Whether it’s an attempt to truly shock people or just a form of artistic expression is up for debate. Either way, here’s a roundup of some of the artists who have provided us with plenty of head-turning and ear-bleeding moments throughout their careers. Love them or hate them, they’re definitely not boring.
From her ’80s days of wearing a wedding dress while performing “Like a Virgin” on the MTV Video Awards to her ’90s “Sex” book to her on-stage lip-lock in the 2000s with Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera, among other notable moments, Madonna has certainly kept us on our toes.
Two words: meat dress. Since she barnstormed the world in 2008 with her debut album “The Fame,” Lady Gaga has churned out the hits and the shocking moments. Along with the meat dress, she’s gone off the deep end in video form and dropped jaws around the world when she arrived for the 2011 Grammy Awards encased in a giant alien-like pod.
Many still shake their heads when thinking about how heavy metal titan Ozzy Osbourne bit the head off a dove while at a 1981 meeting at CBS Records. That act alone would put him high on the list of shock rockers, but it doesn’t end there. He also has a taste for bat and bit the head off of one during a concert in 1982. To be fair, he thought it was rubber. The bat got the last laugh though, and urban legend has it that it bit Osborne first. Bloody well stop it, Ozzy.
Way back in 1969, Alice Cooper earned a spot in the shocking hall of fame when he threw a live chicken into the crowd at the Toronto Rock and Roll Festival. The crowd in turn, ripped it to shreds. Since then he’s been dubbed by his fans the “godfather of shock rock” by including guillotines, electric chairs, snakes, baby dolls and fake blood in his live shows.
Rocker Marilyn Manson, namesake for a band of the same name, is nothing if not shocking. Between controversy-inducing lyrics and live performances, risqué costumes and disturbing videos, both the man and the band have earned a place on this list.
Staff Writer Aimsel Ponti can be contacted at 791-6455 or at: