, Razorlight
You got the feeling J-Bo was distinctly lacking any sense of the LOLs, as he rode about on his motorbike sporting tight white jeans with Kirstin Dunst on his arm. He was “being a rockstar” as if all that meant was to be terribly narcissistic and sound like Simple Minds. His band were so unimpressed that they all ran away.
Bono is so repellent to so many that he makes his band’s entirely likeable music sound worse just by being himself. Is it the self righteous do-gooding, the “personas” or comedy sunglasses that make him so, so bad? Who knows. Personally I blame the song with Pavarotti.
1Chad Kroeger, Nickelback
Chad is The Ghost Of Christmas Future for most self-knowing frontmen. He’s the lamest frontman because he is the face of such clod-footed unappealing rockers such as ‘How You Remind Me’ and ‘Rockstar’. That his biggest defining characteristic is his luscious, bouffant mop of curly hair says a lot, frankly.