Six Artists Practically Unrecognizable On Their First Records

The things you did when you were young are often extremely embarrassing as you get older. The old joke used to be about people's high school yearbook photos, and a cursory search on the Internet will show you the embarrassing evidence of these when it comes to famous celebrities. Nowadays, you can find evidence of every period of a person's development thanks to social media.

We'll also be seeing the embarrassing, earliest recordings of bands floating around becoming a more frequent occurrence, as our new rock stars will be able to put out everything they do on Bandcamp from their beginning to their masterpiece. Back in the day, you had to search for long out-of-print first albums to hear those sorts of things.

They did exist, though, whenever bands or musicians managed to get a recording contract long before they were ready for prime time. Those records are the stuff of legend now, but thanks to the Internet and intrepid fans, we're able to look back and have a laugh.

6. David Bowie Before he was an innovator or a trendsetter, David Bowie was a quaint folkie who released an album under his own name in 1967 that he'd probably prefer the world just forget about -- along with his haircut in this video.

5. Deep Purple Though their first records aren't particularly embarrassing, and contained a huge hit in their cover of "Hush," Deep Purple was still a far cry from their hard-rock future when they put out Shades of Deep Purple.

4. Radiohead Though Pablo Honey will never be forgotten because it featured "Creep," that eternal thorn in Radiohead's side, it's still hilarious to look back on their douchey beginnings with songs and videos like this one for "Anyone Can Play Guitar."

3. GZA/Genius Though technically the first release in the Wu-Tang canon, Words from the Genius is a pretty vapid pop-rap record in the '80s style that everyone in the group, especially GZA, would like to overlook. Oddly enough, though, it's actually not too bad.

2. Ministry Al Jourgensen has claimed that Ministry's first record, the synth-pop With Sympathy, was something the record label foisted on him. Others have said Jourgensen simply hadn't discovered metal yet. Regardless, his fake English accent is worth the price of admission alone.

1. Bjork Released when she was 12 years old, Bjork's self-titled first record is a cutesy pop record featuring Icelandic-language versions of hits like the Beatles' "The Fool on the Hill." And that's to say nothing of her early-'80s punk and avant-garde recordings.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


All-access pass to the top stories, events and offers around town.

  • Top Stories