1 January

Pick a Day

Music History Events: Bold Statements

October 21, 2011 The FBI lists Juggalos - fans of Insane Clown Posse - as "a loosely-organized hybrid gang" in their National Gang Threat Assessment.More

February 10, 2010 John Mayer describes his ex-girlfriend Jessica Simpson as "sexual napalm" in a Playboy interview.More

June 26, 2005 Pink proposes to her boyfriend, motocross rider Carey Hart, by holding up a sign that says "Will You Marry Me?" while he is racing in Mammoth, California. On the next lap, she adds, "I'm Serious." He pulls out of the race to say yes; the couple get married the following year.

March 10, 2003 Dixie Chicks lead singer Natalie Maines sparks political controversy in the run-up to the US invasion of Iraq after telling a London audience: "Just so you know, we're on the good side with y'all. We do not want this war, this violence, and we're ashamed that the president of the United States is from Texas."

February 4, 1998 Judas Priest lead singer Rob Halford comes out as gay in an interview with MTV. "I feel this is the moment to discuss it," he says. "A lot of homophobia still exists in the music world."

July 12, 1997 The French magazine Le Figaro publishes an interview with George Harrison where he blasts modern music, taking aim at U2 and the Spice Girls.More

March 1, 1993 Q magazine publishes an interview with Sting and Bob Geldof where Sting explains how his sex lasts for hours through the benefits of yoga.More

May 30, 1989 Yusuf Islam (formerly Cat Stevens) appears on a British TV show called Hypotheticals, where he addresses the fatwa issued against the author Salman Rushdie. Islam seems to support the fatwa - when asked if he would attend a protest where a Rushdie effigy is burned, he replies, "I would have hoped that it'd be the real thing."More

August 5, 1976 At a show in Birmingham, England, an inebriated Eric Clapton speaks out in favor of the right-wing National Front, repeating their slogan, "Keep Britain white," and adding, "I used to be into dope, now I'm into racism." Clarifying his statements years later, Clapton says, "I made some fairly racial comments, but they weren't directed at any particular minority. It was a feeling of loss of identity and losing my Englishness."

March 4, 1966 John Lennon is quoted in the London Evening Standard saying, "Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink. I needn't argue about that; I'm right and I will be proved right. We're more popular than Jesus now." The remark goes mostly unnoticed, but causes a big stink when it is reprinted in a US publication four months later.

May 13, 2004 In an Australian radio interview, Gene Simmons of Kiss states of Islam: "This is a vile culture, and if you think for a second that it's willing to just live in the sands of God's armpit you've got another thing coming... they want to come and live right where you live and they think that you're evil." After a flood of angry calls from Muslims, Simmons claims he was speaking only of extremists.

May 18, 1992 Sister Souljah, a rapper associated with the group Public Enemy, is quoted in The Washington Post saying, "If black people kill black people every day, why not have a week and kill white people?" It becomes a big moment in American politics when Bill Clinton denounces the comment, risking support from black voters. Clinton goes on to win the presidential election.

May 9, 1989 In an interview with The Washington Times, Public Enemy's "Minister of Information," Professor Griff, blames Jews for "the majority of wickedness that goes on across the globe."More

November 14, 1964 At the start of her first UK tour, Dusty Springfield causes a furor when she tells a local magazine: "I wish I'd been born colored. When it comes to singing and feeling, I want to be one of them and not me. Then I see how some of them are treated and I thank God I'm white."

November 19, 1959 An unnamed RCA executive tells reporters that, when he returns from the Army, Elvis Presley's music will be very different than the rock and roll he performed previously. Manager Colonel Tom Parker rushes to issue an official denial to fans.

May 13, 2017 Todd Rundgren gives the commencement speech at Berklee College Of Music, where he says, "I've never been nominated, thankfully, for the Rock Hall of Fame. If nominated, I will not run. If elected, I will not serve." When he's inducted in 2021, he makes good on his promise by not showing up.

April 8, 2016 Steve Miller, notoriously averse to awards ceremonies, goes on a backstage rant when he is inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He says the Hall is like "a private boys club," and lets loose on the organizers. "It's a bunch of jackasses and jerks and f--king gangsters and crooks."More

July 10, 2012 Slash, who left Guns N' Roses in 1996, gets his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Charlie Sheen, who is master of ceremonies at the event, comments, "It seems quite fitting that Slash is getting a star on the very street Axl Rose will one day be sleeping on."

August 9, 2008 In an interview with the Calgary Herald, Full House actor Dave Coulier claims he's the subject of his ex-girlfriend Alanis Morissette's hit 1995 song "You Oughta Know." Morissette won't confirm or deny the mystery man's identity, but tells Entertainment Weekly: "Fifty-five people can take credit for that song, and I'm always curious about why they're doing it. But Dave is the most public about it."

March 24, 2005 After Carrie Underwood performs "Alone" on American Idol, Simon Cowell, by far the harshest critic on the panel, predicts she will win the competition and sell more records than any previous Idol winner. He's right: She becomes the first country singer to win and ends up surpassing Kelly Clarkson as the best-selling alum of the show.

December 5, 1997 At the KROQ Christmas concert in Los Angeles, Jane's Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro uses his own blood to write an encouraging message to Fiona Apple on her dressing room wall: "Fiona, have fun. Love, DN" He insists it's not creepy. "Fiona courageously shares with the world what comes from the beauty and pain that flows from within her heart," Navarro explains. "I simply chose to thank her for her honesty by leaving her a little note that comes from the beauty and pain that flows from my heart... literally."

January 28, 1984 The legendary Nina Simone tells NME she was forced to record her 1978 album Baltimore under duress when she was kidnapped by five men and held in a basement for three days without food or water. She retracts the statement later.

Back to Categories

©2022 Songfacts®, LLC