Trivia Time: 35 Crazy Facts About Music

[I gave Dorothy the Intern an assignment: Find me at least twenty-five weird facts about music. She came back with these thirty-four. How shall we grade her? -AC]

  1. Mick Jagger is a skilled ballet dancer, and he has been taking lessons for years.
  2. Axl Rose is an anagram for “oral sex.” His real name is William Bailey.
  3. Eric Clapton wrote “Layla” with the intention to steal George Harrison’s wife.
  4. While on tour with Led Zeppelin, Jimmy Page dated a 14-year-old girl. Try getting away with that today.
  5. Anthony Kiedis lost his virginity at age 12 to his dad’s 18-year-old girlfriend, and his dad (Blackie Dammett) helped to arrange it. Larry Slowman, co-author of Scar Tissue reveals:
  6. “One night, when Anthony was 12, he went with his father to the Rainbow Room and Blackie’s girlfriend is there dancing for him. Anthony asks, ‘Dad, can I have my first sexual experience with your girlfriend?’ And Blackie says, ‘Sure, son.’ So they go back to the house, and his dad builds a big bed out of four mattresses in his room and puts the girl in next to him. And that’s how he loses his virginity.”
  7. Elvis recorded over 600 songs and he didn’t a single one of them.
  8. Paul McCartney performed at the London Olympics Opening Ceremony in 2012 for only one pound ($1.57). He felt it was his patriotic duty to contribute to the cause.
  9. When Radiohead released “Creep” in 1992, it wasn’t a success. They released the song again the next year, and it became an international hit, thanks largely to it gaining traction in, of all places, Israel.
  10. When Pixie’s drummer David Lovering wasn’t drumming, he performed as a professional magician.
  11. Chuck Berry, the Godfather of Rock ‘n’ Roll, originally only performed music to buy photography equipment to support his aspirations of becoming a professional photographer.
  12. ZZ Top’s drummer Frank Beard is the only guy in the band who doesn’t have a beard.
  13. Fleetwood Mac’s founding member and guitarist Jeremy Spencer abruptly left the band in 1971 to join the Children of God cult (now known as The Family International) and he is still affiliated with the group.
  14. Led Zeppelin’s song “Black Dog” was titled after a black Labrador retriever that wandered around the Hedley Grange studios where the band was recording in England. Despite the dog’s mature age, it was still, er, sexually adventurous like the song’s character. During a concert in 1972, Robert Plant told the audience: “Let me tell you ’bout this poor old dog because he was a retriever in his early days, and the only thing he could ever find in his late days was his old lady who lived two houses away from where we were recording. And he used to go see the old lady quite regularly, but after he’d “boogied” and everything else he couldn’t get back. And we used to carry him back.”
  15. Jack White was once accepted to the Wisconsin Seminary and almost became a priest. He didn’t go when he found out he couldn’t bring his guitar and amp.
  16. In 1992, Trent Reznor moved into the Beverly Hills mansion where actress Sharon Tate was murdered by followers of Charles Manson in 1969. Nine Inch Nails also recorded The Downward Spiral
  17. Red Hot Chili Peppers recorded Blood Sugar Sex Magik in a haunted house that was previously owned by Harry Houdini.
  18. All members of Nirvana were kicked out from their own release party for starting a food fight.
  19. The first show Weezer played was as an opening act for Dogstar, the band in which Keanu Reeves played bass for in the 1990s.
  20. Morrissey was asked to guest star on the TV show Friends but he declined because he didn’t want to sing with Phoebe.
  21. The Beatles were introduced to LSD by a dentist who secretly slipped it into their coffee.
  22. Axl Rose once brought a psychic named Sharon Maynard on tour. His entourage called her “Yoda”.
  23. Lynyrd Skynyrd is named after a high school teacher, Leonard Skinner, who suspended students for having long hair.
  24. Courtney Love was briefly the singer for Faith No More in the early 1980’s.
  25. Rage Against The Machine went on stage naked with duct tape over their mouths at a concert in 1993 as a protest against The Parents Music Resource Center whose goal was to increase parental control over children’s access to music that was deemed inappropriate.
  26. After the suggestion from producer Brian Eno, Coldplay went under hypnosis during the sessions for Viva La Vida and Xylo Moloto.
  27. In the middle of performing a show in Ohio in February 2016, Puddle of Mudd frontman Wes Scantlin stopped the show and went on a rant accusing an audience member of stealing his home. Scantlin and the band left the stage right after this.
  28. Blur’s bassist Alex James has his own cheese farm and is an award-winning cheesemaker. He also co-hosts an annual food and music festival with Jamie Oliver since 2012.
  29. Layne Staley asked Jerry Cantrell to play in a funk band and agreed to sing in Cantrell’s band in exchange. The funk band didn’t last but Cantrell’s band became Alice in Chains.
  30. When Prince was a kid, his father put him on stage at a James Brown concert where he danced with the singer until security took him off the stage.
  31. After Kurt Cobain passed away, Dave Grohl almost joined Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers after they played together on Saturday Night Live.
  32. Mudhoney bassist Guy Maddison considers his job in the band as secondary to his career as a registered nurse.
  33. At 2:58 into the recording of “Hey Jude”, Paul McCartney (some say it’s John Lennon) says “Oh fucking hell” after making a mistake. You have to listen carefully, but it’s there.
  34. Beck was one of the models for Yves Saint Laurent’s Spring 2013 Collection.
  35. Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards admitted to a journalist several years ago that he once mixed part of his father’s cremated remains with some Coke, and then snorted it.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ 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.

3 thoughts on “Trivia Time: 35 Crazy Facts About Music

  • September 18, 2017 at 2:02 am
    Permalink

    hire her full time.

    Reply
  • September 18, 2017 at 9:22 am
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    Elvis recorded over 600 songs and he didn’t a single one of them.
    …..what didn’t he do? Feels like a word or two is missing.

    Reply
    • February 21, 2021 at 3:19 pm
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      He didn’t write any of them 🙂

      Reply

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