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How Big Stars Blow Their Dough

Updated on July 12, 2012

In 1999, Mariah Carey bought Marilyn Monroe's white baby grand piano for $662,500

In their younger days, money didn't come so easy to the filthy rich stars of today. Madonna worked behind the counter at Dunkin' Donuts. David Lee Roth changed bedpans and bedsheets as a hospital orderly. Vince Neil was an electrician, Rod Stewart was a gravedigger, and Jon Bon Jovi flipped hamburger patties at Burger King. These rockers may have searched their car for quarters years ago, but these days, they followed the golden rule of riches - if you've got it, flaunt it.


When it comes to showing off their hard-earned bread, noone does it like rappers. But long before their platinum grills hit the red carpet. Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones flashed his cash when he implanted an emerald into one of his teeth on his upper right side of his mouth. Unfortunately, from a distance it looked more like a bit of broccoli than a precious jewel. When friends kept telling him he had food on his teeth, Jagger swapped it for a ruby. When they started handling him tissues to wipe the spot of "blood" off his mouth, he learned that red, too, wasn't quite his color. Refusing to give up so easy on something so dang cool, he swapped one more - this time for a diamond


Dropping dollars on jewellry and expensive toys is a signature pasttime of rockers worldwide , but nothing compares to how they blow millions to shine on MTV and VHI. Hoping to shock viewers ( and sell more records) with state-of-the-art special effects,producers will break the bank when it comes to constructing the hottest music videos of all time. And no one does it like pop king, Michael Jackso. In 1983, the groundbreaking thirteen-minute " Thriller" was the most expensive music video ever made at $ 1 million (which translates to nearly double that amount today). However, Jackson has since one-upped himself with the video for " Scream", a futuristic duo with sister Janet Jackson that cost a jaw-dropping $ 7 million. The pair spent at least $11,000 a day on makeup alone. Was it worth the big bucks? Also boasting the theme song for kiddie flick Free Willy 2 , Jackson's album at the time HIStory, only sold 3.5 million copies.


What kind of morning shopping ritual would a colorful male diva sporting a thousand pairs of designer glasses and fifteen hit singles have? Every tuesday morning at 9:30 a.m., Elton John Swings by Tower Records in Atlanta Georgia, to flip through new album releases.. Because he's,well, Elton John, employees let him slip in before the store opens to sip coffee and take a gander at hundreds of CDs alphabetized on carts waiting to be distributed throughout the store. Elton simply buys the ones he wants and sneaks out before the store is packed with shoppers.


When Britney Spears had a Hebrew tattoo put on the back of her neck in 2004, she thought it stood for New Era, in honor of her dedication to Kabbalah. However, Spears had two things wrong - the symbol actually stood for Protection and she failed to realize that in Judaism, the very fact of getting a tattoo is a sinful taboo. What makes the situation even more ironic is that it was not the first time she was duped by a tattoo artist. In 2003, a friend told her that the tattoo on her hip, which she thought meant " mysterious", Actually was more literally translated to " strange".

Dave Matthews Band
Dave Matthews Band
Pete Townshend
Pete Townshend
Noel Gallagher
Noel Gallagher
Frank Zappa
Frank Zappa
Alice Cooper with snake
Alice Cooper with snake


Just what does a platinum selling Dave Matthews Band buy after hosting a rockin' concert in their hometown of Charlottesville, Virginia? A while lot of grass. Held at the University of Virginia's stadium, the concert was packed and the damage done to the turf was so irreversible that the band had to pitch in and pay up for some new green. Before the show, the band had allegedly offer to install a special tile over the grass for protection. However, the athletic department requested the band save their dollars and just replace what they ruined after the fact.


British rocker Pete Townshend of The WHO turned a little red when he admitted to the media that he used his credit card to enter a Website advertising child pornography to simply " see what was there". Luckily for his reputation, the confession was in the middle of a statement he was making against the horrendous crime of exploiting children, Townshend ,who was writing his autobiography about how he was sexually abused as a child, said that explicit Web sites were abhorrent and any of his further " compulsions in this area" would be to fight for child rights and ban all similar site from the web


Oasis front man Noel Gallagher was all about the girls, drugs and fancy digs when his band first went mainstream with the single " Supersonic" in 1994. He even bought a whole convoy of cars ,despite the fact that he has never had a driver's license. There is one thing, however, that Gallagher is proud to say he was never tempted to purchase - Leather pants.

  • Oasis drummer Zak Starkey is Ringo Starr's son.


Frank Zappa never bought a wedding ring for his wife, Adelaide Gail. The couple got married a few days before Zappa left for his first European tour, and his nine-month pregnant fiancee was in a bit of a hurry to shotgun the ceremony and move on with her life. Possibly the least lavish wedding of any rockstar, Zappa bought a pen out of a New York City Hall vending machine ( which read, Congratulations from Mayor Lindsay ) ,filled out the marriage license, and headed off to Europe. In his autobiography The Real Frank Zappa Book ,he admits that to this day, Gail has not a bling on her finger.

  • When Frank Zappa was in the hospital for the birth of his son, the nurse hated his first choice for his new baby's name so much ( Dweezil) that Zappa rattled off a long list of common male names to make her happy. The birth certificate reads " Ian Donald Calvin Euclid Zappa".


When Alice Cooper went on tour ,his right-hand gal was none other than a pet boa constrictor named Veronica, who measured at about fifteen feet long. He has originally purchased the snake to take onstage as a prop ,but eventually decided to let the animal accompany him in his hotel room after concerts. One day, he left Veronica lounging in his Knoxville, Tennessee Marriott suite when she decided to take a gander down the toilet. Cooper notified management ,but the snake didn't reappear for two weeks - when it crawled out and terrified singer Charlie Pride during his stay at the same hotel.

  • One when rehearsing for an upcoming performance with his pet boa constrictor, Evan Marie Snake, Alice Cooper was choked by it. It would not stop and Cooper's bodyguard had to to cut off its head with his pocket knife.

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