Backstage Secrets Hidden And Not Meant For The Audience
By Jack Ripley | June 1, 2023
Stevie Nicks Brought Her Own Coven Of Witches On The Road
Our favorite musicians give us great performances in the studio and on stage, but backstage glimpses and behind-the-scenes facts tell us even more. They are human beings who sometimes keep it real and other times behave like divas. Some of their behavior is relatable and other things they do will blow your mind. In the end, it's a loop that tells you more about the music you already love -- take a look at these scenes of performers living everyday lives, and enjoy these tales of what happened backstage and stories behind the moments that made them pop stars and rock gods.
The recording of Combat Rock had been rough on The Clash; the band was actually slowly breaking up and everyone needed a break leading up to the album's release date. Joe Strummer was set to go to Texas to hang out with his friend (and Clash opening act) Joe Ely. It may even have been a publicity stunt -- a few days of "Where's Joe?" to get the band into the music press. But Strummer did not go to Texas. He really did just disappear.
In 1975, Stevie Nicks (with her then-boyfriend Lindsey Buckingham) joined Fleetwood Mac, and immediately made significant contributions to the group's successful self-titled 1975 album. "Rhiannon" and "Landslide" are not only great Fleetwood Mac songs, they are among the greatest songs of the '70s. When the band went out on tour in support of the album, Stevie Nicks ended up miserable.
Nicks developed a close friendship with bandmate Christine McVie, which helped her overcome the loneliness she was feeling. She also attracted a mysterious group of attractive blondes who dressed in flowy black garments -- in other words, the Stevie Nicks look. "My first impression of touring with Fleetwood Mac was seeing Stevie and her acolytes," Kenny Loggins recalled. "She seemed to collect talented, young, beautiful girls who would then dress like her and follow her around all the time.”
Joe Strummer Disappeared And Ran The Paris Marathon In 1983
Strummer actually hid out in Paris, shacking up in a girlfriend's apartment, going to museums, growing a beard, and drinking his fill at the local brasseries. Oh, and he also ran the Paris marathon -- as you do. This wasn't Strummer's first marathon; he'd run the London marathon, and in both cases he followed a strict training regimen that he later shared with an interviewer:
Drink 10 pints of beer the night before the race. Ya got that? And don’t run a single step at least four weeks before the race… None at all. And don’t forget the 10 pints of beer the night before. But make sure you put a warning in this article, ‘Do not try this at home.’ I mean, it works for me and Hunter Thompson but it might not work for others. I can only tell you what I do.
David Lee Roth Had A Color-Coded System For Delivering Backstage Passes To Female Fans
If you're trying to put on a good rock show you really can only devote so much time to scoping girls in the audience. If you're going to multitask like this, you need to have a system. David Lee Roth of Van Halen was known to be one of the biggest post-show partiers of all time, and after the concert was over he wanted a backstage area packed with young ladies. Here's how he worked it.
MTV VJ Mark Goodman explained that Roth "had the barriers in front of the stage painted different colors on the side that faced him: red, blue, and green, to denote the different areas of the audience. He’d look for hot girls in the crowd, and between songs, go to his assistant Eddie on the side of the stage, and say, 'Green, right, fourteen rows back, three seats in.'" The assistant would deliver backstage passes as instructed, and after the show "there’d be twenty-five girls in the dressing room who all thought they’d been singled out to be with Dave that night."
If You Want To Meet Robert De Niro, Write A Song About Him
The girl group Bananarama had a string of hits in the '80s (moreso in their native UK than the States), and one of them was the curiously titled "Robert De Niro's Waiting." They have explained that the song is about fantasizing about an unattainable celebrity as a mechanism to avoid a real-world relationship. There's also a subtext of date rape that the band sometimes touted, but at other times denied.
Keren Woodward, Siobhan Fahey and Sara Dallin really were big De Niro fans, and the song did earn them a meeting with the star himself. "When the song came out, he was in the UK filming Brazil, and he invited us for a drink at Kettners in Soho," they recalled for The Guardian. "We were all sitting there when this guy knocked on the window. It was a freezing winter’s night and he had a bobble hat and glasses on, and we just thought: 'Who is that person trying to catch our attention?' We’d no idea it was him. He had his producer with him, who did most of the talking. I think De Niro was quite shy. But of course the whole place was filled with our friends and boyfriends – all sitting at different tables trying to sneak a look at him."
Jewel's Biggest Hit Was Written On A Drug Bust
Jewel's music career had an unconventional start -- after leaving Alaska for San Diego, she lived out of her van and played five-hour shows in coffee shops that were standing-room-only. Jewel was clearly about to be a big star, and was accumulating original songs for what would become her debut album Pieces Of You. As people in San Diego often do, she and her boyfriend Steve Poltz took a trip down to Mexico. "Jewel said she wanted to go out on a boat and go whale-watching, but we didn't have a boat," Poltz recalled for Entertainment Weekly. "We met these cops, and as if on cue, they asked if we wanted to go whale-watching."
"We were way out on the water," Poltz continued, "and [the Mexican cops] got a call and said, 'We don't have time to drop you off. We're trying to catch these drug smugglers, and there might be a shoot-out.' They asked us if we wanted AK-47s, so we had guns, and they caught the guys. We helped them load the pot back onto the boat and they took us back to shore."
"We got this picture of Steve holding a kilo of marijuana and me holding an AR-15 with the federales," Jewel added. At some point, during the course of this surreal getaway, Jewel wrote "You Were Meant For Me," the platinum-selling #2 single off her debut album.
Debbie Harry Of Blondie Was Inspired By The Ultimate Blonde
Debbie Harry is not Blondie -- she's the singer in a band called Blondie. But the band did get its name from Harry's experiences as an attractive blonde performer in grimy New York clubs. Men in the audience would try to get her attention with cat-calls, whistles, and, inevitably, "Hey, blondie..."
Harry told Elle UK that she dyed her hair platinum when she was 15. "'I felt drawn to Marilyn Monroe," she said. "She had a big effect on women and was such a magnetic character. Having come up through the era of misogyny, I felt she had been misunderstood and undervalued."
Britney Spears Went Full Sinead O'Connor
We're used to seeing rock stars going for shock value on stage -- and because it happens on stage as part of a performance, it's much less shocking. Pop star Britney Spears raised the bar for outrageous behavior when, in February 2007, she impulsively shaved her hair off in a salon as paparazzi outside snapped photos and video. The public-yet-private nature of the moment made it confusing; were we supposed to witness this, or not?
In truth, Spears was in a downward spiral, and the deranged behavior wasn't a celebrity performing for the tabloids. It was actually just deranged behavior. Spears was, at this point in her career, constantly hounded by a press posse happy to write story after story about a teen star who'd run off the rails. She had recently lost her aunt to ovarian cancer, and the day before the head-shaving incident she had checked into and out of a rehab center in Antigua. It was a dark time for the singer, and though the episode was theatrical, it was not an act.
