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The Most Outrageous Backstage Rider Requests Of All Time

Updated August 13, 2019 20.5k votes 2.2k voters 135.1k views25 items

List RulesVote up the most unbelievable contractual demands by musicians on tour.

Bands' backstage contracts, or riders, can be incredibly amusing for fans. Take the Foo Fighters, for instance; they're a band that has never taken themselves too seriously, and their rider shows it. It's full of ridiculous joke requests for outlandish items and services. Sometimes, though, the nutty stuff isn't just written in for fun. Some celebrity riders truly have shockingly ridiculous requests.

And yes, even the greatest bands of all time have some pretty silly demands. From some not-so-surprising requests - like a stockpile of condoms - to stuff that's truly outrageous - like banning people backstage with a certain name - there have been some really incredible dressing room contract demands over the years. 

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  • Mariah Carey's Demand For 20 Kittens And 100 Doves
    Photo: Filipe Vicente / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 2.5

    With a reputation for being a diva, nothing Mariah Carey demands in her rider should be too much of a shock. One hundred white doves and a dozen kittens, though? That's pretty extra.

    Apparently, Carey wanted these animals surrounding her at an appearance to turn on Christmas lights. She didn't get her wish, though, as it was opposed by health and safety officials.

    "We did manage to source the doves that we were going to release into the sky, but the kittens proved terribly difficult," an official stated. "In the end, it was made clear that due to health and safety, there was no way we could have the animals at Westfield. We do not allow pets into Westfield - that rule would apply for everyone."

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  • Kanye's Cotton Condition
    Photo: rodrigoferrari / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 2.0

    According to a rider from an Australian tour, Kanye West required that his drivers - yes, his drivers - wear 100% cotton and no other fabric while transporting him from place to place.

    That's about as odd a requirement as one could imagine from a pop star at any level. 

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  • Madonna is basically pop royalty, and her tour rider pretty much reflects that. She's got some standard diva stuff in there, like personal chefs and whatnot, but there are also quite a few items that are extravagent and shocking. Would you believe Madonna demands a brand-new toilet seat everywhere she goes?

    Stuff like that is rumored to be all over her rider, but there's one requirement that really tops them all: She reportedly ships all of her furniture around with her, and demands that any hotel furniture be removed and replaced with her own. That way, anywhere she goes feels like home. 

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  • According to her tour rider, Christina Aguilera isn't a fan of traffic. In fact, she hates it so much that she demands a police escort to every show. The rider stipulates that Christina and her team need to be escorted through traffic, and that "under no circumstances are the vehicles to be allowed to encounter any delays due to traffic."

    That's a pretty intense thing to ask of both a concert promoter and local police. 

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