Top 10 Creepiest Moments on Stage
By Pauline France
Whether it’s Mother Nature, a stage malfunction, or rowdy fans, sometimes concerts can go south in a split-second, turning a happy event into a serious nightmare.
With Halloween just around the corner, we’ve put together a list of the top 10 creepiest moments on stage — from David Bowie’s bizarre eye-poking lollipop incident to Gene Simmons’ fire-breathing freak accident.
Due to the graphic nature of these videos, viewer discretion is advised.
Poison frontman Bret Michaels ran right into the stage backdrop after the band’s opening performance at the 2009 Tony Awards. The accident looks terribly agonizing, and the singer fractured his nose and needed three stitches in his lip. It also led to a lawsuit Michaels filed against the Tony Awards.
Pop-rocker Pink gave us a huge scare when she accidentally catapulted into the audience during a concert in Nuremberg, Germany in 2010. Her crew failed to read her hand signals and released her harness before the appropriate time, making the singer hit the ground with tremendous force. Pink was a trooper and a suffered no serious injuries, but after dislocating her shoulder a few months prior, it had to hurt!
David Bowie got his share of trick-or-treat candy during a 2004 Norwegian Wood Festival performance, when an unruly spectator tossed a lollipop at him. The spectator’s aim was so precise, that the lollipop landed directly on Bowie’s eye…totally bizarre to say the least. Watch images and audio below:
Who knew that Tool frontman Maynard James Keenan has serious Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu skills? Obviously not the guy in the video below. The daring fan decided to jump on stage during the band’s 1997 show in The London Astoria, only to be tackled a few moments later by the martial arts-trained singer. We won’t spoil it too much; watch for yourself…
Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic tried performing bass gymnastics during the band’s 1992 MTV Video Music Awards act, but a miscalculation on his behalf cost him a trip to the hospital after getting knocked out by his flying axe. Novoselic stumbled off-stage while Kurt Cobain was totally oblivious to it all.
Nothing yells creepy more than Gene Simmons, dressed in his traditional Kiss outfit, catching fire. His fire-breathing stunt took a turn for the worse while the right side of his face – and consequently his hair-spray infested updo – caught on fire during a 1973 performance at New York’s Academy of Music. Simmons recalled the terrifying incident here.
Ozzy Osbourne is notorious for biting into flying creatures. The rock legend bit a dove’s head off during a 1981 meeting with record label execs, but his insatiable appetite for gore didn’t stop there. In a 1982 concert at the Veterans Memorial Auditorium in Des Moines, Iowa, Osbourne bit into a bat that was thrown onstage by a concertgoer. Watch the controversial bat chow-down video below, and see Ozzy recalling the dove and bat incidents here:
Undoubtedly one of the most notable stage accidents in the history of live music, James Hetfield’s pyrotechnics mishap looks like something pulled straight out of a horror movie. The incident took place in Montreal’s Olympic Stadium in August of 1992, when pyrotechnics exploded right on the Metallica frontman. Hetfield suffered from second and third-degree burns, but was back in action 17 days later.
Absolute chaos broke loose at the Ottawa Bluesfest in July 2011 after a severe windstorm caused the stage to collapse during Cheap Trick’s performance. Amazingly, the band members went unharmed and there was only one serious injury in the audience. Watch as spectators run in complete horror when they see the storm destroying everything in its path.
If you’ve ever been to a Rammstein concert, you know that fire is no foreign phenomenon to these German metallers. The band took their spectacle to another level during a 1996 show in Berlin’s Treptow Arena, when an engulfed decoration inadvertently plunged from the ceiling straight onto the stage. For added creepiness, Rammstein kept playing while the audience fled in panic. Everything in the video below — especially the mannequin plopped midstage — makes for an incredibly sinister moment on stage.