And the Grammy Doesn’t go to….

The 57th Annual GRAMMY Awards - ShowSome surprises and some not – so- surprising results from the Grammy Awards this year. There were a number of artists I would have bet money on winning and I am happy they did:

Sam Smith –  beautiful voice, haunting music. I love his comment when thanking his former lover for breaking his heart as it helped him to win 4 Grammys. Eat that, ex-lover. Smith certainly deserved Best New Artist. His performance during the evening was classy and memorable, unlike the following hag…

Madonna – when will someone tell her it’s over? Aren’t we all used to her opening her legs and showing us her 60-year-old privates by now? Is this talent? She’s not just crass, she’s boring and predictable. And the song she performed is one of the worst I have heard her produce in a long time. Notice that she had no nominations this year? ‘Twould seem the Academy agrees with me.

Bruno Mars –  “say whaaat?” where was this hottie? I love this man! His music, his moves, his face and body – sweet Lord, it’s getting warm in here.  He should have been Mark-Ronson-Bruno-Mars-Uptown-Funk-videonominated in every category with Sam Smith – and taken home a couple himself. At least strut your stuff across the stage, Bruno. That would have really sent the Grammys over the top this year. Bruno has been winning Grammys since 2011. The Academy needs to give its head a major slap. Well, Uptown still funks me up, no matter what the idiot Academy thinks about my boyfriend….

Eminem –  where was this Monster? Eminem ripped up the charts for several weeks this year yet he was nowhere to be seen. He did walk away with Best Rap/Sung Collaboration and, as usual, Best Rap Album, no surprise there. Didn’t the Academy ask him to perform that evening?  Rihanna showed up. That tells me the powers that be aren’t thinking this thing through.

Taylor Swift – too much of her. Too many nominations. Frozen was a good song. Her other stuff all sounds the same and is inane at best. Definitely a teeny-bopper’s entertainer.

Beyoncé I’m not a fan but she’s got a God-given voice and apparently puts on a great paper-magazineshow. She deserves all the awards she gets. Kanye West certainly thinks so. When will Kim Kardashian marry a new rapper? West might have been mocking himself when he interrupted Beck as he received the Album of the Year Grammy from none other than Prince. Who cares? What an embarrassing husband. Of course the Grammys wouldn’t be the Grammys anymore without West making an ass of himself. Mind you, Kardashian’s got a pretty big ass herself. I don’t know how she fit into or got out of her seat on Grammy night. Maybe the Academy designed a chair especially to accommodate her cheeks…

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Absolutely Absent Andrew Ridgely – the Silent Half of Wham!

Wham! was the foundation for George Michael’s incredible worldwide success as a musical artist. He happens to be a good-looking man, too. Although Michael became a household name in the 1980s, he is still rocking in the free world, and cranking out as many hits as ever. However, this blog isn’t about the immortal Michael. It’s about Andrew Ridgeley, the other guy in Wham!, 379817384_65b41e58cawho, after the band broke up, abruptly disappeared from the North American radar.

Ridgeley was neither the usual songwriter nor the lead singer of Wham!, although it is rumored he co-wrote at least one highly successful song on the band’s albums. A reasonably handsome guy, he played a mean saxophone and guitar. Wham! sold more than 25 million records in the 1980s. They were the only British act in the 1980s to achieve three No. 1 singles in both the UK and the US. (take that, Spice Girls – oh, wait – they were a confusing 1990s phenomenon). Manager Simon Napier-Bell, (a brilliant publicist), fabricated a story that Ridgeley was punched on the nose in a nightclub, to get more publicity for his clients. Eventually, he admitted that the bandages on Ridgeley’s face were from plastic surgery he had done on his nose. Well, the surgery is understandable. Ridgeley’s better half was a better-looking kid.

Wham! had two UK No. 1 singles in 1984 and were competing that year with pop rivals Duran Duran, an equally kick-ass British band, to be Britain’s biggest pop act. It’s hard to say who won. They were both stupendous. As far as longevity goes however, Duran Duran matured into a sophisticated band that went beyond their 1980s pop sound. A trio of members came and went, however, the band still tours Europe and are huge in the UK. Most of the original and current members are still married to their first wives. Cool. But I digress.

In 1986, Michael left Wham! to move into an entirely different genre of music and, _CET3505-Edit-2-Edit-Edit-1well, we know how that turned out. Ridgely moved to Monaco, and tried his hand at Formula Three racing. Seriously. Bit of a career change, that. Ridgeley had no success in that area and he moved to Los Angeles to try his hand at acting and well, we know how that turned out. Another no-go. Clearly, Ridgeley was not the talented half of Wham! By 1990, Ridgely got the message and he made a permanent move back to Britain, appearing before a crowd of one (his mother) at the airport. The Spice Girls, I believe, scared him out of North America.

CBS Records released a guitar and drum driven solo recording from Ridgeley, Son of Albert (better than Son of Sam), in 1990. His brother Paul, an occasional percussionist for Bananarama, (cool), played drums on the album. Singles included “Shake” and “Red Dress”. Shake“, which was the first single from his solo album, had moderate success, reaching No. 13 on the Australian charts and No. 58 in the UK charts. Well, that’s not so bad. But “Red Dress” didn’t make the charts at all. The introductory video demonstrates why it did not. At least he was in good shape for the video. And that’s what matters.

CBS nixed the option of a second album. Son of Albert was one of the worst received albums of 1990, achieving only half a star in a savage Rolling Stone magazine review. Quote: On the credibility scale, Andrew Ridgeley falls somewhere between LaToya Jackson and oblivion.  Ouch. Ridgeley later said: “It was disappointing and depressing to receive quite such a beating over that album.” And you thought I was mean. Since 1991, Ridgeley has generally shunned the limelight, but he did agree to give an interview on camera for a 2005 documentary A Different Story, about the life of George Michael. Ouch again. When a documentary producer contacts you to appear in a documentary about someone else, that’s gotta hurt. Ridgeley looks hot in it, however. He has aged gracefully. Kudos.

41BX3+FTpUL__SY470_Ridgeley still writes music under pseudonyms. He made £10 million from sales and royalties of records since 1990.  Although the single “Careless Whisper” was issued as a George Michael solo piece, it was credited as being co-written by Ridgeley. It has sold six million copies worldwide and, to date, is the 34th best-selling single of all time in the United Kingdom, having sold over 1.3 million copies. Ridgeley still benefits financially from receiving thousands of pounds per annum from his share of “Careless Whisper” royalties alone. Not too shabby for a vanishing act. That’s an issue that confuses me. If he  writes such great songs for other bands and singers, why not write them for himself? Meh. One of those weird music industry things, I guess.

KerenRidgeley did alright in the romantic arena too. He lives with attractive, former Bananarama member Keren Woodward, in Wadebridge, Cornwall. He’s also an environmental activist and is a member of a bizarre-sounding eco group, Surfers Against Sewage. Surf’s up in Cornwall? Who knew? Perhaps a come-back isn’t in the cards, nor is a solo career. But a musical history with one of the world’s most prominent pop musicians ain’t a bad achievement either.



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Anna Nicole Smith – the Obese Version of Marilyn Monroe

Anna-Nicole-Smith_The-Early-Years-Edit_HD_768x432-16x9Anna Nicole Smith (aka Vickie Lynn Hogan) was born November 28, 1967. Smith lived one of those rags to riches biographies – rather like her idol, Marilyn Monroe. Smith dropped out of high school at age 15 and was married three years later, in 1985. Monroe married at the age of 16 to avoid returning to an orphanage. Smith’s highly publicized second marriage to J. Howard Marshall resulted in speculation that she married the octogenarian mainly for his money, which she denied. She reportedly never lived with him, never made love with him, or kissed him on the mouth more than ten times. After his death, Smith claimed Marshall promised her half his estate if she married him but he never included her in his will. Ultimately, Smith died without a penny from Marshall. Monroe had the opportunity to wed a billionaire in his 50’s, but unlike Smith she had enough integrity to continue her career climb without marrying for money.

Alternatively, Smith could be stunningly beautiful, then ghoulish-looking. Smith came to public attention through Playboy, winning the 1993 Playmate of the Year.  The magazine made her an overnight modeling sensation, and she became known for wanting to be “the next Marilyn Monroe“. Monroe was the very first Playmate ever to grace the magazine’s centerfold except back in the day, the women were labeled Sweetheart of the Month. Unlike Smith, Monroe’s picture wasn’t what launched her to stardom. She was already filming Gentlemen Prefer Blondes when her nude calendar picture, photographed by Tom Kelly long before anyone knew who Monroe was, became a nationwide sensation. The picture nearly cost Monroe the role.

