Chapter 8: Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap (Fisticuffs, Handcuffs, and Feuds)
Noel Gallagher, guitarist and songwriter for Oasis, understood what his job was in a way that seems to come instinctively to British musicians: he was a rock star, and that meant he not only had license to engage in inappropriate behavior, people would laud him for it. When I interviewed him, as his band started to break through in the United States, he trashed Blur at the drop of a hat (“They’re just pseudo-middle-class Cockney twats, egotistical confrontational paranoid wimps”), tried to start a new feud with Pearl Jam whenever he got the chance (“I wish Eddie Vedder would get on with it and kill himself”), and told stories about waking up in a Detroit hospital after a 72-hour drug binge.
“People encourage rock stars to act like children,” he said. “You can act like a big spoiled baby and people think it’s great.”
- Did a girl really get killed in the studio while the Ohio Players were recording “Love Rollercoaster,” and if you listen close you can hear her screams?
- Was there any kind of a feud going on between Steely Dan and the Eagles in the ’70s?
- What was the deal with Chuck Berry and those bathroom cameras?
- A friend told me that Son of Sam would pump himself up by listening to Hall and Oates–can that be true?
- Why were the Kinks banned from playing the United States in the ’60s?
- Did George Harrison bet Jimmy Page that he couldn’t write a ballad?
- Did Jim Morrison really whip it out in Florida?
- What was the feud between Smashing Pumpkins and Pavement? How’d it start?
- I heard the Army tried to draft Frank Zappa because he was a pornographer–is that right?
- A friend told me Gregg Allman shot himself to avoid serving in Vietnam–is that true?