8 Pop Stars Who Wrote Angry Songs About Their Famous Exes
By Gina Vivinetto
Mariah Carey let the world know what she thinks of her soon-to-be ex-husband Nick Cannon in her new single "Infinity."
"Why you mad... Could it be that you just lost the best you ever had?" she sings. Later she hits him with this diss: "Boy, you actin' so corny like Fritos." Ouch!
Always the professional, Carey wouldn't admit that the song is really about Cannon, and she joins a long list of pop stars who have done the same. From Carly Simon and Fleetwood Mac -- the 1970s acts that started it all -- to today's mega stars Justin Timberlake and Miley Cyrus, here are eight more pop stars who wrote angry songs about their famous exes.
1. Carly Simon, "You’re So Vain"
We'd be remiss if we didn’t begin with 1972's "You’re So Vain" -- it’s rock 'n roll's most famous break-up song! However, Simon, whose loves back in the day included actor Warren Beatty, singer James Taylor and the Rolling Stones' Mick Jagger, still refuses to disclose which of her famous exes the tune is about. Only Taylor Swift knows the truth, as Simon told her the secret after the two performed the song together during Swift's July 2013 concert in Foxboro, Mass. Simon, now 69, swears "You're So Vain" is not about Jagger, and we believe her. After all, Jagger sings background vocals on the song!
2. Taylor Swift, "We Are Never Ever Getting Back to Together," "Last Kiss," "Dear John" & so many more…
It's hard to pick just one Taylor Swift song, because the 25-year-old star has been creating a musical timeline of her loves and losses since her 2006 debut album. Whether it's "Last Kiss," which most believe is about Joe Jonas (who famously broke up with Swift in a 27-second voicemail), or "Dear John," which even John Mayer says is about him, Swift loves to document her relationships in songs. And don’t forget "We Are Never Ever Getting Back to Together," the tune supposedly about her and Jake Gyllenhaal's on-again-off-again relationship. The more bitter, the better!
Remember Timberlake's nasty split from Britney Spears? In 2002, the
singer, now 34, lashed out at an unfaithful ex in his hit song "Cry Me A River," which many understood to be about his famous former lover.
Hmm, maybe it was because of the Britney Spears lookalike in the music
video? Spears responded two years later with the apologetic piano
ballad "Everytime." Think time heals all wounds? In 2011, Timberlake
confessed that he and Spears had not spoken "in nine or ten years."
4. Miley Cyrus, "7 Things"
Justin and Britney weren't the only Disney kids to have a bitter breakup. Cyrus and Nick Jonas were the toast of young Hollywood for two years until their nasty breakup in 2008, which Cyrus, now 22, chronicled in "7 Things." The song lists just a few of the reasons she was glad to move on from the youngest JoBro. "You're vain/your games/you're insecure," Cyrus sings, adding that the ex's friends are jerks too. To make sure he got the message, Cyrus even wore the medical dog tags Jonas gave her in the song's video. Woof!
5. Alanis Morissette, "You Oughta Know"
Morissette's first hit single is so teeming with venom, the world was shocked to learn years later that it was about Full House actor Dave Coulier. Yes, goofy Uncle Joey! Coulier confirmed it himself to the Calgary Herald in 2008. Upon first hearing the song, the Canadian comedian said, "'Wow, this girl is angry.' And then I said, 'Oh man, I think it's Alanis.'" Coulier confessed he listened to the song "over and over," realizing how badly he'd hurt his former flame.
Pink and her motocross-racing hubby Carey Hart are doing fab these days, but back in 2008, the couple was separated and Pink was singing a different tune -- an angry one that went to the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart. "So What" finds a pissed-off Pink calling her husband a "tool," and bragging, "So what/I'm still a rock star/I got my rock moves/and I don't need you." When Pink and Hart reunited the following year, the singer, now 35, told talk show host Ellen DeGeneres she found it "funny" to perform the song with her husband in the audience.
7. Kanye West, "Blame Game"
Anyone paying attention to West's messy break-up with model Amber Rose knew this diss track -- and several others he wrote before settling down with wife Kim Kardashian -- was about her. West brought in singer John Legend and comedian Chris Rock, who delivers an X-rated monologue, on the tune. Rose, 31, who went on to have a baby with rapper Wiz Khalifa, has been open about the fact that West's barbs at her were hurtful. "No one knows what I've been through and the things that I had to deal with when Kanye made his album and talked reckless about me," she's said.
8. Fleetwood Mac, "Go Your Own Way" and "Silver Springs"
Think it would be fun to be in a band with your partner? Not according to Fleetwood Mac, the act that saw songwriting couple Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks implode right before recording its 1977 masterpiece Rumours. But the good news is they scored hit after hit with their fury. Fans may have winced when they heard Buckingham’s sneering “Go Your Own Way,” but Nicks retaliated with “Silver Springs,” a song that has her vowing, "I'll follow you down 'til the sound of my voice will haunt you." The irony is Nicks' has done just that for four decades! The duo still tour together in Fleetwood Mac, and Nicks says they still know how to push each other's buttons. "We know exactly what to say when we really want to throw a dagger in," she told Rolling Stone. "And I think that that's not different now than it was when we were 20. And I don't think it will be different when we're 80."