Alcohol and rock ‘n’ roll have had a long and complicated relationship with each other. For the most part, rock musicians have found a manageable balance between partying with the bottle and their duties as live performers. But it doesn’t always work out that way.
Whether it’s the tedious nature of waiting around all day on tour, or just their inner demons taking the driver’s seat, some rock stars have go on stage and wasted everyone’s time involved with a blinding drunk performance. Today, Diffuser.fm is taking a look back at five of the best/worst examples of this.
Liam Gallagher is a rock journalist’s dream. Not only does the former Oasis, current Beady Eye frontman drop one controversial quote after the other during interviews, he’s also one of the most unpredictable live performers, sometimes showing up to concerts three sheets to the wind, while still delivering the goods. But this drunken display during a 1997 headlining Oasis show in France is just an embarrassment for everyone involved, not to mention a rip-off to the band’s fans.
Pete Doherty (Russia, 2009)
Former Libertines, current Babyshambles singer/guitarist Pete Doherty is as famous for his drugged-out on and off stage antics nearly as much as he is for his music. Throughout the years, the 34-year-old has admitted to abusing crack cocaine, ketamine and heroin, among other illegal substances, making the fact that he’s alive a miracle of sorts. That makes this drunken solo performance from 2009 as surprising as snow in Vermont during December.
Van Halen (California, 1983)
David Lee Roth is the living embodiment of the term “Rock Star.” The guy has never met a party he didn’t have fun at, and his live performances throughout the years carry his wild and free spirit. In this video clip from 1983's US Festival, Diamond Dave tells a Van Halen fan that he’s going to sleep with his girlfriend, swigs a shot of Jack Daniels and then disses the Clash, all in the span of a few minutes.
Besides their left-of-center writing style, Ween are also beloved for their comedic bent on pop music. But at a show at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre in Vancouver, Canada, singer Aaron Freeman aka Gene Ween crossed the line of absurdity by showing up to the gig drunk as a skunk. How bad was he? Well, the rest of Ween left the stage disgusted and only after a few solo songs did Freeman even realize they had exited stage left.
Amy Winehouse (Serbia, 2011)
How bad was Amy Winehouse's 2011 performance in Serbia, well, it actually made the mainstream news circuit. The late singer slurred her way through the set list and was booed by the capacity crowd throughout the 70-minute show. It's one of many sad stories related to the 'Rehab' singer's short yet promising life and career.