Low End Derrick
- May 8, 2014
The Big List of Problematic Artists and Songs — Revolutionary Exchange Productions
The following is a comprehensive list of all the musical artists that have engaged in problematic behavior or have problematic content. This list isn’t complete (yet, but I’ll add your suggestions). This list also doesn’t tell you how you should respond to these artists and songs, that’s up to you. This is for your informational purposes so you can decide that your playlist, show, karaoke performance doesn’t accidentally get you in trouble. If you promote or perform one of these artists/songs, be aware of what message you MIGHT be sending to listeners by your endorsement. The original intent of the artist doesn’t really matter in this context, unless EVERYONE in the audience knows that context. Otherwise, the trauma inflicted by hearing such words still occurs.
Notes: There are no claims made about artists on this page, just links to publicly-available claims. The list is focused on the U.S. (where I live) and artists that perform in English (since I don’t have translation skills).
Some notable names:
Dr. Dre, NWA: Has been accused of multiple incidents of violence against women, including Dee Barnes, an incident he made fun of on later music. Other women to accuse him of violence include Michel'le, Lisa Johnson, Tairrie B and ex-wife Nicole Plotzker. Plead guilty to battery against a police officer. Convicted to two battery accounts. Reportedly left his daughter LaTanya and her four children homeless because “she talked about him in the press.” Released a long series of songs with misogynistic and homophobic lyrics.
Elvis Presley: Started his relationship with Priscilla when she was 14 and he was 24. He carried around a gun and often brandished it or fired it when angry. He controlled Priscilla's clothing, makeup and appearance. He used to hit Priscilla. Priscilla implied that Elvis sexually assaulted her. Elvis regularly gave an underage Priscilla drugs, particularly Dexedrine, and she overdosed and almost died. Multiple accusations of other such violence, sex and grooming, particularly with underage girls.
Eric Clapton, Cream/The Yardbirds/Derek & the Dominoes: Anti-vaxxer. Espoused racist anti-immigrant views. Opposed a law that would ban fox hunting. Accused of stealing a song from Black man Louise King Mathews without credit. Told a concert audience to "keep Britain white." Supported a racist far-right politician Enoch Powell. When he was 23, had a relationship with a 17-year-old girl, Alice Ormsby-Gore, who he got hooked on heroin. She latter died from her addiction. Admitted to forceably having sex with his wife, Pattie Boyd.
Iggy Pop, The Stooges: Had a sexual relationship with a 13-year-old.
James Brown: Started having sex with Tammi Terrell when she was 17 and witnesses say he beat her terribly. Accused of kicking a pregnant girlfriend down a flight of stairs. Involved in an altercation that led to multiple people being shot and stabbed. Accused of kidnapping, holding captive, sexually harassing and sexually assaulting numerous women. On four occasions, he was arrested on charges of assault against his third wife, including beating her with an iron pipe and shooting at her. Plead no contest to assaulting Tomi Rae Hynie. Accused of raping and threatening a woman with a shotgun, but charges were dismissed because of the statute of limitations expiring.
Jared Leto, 30 Seconds to Mars: Alleged to text inappropriately with underage girls. There is a long history and many accusations of him having sex with underage girls, including alleged lack of consent, coercion and sexual activities they weren't comfortable with. Start a cult with his band that gave away prizes like "sleep in bed with Jared Leto." Wore the severed ear of a fan as a necklace. His on-set behavior frequently crosses lines, including things like sending used condoms and rats to co-stars.
John Lennon, the Beatles: Accused of physical and verbal abuse by his first wife. Admitted to hitting women. Cheated on his first wife in their home. Frequently made fun of Brian Epstein in homophobic and anti-Semitic ways. Frequently abandoned and failed to support his oldest son Julian. Frequently wrote songs that were misogynistic or advocated violence against women.
Marky Mark, the Funky Bunch: As a minor, he committed multiple hate crimes including violence and racial slurs; he pled guilty to criminal contempt; as an adult, assaulted a man who had to have his jaw wired shut; reportedly made disparaging remarks about homosexuals and engaged in violence against Madonna's entourage.
Mick Jagger, Rolling Stones: Had sex with a 17-year-old girl.
Rick James: He and his girlfriend were arrested on charges of kidnapping a woman and was convicted of assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated mayhem, forcible oral copulation, false imprisonment and kidnapping. He was also convicted of kidnapping another woman beating her over a 20-hour period. He was also sued by a woman for sexual assault and a second woman who claimed he raped her when she was 15.
I wonder why there is/was a clamor to "cancel" some and not others...