640px-Marilyn_Monroe_-_publicityFor a famous woman, Smith was one of the least original celebrities ever to walk the red carpet. Frankly, she was a joke. She spent her career imitating the most beautiful woman who ever lived, yet Smith completely lacked talent and had no significant film achievements, or film awards, to her name.  Smith never found recognition as an actress.Smith wanted serious roles but Hollywood studios were reluctant. No kidding. Her persona of a ditzy dumb blonde was compressed heavily in her few film roles, which marketed her physical assets. Monroe struggled with the same stereotype, but unlike Smith she had talent and, late in her career, was largely able to overcome the dumb blonde stigma.

As a been-there-done-that publicity stunt, Smith mimicked Monroe by wearing a copy of the star’s flyaway, white sundress and standing over a fake subway grate. Yawn. Smith was way too fat for the dress and for the Monroe wanna-be effort. In the early 2000s, Smith had very few acting roles although she was offered her own reality show. When it premiered on August 4, 2002, it had the highest cable rating ever issued for a reality show. Despite the popularity of the show amongst college students and pop culture fanatics, the show declined considerably in viewership at the end of its first season. It was, however, renewed for a second season, before being cancelled on June 1, 2003, after two seasons and twenty-seven episodes. Surprise.

When she accepted a contract with Guess, photographers decided Smith bore a striking resemblance not to Monroe, but to bombshell Jayne Mansfield and showcased her in several Mansfield-inspired photo sessions. A photograph of Smith was used by New York magazine on the cover of its August 22, 1994, issue titled White Trash Nation. In the photo she appears squatting in a short skirt with cowboy boots as she eats chips. In October 1994, her lawyer brought a $5 million lawsuit against the magazine, claiming unauthorized use of her photo, and that the article damaged her reputation. Frankly, I’m with New York magazine.

Smith’s weight see-sawed throughout her career. At her heaviest, Smith weighed in at a 61725_anna-nikol-smit_or_anna-nicole-smith_1600x1200_www-gdefon-ruhefty 225 lbs. That’s way too much Playmate. Monroe never weighed over 156 lbs and when she died she weighed 117lbs. However, during her postmortem autopsy, Smith was diagnosed as having a severe thyroid disease that caused a slow deterioration of the thyroid gland. This may have contributed to her weight gain, although this hasn’t been proven, especially since Smith’s weight dropped significantly when she secured a contract with TrimSpa. Smith took the job in an effort to earn money and, at that point in her life, hang onto whatever scraps were left of her career. In March 2005, at the first MTV Australia Video Music Awards in Sydney’s Luna Park, she drunkenly mimicked Janet Jackson’s wardrobe malfunction by pulling down her dress to reveal both breasts, each covered with the MTV logo. Classy broad. Have you ever seen more ridiculous implants than these? Didn’t think so.

Probably the most pitiful video of Smith was the notorious and creepy clown video. Clearly under the influence of drugs, Smith, with her face disturbingly painted like a clown, carried on a weird, garbled conversation with the videographer, her boyfriend Howard Stern. It was an all-time low for the model and Marilyn wanna-be.

Smith died on February 8, 2007 in a Hollywood, Florida hotel room as a result of an overdose of prescription drugs. At first when I heard she died at the age of 39 I figured she was so pathetic a figure that, in an effort to imitate Monroe to the end, she even committed suicide before she left her 30’s. Monroe died at the age of 36. However, after watching an episode of Autopsy: The Last Hours Of , I gained a new perspective on her death.

  1. I don’t believe Smith died due to an intentional overdose, in spite of her depression over her son’s death as he lay in her bed at her side.
  2. She died due to a lethal and unintentional combination of prescription medication, including chloral hydrate, a favourite of Monroe’s and
  3. a very high fever

Anna_Nicole_Smith_164Smith had prescriptions for 18 different medications. She took many of them, often with alcohol, to deal with the physical pain of her huge breast implants which she got to imitate her idol. The implants stretched her breasts until her nipples split and the implants had to be removed. After she healed, Smith had them replaced. Eventually they infected again, and once more they were removed. This painful ritual continued for several months of Smiths life. The implants also caused her severe back pain and she became addicted to a number of painkillers to quell the agony. Just remove them already. After Smith’s death, Kim Waithera friend and assistant, pleaded with the press not to make Smith “into a joke.” It was a moot point. Smith had already made herself into a joke.