Phil Spector Pulled A Gun On The Ramones
During the recording sessions for the End Of The Century album, producer Phil Spector pulled out a pistol and the band didn't like it -- that much is clear. Did he point it at them? Did he simply lay it on the mixing board to intimidate them? Did Phil Spector actually kidnap the Ramones at gunpoint? All of these accounts have been put forth and we may never know just how crazy it got.
The late bassist Dee Dee Ramone's account is pretty scary. He wrote in is autobiography that Spector
leveled his gun at my heart and then motioned for me and the rest of the band to get back in the piano room…. He only holstered his pistol when he felt secure that his bodyguards could take over. Then he sat down at his black concert piano and made us listen to him play and sing “Baby, I Love You” until well after 4:30 in the morning.
Dancing In Beyonce's Crew Is Like Joining The Marines
Dancing for Beyonce is no easy job. Her dance captain Ashley McEverett, who's been with Bey for over a decade, told Metro UK that rehearsals can go on for three months -- and that they never nail the routine the first time. Not to Beyonce's satisfaction, at least. "People have breakdowns and exhaustion and get mentally and physically drained because it’s a lot putting on a huge production like this," McEverett said.
Beyonce is intense, but she's not heartless -- in fact, she once allowed a performance of "Single Ladies" to be completely disrupted mid-song for McEverett's personal reasons. McEverett's boyfriend came up on stage and, as the lyrics suggest, he "put a ring on it." After the touching moment, it was time to get back to work; McEverett danced the rest of the song as planned, only now she was wearing her new diamond ring.
Nirvana Were Asked To Leave Their Own Record Release Party
Nirvana's Nevermind was the band's major-label debut, and it's come to be considered one of the greatest rock albums of all time. Back in 1991, the band was thought to be the next big thing, but they were still young punks unaccustomed to fancy industry events. When they showed up to their own record release party at Re-bar in Seattle, it was hardly the low-key affair they'd requested. Surveying the abundance of industry suits (who were actually wearing suits), the band and their friends from the grunge scene felt like fish out of water.
They settled in, made nice with the guests, and partied anyway. There was beer at the event, and the band soon moved on to the "half gallon" of bourbon they had allegedly smuggled in. After two spins of Nevermind, they said they wanted to hear something else, and attempted to take over DJ duties. They ripped the Nirvana posters off the wall, then Krist Novoselic tossed a tamale at Kurt Cobain. Like the first shot fired at Fort Sumter, this small faux pas soon erupted into something larger, and the food fight was most definitely not how planners wanted the party to end. Re-bar owner Steve Wells was very nervous about losing his liquor license, and hustled the band and some others out the door.
Katy Perry Was Too Hot For 'Sesame Street'
Katie Perry has worn some pretty hot outfits, but was this princess getup one of them? In 2010, she filmed a music video, based on her single "Hot 'n Cold," with Elmo of Sesame Street. The video was intended to air as part of the show, but it was first posted to YouTube, and then all hell broke loose. Commenters found the video too risque.
Sesame Workshop decided not to air the video as part of the show -- because Perry had too much cleavage. The company put out a statement that began
Sesame Street has a long history of working with celebrities across all genres, including athletes, actors, musicians and artists. Sesame Street has always been written on two levels...
And didn't really say why the video was being pulled from the show. Perry was disappointed by the move, but got the last word. Soon after, she wore a low-cut Elmo t-shirt in a sketch on Saturday Night Live about acceptance of the female body.
Nicki Minaj Was Literally Holding Her Outfit Together At The VMAs In 2014
Cast your mind back to 2014 -- the single "Bang Bang" by Jessie J, Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj was the jam of the year. If you saw the three of them singing it as the opening number of that year's Video Music Awards show, you might have noticed that Nicki Minaj seemed focused on her Yves Saint-Laurent dress -- she couldn't take her hands off it. In fact, it was falling apart and she was trying to prevent a Janet Jackson-style live-TV debacle.
Immediately after getting off stage, she was up-front with the gathered press. "You all know I had a wardrobe malfunction," she yelled. "We ran out of time getting the dress zipped up." She later explained her viewpoint to fans on Instagram -- unsurprisingly, she wasn't terribly fazed: "God is good... I'm fine. Love my team."
Vince Neil And Ozzy Osbourne Allegedly Stole A Car
After being kicked off their tour with Kiss, Motley Crüe found a soulmate in Ozzy Osbourne. The singer took a liking to the group and brought them out as openers for his Bark at the Moon tour, which was essentially an excuse for everyone to lose their minds. This was the tour where the band really leveled up their bad behavior, and they went from sleeping with every woman they met to committing felonies.
Supposedly at a tour stop in Memphis, Tennessee Vince Neil and Ozzy went out for a night of partying and stumbled upon a car with its keys still in the ignition. Not wanting to let this opportunity go to waste, the guys stole the car and took it for a ride before cutting up the interior and smashing all the windows.
ABBA's Agnetha Faltskog Has A Stalker Who's Become Famous -- For Stalking Her
ABBAmania ran wild all over the world -- the one place it didn't really catch on was the U.S. -- with the Swedish quartet mobbed by fans in country after country. Some artists can deal with the rabid adulation, but Agnetha Faltskog isn't one of them. In fact, her dislike of the spotlight made ABBA's eventual breakup a relief, and for 30 years afterward she lived a lifestyle generally described as "reclusive," tending to her dogs on her farm.
Faltskog's fear of persistent fans predated ABBA -- she had been a solo artist before the group formed, releasing four albums and notching a (Swedish) chart-topping single. Young, attractive and blonde, Faltskog was more or less the ideal Swedish babe, and the press tended to objectify her as such. Many years later, she attracked a stalker named Gert van der Graaf, a forklift operator who was 17 years younger than her, whom she actually dated for a couple of years. After their breakup, he became a superstalker. For his refusal to leave her alone, he has been deported and was subsequently barred from entering Sweden. To Faltskog's dismay, he keeps coming back. Van der Graaf is known in Sweden as the "Agnetha-man."
Van Morrison Was On The Run From The Mob
In 1967, Van Morrison was the former lead singer of a successful group (Them) who'd put out a solo album nobody bought on Bang Records. Then on December 30 of that year, Bang's owner Bert Berns died and the New York mob ended up owning Morrison's contract -- it's not clear how they got their hands on it, but they're the mob. You've seen The Godfather. The mob gets stuff they want.
Warner Bros. wanted to sign Morrison, but the label would have to satisfy his new masters and buy him out of his existing contract. Though the music industry can often be a bit seedy, this was exceptional. Warner Bros. executive Joe Smith was instructed to bring $20,000 in cash to an address on Ninth Avenue in Manhattan. He recalled:
I had to walk up three flights of stairs, and there were four guys. Two tall and thin, and two built like buildings. There was no small talk. I got the signed contract and got the hell out of there, because I was afraid somebody would whack me in the head and take back the contract and I’d be out the money.
The Go-Go's Lost The Beat
The happy pop tunes of The Go-Go's -- "We Got The Beat," "Vacation," "Our Lips Are Sealed" -- obscure the band's origins as well as its customary state of mind. The Go-Go's started out as a punk band on the L.A. scene, and though they cleaned up pretty nice for MTV, they were on a serious bender for most of their run from 1978 until their first breakup in '85.
