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Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page made the news in the 1970s when he started calling 14-year-old Lori Maddox his “girlfriend” – but nobody had a clue how bad it was. Maddox has since said that the relationship started when she was “kidnapped” by Page. “Get in the bloody car,” Page allegedly ordered her, “and if you move, I’ll have your head.”Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
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Baby-groupie Lori Maddox claims that, when she was still a teenager, Mick Jagger took her into a “bondage-themed bedroom,” fed her cocaine and violated her. Maddox, though, insists that the Rolling Stones’ singer did nothing wrong. “The sex was very consensual,” she said. “You need to understand that I didn’t think of myself as underage.”Andrew Maclear/Redferns/Getty Images
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When Steven Tyler started dating 16-year-old Julia Holcomb, he managed to convince her mother to make him her legal guardian as well – meaning that he was sleeping with a child in his care. When the young girl got pregnant, Tyler forced her to have an abortion. Throughout the whole procedure, instead of comforting her, Tyler spent his time snorting cocaine by the hospital bed.YouTube
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David Bowie was notorious for sleeping with underage girls. In 1973, he reportedly took the virginity of Lori Maddox when she was just 15-years-old. In addition, he told her to invite her also 15-year-old friend to join them. Maddox says they were just two of countless other so-called “baby groupies” that Bowie invited into his bedroom.Michael Stroud/Express/Getty Images
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Jerry Lee Lewis
In 1958, Jerry Lee Lewis married his 13-year-old cousin, Myra Gale Brown. Lewis got in trouble with the press, and his career took a nosedive. Legally, however, he got away with everything, even though, when they got married, he was in his 20s and already married to another woman. When they went on their honeymoon, Lewis' new bride Myra still believed in Santa Claus. Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone/Getty Images
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The King of Rock ‘N Roll used to tell people he liked to look out for cherries – underage, virginal girls he could sleep with. He got in trouble with a 14-year-old fan named Jackie Rowland when he took her backstage and offered to teach her to “kiss in a grown-up way.” Jackie’s mother stopped him from going any further – but there were hundreds more. Sometimes, Elvis would slip hundred-dollar bills into the girls’ schoolbooks to pay them off for the night.Flickr / Dan Perry
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R. Kelly went to court when a video came out showing him urinating on an underage girl – but that’s hardly the only thing he’s done. Before that, in 1994, a 25-year-old Kelly secretly married 15-year-old pop star, Aaliyah. More recently, his ex-girlfriend, Kitti Jones, accused him of violently beating her to force her into “lewd sexual acts.” Kelly has gotten away with everything – but that’s way too much smoke for there to be no fire.Wikimedia Commons
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Ted Nugent once adopted a 17-year-old girl so that he could sleep with her without getting charged for kidnapping her from her parents. In addition to that, rock singer Courtney Love says that she performed oral sex on Nugent when she was only 12. None of this should be all that surprising, given that this is the guy who wrote a song about avoiding pedophilia charges by forcing a 13-year-old girl to have sex with a cop.Wikimedia Commons
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The Red Hot Chilli Peppers' song "Catholic School Girls Rule" isn’t just a song – it’s a love ode to a 14-year-old girl Anthony Kiedis slept with when he was 23. Kiedis noted in his autobiography that he “wasn’t incredibly scared” when the girl told him she was 14, so he “had sex one more time” with the barely pubescent girl.Wikimedia Commons
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The Rolling Stones' Bill Wyman started dating Mandy Smith when he was 47-years-old – and she was 13. Wyman insists that he did nothing wrong – because he asked her mother if it was okay.
The Stones haven’t exactly shied away from their liaisons with children. In 1994, they even started marketing a T-shirt boasting that the band had survived decades of “under-age sex.”Wikimedia Commons
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In 1966, Soul legend Marvin Gaye had an affair with his wife’s 15-year-old niece, Denise Gordy. After getting the young girl pregnant, he made his wife pretend the child was her own. That’s pretty bad – but his next marriage to Janis Hunter might even have been worse. Gaye repeatedly beat his wife - once even holding a knife to her neck - and forced her to perform sexual favors for his friends.University of Michigan/Bentley Historical Library
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Iggy Pop didn’t just sleep with 13-year-old girls – he wrote songs about it. “I slept with Sable when she was 13,” Pop sings in his song “Look Away,” an ode to one of the infamous “baby groupies” of the 1970s.Wikimedia Commons
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Dr. Dre isn’t the only member of N.W.A who’s been caught hurting women. In 1993, MC Ren was accused of raping and impregnating a 16-year-old girl in the group’s tour bus. The evidence didn’t look good – after all, a paternity test showed that Ren was the father of the girl’s baby. However, he ended up paying the girl off out of court and got the case dropped.YouTube
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Since his death, Tupac has been a rap legend – but that doesn’t mean he was a saint. After all, this is a man who, in 1993, was sent to jail for gang-raping a woman alongside three other men. “I was star struck and in awe of this man, Tupac Shakur,” his victim told the court. “He took advantage of his stardom to abuse me and betray my trust.”Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
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Miles Davis claims that one time, while sharing a taxi with jazz legend Charlie Parker, he saw a high on heroin Parker force a prostitute to give him oral sex while he ate chicken and drank whiskey. When Davis told Parker that his behavior bothered him, Parker told him to “turn [his] head and not pay attention.”Wikimedia Commons
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A radio DJ accused KISS’ Gene Simmons of grabbing her hand, forcing her to rub it against his knee, and making “unwanted, unwarranted sexual advances.” Simmons denies everything – but the case will be going to court.
