Busting a Move: Performers & Their Injuries

Performing on stage can be exhilarating, exciting and at times downright dangerous. When performers wish other performers to, “break a leg” it is to take the hoodoo and bad luck out of the metaphysical equation. Musical artists and rock band members are often using their physicality to enhance the overall performance for the audience. A guitar hero might model his, or her, work on the legendary Jimi Hendrix. Busting moves and guitars in impassioned poses and thrashing around on stage. Performers do get injured doing these things; and bands, and artists, do not want to have to postpone or cancel concerts based on accidents and injuries.

Busting a Move: Performers & Their Injuries

It is pretty easy to pull a muscle or strain a ligament on stage when careening around at high intensity moments during the performance of a song. Injured band members then need access to physios or chiropractors to fix them fast. Chiropractic services are often on hand at big concerts by super groups and pop stars. Venue management may have a roster of doctors and nurses readily available to mend and treat both performers and stage technicians. Roadies are carrying those large pieces of audio/visual equipment and there are fork lifts zooming around. It is a potentially dangerous place and occupational health and safety have plenty of rules in place.

Performers are like athletes in many ways, they are both seeking glory. Great musicians and singers want to push their performances to the max, as do top line athletes in sporting events. Injuries are bound to happen when you are reaching for the stars. Concerts have been cancelled due to injuries. I remember when John Farnham had to cancel a gig because he almost swallowed his microphone, resulting in a chipped tooth and bruised upper palate. The late great Chrissy Amphlett once slipped on stage during a rendition of I Touch Myself and doctors had to be called to extract broken digits. The show however went on and Chrissy completed the delayed performance.

Life on the road can be full of nasty surprises for musical artists; and not just pox ridden groupies and bloated livers but real accidents. The INXS singer Michael Hutchence not only famously hung himself whilst masturbating, but was a regular drunk onstage, falling down at many gigs early in his career. Living up to the Jim Morrison style legend can come at a painful price.