Ongoing History of New Music

Ongoing History Daily: That time when Shaq threaten to sue 311

Back in the early 2000s, Omaha’s 311 was on a real roll, selling lots of records, playing plenty of gigs, and making their share of big-budget music videos. In 2001, they managed to get Shaquille O’Neal for a cameo in the video for their song “You Wouldn’t Believe.”

At the time, O’Neal was playing for the LA Lakers and the team was in the middle of a playoff run. The team stipulated that O’Neal was not to play any basketball outside of official games and practices for fear that he might get hurt. But 311 convinced him to play a little hoops in this video, completely in contravention of orders from the Lakers.

There was an added complication. For some reason, O’Neal showed up with two left shoes. Where was anyone going to get a pair of size 22 basketball shoes at short notice? Nowhere.

Shaq still agreed to appear in the video—but if anyone filmed his feet too closely, he promised that he’d sue.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38529 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

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