The Go-Go's liked to party, as revealed in the 2020 documentary The Go-Go's. They may have shed their punk hairdos and outfits, but they lived that rock-star life as if there were, as Johnny Rotten would say, no future. For their first Saturday Night Live appearance, they spent the day drinking and then hit the booger sugar to pep up before the 11:30 curtain call. "We were like cross-eyed drunk,” said drummer Gina Schock. Over time, though, a little booze and a little blow just doesn't do it anymore, and guitarist Charlotte Caffey ended up with a serious heroin habit by 1984. “Charlotte was so out of control that Ozzy Osbourne threw her out of his dressing room,” Schock recalled. “That’s pretty ******* bad.”
Dolly Parton's Biggest Hits
Young Dolly Parton, as small as she was, always did everything in a big way. She had a big voice, big hair, big songs -- and, of course, a big bust line. Over the years, there has been much speculation as to exactly how big they are. The size most commonly given is 40DD, although photographic evidence suggests her cup size might be quite a bit larger. Whatever the exact measurement, Dolly has always been proud of her "girls" and fully admits she's used them to her advantage in her career. She has also had them insured -- for a reported $600,000.
"I don't know if I'm supporting them, or they're supporting me," she has said.
Even if you weren’t a fan of country music, chances are pretty darn good that you knew who Dolly Parton was, men and women alike. Dolly has always been comfortable with her attention-getting figure, even dubbing herself a "backwoods Barbie."
Warren Beatty Thought The Song Was About Him (And It Was, Partly)
For years, "You're So Vain" by Carly Simon provided one of the great mysteries in pop music -- just who was being addressed? It was a mystery for years. Everyone speculated, and the list of suspects included Warren Beatty, Michael Crichton, David Geffen, Kris Kristofferson, Terrence Malick, Jack Nicholson, Cat Stevens, John Travolta, and even Mick Jagger (who sang backup vocals on the song), but that’s all it was… speculation.
Over 40 years after the song was released, Simon opened up about the famous mystery. She reportedly had three different men in mind while composing the song. She revealed that Warren Beatty was the lover she'd written about regarding that famous second verse. For his part, Beatty still believes the entire song is about him -- continuing to prove her initial point.
The Who Blew Up On 'Smothers Brothers'
When The Who showed up to play "My Generation" on The Smothers Brothers Show in 1967, the hosts were prepared for a loud performance and the smashing of instruments -- that was The Who's shtick. Drummer Keith Moon planned to add some bang to the finale with a quantity of explosives in his drum kit. During the run-through, Moon was reportedly underwhelmed by the dull thud. Details are faint, but Moon either decided to pack his kick drum with extra flash powder himself or a stage hand took care of it because of his complaints.
Whatever the case, the televised performance ended with a much bigger bang. According to stage manager Bob LeHendro, the explosives that went off were about three times the planned amount. Pete Townshend has blamed his hearing loss on this incident, although that may just be his way of sweetening the story. Townshend has been known for cranking it up to 11 throughout his career, so his eardrums have been taking a beating for decades.
Duran Duran Didn't Want To Be Princess Diana's Favorite Group
Many British people are obsessed with the Royal Family, and devour news about them in the tabloid press -- but to another large portion of the citizenry, it's a silly if not disgusting cult. As Duran Duran was reaching the top echelon of musical fame, Princess Diana said they were her favorite group, which was not necessarily the endorsement they wanted. An American equivalent might be something like: You're an edgy, stylish band and then Oprah starts telling her book club to buy your album. Sure, a lot of people hold Oprah's opinion in high esteem -- a lot of moms and grandmothers.
"The Di thing was a bit naff (tacky, unfashionable)," Simon Le Bon recalled for The Guardian in 2003. "It was something your mum and dad liked, so there was a part of me that bristled at it."
Still, all these years later, Le Bon was able to crack a joke about their royal admirer: "Every time we opened the dressing-room door, there she bloody was - under the table trying to get an autograph. It was like, 'Can't your husband keep you under control?'"
Post Malone Has Portraits Of (At Least) Ten Musicians Tattooed On His Body
Post Malone has upwards of 80 tattoos on his body -- including over a dozen on his face, which is a bold choice. Some of his tattoos have personal meaning to him, while others are of the "just looks cool" variety. "Stay Away," over his right eyebrow, is just something he got to irritate his mother.
But a certain category of his ink is clearly meaningful -- the portraits of musicians who've influenced him. Across his knuckles he's got seven deceased heroes: Elvis Presley, Kurt Cobain, Stevie Ray Vaughan, John Lennon, George Harrison, Dimebag Darrell, and Bankroll Fresh. Malone also has a larger portrait of Cobain on his left arm, and he has the words "whatever" and "nevermind" (lyrics from Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit") on his palms. He's got three other musicians on his left arm: Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, and the rapper Lil' Peep, a close friend of Malone's who died in 2017. Two other music-related tattoos he has are the Motorhead mascot Snaggletooth and the words "So Far, So Good... So What," which is the title of an album by Megadeth. Add to all these the portrait of himself (dressed as a knight). That's a lot of musical ink, and there surely will be more.
Courtney Love Threatened To Beat A Journalist With An Oscar Statuette
In 1992, journalist Lynn Hirschberg wrote an article for Vanity Fair about Courtney Love, and in it she quoted Love as saying she "did heroin for a couple of months" after Nirvana performed on Saturday Night Live. This would have overlapped with her pregnancy with daughter Frances Bean Cobain -- taken at her word, Love appeared to have admitted that she did heroin while pregnant. After the child was born, child protective services removed her from her parents for a time and launched an investigation.
Love claimed the story was totally false, and seethed over the whole episode, at one point writing a song called "Bring Me The Head Of Lynn Hirschberg." For three years, the two never crossed paths, until they finally came face-to-face at an Oscars after party in 1995. In a fit of rage, Love grabbed the nearest heavy blunt object -- which happened to be the Oscar statuette Quentin Tarantino had won for his Pulp Fiction screenplay -- and threatened to smack Hirschberg with it.
Janis Joplin Performed At Woodstock, But Wasn't In 'Woodstock'
Janis Joplin was known for her partying ways throughout her career, having been a hard drinker since high school. Her favorite libation was the whiskey liqueur Southern Comfort, and she was so often photographed holding a bottle that the company bought her a fur coat to thank her for the publicity. The lady liked to have a drink or two.
Joplin played Woodstock in August 1959, but her performances were not used in the famous film, nor were they included on either of the original albums Woodstock and Woodstock 2. Scheduling was an issue throughout the festival, and Joplin and her crew, the Kozmic Blues Band, were kept waiting for 10 hours before they could finally take the stage. Janis being Janis, she indulged -- it's rumored that she took heroin, and famous photographs show her drinking Champagne while waiting. Whatever she had in her system, it affected her performance, and she refused to let the documentarians include her footage in the movie.
James Brown Needed His Cape Man
James Brown was one of the most electrifying showmen in music, but a James Brown show was not complete without Danny Ray. During the emotional song "Please, Please, Please," Brown would crumple on stage, dropping to his knees as if too drained to go on. A man would emerge from the wings with a cape. That was Danny Ray, whose job for 45 years was "cape man" for James Brown.
