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Top 10 Most Shocking Music Myths

VO: Rebecca Brayton
Sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll: when it comes to music, things sure can get crazy! Outrageous rumors, wild myths and all that jazz are just part of the territory when you're a rock star. From undead musicians to deals with the devil to murders, and much, much more, these guys (and gals!) have heard it all! In this video, we count down our picks for the top 10 most shocking myths in rock music.

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These stories are the stuff of legend. Welcome to, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 most shocking myths in rock music.

#10 – Child Actor Turned Antichrist: Marilyn Manson was on “The Wonder Years”

It’s not as wild as the myth that says Marilyn Manson had ribs removed to facilitate oral sex on himself. But picturing a young Brian Warner on “The Wonder Years” is just as nutty. Despite the stark contrast between the wholesome Paul Pfeiffer and the Antichrist Superstar’s image, it’s hard to deny the physical resemblances. But, it’s actually Josh Saviano who played Kevin Arnold’s best friend, so put this rumor to rest.

#9 – Dyin’ to Live: Elvis, Jim and Tupac are Still Alive

Sometimes diehard fans have trouble letting go – especially Elvis fans. Inconsistencies on his death certificate caused some to suggest The King faked his death, and tabloids are full of people who claim to’ve seen him in the flesh. Fake death theories are also attached to Jim Morrison, since his body was never autopsied, and Tupac, who keeps releasing new music that fans believe references future events.

#8 – Psychedelic Bandanas: Jimi Hendrix Wore an Acid-laced Bandana

Jimi was almost as famous for his drug use as he was for his guitar skills, so it’s not crazy to think he’d found a way to combine them. Rumor has it the guitar great hid LSD under his bandanas while performing and absorbed the acid through self-inflicted cuts in his forehead. But that’s not all: the shady circumstances surrounding his death encouraged a persistent rumor that Hendrix was murdered.

#7 – He Sold His Soul for Rock ‘n’ Roll: Robert Johnson Made a Pact with Satan

Robert Johnson’s complex style made him a legend. What’s also legendary is how the King of Mississippi Delta Blues allegedly got his skills: by selling his soul to the Devil. Some point to his short life and songs like “Me and the Devil” as proof, but others know it was natural talent and hard work. Another musician who allegedly made a deal with the Devil? Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page.

#6 – Full of Seamen’s Semen: Rod Stewart’s Stomach was Pumped From Too Much Semen

While this legend’s been attributed to Elton John, Alanis Morissette, Lil’ Kim and more, it’s most famously connected to Rod Stewart. The story goes that the Brit was *ahem* servicing a fleet of sailors when he had to go to the hospital to get his stomach pumped of all the excess fluid. Though the singer-songwriter maintains a fired assistant concocted this bogus tale, he’s still asked about it.

#5 – Cow Got Your Tongue?: Gene Simmons Had a Tongue Transplant from a Cow

Amid KISS’ loud anthemic music, eye-catching costumes and onstage antics, Gene Simmons made tongue-wagging his signature move. His appendage quickly caught the attention of fans (and groupies) for its unusual length. And soon, stories spread that The Demon had a cow’s tongue attached to his own. But don’t worry: it wasn’t true and it wasn’t possible. Simmons’ tongue looked nothing like a cow’s and medicine wasn’t that advanced then anyway.

#4 – A Bloody Good Time: Keith Richards Had a Blood Transfusion

Years of substance abuse led Keith Richards to want a clean slate. The solution? A blood purification procedure. But his status as a member of The World’s Greatest Rock & Roll Band meant the media hounded him about it. So he fabricated an outrageous tale claiming doctors changed his blood with a new supply. Another Richards anecdote: The Stones’ guitarist also said he snorted his father’s ashes.

#3 – Paul is Dead: Paul McCartney Died in a Car Crash and Has Been Replaced

The Beatles were the subject of many rumors, including one where they smoked up at Buckingham Palace. After an American university paper said the Cute One died in a car crash and was replaced by a lookalike, the story picked up steam with help from radio stations and “clues” in the Fab Four’s lyrics and album art. While he was in an accident, Macca’s alive and going strong today.

#2 – Courtney Killed Kurt: Courtney Love Killed Kurt Cobain

When a shotgun and note were found near Kurt Cobain’s lifeless body, most accepted the Nirvana frontman’s death as suicide. But conspiracy theorists cried murder. Journalists and filmmakers took this idea further by suggesting his wife Courtney Love was behind it all – see the El Duce interview in “Kurt & Courtney.” However, most have concluded there isn’t enough evidence to support the murder claim.

#1 – Off With Their Heads: Ozzy Osbourne Bit the Head Off a Live Bat

As an incredible showman known for shocking theatrics, the “Prince of Darkness” was used to animal carcasses on stage. After all, the “Godfather of heavy metal” bit off a dove’s head during a CBS Records meeting. But his fans probably thought he was bat-shit crazy when he bit a bat’s head off. And make no mistake: this was no rubber toy and no myth – after the bat bit back, Ozzy was tested for rabies!

Do you agree with our list? What do you think is the most shocking rock myth? Be sure to subscribe to for more entertaining top 10s.

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