Music history is littered with rebellious figures who courted controversy at every turn in their career. Some of the more troubled of these souls succumbed to their respective demons and left us while their badassery was still in its relative prime and, as such, are remembered accordingly.
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Even the poetry spouting hippies.
That didn't always happen, though. Like anyone else, the rock music rebel who doesn't die before he gets old has to grow up some time. When they do, the results can often be the exact opposite of rocking.
Here are five total pussy moves by former music badasses ...
5Slash Invents His Own Emoticon
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Are you looking for an easy-to-type symbol that perfectly represents the moment when you realized rock was dead? Sure thing, here you go:
Did the Planters guy start smoking?
What in the name of Lemmy Kilmister is that, you ask? Why it's the totes adorbz emoticon that steel-livered rock legend Slash signs off on his tweets with.
Someone's social media team was paid a lot of cocaine for this tweet.
If you're confused, it's a guy in a top hat with a cigarette in his mouth. He's also winking, because the emoticon version of Slash wants to be your boyfriend.
I once saw an interview where the weirdo from Jane's Addiction (you know the one) says something about how thinking for too long about the events surrounding the death of Kurt Cobain won't put you in a great mood. I'd make the same argument about letting your mind obsess over how Slash came to have his own stupid emoticon.
I mean, what's the good answer there? Is it that Slash came up with this dumb shit on his own? Is that how you want to picture Slash in his late 40s? Sitting around expending the same amount of energy that went into the "Sweet Child O' Mine" guitar solo figuring out what combination of punctuation marks most resembles a man in a top hat desperately clinging to relevance?
That's not a pretty picture, is it? So what's the alternative? That Slash has a social media team now? This was a move suggested by some 22-year-old dude named Ian, and Slash considered it and was like, "Yep, that's what I should be doing these days"? Also a pretty harrowing option for anyone hoping to still hold Slash in any kind of regard as a badass.
The only way that emoticon-sealed tweet isn't the third saddest moment in the history of Guns N' Roses (behind the Chinese Democracy album and a surprise coming later) is if it was actually composed and sent from the bed of a sleazy motel room by the barely 18-year-old chick Slash woke up next to that afternoon.
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Pictured: the most embarrassing Super Bowl halftime show since whatever happened the year before this.
But I suspect it's been a long time since that would have been the case.
4Iggy Pop's Chrysler 300 Commercial (John Varvatos Edition)
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Remember when Iggy Pop used to pull crazy stunts like rolling around in shards of glass onstage and taking publicity photos of his gigantic wang and all that fun stuff? Well that was a long goddamn time ago, and if you need proof of that, look no further than the final moments of this otherwise innocuous Chrysler 300 commercial:
In case you didn't have time to watch it, what you missed was Iggy Pop, the former most dangerous man in rock, getting all moist in the pants over a Chrysler 300.
Not just any Chrysler 300, though. Oh no, this is a Chrysler 300 John Varvatos Edition. And who is John Varvatos? Well, he's some fucking guy who owns a fashion line or something. He used to work for Ralph Lauren back in the '80s. Does he have any specific ties to all of that raucous Iggy Pop lore that might make this seemingly unlikely pairing make sense? Nope. John Varvatos just teamed up with Chrysler to make a car, and someone asked Iggy Pop to do the commercial and the money was right so he said yes. It could have just as easily been Charlie Wilson from the Gap Band waiting for that ride on the Varvatos wagon.
Don't get me wrong, a lot of aging rockers make commercials that make no sense. Iggy Pop shouldn't have to be excluded from that gold rush just because Raw Power was an especially important album or whatever. That said, if you're going to start using your persona to sell cars, you don't get to use it for shit like this also:
That's the cover of the new Iggy and The Stooges album. Strap that dynamite to Chris Brown and we'd be debating that cover art for months, especially when you take into account that the album comes out April 30, just a few short weeks after the Boston Marathon bombing. There has been no such controversy surrounding this new Iggy and The Stooges record though, because when you start making Chrysler commercials with John Varvatos, the rest of us get to stop pretending you're scary. When that "bomb vest" goes off, don't be surprised if it just shoots 25 Best Buy T-shirts promoting this stupid album into the air.
Even that album title can kiss my ass. Iggy Pop is like 75 years old. Everyone is ready to die by that age. Most people just aren't so deluded about their badassery that they still think it's a bold stance that late in life.