In Rock and Roll, a famous feud is often remembered more than a hit song or album. Sometimes it’s between bandmates, and other times, just between fellow artists, but one thing’s for sure: the outcome is hardly ever pretty. In light of the recent altercation between Motley Crue and former Skid Row frontman Sebastian Bach, we’ve put together a list of the most memorable feuds in Rock and Roll history!
1. Axl Rose vs. Slash
This one tops the long list of fallouts involving Axl Rose. Fairly soon after Guns N’ Roses’ first album, Appetite for Destruction, topped the Billboard 200 and vaulted the band into international stardom, trouble began brewing between the band’s members.
Axl and lead guitarist Slash became distant after arguing over the GNR’s musical direction and personnel for several years, which eventually led to Slash’s departure from the band in 1996.
Since then, Axl has bad-mouthed Slash in a number of interviews, and seemingly cemented his opinion by failing to show up and perform with Guns N’ Roses at their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction last year. Slash insists that he’d be willing to bury the hatchet if only Axl would apologize, but it doesn’t appear that will be the case and the two seem to be just as far apart as ever.
2. Scott Weiland vs. Stone Temple Pilots
Earlier this year, fans were surprised to find out that Scott Weiland had once again been booted from the Stone Temple Pilots lineup…and apparently, so was Scott Weiland.
The rocker initially denied that he had been kicked out of STP, but the band soon acknowledged that they had let their frontman go with a brief post on their website, later replacing him with Linkin Park singer, Chester Bennington. STP then filed suit against Weiland for using the band’s name and songs to promote his solo work, as he had been playing the band's music from their albums Purple and Core while on tour with the Wildabouts.
Weiland has since countersued for $5 million dollars in damages, alleging that his former bandmates conspired against him. The jury is still out on this claim of mutiny, but it doesn’t look like this one’s getting resolved anytime soon.
3. Courtney Love vs. Nirvana
This feud isn’t one among band members at all. In fact, it involves Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic, the two remaining members of Nirvana, and the wife of late frontman Kurt Cobain.
Following Cobain’s death in 1994, the band immediately split up, and the rights to their music was distributed between Grohl, Novoselic and Courtney Love, Kurt's widow. Since then, Love has been battling with the surviving members over the use of Nirvana's songs, at one point blocking a planned release of never-before-heard material from the grunge-rock band through a successful lawsuit.
Nirvana and Love have been exchanging lawsuits for nearly two decades and neither side seems to be moving an inch.
4. David Lee Roth vs. Van Halen
When you have a high-flying band like Van Halen, it’s easy for egos to get out of control. Frontman David Lee Roth lasted thirteen years before he struck out on his own, with the rest of the band, namely Eddie Van Halen, apparently growing tired of Roth’s behavior, both on and off the stage. On April 1, 1985 Roth and the band parted ways, and Van Halen quickly replaced him with Montrose frontman, Sammy Hagar.
More than ten years later, a disastrous attempt at a surprise reunion at the MTV Video Music Awards led to a shouting match between Eddie and David, threatening to keep them apart for good.
In 2007, over twenty years since the initial breakup, Van Halen and Roth reunited. They have appeared on stage together several times over the years, and even hit the studio together to record 2012’s A Different Kind of Truth, which they promoted with a series of world tour dates. Meanwhile, Eddie isn't on such great terms with former frontman Sammy Hagar and original bassist, Michael Anthony...
5. Geoff Tate vs. Queensryche
For 30 years, Queensryche was led by vocalist, Geoff Tate, and together, the band released 12 studio albums and was nominated for three Grammy Awards. Things were going smoothly until the band held a meeting without Tate, proceeding to fire the band manager (Tate's wife), as well as an office assistant and a guitar tech, who were family members of Tate’s.
Tate got word of the firings just before a show in April 2012 and reportedly proceeded to instigate a physical altercation with band members backstage. Not long after, on June 20, 2012, Queensryche announced they had fired frontman Geoff Tate, citing “creative differences.”
The members are currently awaiting a court decision on the outcome of their legal dispute that is set to take place in January 2014. Until then, Tate has been performing under the name, Queensryche Starring Geoff Tate the Original Voice, while the original band replaced Tate with singer Todd La Torre.
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