Ray wasn't actually there to take Brown off the stage -- it was part of the act. Ray would throw the cape over Brown's shoulders and begin to shuffle the star away -- only to have Brown throw off the cape, seize the mic, and continue with the song. He'd get through another verse, then go down again. Ray would again put the cape on him and Brown would again throw it off and return to the mic, pantomiming physical and emotional pain, perhaps even physically steadied by his backup singers. Watching James Brown get through "Please, Please, Please" was like watching the last 10 minutes of Rocky. Only better, because James Brown had his very own cape man, Danny Ray.
Ray was a close friend of Brown's whom Brown called the "second hardest working man in show business." When Ray died in 2021, James Brown's daughter laid a cape over his coffin.
Tupac Shakur Stopped Flavor Flav From Committing A 'Murk'
Tupac Shakur was a New York rapper before he headed west, and if you were coming up in the New York scene in the '80s, Public Enemy was the rap royalty deserving of respect. This photo, taken backstage at the 1989 American Music Awards, shows a teenaged 'Pac hanging out with Flavor Flav, Public Enemy's resident wild man. At this stage, Shakur had just begun to write rhymes and perform. He got his big break the next year when he was invited to join Digital Underground.
Many years later, Flav shared a story from the same time period, about how Shakur prevented him from committing murder (or "murk" in Flav slang). "Tupac was 17 or 18 years old when he stopped me from hitting this guy over the head with a fire extinguisher," Flav said. "If I had hit this guy over the head, the whole tour would have had to go home, I would have gone to jail, I might not be sitting here talking to you today. So I really got to thank God for Tupac stopping me from committing a murk."
David Bowie Didn't Remember Recording 'Station To Station'
David Bowie survived the mid-'70s, but barely. He had developed a massive cocaine habit while simultaneously reducing his diet to peppers and milk. He was living in Los Angeles at the time, where he made the film The Man Who Fell To Earth in 1975. The character he played in that movie, Thomas Jerome Newton, was the precursor to the character of the Thin White Duke, introduced in the opening track of Bowie's album Station To Station, recorded in late 1975 and released in 1976. The Thin White Duke also became Bowie's stage persona during this period.
This is all lovely Bowie history, but it has the unusual twist of being history that was a mystery to Bowie. Biographer Nicholas Pegg wrote that "Bowie himself remembers almost nothing of the album's production, not even the studio, later admitting 'I know it was in L.A. because I've read it was.'"
Thanks to his drug habit and odd diet, Bowie was simply not in his right mind in '75-'76, a condition that another biographer described as "a state of psychic terror."
Neil Young And Rick James Were In The Mynah Birds And Signed To Motown
It's a fact that Neil Young and Rick James were in a band called The Mynah Birds, and it's also a fact that they were signed to Motown Records. The question is -- how did this happen? Rick James was born and raised in Buffalo, NY, and joined the U.S. Navy to avoid being drafted into the Army. This plan ran aground when James missed his reserve sessions aboard the USS Enterprise, and was ordered to go to Vietnam. James fled for Toronto.
James befriended local Toronto musicians, including Levon Helm (of The Hawks) and Neil Young. James formed The Mynah Birds, who played a mixture of soul, rock and folk music, and they even released a single on Columbia records. They headed to Detroit to record for Motown, and Young joined the group there. When Motown found out that James was a fugitive, they put the kibosh on working with him. While James was away doing five months hard labor to atone for his draft-dodging, Neil Young bought a hearse and drove west, where he formed Buffalo Springfield with four others. After his release, James formed a new Mynah Birds in Toronto and again took them to Motown to record, but very little of the music they made has ever seen the light of day.
Nico May Have Invented Goth
Lou Reed and John Cale resisted the idea of former model Nico joining the Velvet Underground, but their mentor Andy Warhol overruled them. As a visual artist, Warhol saw a powerful stage presence in the statuesque blonde chanteuse. Not everyone felt "statuesque" was a virtue. Guitarist Sterling Morrison bluntly said, “We’ve got a statue in the band.”
The truth is, Nico helped the Velvets get a contract with MGM, who, like Warhol, saw her as a star. She soon moved on, releasing her solo debut Chelsea Girls, and her second album, a total downer called The Marble Index. The latter was a flop -- producer John Cale remarked that "You can’t sell suicide." Maybe not, but bands that pioneered got rock, including Bauhaus and The Cult, would later cite The Marble Index as an inspiration.
Taylor Swift Was Shocked When Two Swifties Got Engaged Backstage
Taylor Swift is famous for making her private life public -- notably writing love songs and breakup songs that are clearly about her many real-life celebrity boyfriends. Her most shocking backstage moment barely involved her at all. In 2018, an excited fan was meeting her when he got down on one knee, produced a ring, and proposed -- to his girlfriend, who was also there.
The couple had met at a Taylor Swift concert five years earlier and were self-described "Swifties" who'd forged their romantic relationship to the soundtrack of Taylor's albums. The proposal caught Swift off guard; in tweets that went viral, the groom wrote that "[Taylor] called me a baller and said that she is never surprised. She also said we were incredible and to go get married!!!! IS THIS REAL LIFE?!?!"
Though it happened right in front of her and had a lot to do with her music, Swift was not in on it -- she was really just the backdrop. She acknowledged this with the hashtag "#thirdwheel" in an Instagram post that earned 2.3 million likes.
Led Zeppelin's John Bonham Served Groupies A Jimmy Page Sundae
Because of their massive fame, Zeppelin had to lock themselves in their hotel rooms every night after concerts to avoid being swarmed by a mob of fans. The bandmates had to find creative ways to entertain themselves, and most of their ideas involved hardcore partying and sex with groupies. One night during their American tour, drummer John Bonham, aka “Bonzo,” and guitarist Jimmy Page became very inventive in how to escape their boredom.
Bonzo dressed as a waiter and rolled Jimmy Page, fully naked and covered in whipped cream, on a service cart into a room full of groupies. Needless to say, the girls dove into their human sundae. The story has been neither confirmed nor denied by the bandmates.
The Runaways Modeled Themselves On Specific Musical Heroes
The Runaways were the first truly successful all-female rock band. They weren't the first such band to have a top-40 single -- that would be Fanny, whose "Charity Ball" made it to #40 in 1971. Though The Runaways never cracked the top 40 in the States, their signature tune "Cherry Bomb" went to #1 in Japan, and when they visited that country to tour in 1977 they were mobbed by fans in scenes recalling Beatlemania. The Runaways managed to exist for four years (1975-79), and released four studio albums.
Due to departures and replacements, there were nine members of The Runaways, with the classic five-piece lineup staying together from late 1975 through mid-'77. Many years after their breakup, in the 2004 documentary Edgeplay: A Film About The Runaways, it was revealed that these members had each modeled their rock personas on their favorite established musicians. Keyboardist Cherie Currie took after David Bowie; guitarist Joan Jett emulated Suzi Quatro; guitarist Lita Ford claimed Ritchie Blackmore (of Deep Purple) and Jeff Beck; drummer Sandy West took after Roger Taylor (of Queen); and bassist Jackie Fox emulated Gene Simmons.
