Name These Singers Based on Their Notorious Scandals


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There was a time in the ancient past when celebrities did whatever they could to avoid scandal. 

If some lurid rumor escaped from behind the veil of secrecy to become public knowledge, it was a problem, one that could potentially end a career.

What a difference a few decades can make. While most celebrities would probably still prefer to steer clear of controversy, others have taken the axiom “there’s no such thing as bad publicity” to heart and tried to weather the outrage. Can you name the famous singer by the scandalous clue we’ve included?

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1. This Singer Had an Unforgettable SNL Appearance.


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Answer: Sinead O’Connor

Sinead O’Connor could have had a nice, safe career as the woman who sang Prince’s “Nothing Compares 2 U,” but that wasn’t her style. After a 1992 musical performance on SNL, she tore up a photo of Pope John Paul II to protest abuse in the Catholic Church. The backlash was fierce and immediate, and a shamefully small number of her fellow musicians defended her. She passed away in 2023 and only then did some celebrities come out of the woodwork to say she might have been onto something.

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2. This Pop Singer Shaved Her Head.

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Answer: Britney Spears

Britney Spears has been in the public eye since childhood, and in adulthood, she became one of the biggest pop stars in the world. In 2006, she filed for divorce from her husband, Kevin Federline, and in 2007, her aunt passed away. After entering rehab and then leaving in the space of less than a day, she was seen shaving her own head at a Los Angeles hair salon. She was later photographed wielding an umbrella against a member of the paparazzi who was sitting in a parked car. In her 2023 memoir “The Woman in Me,” she revealed that she had been “out of [her] mind with grief” after the death of her aunt, saying, “I lost it, over and over again.”

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3. This Singer’s Career Took a Hit When He Married.

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Answer: Jerry Lee Lewis

In the 1950s, rock ‘n’ roller Jerry Lee Lewis had an ascendant career with hits like “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” and “Great Balls of Fire.” It all came to a screeching halt in 1958 with the revelation that he had married one Myra Gale Brown. Close inspection revealed that she was the 22-year-old’s first cousin once removed. Closer inspection revealed that she was only 13 years old when they were wed. He had also married her before the divorce from his second wife had been finalized, making him a bigamist. He was never again as successful as he was before the revelation. However, the fact that he still kept touring and making albums for paying customers proves that the general public never had much of an attention span.  

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4. This Singer Lost a Sponsorship Deal Thanks to a Music Video.

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Answer: Madonna

It may seem strange now, but in the 1980s, Madonna could do pretty much anything, and it would be guaranteed to offend polite society. One such instance was in 1989 when her music video for “Like a Prayer” debuted. It depicted attempted lynching, stigmata, burning crosses, and other things about which many Americans have a bee in their collective bonnets. The public outrage led to religious groups boycotting Pepsi, who had entered into a sponsorship deal with the Material Girl, and the soft drink company decided it wasn’t worth the headache. They dropped the deal, but Madonna got to keep her $5 million fee anyway, so she got the last laugh.

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5. This Singer Landed in Hot Water for Doing This.


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Answer: John Lennon

In a February 1966 London Evening Standard interview with journalist Maureen Cleave, Lennon remarked that the Beatles were “more popular than Jesus.” Since it was not yet the internet age, it wasn’t until the interview was re-published months later in an American magazine that it set off a furor, which inspired American teenagers to throw their Beatles records onto bonfires. Lennon walked the comment back, observing that he could have gotten away with saying “television is more popular than Jesus” instead. The man was not wrong.

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6. This former Disney star fell from the top of the heap.

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Answer: Lindsay Lohan

Known to some as LiLo, Lindsay Lohan became famous as the star of the 1998 Disney remake of “The Parent Trap,” and from there, her career took off, including a recording career that started with her 2004 debut album “Speak.” That album hit number four on the US Billboard chart and would sell one million copies. She began to have drug and alcohol problems on the set of the movie “Georgia Rule,” which led to studio executive James G. Robinson writing a letter to her that became public. It blamed her conduct on set on her “ongoing all night heavy partying.” She’s since tried to remain in the public eye, but her career never again scaled the dizzying heights it did in the first half of the 2000s.

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7. This Other Former Disney Star Also Worked Overtime…


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Answer: Miley Cyrus

It’s hard to believe Miley Cyrus was once known only as the daughter of “Achy Breaky Heart” singer Billy Ray Cyrus. It’s also hard to believe she was once famous for playing the very wholesome role of Hannah Montana. One image makeover later, she was licking sledgehammers and twerking her way into our hearts. Unlike many wholesome teen stars trying to shift into careers as grownup artists, Cyrus succeeded in the transition, so kudos to her.

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8. This Canadian Singer Hoped Anne Frank Would Have Been One of His Fans.

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Answer: Justin Bieber

Justin Bieber has mellowed out a lot since his heyday in the 2010s when he wound up having encounters with law enforcement officers for questionable frat boy behavior. However, his run-ins with the law never got as much criticism as his 2013 visit to the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, where he wrote a heartfelt if self-serving message in its guestbook: “Truly inspiring to be able to come here. Anne was a great girl. Hopefully she would have been a belieber.” We don’t know if there’s a connection, but the following year, over 270,000 people petitioned the White House to deport him from the United States.

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9. This Singer Relieved Himself in a Public Space.

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Answer: Ozzy Osbourne

The former Black Sabbath singer was quite versatile and didn’t limit himself to decapitating doves and bats. He also spent one evening in February of 1982 at the Alamo in San Antonio, Texas, where he drunkenly made a number one on a monument honoring those who died in the Battle of the Alamo.  Osbourne was arrested and promptly banned from San Antonio for ten years, which welcomed him back after he made a $10,000 donation to the Daughters of the Republic of Texas.

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10. This Singer Pleaded Guilty to a Felony Assault Charge.


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Answer: Chris Brown

In 2009, singer Chris Brown was involved in a fight with the singer Rihanna, his girlfriend at the time. She was hospitalized after the altercation, and when photos of her physical injuries emerged, he became known less as a musician and more as a felon. He pleaded guilty to felony assault and was given a combination of community service, domestic violence counseling, and probation. The judge also put a restraining order into effect requiring Brown to stay at least 50 yards away from Rihanna, although if they were both at a music industry event, it could be as little as 10 yards. The show must go on, or something.

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11. This Singer Was Arrested in a Public Bathroom.

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Answer: George Michael

In 1998, George Michael of Wham! fame was arrested when a police officer “observed Mr. Michael engaged in a lewd act” in a Beverly Hills public bathroom. He pleaded no contest and was fined and sentenced to community service. Not long after, the singer made fun of the incident in the music video for “Outside,” which was set in a public bathroom and featured men kissing one another while dressed as police officers.

This article was produced and syndicated by MediaFeed.

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