The Top Five Most Disastrous Musician Interviews Ever

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At Rocks Off, we know a thing or two about interviews, for better or worse. Most of them go pretty good, alright, nothing special. Someone has something to promote and we want to talk to them and then it goes up, people read and enjoy it, and we all go about our lives. It's a pretty rare and special occasion that an interview will live on beyond that.

It does happen though. Sometimes interviews live on in infamy because they're so damn crazy, weird, or otherwise awkward that they provide entertainment long after everyone has forgotten why the celebrity was being interviewed in the first place. Those special disasters continue to capture all of our imaginations because if there's anything America loves, it's seeing a celebrity break down or blow up in public.

For the sake of that, I compiled five of the most disastrous interviews with musicians of all time, and, thankfully, none of them were done by anyone on the Rocks Off staff.

5. Tom Waits
Tom Waits has given some bizarre interviews, including one which briefly became internet famous due to Waits' resemblance to Heath Ledger's portrayal of the Joker in The Dark Knight. Credit where it's due though, interviewer Don Lane was a professional the whole way through.

The disaster here, then, was when Waits decided to promote his last record Bad as Me with an appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. The future Tonight Show host Fallon has done well for himself in the Late Night seat, but he showed his youth in conducting interviews in this one where he practically breaks down because he's so starstruck interviewing Waits. Waits plays it off decently, guiding Fallon through it, but it's clear how ridiculously nervous Fallon is to be in his presence and it ends up being terribly uncomfortable.

4. Billy Bob Thornton
Whatever you do, don't refer to Billy Bob Thornton as an actor when he's doing an interview as a musician. Billy Bob Thornton is a serious musician with a serious band, and you will not mention his other career.

The Q radio show on CBC found that out the hard way when Thornton's band the Boxmasters appeared and host Jian Ghomeshi briefly referred to Thornton's acting career in his introduction of the band. Apparently Thornton had instructed them not to bring that up and after it is mentioned, he refuses to answer questions until he finally simply blows up and has a fit over the whole thing.


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10 comments
arrothiel
arrothiel

Honorable mention: Conor Oberst's interview with Craig Ferguson, after he smashed his "very expensive guitar" (his words). He was twitchy, clearly on uppers of some kind, and could barely answer the questions.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RKV2bHpiH1E

kyle
kyle

Look for Sly Stone on Davis Frost. He was absolutely stoned and it was hilarious.

kyle
kyle

Look for Sly Stone on Davis Frost. He was absolutely stoned and it was hilarious.

Glenn Ray
Glenn Ray

The inclusion of the Crispin Glover-Letterman episode was weak: he wasn't appearing on the show as a musician and it's been long-known that this was likely a prank by Glover (appearing as a character in a later-released movie). And the Waits interview wasn't that cringe-worthy.

Rebecca Hadley
Rebecca Hadley

Oh ... and I just remembered Tori Amos on the Daily Show, circa 1999. Those were three of the most uncomfortable minutes I've ever seen on TV. Awkward!

Rebecca Hadley
Rebecca Hadley

Poor Letterman - he's had some of the worst. Not mentioned in your list was the infamous Cher interview in which she called Letterman an asshole. It was probably deserved, but still ...

MadMac
MadMac topcommenter

Joaquin Pheonix? Kidding. I can't find the link but I remember an interview, (Mtv?) where he insisted on speaking French and answering through an interpreter. I already LOVED the man's music but that was just one step beyond kewl. I was also 14, so there's that. Fun stuff, Mr. Deiterman.

allanbartlett
allanbartlett

deserved? From a woman that was married to sonny talentless hack bono. Who's the asshole?

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