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Top 50 Music Scandals

While I do agree that the Top 50 Music Scandals are indeed uh…scandalous, most famous artists nowadays do the same damage (if not worse) and are successful as fuck. What gives, world?

The spirit of excess that haunts the best rock & roll comes out in a variety of forms, from groupie abuse to substance abuse to hotel room abuse. When you’re making millions for jumping around like a jackass howling into a microphone, the rules and regulations of normal society no longer seem to apply. In the more than a half-century that rock & roll has roamed the Earth, the record industry has seen so many scandals that they’re all starting to run together. If you’re getting overwhelmed by all of this bad behavior, we’ve got a guide for you: UGO’s Top 50 Rock Scandals.

From the payola scandals of the 1950s to the panty scandals of the 21st Century, we’ve built a guide to studio shenanigans, tour trouble and backstage badness that will keep you busy for weeks.

Without further ado, let’s get to the show.

Milli Vanilli Caught Lipsynching

Oh, Rob and Fab. The pair of model-dancers weren’t the first to be seduced by the smooth talk of producer Frank Farian, but they paid the most public price. When Farian, a veteran of the 70s disco scene, wanted to create a new group for the ’90s, he assembled a group of singers and musicians and started knocking out the hits. The only problem was, none of the new band members had the good looks necessary to succeed in the MTV era. Enter Rob Pilatius and Fabrice Morvan, who Farian discovered in a Berlin nightclub.

As the lipsynching faces of Milli Vanilli, the two would sell over 30 million albums and even win a Grammy for Best New Artist in 1990. However, after a tape skipped at a live performance, the jig was up, and Farian had to come clean to the media, putting Rob and Fab out of a job.

Janet Jackson Wardrobe Malfunction

Halftime shows are usually a God-given break in the action to dash off to the restroom and take a quick piss. However, for those of us with larger bladders, the NFL needed to do something to fill the time, so the tradition of having the biggest bands in America rock us through the breakpoint of the Super Bowl was born. Most of the shows in the last decade have been eminently forgettable medleys of hits by bands like the Rolling Stones and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, but one Super Bowl was a little different.

In 2004, Janet Jackson was set to perform with Justin Timberlake. The two put on a high-energy number that concluded with Timberlake putting his hand on Jackson’s top and – ripping it off, revealing a bare breast clad with some sort of ornate nipple piercing. Cue FCC reprisals, irate complaints, and MTV never, ever being allowed to produce a halftime show again.

Many more Music Scandals at UGO.