On the night she died, Smith refused to allow her entourage to call an ambulance even though she was perilously ill. Even in her weakened state, she worried the press would ridicule her again, accusing her of an intentional overdose when that wasn’t the case. However, in such a tenuous state of mind, her friends should have taken matters into their own hands and called an ambulance. Had they done so it is likely Smith would still be alive today.

Pathetic. But alive.



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Philip Michael Thomas – Psyched Out by Psychics (and being a side-kick)

Okay, Thomas has had a good run and by all accounts, still has a decent career. I’m sure he’ll step out again somewhere when we aren’t expecting him. However (there’s always a however on this blog), three things truly sucked about his career. One is Miami Vice; the other is his, ah, recording career, and finally his foray into the Psychic Readers’ Network. Here’s why:

Miami ViceDon Johnson’s side order of Ricardo Tubbs. Let’s face facts: no one was into this dude on Vice. Women didn’t watch it to see Tubbs looking tubby. Women liked 397px-Don_JohnsonJohnson. Heck, he even started a coast to coast fashion trend among men with the sneakers, light cotton suits and rolled-up sleeves (tee-hee). Well, it was the 80’s. We learn a lot in retro(pun)spect. People remember Thomas of course however it’s always with a mix of pity and a yawn. Vice just wasn’t his long-suit (another pun). He acted well. He just didn’t rate. I read an article once (not a blog – this was the early 90’s) by a reporter who stated when she went to interview Thomas he was all over her, showing off this and that about his acting and treating her a foot massage and tea and scones, and what have you. Later at some sort of celeb party he acted like he didn’t know her. She stated how odd that was but perhaps that was how some celebrities acted. Frankly I can’t help but think Thomas was so sick of being in Johnson’s shadow that he went all out when a reporter came to see him so he’d get a terrific write-up. After that, show’s over folks!

The Psychic Readers’ Network: Really? Seriously? Was Thomas that low on funds? What did he do with the money he made on Vice? Spend it all on the Don Johnson look? I philip-michael-thomas-miami-vice-now-2-768mean who the hell becomes a spokesperson for something that utterly phony and fraudulent? Seriously, that network (now known as Traffix Inc) rips so many people out of their hard-earned money it’s vile. There’s a special spot in hell for those fakes, put money on it (oops – maybe not). It’s a known fact that people who work for “psychic” phone lines are given a script to use when people call in for advice. They receive hours of training to know how to respond to, um, awkward questions. I can’t believe Network didn’t kill Thomas’ acting career. Then again, that’s probably the best acting he ever did in his life.

Recording Career: In 1985, Thomas recorded a music album titled Living the Book of My Life. Personally I like reggae and he has a good voice however (there’s always a however in this blog) it sold poorly and failed to produce a hit single. That tune really is bad. Besides we know Johnson released a song or two before Thomas (Heartbeat). it was lousy, too…very…80s American like something you’d see in a really bad teenage movie. Anyway. This isn’t about Johnson….yet. Could Thomas’ brief recording career be a coincidence, an influence, or just an embarrassment (maybe all three)? Perhaps he should have recorded Reading the Palm of Your HandThomas followed up in 1988 with a second album, Somebody. It also failed to produce a hit and sold poorly. As a matter of fact his current net worth is $2.7 million. Compare that with $1 billion for Justin Bieber, $25 million for Michael Jackson and $30 million for, you guessed it, Don Johnson. Is this bad investing or a lackluster career? 

