The Band Feuds That Got Infamy In The 1960s and 1970s

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Feuding among band members is a tale as old as rock and roll itself, and the 1960s and 1970s were no exception. In this era of musical revolution, bands with big egos and even bigger hair clashed in epic battles that sometimes rivaled their onstage performances. Let’s take a trip down the memory lane and explore some of the most infamous band feuds from this tumultuous period in music history.

1. The Beatles: John Lennon vs. Paul McCartney


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The songwriting genius behind The Beatles, John Lennon and Paul McCartney, had a partnership that made history. However, their differing personalities and creative instincts led to tensions behind the scenes. In 1970, the band split, and legal battles ensued. Despite reconciling later, their relationship remained distant until Lennon’s tragic death in 1980.

2. Simon & Garfunkel: Paul Simon vs. Art Garfunkel


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The animosity between Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel began before their rise to fame. Simon’s solo deal while working with Garfunkel created an enduring grudge. After a decade of success, their partnership shattered during the production of their final album. Reunions happened, but resentments lingered.

3. The Who: Pete Townshend vs. Roger Daltrey


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The Who’s guitarist Pete Townshend and frontman Roger Daltrey clashed in 1973, leading to a physical altercation during a promotional shoot. Their public spat didn’t last long, and they soon collaborated on an album, showcasing the band’s resilience.

4. The Rolling Stones: Mick Jagger vs. Keith Richards

Mick Jagger and Keith Richards’ feud began in 1978, intensifying over creative control. Richards’ scathing lyrics in “All About You” strained their relationship, leading to Jagger’s brief departure. Reconciliation eventually happened, cementing The Rolling Stones’ status as rock legends.

5. Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young


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Neil Young and Stephen Stills’ conflicts persisted over years, spanning two iconic bands. Personal differences, public mockery, and drug use marred their collaboration. Despite reunions, their relationships remain contentious, with a reunion seeming unlikely.

6. The Kinks: Ray Davies vs. Dave Davies


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Sibling rivalry fueled the Kinks’ tensions. Ray and Dave Davies’ constant fighting reached its peak during their peak in the ’60s. Despite their differences, the band endured until 1996, with hopes of a future reunion.

7. Jeff Beck vs. the Yardbirds


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Jeff Beck’s tenure in the Yardbirds ended abruptly when he clashed with bandmates over musical direction. His departure paved the way for Jimmy Page’s rise, leading to the birth of Led Zeppelin. Beck’s resentment lingered for years, visible even during his Hall of Fame induction.

8. The Everly Brothers: Don Everly vs. Phil Everly

Family feuds hit rock ‘n’ roll too. The Everly Brothers’ infamous 1973 onstage confrontation led to a decade-long separation. Reconciliation came in 1983, marking the end of their tumultuous relationship.

9. Pink Floyd: David Gilmour vs. Roger Waters


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Creative differences marred Pink Floyd’s legendary status. Roger Waters’ dominance in songwriting led to tensions, culminating in Waters’ departure in 1985. Legal battles followed, but in 2005, the original lineup reunited for performances.

10. The Beach Boys: Mike Love vs. Brian Wilson


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Brian Wilson’s innovative direction clashed with Mike Love’s resistance during the making of “Pet Sounds.” Lawsuits ensued over songwriting credits, causing rifts within the band. Despite challenges, the Beach Boys endured, becoming music icons.

11. Eagles: Don Felder vs. Don Henley


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Eagles’ internal conflicts reached a peak during the production of “Hotel California.” Don Felder’s disagreements with Don Henley led to his eventual ousting in 2001. Legal battles followed, leaving deep-seated animosity between band members.

12. Fleetwood Mac: Stevie Nicks vs. Lindsey Buckingham


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Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham’s rocky relationship within Fleetwood Mac reached its breaking point during the “Rumours” era. Despite their tumultuous romance and musical collaboration, Buckingham’s firing in 2018 marked a seemingly permanent split.

13. Fleetwood Mac: John McVie vs. Christine McVie


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The McVies’ marriage disintegrated during Fleetwood Mac’s peak. John’s drinking and Christine’s affair strained their relationship. Despite personal turmoil, Fleetwood Mac’s music endured, solidifying their status as legends.

14. The Allman Brothers Band: Gregg Allman vs. Dickey Betts


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Dickey Betts’ rowdy behavior clashed with Gregg Allman’s sensibilities. Betts’ heavy drinking led to his ousting in 2000, permanently severing ties with the band. Despite challenges, the Allman Brothers Band’s legacy lives on.

15. Creedence Clearwater Revival: John Fogerty vs. Tom Fogerty

John Fogerty’s dominance led to tensions within Creedence Clearwater Revival. Tom Fogerty’s departure exacerbated the situation, causing the band’s dissolution. Sibling rivalry and creative control disputes haunted their legacy.

16. The Band: Levon Helm vs. Robbie Robertson


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The Band’s eclectic personalities led to strife, particularly between Levon Helm and Robbie Robertson. Disputes over songwriting credits and creative control fueled tensions. Despite a tumultuous history, their music remains iconic.

17. The Beatles: George Harrison vs. Paul McCartney


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George Harrison’s resentment towards Paul McCartney’s dominance within The Beatles came to a head during the recording of iconic albums. After the band’s breakup, Harrison found freedom in his solo career, showcasing his talent beyond McCartney’s shadow.

18. Kiss: Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley vs. Ace Frehley and Peter Criss


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Kiss faced internal strife due to divergent commitments and partying habits. Frehley and Criss’ lack of dedication led to their departure. Simmons and Stanley’s dedication kept the band going, emphasizing the importance of commitment in the rock industry.

19. Deep Purple: Ian Gillan vs. Ritchie Blackmore



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Deep Purple’s commercial success drove a wedge between Ian Gillan and Ritchie Blackmore. Gillan’s departure highlighted the band’s struggle with commercialism, eventually leading to Deep Purple’s temporary disbandment. Creative differences and divergent musical directions severed their ties permanently.

20. The Ramones: Johnny Ramone vs. Joey Ramone


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Johnny Ramone’s strict oversight and Joey Ramone’s strong personality clashed within The Ramones. Rumored affairs and physical altercations marred their relationship. Despite the tension, The Ramones left an indelible mark on punk rock.