Riot On The Set: 20 Live Concert Movie Cameos By Hard Rock + Heavy Metal Bands

There are rock concerts, there are movies, and there are rock concert movies. Then there are movies that contain scenes set at rock concerts.

It’s a tradition that stretches back to the early days of rock-and-roll, as evidenced by time capsule classics such as Don’t Knock the Rock (1956), which showcases Bill Haley and Little Richard performing, and The Girl Can’t Help It (1956) with live numbers by Fats Domino, Eddie Cochran, the Platters, and, again, Little Richard.

The “beach party” movies of the 1960s kept the tradition going when Frankie and Annette’s high jinks would take a break for music from the likes of surf guitar king Dick Dale (Beach Party, Muscle Beach Party), the Kingsmen (How to Stuff a Wild Bikini), Nancy Sinatra and Bobby Fuller (The Ghost in the Invisible Bikini) and, naturally, the Beach Boys (The Girls on the Beach). Two decades later, Fishbone paid tribute alongside Frankie, Annette, and Dick Dale themselves in the 1987 spoof, Back to the Beach.

Since then, numerous films have contained classic scenes set at shows by recognizable rock bands, from David Bowie in Christiane F. (1981) to the Plymsouls in Valley Girl (1983) to Oingo Boingo in Back to School (1986).

Along the way, live band movie cameos have amply represented heavy metal and hard rock. Here now are twenty killer highlights.


Alice Cooper in Wayne’s World (1992)

Alice Cooper – “Feed My Frankenstein”
Heavy metal icon Alice Cooper delivers one of cinema’s all-time great comedic monologues in Wayne’s World. It happens backstage in Milwaukee when, after a great show, our heroes Wayne (Mike Meyers) and Garth (Dana Carvey) approach Alice and ask if he gets to the city often.

The godfather of shock rock responds with a perfectly deadpan dissertation on the city’s history. Wayne and Garth then famously fall to their knees and bow worshipfully while proclaiming: “We’re not worthy! We’re not worthy!”

For as well remembered as that Wayne’s World exchange is, the scene that precedes it often gets overlooked. It showcases Alice onstage, still the best in the business, tearing through “Feed My Frankenstein.” The movie’s producers originally wanted Alice to perform “School’s Out,” but Cooper’s legendary manager Shep Gordon insisted that a new song be used. He won and, as a result, the movie rocked that much more uniquely harder.

Alice gives Wayne and Garth a history lesson 

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