Def Jam Dropped The Beastie Boys Because They Started A Riot In Liverpool
As a young act supporting their debut album Licensed To Ill, the Beastie Boys gained a reputation that had parents everywhere fearing for their children's well-being when the Beasties rolled into town. Their show (like their lyrics at the time) was full of frat-boy humor and included a giant inflatable phallus, and they were known to trash a hotel room -- but they weren't really dangerous by rock 'n roll standards.
That is, until the final date of the tour, which was a show in Liverpool, England. The dynamic between the crowd and the rappers was confrontational from the start. The Beasties performed for just 12 minutes. Things turned ugly, and Ad Rock started lobbing cans of beer into the audience. As a riot broke out, the crowd was dispersed with tear gas. Unfortunately, one of the beer cans that was either thrown or deflected (using a baseball bat) by Ad Rock hit a female audience member in the face. The rapper was arrested and hauled into court, and the whole ugly incident led to the Beasties' being dropped by their label, Def Jam.
The Bee Gees' Fall Was Predicted By A T-shirt
Sometimes the tiniest things prove to be grave omens. In June 1979, the Bee Gees were the biggest group in the world, riding high on a disco sound that had launched with their several contributions to Saturday Night Fever, the disco blockbuster with one of the most successful movie soundtracks ever. The three brothers seemed bulletproof as they donned their white getups and prepared to wow the appreciative crowds.
Maurice Gibb had an odd artifact he pulled out backstage for a laugh -- it was a t-shirt he'd found that said "Shoot the Bee Gees." His brothers did indeed laugh -- shoot the Bee Gees? It was inconceivable that anyone would bear ill will toward a group of such unbridled success. But in the streets, a vicious backlash against disco had been percolating, and when it struck, the Bee Gees were indeed the primary target. In the space of six months, the group went from being a Beatlesesque phenomenon, dominating the airwaves, to pariahs who were effectively banned from radio. It may be the most precipitous fall from grace in music history. They hadn't been literally shot, but careerwise, the Bee Gees were dead.
'No Brown M&Ms' For Van Halen -- For Good Reason
When Van Halen rolled into town, the band had a rider like any other band does -- but Van Halen's contained a very specific provision that has become the most famous demand in rock-rider history. In the "Munchies" section, there existed the line-item "M&Ms (ABSOLUTELY NO BROWN ONES)." While this has often been mentioned as an example of a band being whimsical jerks, making some poor third-string caterer sort through the M&Ms for no reason, it was actually an important check on the venue. If there were brown M&Ms in the bowl, the band went nuts, and here's why.
David Lee Roth explained it in his autobiography:
We’d pull up with nine eighteen-wheeler trucks, full of gear, where the standard was three trucks, max. And there were many, many technical errors — whether it was the girders couldn’t support the weight, or the flooring would sink in, or the doors weren’t big enough to move the gear through. The contract rider read like a version of the Chinese Yellow Pages. ... So just as a little test, in the technical aspect of the rider, it would say “Article 148: There will be fifteen amperage voltage sockets at twenty-foot spaces, evenly, providing nineteen amperes …” This kind of thing. And article number 126, in the middle of nowhere, was: “There will be no brown M&M’s in the backstage area, upon pain of forfeiture of the show, with full compensation.”
It was Van Halen's way of testing the venue staff. The presence of brown M&Ms indicated to the band that those responsible hadn't read the contract, and who knows what other -- actually serious -- problems might arise.
Elton John And Rod Stewart, Soccer Stars
Music and sports have often been linked -- many rock stars and rappers are sports fans like anyone else. But few in the world of pop music have taken it as far as Elton John, a lifelong fan of the British soccer club Watford FC. By the mid-'70s, Sir Elton was one of the biggest rock stars on the planet, and in 1976, he realized his boyhood dream of becoming Club Chairman of Watford. The Elton John era was a prosperous one for the club, which became one of the best teams in the UK within seven years.
Another rock star of Elton John's vintage is often associated with British soccer -- Rod Stewart. Though Elton John was never going to be a professional player, the naturally athletic Rod Stewart was very good at the sport, and captained his school team. As Stewart became a famous musician, the story of his soccer chops was considerably upgraded, to the point where it was taken as a fact that he "could have gone pro." Stewart told the underwhelming truth in his 2012 autobiography: in 1960, he tried out for Brentford FC, but didn't get called back, and that was it. He had no regrets with his career path: "Well, a musician's life is a lot easier and I can also get drunk and make music, and I can't do that and play football."
Glenn Frey Of The Eagles Was A Fighter
The late Glenn Frey was one of the founding members of The Eagles, and though their music was often about peaceful easy feelings, Frey himself tended to get into altercations. This had something to do with the general interpersonal dynamics of the band, where almost everyone was at war with everyone else at one time or another. One night, the band was backstage after its second encore and Randy Meisner said he didn't want to sing "Take It To The Limit" in a third encore. The song features extremely high notes, and Meisner was the only one who could sing it properly.
Frey wasn't having that, and got into a physical altercation with Meisner. By the end of the year, Meisner had been pushed out of The Eagles. But that's not the most famous battle Frey was involved in. In 1980, a simmering feud between Frey and guitarist Don Felder erupted on stage, during a concert. As the band progressed through its set, Felder and Frey traded jabs over the hot mic, each promising to kick the other's ass after the show. An actual fight was narrowly avoided, but that was it for the band -- The Eagles were done.
The Cause Given For Bon Scott's Death Was 'Misadventure'
As AC/DC's frontman, Bon Scott was one of the legendary voices in hard rock, singing on the classics "Highway To Hell," "TNT," "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap" and "It's A Long Way To The Top." Though AC/DC became a long-running rock institution, Scott died just five years into the group's existence. After a night of drinking with some acquaintances in London, Scott passed out in the passenger seat of the Renault they were driving. The others left Scott there in the car, parked in front of 67 Overhill Road in the East Dulwich neighborhood, to sleep it off.
The next morning, when his friends returned to check on the rocker, they found Scott slumped over in the vehicle, covered in vomit. The 33-year-old singer was dead. Conspiracy theorists speculated that Scott was murdered, but in all likelihood, his death was far less glamorous. He most likely choked to death on his own vomit, just as Jimi Hendrix had before him and as John Bonham of Led Zeppelin would do a few months later. The official cause of death was listed as “acute alcohol poisoning” causing “death by misadventure.”
Travis Barker And Shanna Moakler Feuded On MySpace
Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker married Playboy Playmate and former Miss USA Shanna Moakler in 2004. Two years later, Barker filed for divorce, and soon afterward the couple carried on a public spat that should be included in any How Not To Use Social Media textbook. The social media medium of choice back in those days was MySpace.
Moakler posted a fairly harmless statement to fans of their reality show, Meet The Barkers: "I am very devestated [sic] and very much heartbroken over the demise of my marriage and for the upset of my family....I wanted nothing more to overcome the challenges we faced but failed."