Last off he did a voice-over in the video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City (another cazy coincidence). He’s much more handsome now than he ever was as a young man, no question. The wisdom of his years have given him an attractive distinction, well, from what I know of his career. His personal life could be another matter entirely…




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Jon Lydon – aka Johnny Rotten with a Rotten, Ruined Reputation

I never could understand what Jon Lydon was – as a performer or a person.  However, I believe his verbal attacks against shocked fans and reporters, and his early, erratic, spitting performances as a Sex Pistol have ultimately revealed his true persona: john_lydon_3224099psychotic.  Lydon is beyond words, an irony for the subject of a blog, considering he wields them so wickedly at people who do not deserve his abuse (does anyone)? Lydon seems to think this distinguishes him and sets him apart, a rebel who tells it like it is (in his reality zone). Then, egad!, 30 years after the dissolution of the Sex Pistols, his haggard face has reappeared in the coolest venue ever: Country Life Butter commercials. He farts about the English countryside and an $8 million sell-out. (Would I have done the commercial for 8 mill? Yes, but I haven’t spent 30 years trashing everyone else for their “commercialism”). Clearly, his finances are in a pickle and no one is offering him a singing job (since he couldn’t sing anyway). And Lydon still has the nerve to crash his way unwanted up the red carpet in L.A., throwing his weight around and ranting about nothing. He’s turned into the turd he would have hated when he was young and had a few bucks, pretending to attend an awards show without realizing it was for the Pistols. He would prefer to be at a pub around the corner. So why not leave? Then again, the pub owner’s happy he pulled a no-show.

“I think Green Day fucking stink. I think they’re the biggest fake (??) artists 220px-John_Lydon_-_2010I have ever seen.” Lydon shrieks at a reporter about a poster he has hung in his home. He’s mocking GD for being stuck in the punk era, although GD didn’t exist then. He’s angry because they swore “we’ll never change” with fame, what he believes to be a lie. See anything of yourself in the band, Lydon? He still introduces himself as Jon Rotten. Is he kidding? Johnny Rotten died after the Pistols (who only made one album) and his early years with Public Image Limited (PIL). He claimed that he moved out of the punk era and this was what prevented him from becoming washed up. Then why not move out of the spotlight entirely and accept the fact that he, like many singers and screamers of the 70s and early 80s, has had his day. He’s an aging rebel-wannabe (he’s got nothing left to rebel against except his own reality). He stated he wasn’t allowed to make music until he made enough money to pay down debts. Enter Country Life. What annoyed him about Madonna? It “drove [him] nutswhen she went to England and pretended to be British. Naturally, phony people piss him off.

Eminem has nothing on Lydon where sexism goes. I’d love to see those two sing a merry olde duet. “When a man is talking do not interrupt!” he snarls at a pretty, young interviewer. If a man was talking, that is.


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The Lovely, Lost, Late Lisa Robin Kelly

lisaDo you still watch those tired reruns of That 70s Show starring Ashton Kutcher. The show was always kind of stupid and Kutcher made it even worse. I dislike that man intensely for reasons too numerous to mention here. Anyhow this blog is dedicated to Lisa Robin Kelly, (Laurie Forman), the gorgeous blonde promiscuous sister of Eric Forman. She was that quintessential copy of Farrah Fawcett that every girl in America wanted to be. She was the girl that every boy in high school wanted to date and many girls hated just because she was hot. There must have been a few like that in your high school too.

Ironically a girl named Laurie was the incredible blonde bombshell in my high school. Her hair was naturally platinum blonde, she had a pin-up girl figure and many boys in the school dissed her because they knew they didn`t stand a chance. Anyhow.

Lisa_Robin_KellyLisa made her debut in a brief exchange with Christina Applegate in a 1992 episode of Married… with Children entitled “Kelly Doesn’t Live Here Anymore“, launching her television career. She appeared in 1997 in the episode, Charmed and Silk Stalkings Lisa lasted for 5 seasons on 70s. She was written out  in an episode where Laurie Forman left home to go to beauty school. In reality, Lisa was heavily addicted to crack cocaine and had a drinking problem. The producers insisted she enter rehab for 6 weeks but she was fired in 2002. She briefly returned to the show in the fifth season in four episodes, but was replaced with Christina Moore in the sixth season. Lisa`s last role onscreen was in the 2005 film The Food Chain: A Hollywood Scarytale.

