It takes a minor miracle to reach the top of the musical world. For all odds that tend to be stacked against the artist before they even put out a song, they also need the right hook and more than a bit of luck to write a song that resonates with millions of people. Although they may have put in a lifetime of effort to become the best in the world, acts like Eagles and Oasis found themselves falling from grace in no time.
Even though a few acts were at least competent behind their instruments, their luck seemed to run out when they opened their mouths for interviews. From controversial statements to bad PR moments, one lousy decision sent every one of these artists plummeting off the charts, as their fans dropped them like a bad habit.
Granted, a handful of blackballed artists didn’t necessarily deserve the ridicule they had. Even though they stood up for what they believed in or were just caught in the crossfire of controversy, they still became casualties of the industry, gently fading away from view before fans could hear their next single.
Just because your time in the spotlight is gone doesn’t mean it’s entirely over, and many artists have successfully made second acts, either on the indie circuit or building themselves back up to at least a modest position in the music industry. Some may have been able to muscle through their controversial pasts, but they would never see the heights of their glory years ever again.
10 musicians who killed their careers:
10. The Replacements
As the college rock circuit began picking up steam in the 1980s, it looked like The Replacements would become legends on the same level as R.E.M. Although Michael Stipe may have been able to tap into his introspective side on every song he made, the jaded lyrics of Paul Westerberg and the bar-band sloppiness of his bandmates made the punk rock drunkards an underdog amongst rock legends. When they were supposed to reach their creative pinnacle, their performance on Saturday Night Live sent them back down the tubes.
Being one of the first times they were on national television, the band dealt with their raw nerves like they always had: getting drunk. By the time they were set to perform, most of the group was hammered, often bouncing off each other onstage and giving a half-hearted performance of songs like ‘Bastards of Young’.
During the performance, Westerberg forgot he was on national television, motioning to guitarist Bob Stinson to play solo, calling him “fucker” on live television. While the performance may have captured all of the rough edges that made The Replacements so endearing as a live act, it also confirmed that they wouldn’t be played in living rooms worldwide either.