Barker struck back with his own MySpace post in all-caps that gave a vicious account of life with Shanna, painting a portrait of a spoiled woman who slept most of the day, didn't take a role in parenting their children, disappeared to get her nails done, didn't come home for dinner and instead stayed out drinking with her friends. Barker also speculated that she was having an affair.
A 7-Year-Old George Clooney with his dad Nick, mom Nina and sister Adelia in 1968
From Bruce Lee's impressive martial arts moves to Fleetwood Mac's classic rock hits, the Groovy Era was filled with memorable moments and influential people. In this collection of photographs, you'll have the opportunity to see your favorite Hollywood legends, musical icons, and cultural figures as they were in their prime - and even beforehand! Get a behind-the-scenes look at Nicole Kidman on set, or find out what George Clooney was like pre-fame. We have it all right here.
Before he was the silver fox we all know and love, George Clooney was just a cute little kid growing up in Lexington, Kentucky. In this nostalgic snapshot, taken 1968, 7-year old George is posing with his dad Nick, a former anchorman and news editor, his mom Nina, a beauty queen and city councilwoman, and his sister Adelia, who would later become a school teacher.
Don't miss your chance to experience the nostalgia of the groovy era and see your other favorite legends like you've never seen them before. Come and check out our gallery for a peek behind the curtain...
A young and handsome Anthony Hopkins
It's a young and handsome Anthony Hopkins, captured in a moment of pure charisma and charm. With his sharp features, piercing gaze, and a head full of dark hair, the man who would later become one of the greatest actors of his generation exudes confidence and natural talent. This photo is a glimpse into the early career of Anthony Hopkins, who began his journey in theater and television before transitioning to film. He worked hard and honed his craft, eventually leading to his breakout role as Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs, which earned him an Academy Award for Best Actor. His undeniable talent, range, and dedication to his craft have made him one of the industry's most respected and revered actors.
A young Flea (of the Red Hot Chili Peppers) playing the trumpet in 1973
It's 1973, and the music scene is starting to heat up. Meet a young Flea, the bassist and co-founder of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, as he plays the trumpet with passion and intensity. This is a rare glimpse into Flea's early days as a musician, before the Red Hot Chili Peppers formed, and before he became one of the most influential bassists in rock history. This photo is a testament to his versatility as a musician and his dedication to his craft. It's also a reminder that before the Red Hot Chili Peppers became one of the biggest bands in the world, they were just a group of young, passionate musicians trying to make a name for themselves.
Alan Reed was an actor who was best known for being the voice of Fred Flintstone
Meet Alan Reed, the actor behind one of the most beloved animated characters of all time, Fred Flintstone. Reed brought the prehistoric patriarch to life with his distinctive voice and comedic timing. He lent his voice to the character in the original The Flintstones series from 1960 to 1966 and in multiple spin-off shows, movies, and commercials.
Reed was a versatile actor who appeared in various television shows and films. Still, his portrayal of Fred Flintstone cemented his place in the annals of television history. His work on the show has been recognized as a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and his portrayal of the character is still beloved by audiences of all ages.
Annette Funicello was the most popular Mousketeer on the Mickey Mouse Club from 1955-59
Meet Annette Funicello, the most popular Mousketeer in the original Mickey Mouse Club from 1955-1959. This photo captures her in her iconic Mousketeer outfit, with a big smile, ready to entertain audiences with her singing and dancing skills.
Annette was a fan favorite on the show and had a successful career as a teen idol, singer, and actress. She appeared in several films, television shows, and albums. She was considered a role model for young girls, and her popularity helped pave the way for future teen idols. Annette was also known for her wholesome image and her ability to maintain a good girl image throughout her career.
Before she was Alice on The Brady Bunch, Ann B. Davis was looking glamorous in 1958
Meet Ann B. Davis before she became known as the beloved Alice on The Brady Bunch in this photo from 1958. She looks glamorous in a chic dress, her hair styled in the era's fashion. This photo captures her at the start of her career before she became a household name, playing the iconic role of the Brady's housekeeper and nanny.
Ann B. Davis was a talented actress with a long and varied career, with appearances in film, theater, and television. She started her career on stage and appeared in several TV shows before landing the role of Alice Nelson in the popular sitcom The Brady Bunch, which aired from 1969 to 1974. She reprised her role in the show's spin-offs, and reunion specials, her portrayal of Alice was a fan favorite, and the role earned her two Emmy Awards.
Brigitte Bardot at her apartment in Paris, 1955
Brigitte Bardot, in 1955, was captured in a candid moment at her apartment in Paris. The photograph captures the French actress and model in her youth and beauty prime.
In the 1950s, Bardot was one of France's most popular and controversial actresses, known for her sensual performances and free-spirited attitude. She was a fashion icon and a symbol of the youth rebellion, and her image was used extensively in the media. Her performances in films such as And God Created Woman helped establish her as one of the most iconic actresses of her time and an embodiment of the "sex kitten" archetype.
Bruce Lee looking groovy in the 70s
Bruce Lee, the martial arts legend, looked groovy in the 1970s. This photo is a reminder of the charismatic and cool persona that Bruce Lee cultivated and projected on and off the screen.
In the 1970s, Bruce Lee was at the height of his fame, having achieved international success with martial arts films such as Enter the Dragon and Way of the Dragon. He was a skilled martial artist and a charismatic and talented actor, director, and philosopher. His unique blend of martial arts, philosophy, and personal charisma made him an iconic figure in the entertainment industry and a cultural icon for many.
Check out this photo of Tiny Tim in a blue glitter jumpsuit and breaking out his moves in the 1970s
Tiny Tim, the ukulele-playing crooner, breaks out his moves in a sparkling blue glitter jumpsuit. This photo captures him during a performance, his signature long hair on full display. He's holding his ukulele, his instrument of choice, and looks to be thoroughly enjoying himself on stage.
Tiny Tim was a unique and eccentric figure in the music industry, known for his high-pitched singing voice and his performances of old-timey songs. He became a popular and successful musician in the 1960s and 1970s. He had a hit with his rendition of "Tiptoe Through the Tulips" in 1968. Likewise, he was a regular performer on TV shows such as Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In and The Tonight Show.
This photograph is a glimpse into Tiny Tim's flamboyant and unique stage persona and a reminder of his contributions to the music industry and pop culture.
Eddie Murphy as Mr. Robinson during his Mister Robinsons Neighborhood sketch on Saturday Night Live 1983
It's 1983, and Eddie Murphy is bringing the character of Mr. Robinson to life on the set of Saturday Night Live. Eddie Murphy's portrayal of Mr. Robinson was praised for its comedic timing, character development, and its ability to address critical social issues in a comedic manner.
The sketch was a commentary on urban poverty. It portrayed Mr. Robinson as a slacker and a grifter who often took advantage of his young viewers.
The sketch was a recurring segment. It featured different sketches with the character Mr. Robinson, such as showing how to make a "rock collection" by picking up rocks on the street or teaching how to steal a bike. It was a humorous and satirical take on the original show and a favorite among the audience and critics.