In August 2010, Lisa was arrested in North Carolina on a charge of driving under the influence. In November 2010, she pleaded guilty, was fined and sentenced to 12 months unsupervised probation.  On March 31, 2012, Lisa was arrested on a felony charge of corporal injury upon a spouse, and was released on $50,000 bail. The charge was based on a complaint filed by her ex-boyfriend, John Michas. She later made public statements saying that she was the one who had been assaulted, and denied Michas’ claim that she assaulted him

Pantages TheatreMacKenzie Phillips who was Julie Horvath on One Day at a Time is another actress who was fired for her drug addiction. During the show’s third season in 1977, Phillips was arrested for public drunkenness and possession of cocaine. Because of her drug and alcohol abuse, Phillips began arriving late and was incoherent for rehearsals. The producers ordered her to take a six-week break to overcome her addiction. In 1980, she was fired from the show. In recent years Phillips informed the press that she was her father`s victim of incest for years beginning at age 11. That would explain the drug addiction.

Between 2012 – 2013 Lisa was arrested for a variety of crimes including DUIs and spousal abuse. Her life was in a downward spiral. At time of a 2012 arrest she had just suffered a miscarriage. On Good Morning America Lisa admitted she had a miscarriage as a result of her drinking. “I had lost a baby, as a result of that, I lost everything,” she said at the time. “And I was abusing alcohol, which I no longer do.” 

lisaDuring 2013 Lisa was barely recognizable. Alcohol had taken its toll. She looked years older than she was and it was hard to believe she was a celebrity. Suddenly Lisa died on the evening of August 14, 2013, at the Pax House substance abuse facility in Altadena, California. Her manager Craig Wyckoff said Lisa voluntarily checked herself into the facility several days earlier to receive treatment. The cause of her death was not immediately known. The LA Coroners office is waiting on tests to come back. Sources have said she overdosed. Other sources are saying that she passed away in her sleep from cardiac arrest. What a waste.

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Axl Rose -, Absurd, Awkward, Absolutely Assinine, Awful, XXL Rose

name:  Axl Rose
occupation:  Big Year Blimp and former frontman for GNR I

I saw this picture of Axl Rose on Yahoo tonight that nearly made me chuck my cookies (irony). Axl Rose must weigh in at a hefty 250lbs, easy, and none of it is muscle. I couldn’t believe my eyes. You must understand my shock and horror. I loved this man. He was my

axl-rose-fatidol for 20 years. I was all of 21 when GNR hit the big time with Appetite. The first song I ever heard the band play and Axl (the Angel) sing was Sweet Child O Mine. I was at a nightclub and had just come back from the dead. I’d suffered a wicked bout of mononucleosis and I’d been hospitalized for 8 days. It wasn’t for weeks that I ventured back into the world to party, and a girlfriend of mine and I went to a happening little club when I first heard Axl sing.

I remember thinking “my God! Who has that beautiful voice? And who wrote axl-rose-fat-jokes-i12those angelic lyrics?” I wanted to marry Axl Rose, and that was without seeing him yet – a skinny, pretty-faced boy from Lafayette. I was staggered when someone told me I looked like his wife, Erin Everly. Darn it. If only I’d lived 20,000 miles south, who knows what Might Have Been? Anyway. Have you ever heard a wounded coyote cry? It would appear that Axl has not only eaten all the lard in his pantry in recent months, he has somehow managed to destroy that golden voice. He can’t pitch the notes and he can’t sing them anymore.  At least he can’t disappoint GNR II: they suck. Their sound is acoustic, tinny, pathetic. In concert, they butchered Jungle so as to render it unrecognizable. “It’s gonna bring you down. Ha!” Axl barked and gasped. True that.

Axl is such a sad, wallowing, (fat) shadow of his former self that I can’t bear to reflect on him. When he made his comeback in 2006 or thereabouts, critics then were astonished at axl_rose_fathow he’d changed: definitely heavier, dreadful and  entirely unnecessary plastic surgery on his once-beautiful face, and bizarre, woolen cornrows all combined to make him look like Carrot Tops older, saner brother, rather than the rock icon of the 80‘s. However, over time, his face seemed to settle from that tight, plastic mask into something more realistic and almost handsome, and it was relatively easy to overlook the cornrows when he belted out Welcome to the JungleHe still had the Voice. Now when he has the chance to sit his old self down, and play the piano, Axl’s vocals make me cringe. Speaking of Voice, please Axl, promise me you will never guest star as a judge on The Voice. When you can’t keep up to incoming talent, you really have no business judging and bringing them down.

