Up and coming singer-songwriter Jake Bugg caused uproar in the Twitterverse recently by picking on worldwide pop favorites, One Direction. Words were exchanged between himself and 1D member, Louis Tomlinson after he tweeted that the band were “terrible” and had “no real talent”. Tomlinson tweeted back saying, “Hi @JakeBugg do you think slagging off boy bands makes you more indie?” to which Bugg inadvertently replied by telling The Daily Star, “Instead of tweeting people who don’t like your music, why don’t you go and actually write a tune?”
The feud seemed to simmer online but reared its ugly head again at last month’s NME Awards when Bugg was asked for a comment about One Direction ‘winning’ the Worst Band Award and Harry Styles taking home the Villain of The Year accolade. “I don’t know how they can really be considered a band though to be honest…they’re there to look good. Music wise? I assume they don’t really have a clue. We’ll just see. They might do,” said Bugg before continuing: “Probably the ugliest one [Styles] is the best singer. He might know a couple of chords.” Meow!
Nineteen year old Bugg, who was nominated for two NME awards but failed to take home either could well have just been suffering from a case of the Green Eyed Monster having not been around long enough to perfect his ‘gracious in defeat’ face for interviewers. It will, however, be interesting to see if One Direction retaliate to Bugg’s comments or (are forced by Simon Cowell) to turn their backs on the feud as the manlier, more mature skinny-jean wearers.
Jake Bugg and One Direction are not the only musicians to enter a feud over their different tastes in ‘art’. As long as the word ‘genre’ has existed, so has obnoxious and spoilt musicians who like nothing more than the sound of their own voice.
A feud dating all the way back to 1992 has still not been resolved between Nirvana and Guns N’ Roses. Nirvana always made it clear that they had no time for the nasty lyrics and homophobia showcased by Guns N’ Roses, but the feud officially made headlines after Nirvana refused to open for the band on tour. Speaking to a magazine over two decades ago, Cobain went on a rant very similar to that of Jake Bugg: “I can’t even waste my time on that band, because they’re so obviously pathetic and untalented…I have to look into it more: They’re really talentless people, and they write crap music, and they’re the most popular rock band on earth right now. I can’t believe it.” Axl Rose retaliated to Cobain’s comments on stage saying, “Nirvana would rather stay at home and shoot drugs with their bitch wives than tour with us.” Reportedly, even now Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl and Guns N’ Roses frontman Axl Rose refuse to be near each other if they are in attendance at the same event.
Feuding however, is not just a man’s game and female artists have also taken part in their fair share of cattiness. British rapper M.I.A made swipes at American popstar Lady Gaga during an interview with NME magazine (Anyone else here think NME secretly enjoy holding the wooden stirring spoon?) labeling her a “mimic” and “boring”. “None of her music is reflective of how weird she wants to be or thinks she is. She models herself on Grace Jones and Madonna, but the music sounds like 20-year-old Ibiza music, you know? She’s not progressive,” said M.I.A. Though Lady Gaga refused to say anything back to the rapper her ‘people’ came out and said: “Lady Gaga really doesn’t have time to respond to criticism from people who are below her.” Yeah M.I.A, back in your box, love.
Though the majority of us were only knee-high to a grasshopper during this particular feud it is probably still the most talked about amongst our generation’s music fans – the war of words between British supergroups Oasis and Blur. Though a whole feature could be given to feuds between Oasis and…well, everyone else, their heated exchanges with Blur’s Damon Albarn and Alex James are probably the most notable. The British press purposely puffed up and exaggerated the 1995 same-day album release of Oasis’ Roll With It and Blur’s Country House until the chart battle became a regional and class war with fans viciously taking sides. During an interview with The Observer in 1995, Noel Gallagher of Oasis harshly stated that he hoped both Albarn and James “catch AIDS and die because I f**king hate them two.” Nice one, Noel. Speaking in 2007 Albarn said, “I can’t make it up with Noel. Britpop would be over and heaven forbid that we’d ever admit we’d all grown up!” Noel made a statement even more shocking than any of his previous jibes last year when he tweeted that himself and Albarn had kissed and made up over a few pints.
As long as musicians are given the royal status that they are so often labelled with their egos will remain inflated and they will continue to believe that their opinion goes. I’m by no means complaining, it does make for more interesting interviews, awards ceremonies and lyrics for us fans. To all the ‘Directioners’ jumping to the defense of their boys, remember Bugg is only a teenager who probably thinks fighting makes him sound like Noel Gallagher. Awh, bless his lil naive cotton socks.