Musicians have a certain luxury when it comes to films in that they can apparently just show up in them whenever the hell they want. We think it’s cute (and it is) to watch Keith Richards don a pirate face and go staggering around with Johnny Depp so long as we don’t expect him to do much more than that.
But in the wake of recent news concerning a particular interruption at a certain Dropkick Murphys show, it might be fun to explore musicians who were both made to seriously work for their cameo roles and to endure some bizarre disruptions. Here are eight of ’em.
8. Cannibal Corpse – Interrupted By Jim Carrey in Ace Ventura
It’s a deleted scene, so unless you’re hungover watching the TV version you probably missed it. That said, it’s kind of the best part of the film. Cannibal Corpse is one of those bands that you hope to lord Lucifer doesn’t actually take itself seriously. How could they? Their lead singer sounds like a blender.
But it’s this deleted scene where Ace gets on stage and replaces the lead singer that confirms that they are, in fact, self-aware. While it’s not enough of an interruption to stop the show, it’s certainly the best moment on this entire list… which isn’t something I should be advertising this early, but whatever.
7. The Subways – Plug Pulled By Mobsters in RocknRolla
This movie has so much European charisma that if you grind up and drink a copy of the DVD you’ll poop out Daniel Craig 24 hours later. Seriously, you got Gerard Butler, Tom Wilkinson, Thandie Newton, Mark Strong, Tom Hardy, and freaking Idris Elba just sloshing around this Guy Richie-directed cool crime hip style festival of guns and sex. It’s just too much to handle.
The Subways, aka “the band who played that one song you kept hearing for a month,” have their own little music video halfway through the film when junkie rock star crime heir Johnny Quid (so British) goes sickhouse on a surly bouncer while the show is shut down by his father, who quite literally pulls the plug by shutting off their power. It’s a pretty big dick move but, in fairness, probably the least terrible thing a mobster has done to someone in a Guy Richie film.
6. Snoop Dogg – Accosted By Drunk Naked Man in Old School
Will Ferrell is really the only person who can get away with interrupting Snoop like he does in this film, and even then he has to be naked to really pull it off. When you really think about it, being a naked middle-aged man is not unlike a super power; no one really wants to engage with you in any physical way, making you somewhat invulnerable to attack. It’s not unlike being that spiky mutant in the third X-Men film, accept slightly less humiliating. After all, that spiky kid sucked pretty damn hard. He could either look like a Sonic The Hedgehog Photoshop fan art or an asshole with face tattoos; that’s what we call a lose/lose.
For a humble comedy, Old School has a surprising amount of musical talent featured. From being kicked off by The Dan Band, to Snoop, to Will Ferrell’s heartwarming rendition of “Dust In The Wind,” all grounds are covered here.
5. L7 – Show Halted In Support Of A Lady Who Just Lit A Dude On Fire
This one from John Waters’ Serial Mom is complicated in that it’s ridiculously simple but still inexplicable. Lady goes into punk rock club, lights an innocent boy on fire, everyone loves it. The best part is when one of the members of the band gets in on the action and spits alcohol on the flaming corpse, swiftly earning her punk rock stripes. After all, it would normally take someone years of doing lines off toilet seats and drunkenly jumping off rooftops to match those seconds of torching a dead body on stage. That’s like a punk rock cheat code.
What do you suppose would happen if Mrs. Sutphin and Patrick Bateman co-hosted a dinner party? That sounds like a real match, if you ask me. No doubt the décor would be spotless, up to date, and expensive. The music would be amazing, and the conversation would be unique – you just wouldn’t want to eat the food.
4. Smash Mouth – Delayed Show Because Of Hot Air Balloon Crash in Rat Race
I’m not going to sugarcoat it; Smash Mouth is a horrible band. Collectively they look like the villains in a sexual harassment PSA, and their lead singer’s voice sounds like what I think a dog’s anus would sound like if you were to give it the power of speech. Between them is every head and facial hair mistake a man could ever make in his life. It’s as if a ska band fell into whatever made the Toxic Avenger and these guys came out. I hate Smash Mouth.
