Over the course of rock’s biggest decades, a running trend has been seen throughout some of rock’s biggest bands. It’s been proven that it’s hard for successful bands to not have at least one falling out between members, resulting in either the break-up of the band, replacement of members, or even lawsuits. Here’s a list of some of rock music’s biggest feuds:
1. Axl Rose and Slash
Guns N Roses, arguably one of the biggest rock bands of their time, came to power with their debut, Appetite For Destruction in 1987. Over the years following their initial popularity, original members began to leave, first starting with original rhythm guitarist, Izzy Stradlin and original drummer Steven Adler. Lead guitarist Slash, soon followed suit in the early to mid 1990’s once Stradlin’s replacement, Gilby Clarke was replaced by Rose’s childhood friend, Paul “Huge” Tobias. The feud between Rose and Slash lasted nearly twenty years, all while Slash released records and toured solo; Rose continuing on with Guns N Roses, being the only original member left to hold the name. Recently, the two reconciled and joined forces to recreate the original magic of the band, Guns N Roses. They toured the world in 2016, and are now selling out and filling stadiums for the upcoming year.
2. David Gilmour and Roger Waters
Pink Floyd, the band known for it’s trippy, and thought provoking melodies has seen it’s share of feuds. The band became known in the underground music scene within London in the mid 1960’s. Albums like, The Dark Side of the Moon, and The Wall are some of Floyd’s biggest records, and definitive releases of their career. The band began to fall apart in ‘85, when Roger Water’s announced his withdrawal from Pink Floyd. to Columbia and EMI. Prior to the breakup, David Gilmour, longtime guitarist, felt that he was losing control. Their latest album at the time, The Final Cut, was described as a “Roger Waters solo album.” by Rolling Stone. Pink Floyd has reunited for some shows such as Live 8, and Waters and Gilmour play shows together from time to time, but they have never officially reunited as a band.
3. Dio and Vivian Campbell
Although Vivian Campbell helped create some of Ronnie James Dio’s most recognizable riffs, Ronnie James Dio, renowned singer for Rainbow, Black Sabbath, and the curator of his own impactful solo career; and Vivian Campbell, best known for his work on the Holy Diver and The Last in Line albums, they had clashing opinions on Campbell’s departure from the band. Previous to Dio’s death in May of 2010, videos were shared of him making disparaging comments about his relationship with Vivian Campbell. As the story goes, Campbell had grown to be dissatisfied with his status and financial agreements within the band, thus causing his departure. His disputed exit was prior to the release of Dream Evil, and he later went to join Whitesnake in 1987. After Dio’s passing, Vivian decided to reform the original Dio lineup, the band entitled Last In Line. It is now fronted by Andrew Freeman.
4. David Lee Roth and Eddie Van Halen
Diamond Dave and EVH are two personalities from different sides of the spectrum, but their different and distinctive talents are what made their band, Van Halen, one of the biggest rock bands in the world. The classic lineup created some of rock music's most recognizable riffs, and released one of the most impressive debut albums of the 1970’s, their self-titled album, Van Halen. Tensions began to rise in the band during the 1984 tour, where Roth expressed his unhappiness with Eddie’s collaborations outside of the band, referring to Halen’s solo feature on Michael Jackson’s, Beat It (1982). Roth took it upon himself to go to work recording his own solo EP, Crazy From The Heat, and announced his departure from the group. The band went through two singers after Roth’s retreat, such as Sammy Hagar (‘86-’96), and Gary Cherone. In recent years, Roth and Van Halen have put their differences aside to reunite the original Van Halen, exception of Michael Anthony who left the band in 2006.