The Greatest Rock N Roll Diss Tracks Ever

I've been doing a bunch of videos on my favorite stories and fun facts in rock n' roll history recently, and this series on "diss tracks" in the genre has been really taking off - so I figured I'd make a blog with a bunch of them in here. 

Aerosmith - "Dude (Looks Like A Lady)"

About: Vince Neil

Desmond Child is a songwriter famous for collaborating on KISS/Bon Jovi tracks like "I Was Made for Lovin' You", "You Give Love a Bad Name", "Livin' on a Prayer", "Bad Medicine", and more - as well as Aerosmith's "Dude (Looks Like A Lady)", and revealed the inspiration behind the song on Celebrity Access not too long ago after decades of speculation....

“We basically told the story that he had told me - he had gone into a club and saw this gorgeous creature at the end of the bar with teased-up platinum mullet and black nails and porcelain skin and jewelry with a curvy waist. Then the creature turns around, and it’s Vince Neil of Mötley Crüe. Then they were like, 'My God, that dude looks like a lady.'”


John Lennon - "How Do You Sleep"

About: Paul McCartney

This is arguably the most famous rock n' roll diss track of all time, written as a response to 'Too Many People' on Paul McCartney's album 'RAM'. Some of the lyrics are straight up MEAN, and so mean that Ringo Starr wanted no part of it when he read them. 

George Harrison, on the other hand, was fine sitting in on the recording. I don't think he was too happy with Paul at this point.

I wrote a full blog on this not too long ago, found HERE.

Paul McCartney - "Too Many People"

About: John Lennon

Here's the song that provoked 'How Do You Sleep?' from John Lennon, where Paul McCartney ironically accuses Lennon of making too many artsy underground songs in….an artsy underground song. 

It's a jam, though, and the whole 'RAM' album is well worth a listen, in my opinion. Again, if you want to know more about these songs, check out my full blog on the rivalry HERE.


Foo Fighters - "I'll Stick Around"

About: Courtney Love 

It's rumored that there's more than one Foo Fighters song about Courtney Love, including "Stacked Actors"/"Let It Die", but "I'll Stick Around" seems to be the track most commonly associated with her. 

Dave Grohl even admitted it was about Courtney in 2009, stating, "I don't think it's any secret that 'I'll Stick Around' is about Courtney. I've denied it for 15 years, but I'm finally coming out and saying it. Just read the fucking words!"

Nine Inch Nails - "Starfuckers Inc."

About: Courtney Love/Marilyn Manson

Here's another one about Courtney Love (and possibly Marilyn Manson), this time from Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails. I believe Courtney Love still alleges that they had a relationship back in the 90s, but Trent Reznor denies it and mostly shies away from the topic.


Gwen Stefani - "Hollaback Girl"

About: Courtney Love

ANNNNNND another one for Courtney Love here. I'm not sure I'd say this is "about" her, necessarily, as much as it's a response to her, on the other hand. 

Apparently Courtney Love said that Gwen Stefani was nothing but a cheerleader in a magazine interview, and this was Gwen saying, "Oh, I'm a cheerleader? Here's a #1 hit with that premise."

Slash w/ Ozzy Osbourne - "Crucify The Dead"

About: Axl Rose

Ozzy Osbourne wrote the lyrics to this one from Slash's perspective, actually! He says that while he's never met Axl, this is what he would've said to Axl if he were Slash….

Lynyrd Skynyrd - "Sweet Home Alabama"

About: Neil Young

"Sweet Home Alabama" by the Jacksonville band Lynyrd Skynyrd is a response to Neil Young's "Southern Man", as they felt he blamed the entire South for slavery. 

Neil Young even gets namedropped in the lyrics of this one, famously….


Fleetwood Mac - "Dreams"

About: Lindsey Buckingham

There's about a thousand Fleetwood Mac songs about other members of Fleetwood Mac, but this is probably the most famous one. Stevie Nicks wrote this about Lindsey Buckingham at the end of their 8-year relationship, while he wrote….

Fleetwood Mac - "Go Your Own Way"

About: Stevie Nicks

'Rumours' is basically one big inter-band diss album. "Go Your Own Way" is written by Lindsey Buckingham about Stevie Nicks, probably while she was in the other room writing "Dreams". That relationship truly gave us some unbelievable music.


Paul McCartney - "Silly Love Songs"

About: John Lennon

After critics in the press including John Lennon claimed that Paul McCartney's career was going downhill, and that he was writing nothing but 'silly love songs', McCartney turned it back on em with this jam. I love the bass line in this song so much.

Brand New - "Seventy Times 7"

About: Taking Back Sunday guitarist John Nolan

The Brand New/Taking Back Sunday rivalry is one of the most famous pop punk feuds ever, and it all starts here. "Seventy Times 7" was written by Brand New vocalist Jesse Lacey about his girlfriend cheating on him with his childhood best friend, John Nolan - guitarist of Taking Back Sunday.

Taking Back Sunday - "There’s No I In Team"

About: Brand New singer Jesse Lacey

This is Taking Back Sunday's direct response to "Seventy Times 7" by Brand New….

The bands would eventually make up and tour together about a year after the feud started.


Godsmack - "Cryin Like A Bitch"

About: Nikki Sixx (but maybe Philip Rivers)

Godsmack has always claimed this song was about Nikki Sixx, written after they opened for Mötley Crüe on the Crüefest 2 tour and allegedly got into multiple verbal altercations with the bassist….but in 2020, Godsmack drummer Shannon Larkin claimed he wrote it about Philip Rivers as a die-hard Raiders fan.

Also, while writing this blog, I realized the the music video to "Cryin Like A Bitch" is UFC themed. How strange!

Tool - "The Pot"

About: Led Zeppelin/Jimmy Page (Maybe)

This one has never been confirmed, but the theories about some of the Zeppelin references in the lyrics are pretty enticing….


George Harrison - "Wah-Wah"

About: John Lennon/Paul McCartney

George Harrison wrote this song about John Lennon/Paul McCartney's constant bickering right after quitting The Beatles during the 'Get Back' sessions, which was captured in the Disney+ documentary….

….and then shelved for his first solo album, 'All Things Must Pass' - which I believe is the best Beatles solo album.

Limp Bizkit - "Hot Dog"

About: Trent Reznor

After Woodstock 99, Trent Reznor criticized Fred Durst for his involvement in the insane crowd riots, called him a "moron" in the press, and said, and I quote: "Let Fred Durst surf a piece of plywood up my ass."

Durst didn't take too kindly too that, and wrote this not-so-subtle diss afterwards….


Aerosmith - "Sweet Emotion"

About: Joe Perry's girlfriend Elissa

Steven Tyler wrote "Sweet Emotion" about Joe Perry's then-girlfriend Elissa, who I believe Perry later married (and divorced)

Tyler specifically credits writing the lyrics, "Talk about things that nobody cares, wearing other things that nobody wears" to Elissa….

Alanis Morissette - "You Oughta Know"

About: Dave Coulier (Maybe)

This famous 90s anthem has pretty much always been speculated to be about Dave Coulier, AKA Joey from Full House, but I think Alanis has denied it at some point. Still, there's plenty of videos where it seems she avoids the question, and Dave Coulier has said he believes it's about him, so who knows.

Hopefully you guys enjoyed this blog and learned a thing or two from it!