But the joke is on them, because they made a song called “All Star,” and as we rolled into a new millennium, that piece of crap exploded on everyone. We saw it in films, weddings, and television. Everyone hated it, but it wouldn’t go away – especially, one imagines, for the members of Smash Mouth. That is why the joke is on them, because whatever horror we all went through dealing with that ridiculous song must have been 10 times worse for them.
Just imagine, sitting in the studio singing that fucking thing. Imagine getting up every day of your life having to stare in the mirror knowing what you did. You can’t escape that. You’d try, but then sure enough, Shrek would come on TBS and the next day they’d find you eating dumpster rust in an alleyway hoping the tetanus will take you swiftly yonder.
3. Green Day – Concert Sunk in The Simpsons Movie
There’s a marginal level of satisfaction in watching Green Day sink into a dark abyss. It’s not unlike what’s happening to them now. Not that I hate Green Day at all; I’m just a really mean-spirited person. Still, in terms of punk rock, being killed in a Simpsons movie for talking about the environment isn’t exactly earning your leopard print, especially considering the ten-year-old Titanic reference at the end.
There’s a problem I’ve noticed with movies based off of half hour primetime cartoons like The Simpsons, Family Guy, or Futurama: There’s no point to them. Like, they’re great… sure, but most of us out there tend to watch these shows in bulk anyway, so the length isn’t anything special. Next you have your celebrity cameos, but again, it’s not like The Simpsons didn’t already have that. Finally there’s the whole upping-the-ante aspect… but once again, that’s pretty hard to do for a show that regularly features aliens and weird yellow people and whatnot. Really the only one difference is the fact that, if they wanted, they could curse – and yet… they don’t.
So when Matt Groening comes out to say that there will be no sequel anytime soon, I say: good. Why bother with it? Just stick to your decades-old show and we’ll call it even. Enjoy being rich.
2. The Offspring – Lead Singer Scalped By Dismembered Hand in Idle Hands
These days this really seems like the best thing to do to the lead singer of The Offspring. The most shocking thing I just learned off their Wikipedia page is the fact that they apparently still exist. Seriously, after whatever the hell “Americana” was, did anyone actually keep up with these guys? The lead singer looks like he is perpetually about to be vaporized by an atomic blast, sounds like it too.
But you can’t deny how awesome this cameo and this movie are. With an adorable soundtrack, nostalgic cast, and comedy horror theme it was the perfect wind-down from the messy spectacle that was 90s teen cinema. It’s even got Seth Green in it, for Pete’s sake. Also, Jessica Alba apparently. Not that Devon Sawa is bumming the streets, but it’s weird to see Alba bloom out of his leading man corpse in this film.
1. Vanilla Ice – Giant Turtles in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II
No contest here. Giant ninja-fighting turtles almost always wins when it comes to “things that can ruin your concert.”
Here’s what I love about what this says about Vanilla Ice: apparently even after a ninja fight breaks out at his weird warehouse rap concert, he’s still okay with it enough to not only continue the show, but make up an entirely new rap song about the interruption. That’s amazing. That’s like if Bob Dylan had suddenly broke out into a song called “Soy Bomb” during that Grammys performance.
And lucky for Ice, when he starts singing about these ninja turtle folk they actually start getting into it! Like, okay… you have four man-sized turtles, and for some stupid reason you just start NAILING this song about their presence… and instead of like, biting you or attacking the crowd (a crowd surprisingly calm about the situation) these turtles actually start dancing! Talk about a bad situation turning around fast, you’ve literally made a monster attack into a dance party. You should get a medal!
To put that into perspective, imagine if halfway through Cloverfield or The Thing someone turned just up the radio and everyone went with it. You bet your ass that alien in The Thing could do a mean Hammer Dance.