He huffs and puffs his way through a concert.. He frequently takes a breather between lines and has to pick up several beats behind. Yet thousands upon thousands of fans pack Fat-Axl-Rosestadiums worldwide to see this man!  He entertains a young, new audience now, which is wholly unexpected. Very few stars of yesteryear appeal to the Y generation (as in y would anyone go see GNR II?), but somehow GNR II and Axl have cracked the code. I don’t know how many fans my age from his early, hot years attend his concerts but I suspect the number is few compared to the 20-year-olds. This isn’t due to the current Axl Rose. His ongoing fame is a tribute to the earlier, hotter, talented Axl, who could rip up a stage with his body and voice. He was a serious shit-disturber in his personal life, and unpredictably unstable onstage. Somehow, those antics added a racy edge to his bad-boy image and lured in more and more groupies, fans, and admirers. Now Axl can barely waddle his way around stage. He often stops and leans again an amplifier for leverage while gasping for air. Seriously.

Axl is so god-almighty obese and unhealthy that he walks with a cane when he isn’t onstage. That’s no surprise: he looks unsteady without it onstage and that probably accounts for the amplifier assistance. Of course, when he released the utterly banal AxlRose-StillFat-1Chinese Democracy (no surprise there), everyone knew it was over. He was a wash-up after GNR broke up in the mid-1990s. There was no official announcement. Axl fired band members, or they quietly resigned. Slash hasn’t spoken to Axl since 1996 – seventeen years. Slash stated he and Axl didn’t exchange words. Slash was offered the opportunity to sign a new contract with Axl’s band, GNR II. This was no longer an equal footing, not an eager young band bringing a shared interest to the table. This was all about Axl, take it or leave it. Sensibly, Slash left it.

For reasons known only to himself and his publicist (who should be fired), Axl made his first television interview appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live, in 20 years. He was axlcharming and witty, and dressed in one of his middle-aged Axl get-ups that actually worked 3 years ago when he still had a good bod. When he spoke, his padded cheeks made him slur. Sad.  Yet the audience screamed and whooped for several minutes after he walked onto the set. When Axl took his seat, Kimmel remarked “I’m excited.” In spite of the advancing years, the hefty pounds, the thinning hair, the broken voice, people love him. I’m convinced they simply Use their Illusion and worship the Axl of old (irony). He manages to cloak himself in that invincibility, almost as tightly as the Paddington Bear yellow raincoat he wore in a pitiful effort to hide his weight, during a 2012 concert in Rio. 

Although I used to love him, Axl has always been an audacious, self-centered turd. In the 1990s, when hot Axl and GNR I rocked out, Axl caused a major riot during a Montreal, Canada performance, after he threw down his microphone and walked offstage. A major riot ensued, resulting in $100,000.00 of damages: police cars were overturned, bottles were thrown at buildings, fans assaulted one another. Later in interviews, Axl claimed it wasn’t the band’s fault (certainly wasn’t) but the fans wanted a show, regardless of “technical difficulties” (so it’s the fans’ fault). In reality, Axl the A-hole, felt upstaged when mere minutes before, Metallica, who opened for GNR, had to cancel their show after James Hedfield burned his arm and couldn’t perform. Such was the stunning psychosis of Axl Rose’s ego. He lied to reporters and, being at the peak of his career; nothing could stop that train. Well, almost nothing. At the same time, he’d criticize Kurt Cobain for thinking he was “too good and too cool.” When you’re 20 or 30-something with a gorgeous voice and a kick-ass stage performance, you can do that sort of thing if that’s what does it for you.

Sounds mean? Ask Slash what he thinks of Axl and GNR II when Axl stumbled and fell over his own feet during a concert while placing one foot on an amplifier. He can’t do axethat simple classic Axl move anymore; it throws off his balance. Oh, Ax. Or is it XXL? Still, Axl keeps on waddling and puffing in front of millions of fans because somehow, he still has them. They keep giving him reason to believe that he de man, when clearly, his time has come and gone. To the Axl Rose of the 1980s and early 1990s, I salute you. To the haggard, obese, aging man barely able to cross one side of a concert stage to another, I beg you to hang up your microphone and retire with what little dignity you have left, or it’s gonna bring you down. Hurl!

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