13 artists who hate their biggest hit

Their reasons are mainly sound

You know that feeling when a song makes you really, really famous and then you have to play it all the time, so you get completely sick of it? No? Well these guys bloody do!

1. Radiohead – ‘Creep’

Thom Yorke has called Radiohead’s ultra-famous 1993 single “crap” and once, when a Montreal crowd were baying for it, he said: “f*** off, we’re tired of it”. Guitarist Jonny Greenwood, meanwhile, has said he didn’t even like it during recording. and tried to sabotage the song by hitting “the guitar hard—really hard.” It’s made an unlikely return at recent shows, though.

2. Pulp – ‘Common People’


Drummer Nick Banks called this a “tuneless dirge”, and a “load of rubbish”. We’d beg to disagree, sir.

3. Beastie Boys – ‘(You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party)’

In the liner notes of their 1999 compilation ‘The Sounds of Science’, they said this song ‘sucks’. Mike D also said: “The only thing that upsets me is that we may have reinforced certain values of some people in our audience when our own values were actually totally different.” 

4. Oasis – Wonderwall

“I can’t f***ing stand that f***ing song! Every time I have to sing it I want to gag,” Liam Gallagher has said. You go to America, and they’re like: ‘Are you Mr. Wonderwall?’ You want to chin someone.”

5. REM – ‘Shiny Happy People’


“I hate that song” – Michael Stipe. 

6. Lorde – ‘Royals’

Lorde doesn’t hate this song per se, but she doesn’t think it sounds good when other people sing it. “I listen to people covering the song and putting their own spin on it,” she’s said, “and I listen to it in every single form except the one I put out… and I realise that actually it sounds horrible! It sounds like a ringtone from a 2006 Nokia! None of the melodies are cool or good! It’s disastrous. Awful… But for some reason, in the context of the way I released it, it just worked.”

7. Led Zeppelin – ‘Stairway to Heaven’


Robert Plant got so sick of playing this one live that he’s said: “I’d break out in hives if I had to sing that song in every show.”

8. Pretenders – ‘Brass in Pocket’

Chrissie Hynde called this song “so obvious” – it was a song she “hated with a vengeance”. In 2004 she told The Observer: “I wasn’t very happy with it and [I] told my producer that he could release it over my dead body”.

9. Coldplay – ‘Speed of Sound’

Chris Martin says this one “pains” him, adding that they don’t really play it any more. Since 2012 they’ve played it just seven times in concert.

10. Nirvana – ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’

In 1993 Kurt Cobain told Rolling Stone: “It’s almost an embarrassment to play [‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’]. Everyone has focused on that song so much. The reason it gets a big reaction is people have seen it on MTV a million times. It’s been pounded into their brains… I can barely, especially on a bad night, get through ‘Teen Spirit.’ I literally want to throw my guitar down and walk away.”

11. MGMT – ‘Kids’ & ‘Time to Pretend’

It’s not exactly hatred here, but there’s not a huge amount of love either. “I’m not saying that ‘Kids’ and ‘Time to Pretend’ are stupid songs,” said Andrew VanWyngarden in 2010, “but I think there’s at least partial irony and sarcasm. Now we’re 27. It’s hard to keep that naive-19-year-old-at-college philosophy going when you’re writing a second album.”

12. Miley Cyrus – ‘Wrecking Ball’

Miley is sad that ‘Wrecking Ball’ will be part of her legacy: “I’m never living that down. I will always be the naked girl on a wrecking ball. No matter how much I just frolic with Emu, I’m always the naked girl on the wrecking ball … I should have thought how long that was going to have to follow me around.”

13 Madonna – ‘Holiday’ & ‘Like a Virgin’

“I’m not sure I can sing ‘Holiday’ or ‘Like a Virgin’ ever again. I just can’t, unless somebody paid me, like, $30 million or something.” You know what Madge? We’re good.