10 Times Rock Musicians Lost Their Cool On Stage

When rockstars forget to play it cool.

Axl Rose
Ian West/PA Archive

By this point we all know being a rock star isn't as glamorous as it's sometimes made out to be.

Sure, mountains of free narcotics, adoring fans, shed loads of disposable income and the chance to see the world, sounds appealing, but hedonism can ultimately only ever lead to trouble. Plus, there's the matter of having to put up with that band mate who wont strop snoring with all the intensity of a whale, while you're trying to sleep on the tour bus.

Yep, whether it's an annoying band mate, over zealous fans, an intensive touring schedule or just having to show up to a gig on time, being a rock musician can be tough...

With all these stresses it's no wonder musicians sometimes flip-out on stage, and when they do it makes for a great bit of entertainment for their audience, most of the time anyway...

Here's 10 examples of some of rock's all time greats, succumbing to the pressure of their job, breaking that on stage cool and demonstrating that even rock stars can have a bad day at work.

10. John 5 Vs Marilyn Manson

John 5 (John Lowery), best known as the emo-Joker looking guitarist for Marilyn Manson has had quite the rock career. Recording with the likes of Rob Halford (Judas Priest), David Lee Roth (Van Halen) and the controversial Marilyn Manson. Since leaving the latter, he has worked with Rob Zombie, the purveyor of all things rock and horror.

Known as one of the nicest guys in metal, John 5 left his gig with Manson, due to creative difference in 2004. However, his leaving just happened to occur after the 2003 Marilyn Manson tour, when during a gig in Germany, Manson displayed his propensity for being one of the more obnoxious individuals in rock.

Manson has had a reputation for being, to put it conservatively a total ball bag. Prancing around on stage like a twisted gothic Mickey Mouse, Manson goose-stepped his way into the path of his guitar player almost knocking the poor guy over. The antagonised John 5, proceeded to discard his guitar in a fit of desperate rage before squaring up to Manson with all the confidence of school kid standing up to a bully.

Although John 5 later attributed this outburst to tour fatigue, there are several other videos of Manson playing with his band mates in this way, and with all he other allegations against Marilyn Manson, this outburst might just have been justified.


Before engrossing myself in the written word, I spent several years in the TV and film industry. During this time I became proficient at picking things up, moving things and putting things down again.