Just because someone is a musical genius, doesn't mean that they don't deal with their own interesting, um, quirks, right? Hey, who doesn't? This list of strange phobias, hobbies, and habits of the greatest quirky musicians of all time covers everything from mild bug-collecting to a terrible fear of grass. Musical greats throughout history, from Mozart to Duke Ellington to Tupac, have some pretty surprising interests and tendencies. Perhaps these famous quirks can provide some insight into the minds of these talented musicians. Maybe you too should pick up mixed martial arts or start counting your coffee beans if you want to be a successful musician.
Check out this list of weird musicians and their habits and vote up the quirks that shocked you!
Freddie Mercury had at least ten cats, and it says a lot that no one is sure of the exact number. He also enjoyed talking to his cats. The Queen song "Delilah" and his entire solo album Mr. Bad Guy is dedicated to to his felines.
Age: Died at 45 (1946-1991)
Birthplace: Stone Town, Zanzibar City, Tanzania
Profession: Record producer, Pianist, Musician, Singer-songwriter, Singer, + more
Credits: Metropolis, Ted, Shaun of the Dead, Moulin Rouge!
#1 on The Best Rock Vocalistssee more on Freddie Mercury
In the early fifties, jazz legend Louis Armstrong lost 100 pounds, which he attributed to an herbal laxative called "Swiss Kriss." After his success with the product, he became probably the most loyal customer of all time, and distributed it to friends, family, and acquaintances. Nothing says "I care" like "I'm worried about your bowel movements."
Age: Died at 70 (1901-1971)
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States of America
Profession: Musician, Actor, Trumpeter, Singer
Credits: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Blue Jasmine, WALL·E, Twelve Monkeys
#51 on The Best Singers of All Timesee more on Louis Armstrong
There are enough bizarre facts about Mozart to confirm that he was far from a normal guy, but this one is really one of the strangest: the composer enjoyed pretending to be a cat, especially during the rehearsals of his operas. He would often climb over chairs and meow when bored. Okay, he'd officially be the worst person to have next to you on an airplane.
Age: Died at 35 (1756-1791)
Birthplace: Salzburg, Austria
Profession: Pianist, Musician, Composer, Violist, Violinist
Credits: The King's Speech, The Shawshank Redemption, Batman Begins, Alien
Also Rankedsee more on Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
When Kurt Cobain was a little kid, he was certain that his parents weren't his real parents. But the Nirvana frontman didn't think he was just adopted; it went a bit weirder than that. In a 1993 interview, he told journalist Michael Azerrad that he was certain he was actually an alien. “I always used to think that I was adopted by my mother because she found me after a spaceship left me from a different time or a different planet. Every night I used to talk to my real parents in the skies. I knew that there were thousands of other alien babies dropped off who were all over the place and I’d met quite a few of them. It’s just something I’d always like to toy with in my mind… it was really fun to pretend that there’s some special reason for me to be here."
Age: Died at 27 (1967-1994)
Birthplace: Aberdeen, Washington, United States of America
Profession: Guitarist, Songwriter, Musician, Singer, Artist
Credits: Moulin Rouge!, Jerry Maguire, The Big Short, Jarhead
#22 on The Best Rock Vocalists
#10 on The Best Frontmen in Rocksee more on Kurt Cobain