With the advent of the messageboard and the “band blog,” opportunities abound for rock stars to talk smack about their contemporaries. There are so many poorly punctuated rants, ego-fueled back-and-forths and downright puzzling tirades floating around in cyberspace that in order for a burgeoning feud to truly get noticed, it’s got to raise (or lower) the bar drastically and dramatically.
Well, that’s the case with a tirade that Good Charlotte’s Benji Madden has lobbed at former “American Idol” champ (and current pop-rock golden girl) Kelly Clarkson, which manages to break new ground in the “are-you-serious?” world of rock beefs because of its undeniable ridiculousness (but also because it doesn’t involve the Killers — see “The Vanilla Thrilla: The Killers vs. The Bravery” and “Killers Get More Beef — This Time With Fall Out Boy” ).
The whole mess started late last month, when in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Clarkson made a joking reference to a beef between herself and Hilary Duff (a.k.a. GC frontman Joel Madden’s girlfriend), saying that she’d like to “fight” Duff because she’s from Clarkson’s home state of Texas. She then added that she’d also like to throw Beyoncé in the mix, too, since she’s also a native Texan.
Perhaps failing to realize that Clarkson was joking (even though the interview was in the magazine’s ’Stupid Questions With …’ section), on Saturday, Benji Madden fired back at Clarkson with a catty entry in his blog on GoodCharlotte.com.
In the post, which has since been removed from the band’s site, Madden got in a few shots about Clarkson’s weight and career, while also giving props to his mom, replacing the pronoun “you” with “u” and spelling the word “sucks” with an “x.”
“My mom told me if I didn’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all, so I won’t say ’Amercian Idol’ sux, but it does make me laugh when someone like Kelly Clarkson disses someone like Hilary Duff,” the post — as quoted in several punk blogs — read in part. ” ’Cause let’s not forget Kelly (BTW-Kanye West thinks u have a nice a–, I saw him look at it one time … me, I prefer the more fit look), you were a ’contestant’ on a TV show. Hilary made herself.”
The post was long gone by Sunday, replaced with a message from Benji that read “Where did all my blogs go? O well,” and concluded with a link to Clarkson’s official site (listed as “#1 Ya’ll!!!”). But Wednesday, Benji managed to get in one more passing dig, writing that he would be “making balloon figures of Kelly Clarkson” during Duff’s birthday party at the Los Angeles club Mood on Wednesday night.
When MTV News caught up with Madden at Mood, however, there were no balloon figures or harsh words.
“Here’s the thing,” he said. “I heard that she said some petty things about someone I care deeply about, so I just made some petty remarks ’cause I’m a petty guy. Straight up, I’m from Waldorf, Maryland, you guys. Let’s not forget that. You take shots, I take shots. I love you, Kelly — it’s all good.”
Well, maybe not all good. Neither Madden’s record label, Epic, nor his management company would comment on the issue. And Clarkson has declined comment, though a spokesperson for RCA, her record label, who requested anonymity told MTV News, “It’s insane. Kelly likes Hilary, and the [EW quote] was said in jest. In fact, the article says she was laughing while she said it.”