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Chuck Berry was arrested in St. Louis in 1959. The charge? Crossing state lines with a 14-year-old child prostitute for “immoral purposes.” Berry denied that he’d done anything with the little girl – but even after multiple appeals, he was found guilty and sent to prison for soliciting a minor.Wikimedia Commons
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In the 1980s, paramedics were sent to the home of The Eagles' Don Henley. Henley, though, wasn’t alone – he was getting high with two naked girls, one who was 16 and one who was 15. For statutory rape, prostitution, and drug abuse, all Henley got was a $2,500 fine.Flickr/Jeaneeem
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Shock rocker Marilyn Manson took his on-stage antics too far and ended up getting charged with sexual assault. Manson rubbed his crotch against a security guard’s head during a show in 2001. Manson saw it as an on-stage stunt – but the guard saw it as sexual abuse and public humiliation. Manson ended up paying an out-of-court settlement to get the guard to drop the case.Wikimedia Commons
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Pop star Melanie Martinez’s close friend Timothy Heller recently came out, claiming that Martinez had repeatedly sexually assaulted her. Martinez claims their relationship was consensual, but Heller denies it. “I said ‘no,’ repeatedly, but she used her power over me, and broke me down,” Heller claims. “The thought of accepting that my best friend raped me seems insane.”Wikimedia Commons
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In 2015, rapper Rick Ross was accused of helping a friend drug and rape an unsuspecting fan. Ross allegedly invited a fan into his van, where she was fed alcohol spiked with drugs. One of Ross’ friends, Thaddeus “Black” James, then carried her to a hotel room and raped her while she slipped in and out of consciousness.
The woman ended up dropping the case – but some of Ross’ lyrics make her accusation’s disturbingly plausible. “Put molly all in her champagne, she ain’t even know it,” Ross raps. “I took her home and I enjoyed that, she ain’t even know it.”Wikimedia Commons
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Radio DJ Brian Henderson claims that, during a photoshoot for the band Spacehog, the group’s drummer, Jonny Cragg, sexually assaulted him. Without warning, Henderson says, Cragg put “his hand and arm completely in [his] pants.”Flickr/Joshua Smelser
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Jesse Lacey, the lead singer of Brand New, got caught asking a girl to send him nude pictures and making her watch him masturbate over Skype. Lacey was 24-years-old – and the girl was only 15.Wikimedia Commons
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Rapper Tyga had his moment in the tabloids when he started dating Kylie Jenner – but when they first started dating in 2015, the two had to keep it secret. After all, Tyga was 26-years-old, and Kylie was 16 – younger than the California age of consent. Tyga’s friends didn’t think much of the age gap. “I think he got in early,” Kanye West commented. “I think he was smart.”Wikimedia Commons
24 Musicians Whose Legacies Could Face A #MeToo Reckoning
The #MeToo movement has shaken things up in Hollywood. Major names have fallen, and some people we once considered role models and heroes have been exposed as predators. It’s a massive cultural change that’s rewriting the face of the film industry -- so why is the music industry getting off seemingly scot-free?
As much as sexual harassment has been an unspoken problem in the film industry, it’s one that’s been actively and openly talked about in the music industry. Women have come forward calling some of the most celebrated music legends everything from pedophiles to predators to rapists and most of them didn’t even deny it. Some of them even wrote songs about it.
It’s not something we like to acknowledge; the music industry is full of Harvey Weinsteins. It’s full of people who prey on young girls and use their power to sexually abuse them. That’s not Rock ‘n Roll’s dirty secret – that is its loud and proud anthem.
For some reason, though, we keep talking about David Bowie, The Rolling Stones, and Led Zeppelin as inspirations without mentioning the underage “Baby Groupies” they used for sex. We talk about Elvis without mentioning the time he got caught teaching a 14-year-old girl to “kiss in a grown-up way,” shortly before marrying another girl the same age.
We ignore that time Marvin Gaye held a knife to his wife’s neck or forced her to pleasure his friends, or that time Chuck Berry was caught paying a 14-year-old child prostitute, or that time Steven Tyler snorted cocaine while his 16-year-old girlfriend had an abortion for his baby.
Maybe it’s the timing. Maybe it’s the music. Maybe it’s the fact that nobody’s pressed them hard enough. But the truth is that most of our favorite songs were written by sexual predators and for some reason, we’re letting them get away with it.