Any self-respecting rock star should be blessing their fans' hearts every single day of their lives. After all, these are the people who make your musical career a full time job, so you’d better believe that you’ll do right by them every time you go into the studio or perform onstage.
That doesn’t mean that the fans should get a free pass to be jerks, though. Cause when you’re the one performing for millions of people, you sometimes need to lay down the law on your fans every once in a while. Whether they were warranted or not, here are 10 instances where rock stars went off on their fans.
Kurt Cobain Trolls Misogynists
Whenever you hear about fans and musicians butting heads, it’s usually a one time thing at a show. In Nirvana’s case though, Kurt Cobain was none too happy that some misogynistic jocks were turning up at his shows now.
Though he took his anger out onstage, you just need to look on the inner sleeve of Incesticide to know how he feels. In Cobain’s own words, “If any of you hate homosexuals, people of different colors, or women, do us a favor and don’t listen to our music.” He also channeled some of his thoughts about violence against women into one of the band's darkest songs, "Polly." Yeah, that’s probably about as blunt as a shovel between the eyes.
Alice in Chains are one of the few grunge bands that are pretty hard to dislike. It would appear that some people found it pretty easy in the early days, though, trolling them in the middle of their set.
But Layne Staley knew how to put haters in their place, going off on this obnoxious couple in the front row before blasting through “Man in the Box” with modified lyrics meant to mock them. Out of all the ways to manage hecklers, this is still one of the funniest ways to get your point across.
Wes Scantlin Accuses Fan of Stealing His House
Most people in the know are probably aware of Wes Scantlin’s antics by now. Though his cover of Nirvana’s “About a Girl” is legendary at this point, let’s rewind it back to 2016 when Wes went off on someone for (allegedly) stealing his house.
We don’t have any documentation or anything, but it seems like Wes was pretty serious, going so far as to bring the set to a close and walk off. I don’t know what you did to Wes, dude, but it looks like you might owe him an apology...maybe?
Roger Waters Yells at the Crowd
Roger Waters has never been known to have the most simpatico relationship with his fans. Granted, if I had to deal with the kind of behavior in this clip, I’d be pissed, too.
You’ll see Waters having to calm the crowd during “Pigs on the Wing” and urging them to actually pay attention to what’s happening. Hell, if this is something that he had to deal with night after night, it’s understandable why he would end up making something like The Wall.
Thom Yorke Puts a Fan In His Place
Radiohead is probably the last band that you’d think of in the context of going off on their fans. Since most of their songs tend to be a bit trippy, it makes it all the more hilarious when Thom Yorke decides to go off on a heckler in the middle of the acoustic song “Faust Arp.”
Halfway through picking through the chords, Yorke stops to tell a fan to shut the hell up and that “you’re not cool...you just don’t get out much.” Then again, if you’re looking to rage at a Radiohead concert, you’re probably part of a very small population.
Maynard James Keenan Goes Full Judo
It’s just the nature of the beast to have stage divers at rock shows every now and again. There’s a time and a place for stage intruders though, and Maynard was not having it when he decided to bust out some fighting moves on this guy.
In the middle of “Pushit” some fan goes in for a hug when Maynard takes him to hell, body slamming him and holding him down for the rest of the song. As a Tool fan myself, I’m still not sure if this is one of the best or worst moments that you could have during the show. Take your pick I guess.
Dave Grohl Kicks Out a Fan
Depending on how long you’ve been a rock star, your tolerance for people fighting in the crowd starts to get lower and lower. When you’re Dave Grohl though, this is some serious business, with him bringing the crowd to a hush before absolutely annihilating someone who was fighting in the front of the crowd.
Once he has the guy’s attention, he yells at him to get out of the show if he’s there to fight people. As vicious as this sounds on the video, only Dave Grohl can go off like this and still look like the nice guy.
James Hetfield vs. The Shoe Tosser
Just a rule of thumb, it’s probably not the best idea to throw anything at the band while they’re playing. If you’re absolutely going to, though, why would you make James Hetfield your primary target?
Once Papa Het gets ahold of a shoe someone threw at him, he proceeds to kindly ask the guy why he threw it before telling him that they’re looking to have fun, not defend themselves. Considering how angry he can get in song, the guy should feel lucky that the real Hetfield energy didn’t come out in full.
If there’s one thing you should know about Eddie Vedder, it’s that he keeps his beliefs pretty close to the chest. So when he sees someone assaulting a woman in the audience, he will bring the entire song to a close if he has to.
In the middle of “Lukin,” Vedder takes the opportunity for security to clear out the assaulter and make sure the woman is all right before continuing with the rest of the song. Even when showing someone who’s boss, Vedder can still remember to keep it classy.
Corey Taylor’s Stolen Picks
If you know anything about Corey Taylor, you know the guy known as the Great Big Mouth isn’t gonna mince words if he doesn’t like you.
This had to be a fun one, though, when someone during his Q&A got kicked out for stealing some of his guitar picks. Complete with the perfect use of “Na Na Hey Hey (Kiss Him Goodbye),” this is the way a true master trolls the hecklers.