L The List
Bille Joe from Green Day Fights a GuyYeah, Green Day themselves come first, because you don’t even have to go all that far back to see them punk-rocking out and not apologizing for it. In 2006, Armstrong ended a song by shouting into the audience:
“Hey, why don’t you come here you little mohawked motherf*cker? You wanna fight? I’ll fight you right now. C’mon, get up here on the stage.”
It’s impossible to say how much of this is posturing. Being on stage pumps so much adrenaline through the average performer that they feel like a temporary God, and even a fake-punk band like Green Day (I mean, I love ‘em but... come on) can’t let themselves be seen as anything less than take-no-bullsh*t hardasses.
But the crowning moment comes when the singer actually takes a running leap into the crowd, with both legs together in a flexed kick that looks like it could’ve broken some teeth if it actually connected.
Kurt Cobain Hits a Guy With His GuitarDuring a performance of Love Buzz in Dallas, Texas, Cobain managed to get in a fight with his bouncer.
Cobain jumps into the mosh pit, because that’s an awesome thing to do, but while he’s pulling himself back on stage one of the bouncers (accidentally, probably) grabs the singer’s hair and tries to lift his whole weight just by that. Cobain’s reaction is to nail the guy in the face with his Fender Jaguar two or three times. As soon as the bouncer retaliates, both Noveselic (the bassist) and Dave Grohl (the drummer) instantly stop playing and come to their friend’s defense.
This one really doesn’t seem like it’s anyone’s fault. It’s a punk rock show that got a little too punk rock.
Kanye West Auto-Tuned “Eat Sh*t and Die”After someone threw a penny at him, Kanye West lost his temper and improvised this little auto-tuned number:
“You should be ashamed of your f*ckin’ self
whoever did that
You playin’, go f*ck yourself
eat sh*t and die.
eat sh*t and die.”
Shirley Manson (Garbage) Is Just AwesomeIn case you need to be told, it is not a good idea to spit on Garbage frontwoman Shirley Manson, especially when she’s on stage. This tiny Scottish woman is freaking Goddess when she sings. Her demeaner, her voice, and especially her singing captures all the raw anger, frustration, sex and heartbreak that makes up the backbone of classic rock and roll. I’d bet on her in a screaming match against anyone else on this list.
That video’s not a fluke -- this is just who she is. In another show, after she saw a fan throwing things at other concert-goers and putting them in danger, she launched into a brutal explanation of exactly how f*cked that boy was.
Her exit line was “I’m on my period, I can eat meat.”
I have no idea what that means but you can be damned sure I’m not throwing anything at her shows.
System of A Down: Stage FightIn the middle of a performance of “Suite Pea”, bassist Shavo Odadjian gets blindsided by a fan who seems to rush out of nowhere and pummel the musician for a few seconds before guitarist Daron Malakian rushes over and body-slams both of them.
Serj Tankian, the vocalist, never actually stops singing.
Maynard James Keenan (Tool) Fights Fan on StageIn the middle of a performance of “Pus**t”, Tool’s singer Maynard James Keenan was getting sick of a particular fan who kept breaking through the bouncers and climbing up on stage to wave his arms around like an idiot. So the singer grabbed him, flipped him over his hip, and pinned him to the ground -- all without missing a single note.
He even launches into the chorus while tangled into a human pretzel made of equal parts wiry strength and pudgy stupidity.