Edward Platt as Chief with Don Adams as Maxwell Smart, Agent 86 in a scene from the classic TV spy comedy, Get Smart
Step into the world of espionage and comedy with this photo of Edward Platt as Chief and Don Adams as Maxwell Smart, Agent 86, in a scene from the classic TV spy comedy Get Smart. The photo captures the two actors in character, dressed in the iconic suits and ties of the espionage genre, with Platt as the no-nonsense Chief and Adams as the bumbling but lovable Agent 86.
Get Smart was a popular TV show from 1965 to 1970. It was a satire of the spy genre, following the comedic misadventures of Agent 86, a secret agent working for the intelligence agency CONTROL, and his boss, the Chief. The show was known for its clever writing, physical comedy, and the chemistry between its lead actors.
Elvis getting a parking ticket on Main Street in Memphis, 1956
Elvis Presley, the King of Rock and Roll, got a parking ticket on Main Street in Memphis, Tennessee, in 1956.
At the time this photo was taken, Elvis was still relatively unknown. Although he had released several singles and made some appearances on local TV shows, he had yet to achieve the fame he would soon attain.
This photograph is a reminder of Elvis' early days before he became the international superstar that he is remembered as today. It captures a moment when Elvis was just starting his career and shows that even the King of Rock and Roll wasn't immune to getting a parking ticket. It gives a glimpse of his humble beginnings and how even the most famous people deal with everyday problems.
George Savalas (Detective Stavros) and Telly Savalas were in the TV series Kojak and siblings in real life. (1975
Meet Telly Savalas and George Savalas, brothers and actors, in a scene from the popular 1970s TV series Kojak. Telly Savalas plays the lead character, Lt. Theo Kojak, a tough and streetwise New York City detective. George Savalas plays the character of Detective Stavros, Kojak's partner.
The show ran from 1973 to 1978, and it was known for its gritty and realistic portrayal of crime and police work in New York City, as well as Telly Savalas's portrayal of the iconic character of Kojak. The show was a critical and commercial success and helped establish Telly Savalas as a household name.
Go-Go dancers in the 1960s
Welcome to the 1960s, when Go-Go dancing was all the rage. This photo captures a group of Go-Go dancers in action, dressed in the iconic short skirts and boots of the era, as they perform to the beat of the music. Go-Go dancing originated in the 1960s. It was a popular dance style characterized by its frenetic energy and focus on the lower body. The dancers would often be placed in cages or on platforms and dance to the beat of the music, usually in a club or concert setting. Go-Go dancers became a staple of the 60s pop culture, especially with the youth culture and the rise of disco music.
Henry Winkler and Cindy Williams at a celeb charity event in the late 1970s
This photo captures Henry Winkler and Cindy Williams, two of the biggest stars of the 1970s, at a celebrity charity event in the late 1970s, laughing and enjoying each other's company.
Henry Winkler and Cindy Williams were famous for their roles in the popular TV show Happy Days as Arthur "Fonzie" Fonzarelli and Shirley Feeney, respectively. The show was one of the most popular and successful shows of the 1970s, and it helped to establish both actors as household names.
This photograph captured a moment when two of the biggest stars of the 1970s were supporting a good cause. It serves as a reminder of the charitable spirit of the era and the way celebrities used their fame to support important issues. It also highlights the chemistry between the actors and how they maintained a friendship beyond the show.
In 1970, actor Dennis Hopper and Michelle Phillips (Mamas & the Papas) impulsively married
It was 1970, and the world was abuzz with the news of a spontaneous celebrity wedding. Dennis Hopper and Michelle Phillips of the Mamas & the Papas had impulsively tied the knot in a Las Vegas chapel, shocking the entertainment industry and fans alike. The two had met only a week prior and decided to plunge into a whirlwind romance. The wedding was a one-of-a-kind affair, with a flower-strewn altar and a traditional Vegas Elvis impersonator. In the end, their marriage only lasted eight days, but it was a moment that captured the world's attention.
In the 1984 film, Firestarter Drew Barrymore stars as an 8-year-old girl with the ability to start fires with just a glance. Heather Locklear and David Keith also star in the film as her parents
In 1984, the world was introduced to the incredible story of 8-year-old Charlie McGee in the horror-thriller film Firestarter. Starring Drew Barrymore as the young girl with the ability to start fires with just a glance, the movie captivated audiences with its unique mix of suspense and drama. The cast, which included Heather Locklear and David Keith as Charlie's parents, added a sense of realism and poignancy to the story. Firestarter was a box office success and quickly became a cult classic. It was a reminder of the power of imagination and the power of a great story, and it's one we fondly look back on with nostalgia.
Jack LaLanne the original Mr. Fitness
Jack LaLanne was the original Mr. Fitness, inspiring people to get into shape and stay healthy in the 1950s. His iconic TV show, which ran for over 30 years, was a hit with viewers and featured him demonstrating exercises, sharing health tips, and encouraging viewers to get up and get moving. LaLanne's charismatic, no-nonsense approach to fitness made him a household name. His signature jumpsuits and mustache became synonymous with a healthy lifestyle. He became an advocate for healthy living and a role model for generations of people looking to be more active. To this day, LaLanne is remembered as the pioneer of modern fitness.
Janis Joplin sitting in the kitchen of her San Francisco home, 1969
It was 1969, and Janis Joplin was at the height of her career. The Queen of Rock and Roll was known for her unique style and powerful voice, and she became an icon of the counterculture movement. One of her favorite places to spend her time was in the kitchen of her San Francisco home. She felt a sense of comfort and safety and that some of her most excellent work was created here. The kitchen was Joplin's creative refuge, from writing lyrics to experimenting with new sounds.
Katherine Ross and Dustin Hoffman filming the final scene of The Graduate (1966)
It was 1966, and the world was transfixed by the iconic film The Graduate. Starring Katherine Ross and Dustin Hoffman, the movie captivated audiences with its unique blend of comedy, romance, and drama. And, one of the most memorable scenes from the movie was the final one, which featured Ross and Hoffman riding the bus away from the church and into the unknown. This scene was a powerful moment of reflection and a reminder of the uncertainty of life.
This scene was a classic example of the power of the cinematic medium, and it quickly became an iconic moment in film history.
Linda and Paul McCartney met Jackie Kennedy Onassis after their Wings concert in Madison Square Garden, 1976
It was 1976, and Linda and Paul McCartney had just finished a sold-out concert at Madison Square Garden. After the show, they had a chance encounter with a very special guest: Jackie Kennedy Onassis. The two had a warm conversation and even shared a few laughs. It was a moment that the McCartney's would never forget, and it became a cherished memory of their time in New York City.
Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac rockin' the big hair of the 1970s
In the 1970s, no one rocked the big hair look like Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac. His iconic style was part glam-rock, part punk-rock, and all rock and roll. From his signature long locks to his wild wardrobe, Buckingham was a symbol of the era and an icon of the music industry. His look was daring and rebellious, and it was a perfect reflection of the music he was creating.
