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Music and television have gone hand-in-hand since The Buggles first threw on those silver shades and showed up on MTV in 1981. Since then, musicians (and probably their PR reps) have collaborated with TV networks and producers. Whether it’s through music videos or cameos on television shows, musicians are more visible now than ever.
Most recently, A$AP Rocky and A$AP Ferg made a guest appearance on HBO’s new animated series Animals. The two rappers literally (okay, not literally) became cats for the role. They now join an illustrious group of musicians to make cameos on television shows.
These are some of the most unexpected guest appearances from musicians, on some of the biggest shows—and then also a guest appearance on The Famous Jett Jackson.
Dharma and Greg was a show about Agent Hotchner’s (Thomas Gibson) life before he was on Criminal Minds… or maybe it’s just the same actor in both and the two are completely unrelated. Regardless, one of the show’s highlights has to be episode four from season three. It features the one, the only, Bob Dylan. Dylan plays himself as Dharma (Jenna Elfman) plays drums alongside the rock’n’roll legend. The combination of Dylan’s mumbling and Dharma and Greg‘s over-the-top laugh track is nothing short of television magic.
This is easily one of the greatest cameos by a musician you will ever see on television. Did you really expect anything less from David Bowie? Bowie appeared on the second episode of season two of Ricky Gervais’ comedy Extras. The scene features Gervais’ character Andy in the VIP section of a pub/club, where he meets David Bowie and immediately tells him his life story. The brilliance that follows can’t even be described, only watched. So stop reading and go watch the clip. It’s amazing.
Poor Otto. He meets Metallica, they love him, and then all of his dreams come crashing down ten seconds later. The band appeared on the season premiere of season 18 of The Simpsons. On the surface, it probably looks super cool of Metallica to do this cameo, and maybe it really was. But the band had also been on hiatus for almost a year and had a DVD featuring all their music videos coming out that December. But that could also just be a huge coincidence.
What do you do when you’re a witch and need advice? Well, you conjure up Britney Spears and dance away your problems. Spears was the voice of reason on the season four premiere of Sabrina, the Teenage Witch. Because really, who’s better than Britney Spears at dealing with their problems in a healthy manner? It’s believed that in a deleted scene, Sabrina actually shaved her head in an attempt to cure her loneliness, but producers thought it might scare the viewers. Also, spoiler: Britney doesn’t sing live. Go figure.
Episode 16 of season 3 of The Famous Jett Jackson doesn’t just feature Destiny’s Child—it’s basically their episode. The episode is focused on Jett filming an episode of his show (talk about Showception) with the music group. Naturally, the title character ends up crushing on Beyonce and she hits him with the “little brother” line in the end. Like she tends to do, Beyonce stole the spotlight in this episode of the classic teen drama. That obviously means that, as usual, poor Michelle was stuck in the background. Maybe one day Michelle…maybe one day.
Back before she was winning Golden Globes, Gaga was killing the “music guest on a hit teen show” game. This scene in the tenth episode of season 3 of Gossip Girl is set up as though Gaga is about to perform and everyone will just watch in (silent) amazement. Unfortunately for viewers, the writers decided every single character needed to speak while Bad Romance played in the background. This scene probably would have been a lot better if it was used on The O.C. instead. Woops.
Let’s just break this one down for those of you that are confused. Buffy the Vampire Slayer was in its final season. There were only nine episodes left, including this one. For some strange reason, maybe as a last hoorah, the Buffy team decided it was a good idea to slip in an Ashanti cameo. The one person who profited from this? Well, of course that was Ashanti. She went on to enjoy a marvelous film career including roles in movies such as John Tucker Must Die, Christmas in the City and something called Mutant World.
This scene is so eerily similar to the Gaga one on Gossip Girl that it’s kind of scary. Introduce an artist who’s about to perform their new hot track? Check. Immediately interrupt said artist with dialogue? Check. Proceed to film a scene completely unrelated to said artist’s performance? Triple check. But at least the writers of One Tree Hill let Cudi film seemingly live adlibs and allowed him to give another character some advice before her set. Take that Gaga.
Ah, the good old days. Back when the 1D boys still loved each other. Season six, episode two of iCarly is either a beautiful little time capsule for One Direction fans, or a gut-wrenching reminder of what the band used to be. It really was the beginning of the end. Harry gets sick and asks for someone to hold him, and of course, Zayn says no. The whole episode plays out almost exactly like the real fall of One Direction. Four band members stand united with their weird bowl cuts, and there’s Zayn being all different on the end. Just more confirmation the writers of iCarly could predict the future.
There’s literally nothing you can say about this to make it any less traumatizing. Just… yikes.