Debunking 6 Rock ‘n’ Roll Urban Legends


(via mental floss)

by Kara Kovalchik

Most great songs also have a great backstory—but the tragic or funny or drug-fueled origin stories surrounding these rock classics simply aren’t true.


The Legend: Known as the “Ohio Slayers” rumor, the faint scream heard midway through the song “Love Rollercoaster” was the cover model from the Ohio Players’s Honey album being stabbed to death in the studio (or being burned by heated honey).

The Truth: That particular vocalization was keyboard player Billy Beck trying to hit a Minnie Riperton-style high note. The model in question, Ester Cordet, was a former Playmate of the Month who was provocatively drizzling honey into her mouth on the album cover. She is reportedly alive and well and has been married for many years to motivational guru Robert Ringer (whom she met at a party at the Playboy Mansion).


The Legend: The haunting 1981 hit was written by Phil Collins after he witnessed a man drowning. He was too far away to offer assistance, but he saw another man sitting idly by on the shore. The man could have easily reached the swimmer, but didn’t even try to help. Years later, after some clever detective work, Collins located the bystander and invited him to a concert, giving him a front row seat. He then had a spotlight shine on him when he performed this song to publicly humiliate him.

The Truth: Collins wrote “In the Air Tonight,” and many of the other songs on his first solo album, Face Value, while alternately depressed and angry over his disintegrating marriage. His first wife, Andrea, was reportedly fed up with his constant touring and had taken the couple’s two children and fled back to her native Canada, where she eventually filed for divorce.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. eldux72
    Jan 20, 2016 @ 04:13:41

    Cool! Now off to read the other 4.


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