Lovely singer/actress Connie Francis, early 1960's
Connie Francis was one of the most iconic figures of the early 1960s. From her classic hits like “Where the Boys Are” and “Everybody’s Somebody’s Fool” to her numerous film appearances, Connie was a beloved star of the era. Her voice was one of the most recognizable of the time, and her singing style was powerful and emotive.
Connie was born in New Jersey in 1938 and rose to fame in the late 1950s after recording a series of popular love songs. Her 1960 hit “Where the Boys Are,” which she wrote herself, became a Top 5 hit and made her an international star. She enjoyed success throughout the early 1960s, recording eight Top 10 hits. As an actress, Connie appeared in several films, including the musicals Follow the Boys and Looking for Love. She also had her own television show, The Connie Francis Show, and was a headlining act in Las Vegas. Connie was one of the first female pop stars to break through in the early 1960s, and her influence and legacy can still be felt today.
Maren Jensen as Athena doing a back lot photo shoot at USC for the TV series, Battlestar Galactica (1978)
In 1978, the science fiction television series Battlestar Galactica premiered and quickly became a cult classic. At the show's heart was the character Athena, a strong female warrior portrayed by Maren Jensen. Athena was a major part of the show's visual look, and Maren looked every bit the part. The production team set up a back lot photo shoot to capture Athena's iconic look at the University of Southern California (USC).
Maren Jensen was born in California in 1955 and studied acting at the University of California, Los Angeles. She was only 23 when she was cast as Athena in Battlestar Galactica, and went on to appear in numerous television series and films throughout the 1980s. Her portrayal of Athena was a career-defining role, and her back lot photo shoot at USC is an iconic image of the era.
Michael J. Fox and Huey Lewis on the set of Back to the Future, 1985
In 1985, the classic time travel movie Back to the Future hit theaters and quickly became a beloved classic. The movie starred Michael J. Fox as Marty McFly, who must travel back in time to save his family's future. Meanwhile, Huey Lewis plays Marty's band teacher, who advises him to “play loud” to make it big.
The two actors had great chemistry on screen. The movie featured several of Huey Lewis' hit songs, including “The Power of Love.” The movie was a critical and financial success, quickly becoming a classic of the 1980s. Michael J. Fox was already a beloved star from his role in the sitcom Family Ties, and he went on to star in several more hit movies, including Teen Wolf and Doc Hollywood. Huey Lewis had already had a few hit albums with his band, Huey Lewis and the News, and the success of Back to the Future cemented his place as one of the most popular musicians of the decade. The movie's soundtrack also earned an Academy Award nomination, further cementing its place in pop culture history.
Nicole Kidman on the set of the movie, BMX Bandits, 1983
In 1983, the Australian movie BMX Bandits premiered, starring a young Nicole Kidman in her first film role. The movie follows a trio of teenagers who find a stash of walkie-talkies and decide to become BMX bandits. Nicole was only 16 at the time but already had a passion for acting. She studied drama since she was ten and had already appeared in several stage productions. She was cast in BMX Bandits after director Brian Trenchard-Smith saw her in a stage production. BMX Bandits was a modest success in Australia. Nicole went on to star in several more films before becoming an international star in the 1990s.
Norman Fell and Audra Lindley in their spin-off TV series from Three's Company, as The Ropers, which lasted for 28 episodes in 1979-80
Meet Norman Fell and Audra Lindley in a scene from their spin-off TV series The Ropers. The show was a spin-off of the popular TV series Three's Company, and it followed the characters of Stanley Roper and Helen Roper, landlords of the apartment complex where Three's Company took place. The photo captures them in character, dressed in their typical 1970s attire and with a background of their living room set.
The show, which premiered on ABC in 1979, lasted for 28 episodes, and it followed the lives of the Ropers after they sold the apartment complex where the original show took place and moved to a more upscale neighborhood. The show was praised for its comedic timing and the chemistry between the lead actors.
Odd couple- Donny Osmond and Billy Idol in 1985.
Donny Osmond and Billy Idol at Beverly Wilshire Hotel in 1985. We know little about this meeting between two of the biggest names in the music industry when they crossed paths. From this image, we can assume that it was both a joyous and hilarious moment captured by one lucky photographer.
Paul Newman's character Luke ate 50 boiled eggs in under an hour for a bet in the film Cool Hand Luke (1967)
Yes, in the 1967 film Cool Hand Luke, Paul Newman's character Luke is challenged by the other prisoners to eat 50 hard-boiled eggs in under an hour. The bet is meant as a way for the other prisoners to mock Luke and assert their dominance over him. Luke initially resists, but eventually agrees to the bet and successfully eats all 50 eggs in under an hour, much to the surprise and admiration of the other prisoners.
This scene is considered one of the most iconic and memorable in the film. It is often cited as an example of Luke's resilience, determination, and defiance of authority. The film, directed by Stuart Rosenberg and written by Donn Pearce, was based on a novel of the same name. It tells the story of Luke, a man sentenced to a Florida prison camp for cutting the heads off parking meters. The film was a commercial and critical success. It helped establish Paul Newman as one of the most respected actors of his generation.
Richard Gere, Louis Gossett Jr. and David Keith in a scene from An Officer and a Gentleman 1982
Robot and Jonathan Harris (Dr. Zachary Smith) in the TV series Lost in Space (1965)
Meet the Robot and Jonathan Harris (Dr. Zachary Smith) in a scene from the classic TV series Lost in Space. The photo captures them in character, with the Robot standing next to Dr. Zachary Smith, who is dressed in a suit and tie, with a worried look on his face. The Robot is a fictional robot character in the series, with a distinct silver and white appearance, often providing comic relief.
Lost in Space is an American science fiction TV series created and produced by Irwin Allen. It was first aired in 1965, and it ran for three seasons. The show was about a family and their robot stranded in space. It followed their adventures as they attempted to return to Earth. The Robot was one of the show's most iconic characters and was played by several actors inside the suit.
Stan Lee surrounded by his comics in 1954
In the 1950s, Stan Lee was an editor, writer, and publisher at Marvel Comics, then known as Atlas Comics. During this decade, he played a key role in developing the company's direction. He was responsible for creating many characters that would become household names.
Some of the most notable characters and comics that he created during this decade include Journey into Mystery featuring Thor, Tales of Suspense featuring Iron Man, The Amazing Spider-Man and The Fantastic Four among others.
Lee's writing style, characterized by a focus on characterization and social commentary, helped set Marvel apart from other comic book publishers of the time. His work helped to establish the company as a major player in the comic book industry.
During this decade, he also began to use the pseudonym "Stan Lee" instead of his given name, Stanley Lieber. He wrote under this pseudonym for the rest of his career, and it became synonymous with the comics he created.
Terry Gene Bollea aka Hulk Hogan in his high school Senior photo, back in 1971
Terry Gene Bollea, also known as Hulk Hogan, is a famous professional wrestler, actor, and television personality. In 1971, he graduated from Robinson High School in Tampa, Florida, and began his professional wrestling career soon after. Hulk Hogan is considered one of the most popular wrestlers of all time, known for his distinctive blond mustache, 24-inch pythons, and charismatic personality. He was a multiple-time champion and was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2005.