25 Classic Songs You Won’t Believe Were Banned (For Hilariously Ridiculous Reasons)

  • Bing Crosby

  • Elvis Presley

  • Kingsmen

  • Peter Paul and Mary

  • The Byrds

  • John Denver

  • shangrila

  • Bobby Darin

  • The Kinks

  • Paul Simon

  • The Beach Boys

  • Billy Joel

  • Jimmy Boyd

  • Monster Mash

  • Napoleon XIV

  • U2

  • The Rolling Stones

  • The Beatles

Rock ’n’ roll has a long and storied history as “the Devil’s music”, rotting away teenage morals and shocking decent upright citizens who have no sense of rhythm. With a rep like that, it’s inevitable that some songs are going to ruffle feathers every now and then. But we’re still pretty amazed that the censors found fault with these seemingly inoffensive classics!

Banning a song from the radio is a sure-fire way to boost the song’s street cred, even if the reasons are totally bogus. Sometimes the powers-that-be fear the (extremely vague) suggestion of sex, drugs and violence, and other times the reasons are even more hilariously neurotic. Can you believe Bing Crosby’s “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” got red flagged at one point?! Although it’s worth saying that none of the tracks on this list were particularly hurt by the controversy, which just goes to show you that there’s no such thing as bad press. Head on up to the gallery above to read about 25 “dirty” ditties that might surprise you!

[Photo: Getty Images]

VH1 Music Editor + Seltzer Enthusiast