Main content

The Strangest Musical Conspiracy Theories

Pop culture has consistently generated a plethora of bizarre stories connected to various musicians. As a recent episode of the Unpopped podcast illustrated, the boy band One Direction generates a multitude of tall tales. But they are not alone when it comes to conspiracy theories. Here are just a few strange tales of musical oddness.

Paul is Dead

The daddy of all music conspiracy theories. Legend has it that Paul was killed in a car accident in the mid-1960s and replaced by a lookalike, possibly called Billy Shears. All the clues are there, people! John saying ‘I buried Paul’ at the end of Strawberry Fields Forever (or possibly ‘cranberry sauce’). Paul’s bare feet on the Abbey Road cover JUST LIKE CORPSES HAVE and the VW licence plate that reads ‘28IF’ as Paul would have been 28 IF he had lived (though he would have been 27). There’s an even more insane theory that The Beatles never existed at all and were comprised of an ever-revolving collection of stand-ins.

A very much alive Paul McCartney

Elvis Isn't

While Paul has got his wings, many believe that Elvis never got his. Immediately after The King’s untimely death in 1977, rumours started to circulate that he had faked his demise due to the pressures of fame. He has since been spotted buying a fuse in Michigan, at a Kalamazoo Burger King and as an extra in the background of the film Home Alone. Other celebrities who are thought to have faked their deaths are Michael Jackson, Tupac, Kurt Cobain, Jim Morrison… in fact anyone who has passed away has almost certainly not passed away.

The King hasn't left the building?

Bieber is Cold Blooded

Ah, the lizard people. In the same way that all dead celebrities are healthily buying fuses somewhere, pretty much every famous person is either a member of the Illuminati or a shape-shifting alien lizard being. Including baby-faced bad boy Justin Bieber, who blinked oddly in a YouTube video, in a way that ‘only a lizard can’ according to commenters. So he joins Barack Obama, Madonna, Katy Perry, Angelina Jolie and every member of the royal family as a scaly-skinned beast here to enslave the human race.

A surprised-looking Justin Bieber

Jay-Z Sucks (Blood)

Also a supposed member of the Illuminati (who secretly run the world - though it’s not that secret as I know about it) but not necessarily a lizard person is Jay-Z who, on the strength of a photograph from 1939 showing someone who looks a bit like him, is thought to be a time-travelling vampire. The time-travelling I understand, though I’m not sure why he has to be a vampire as well. Unless he has a fondness for capes.

Modern-day Jay-Z

Bey Away

Just as practically every celeb is in the Illuminati or is a lizard person (or often both) many are thought to be clones of themselves or, like poor old Paul McCartney, has been replaced by a lookalike. Beyonce is one such notable who was replaced by her own stems cells as proven by a video showing her acting oddly or ‘clone-like’ at a basketball game (or is possibly a bit bored). It’s also proposed that Beyonce is much older than she claims to be and Solange is actually her daughter.

The 'real' Beyonce

Additional Avrils

Avril Lavigne was also supposedly replaced after her first album Let Go (featuring the hit "Sk8er Boi”) by someone called Melissa Vandella, who is slightly taller than the original Avril. Dead giveaway. Foolishly, fake Avril started blabbing about the switch in songs such as Under the Skin, which suggests the singer is ‘under the skin’ of her replacement Melissa. Pretty obvious when you think about it. (??)

What would appear to be Avril Lavigne

Sister Michael

The tragic and perpetually bizarre life of Michael Jackson has generated untold speculation and uncorroborated rumours. From the Elephant Man’s bones to sleeping in an oxygen tent with a monkey, the King of Pop was often saddled with odd tales about his exploits. This has only multiplied since his death in 2009, with speculation that he was bumped off by the Illuminati or that he’s very much alive and hiding in the back of cars in YouTube videos. But one exceptional theory claims that Michael and his sister LaToya ARE THE SAME PERSON based on the fact that they were never photographed together and they, erm, look similar.

Clearly Michael Jackson

Time Lorde

It’s not just your vintage pop stars that attract scurrilous online gossip. Even newer celebrities like Kiwi teenage pop sensation Lorde get the treatment. But wait a minute? Is she really THAT new? One conspiracy theory claims that Lorde is actually much, much older than she claims to be and rather than being born in 1996 she is actually a 35 year-old woman. Lyrics such as ‘I'm kinda older than I was when I revelled without a care’ are considered a stone cold, signed confession. However, one journalist tracked down Lorde’s birth certificate that proves her youngness. Unless that was all faked too, of course.

A youthful-looking Lorde

Ri-Ri’s Eyes Don’t Have It

Some conspiracies involve death and secret new world orders. Others are about winking. That’s right, there are certain portions of the internet who believe that Rihanna can’t wink. There are untold videos online that show the singer ATTEMPTING to wink but never actually following through. This doesn’t seem to have been connected to the ubiquitous lizard people yet, though it is only a matter of time.

Rihanna (not winking)

Stevie’s Eyes Do

While Rihanna has trouble controlling where her eyelids go, some conspirators are convinced that legendary performer Stevie Wonder is a lot less blind than he claims to be. This is based on the fact that he goes to basketball games, owns televisions and occasionally wears a watch. Oh and once playfully pretended to strangle Boy George. As far as we're aware, no one has proffered a theory as to WHY Stevie Wonder would pretend to be blind. But let’s not let facts get in the way of a good story.

Stevie Wonder at work