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Top 10 WTF Moments in Music 2016

VO: Matt Campbell

Script by Tiffany Ezuma

We’re pretty sure we’re not the only ones asking: what was the deal with 2016? Welcome to, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 WTF Moments in Music in 2016. For this list, we’re looking at the music stories from 2016 that made us wonder what the heck was going on with musicians, whether it was feuds, bad performances, or other bizarre behavior.

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We’re pretty sure we’re not the only ones asking: what was the deal with 2016? Welcome to, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 WTF Moments in Music in 2016.

For this list, we’re looking at the music stories from 2016 that made us wonder what the heck was going on with musicians, whether it was feuds, bad performances, or other bizarre behavior.

#10: Taylor Swift vs. Calvin Harris

After publicly saying he’d never collaborate with Taylor Swift, news surfaced proving that you should never say never: turns out, she was a co-writer of Calvin Harris’ smash hit, “This Is What You Came For.” In an effort to ensure that their relationship would not dwarf the song, Tay-Tay’s lyrical contributions were credited under a pseudonym – and her backing vocals were not acknowledged. Anyway, no celebrity relationship can die quietly, so Swift’s people revealed the truth after she’d split with Harris – and, if Harris’ subsequent tweets are any indication, he felt betrayed. What followed was a round of he said/she said, deleted Instagram pics, and snake emojis aplenty.

#9: Birdman Goes Off on “The Breakfast Club”

Hip-hop radio show The Breakfast Club asks its interviewees the tough questions. Co-host Charlemagne Tha God specifically is famous for not holding back, and that’s gotten him involved in beefs with various members of the hip-hop community – but none quite was like the Birdman incident. On April 22, 2016, Birdman visited the studio and, before he even sat down, all hell broke loose as he demanded Charlemagne, Angela Yee, and DJ Envy “respek” his name. Baby’s strained relationship with Lil Wayne had previously come up in the show’s interviews with Rick Ross and Trick Daddy, and he wasn’t having that. Birdman stormed out after his rant, ultimately later apologizing for his actions. But lesson learned: don’t get on his bad side.

#8: Beyhive Mistakes Rachael Ray for Rachel Roy

The Beyhive is one the fandom that doesn’t play. After Beyoncé dropped “Lemonade” in April 2016, fans started speculating wildly, trying to figure out who “Becky with the good hair” was from “Sorry.” There’d been rumors that Jay Z cheated on Beyoncé with designer Rachel Roy, and that’s a rumor Roy herself fueled by posting a pic on Instagram with the caption “Good hair don’t care.” Fans began spamming her account with lemon and bee emojis, but the real kicker came when fans confused Rachel Roy with Rachael Ray, the celebrity chef. Poor Rachael Ray took things in stride, making light of the incident by posting a picture of a chicken recipe with a caption telling fans to “make it a family affair.”

#7: Jesse Hughes

In November 2015, tragedy struck when the Bataclan Theatre in Paris became the target of a terrorist attack, leading to the deaths of 89 people at the venue. At the time of the attack, the band Eagles of Death Metal had been performing. None of the band members was harmed, but fast-forward a few months to when frontman Jesse Hughes made headlines by publicly claiming the attacks were an “inside job.” He said he’d felt that something was not right with security inside the venue that night, and that he’d seen Muslims celebrating the attack in the streets. His comments were not well received, and he was barred from returning to the Bataclan on the anniversary of the attack.

#6: Kid Cudi’s Beef with Drake & Kanye

Back in September 2016, Kid Cudi took to Twitter to sound off on rap artists who use ghostwriters. He namechecked Kanye West and Drake in the process, and said that they don’t care about him. His supposed mentor Kanye fired back during a concert saying, “I birthed you,” but later backtracked and wished Cudi the best. Drake, on the other hand, responded with a brutal diss track, “Two Birds, One Stone,” and made low blows attacking Cudi’s mental health. Unfortunately, that turned out to be oddly prophetic, as Cudi later checked into rehab for depression and suicidal thoughts. From rehab, Cudi clapped back, urging Drizzy to “say it to his face.” We’ll certainly be watching in 2017 to see if feud this continues…

#5: Corey Feldman’s “Today Show” Performances

In the ‘80s, he was known as one of the two Coreys, but in recent years, Corey Feldman’s fame has faded. In 2016, he tried to make a comeback by taking a stab at a music career, releasing his fifth studio album, Angelic 2 the Core. He appeared on NBC’s “Today Show” in September to promote the album by performing the song “Go 4 It” – with special help from his “angels.” To call the performance “bizarre” would be an understatement, and the video – of course – went viral, with Corey taking to Twitter to defend himself. To capitalize on his notoriety, the show invited him back to perform “Take a Stand” a month later.

#4: iPhone Goes Wireless

One thing everyone loves about their iPhone is having your whole iTunes collection right there in your pocket. Apple made it harder for us to enjoy that simple pleasure in 2016 when they announced that the new iPhone 7 would not have a headphone jack. Rumors about this had been swirling for quite some time before the September 7th release date, but consumers’ worst nightmares came true when it was confirmed. Instead of the traditional jack, iPhone 7 users have to use wireless headphones or Apple’s lightning port. And just like the phone, neither option is cheap. Considering how iconic Apple’s white earbuds have become, we’re still scratching our heads about this move. But maybe we’ll get over it???

#3: Kesha’s Legal Dispute with Sony

Since 2014, Kesha has been involved in a legal battle with her record label, Sony, and Dr. Luke, one of the biggest pop producers around. Alleging that he’d sexually and emotionally abused her over the course of their working relationship, Kesha sued Dr. Luke and later filed a lawsuit against Sony asking to be freed from her recording contract so she would not have to work with him anymore. 2016 saw Kesha face several setbacks, with the judge denying her request for an injunction and dismissing most of her claims against Dr. Luke, leaving her career at a standstill. Of course, Kesha was supported by fans, with the hashtag #FreeKesha trending on social media, and pop giants like Kelly Clarkson, Taylor Swift, Adele, and Lady Gaga also offering their support.

#2: Kanye

2016 was a rough year for Yeezy. Starting with the pushback he felt due to the delays on The Life of Pablo, he stayed in the headlines pretty much all year, whether it was due to his feud with Taylor Swift over a lyric in his song “Famous,” his Twitter fight with Wiz Khalifa and Amber Rose [#FingersInTheBootyAssBitch], and for the rants he spouted over the course of his Saint Pablo tour – a tour he cancelled altogether in November. His tour rants ran the gamut: he claimed Jay Z had hired hitmen to kill him and admitted he would’ve voted for Donald Trump – had he voted at all. In late-November, Kanye was committed to a mental hospital, perhaps explaining some of his erratic behavior.

Before we unveil our number one pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- Fergie’s “M.I.L.F. $” Music Video
- Black Eyed Peas Rehash “Where Is the Love?”
- Controversy Over Beyoncé’s Super Bowl 50 Performance

#1: All the Musician Deaths

By far our saddest entry, this one also had the most impact on us in 2016. Throughout the year, we saw musician after musician pass away from a multitude of causes, like cancer as in the case of David Bowie to an accidental overdose for Prince to heart failure for Natalie Cole. Whether it was an icon like Merle Haggard or Leonard Cohen, stars of years past like Vanity and Pete Burns, or relative newcomers like Christina Grimmie, each death has affected the artists’ fans, who turned to their music for comfort. Numerous awards shows performed tributes in honor of these fallen musicians, making 2016 a time for mourning and reflection.

Do you agree with our list? Which 2016 music moment made you scratch your head? For more newsworthy Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to

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