Living the celeb life means you can ask for just about anything you want when you’re out and about, especially when you’re a famous singer on tour. Dressing rooms of the rich and famous are much more than lit-up vanity mirrors and coolers full of bubbly—they’re a celeb’s haven to relax and unwind after the show and some people take this privilege to the extreme.
While some celebs are content with finding a few light refreshments in their room, others expect their backstage hideaway to resemble a mini apartment, with renovations and customized décor (or a pet shop, if you happen to be Mariah Carey). Sometimes, celebs make such crazy demands because they want to feel powerful and prove that people are paying attention.
Van Halen famously asked that all the brown M&M’s be removed from their candy bowl while on tour, but this was just a health and safety experiment to ensure that nothing else would go amiss. Some of the following celebs aren’t so fussy when it comes to getting every detail right about their dressing room, and then there are the typical divas. You might be surprised to find that some of your fave celebs have modest tastes. Who’d have thought Justin Bieber wasn’t the demanding type backstage?
15 Britney Spears – A Fish & Chip Dinner And Toothpaste
The Princess of pop could have pretty much anything she wanted while on tour, but apparently, she was happy enough sampling a local dish (and having something to freshen her breath afterwards). When Britney was due to perform at the O2 Arena in London back in 2011,
the pop star apparently requested the favorite of all British meals—the fish and chip dinner! When in Rome, eh Brit?
The pop star reportedly also asked for a framed photo of Princess Diana and requested that some toothpaste is left out for her. When you consider what some stars below Britney’s league have probably demanded while on the road, this is adorably modest and shows her to be a lot more human than other singers. Part of her must have been a tad homesick, though, because she also ordered some McDonald's burgers while in London town!
14 Justin Bieber - Drinks And Extra Small Shirts
Bieber is one of the biggest brats in the music industry, so we never could have expected that his backstage demands were this. Boring. For a guy who’s known for his wild child behavior as much as he is for his music, Justin Bieber’s rider requests are surprisingly low-key. Apparently,
after each show, all Bieber expects to be waiting for him in his room are a few soft drinks and a spare set of shirts and vest tops.
The guy who’s previously been busted for vandalism and reckless driving is content with the kind of refreshments you might find at a kid’s birthday party. Bieber’s full rider list apparently includes cases of coke and ginger ale, cases of water, potato chips, deli food covered by plastic wrap, and fresh white tees, socks, and tank tops!
13 Madonna - A Brand New Bespoke Toilet Seat To Every Show
So, you may have already heard about Madge’s weird obsession with having a custom-made toilet at every show? Well, we’re here to tell you that it gets a lot worse (and far more diva-ish) than this. The reason why Madonna likes to have her own bespoke toilet seat at every gig she plays is that
she demands that her dressing room is more or less exactly like her home.
Madge’s dressing room is presumably bigger than most celebs' (which is good news for her 200-plus entourage) because she likes to have her home furniture shipped from show to show just so that she has her home comforts around her at all times. To be fair to her, she does make small requests too, like white roses and candles to help fend off, in her words “negativity and mean-spiritedness.” Okay.
12 Jay-Z – Good Quality Peanut Butter & Jelly
One-half of music’s biggest power couple (if not THE biggest power couple on the planet) likes to keep things pretty low-key when he’s on tour. When it comes to backstage benefits, the multi-Grammy Award-winning rapper is happy with some of the things you’d find in your average hotel room. All Jay-Z asks for is
a comfy couch, plenty of water, and also that he has some good-quality peanut butter and jelly waiting for him.
Between them, Jay and Beyonce are worth over $1 billion. If he felt like it, the rapper could buy out every restaurant near the concert venue and cater a wild celeb house party after each show. Instead, he’s happy enough with a fridge full of bottled water and a jar of the stuff we usually reach for to make a midnight snack!
11 Eminem – CD Players And Lunchable Snacks
Backstage, the iconic rapper prefers to keep things old school in more ways than one. For starters, he mainly asks that his dressing room should have a CD player to be able to play his collection of burned CDs and mixtapes that he carries with him on tour.
No iPods or fancy playlists on the cloud for Slim.
As well as pretending he’s back in the early 2000’s with his music choices, Eminem also likes his backstage snacks to take him back to a simpler time. Remember the Dairylea ‘Lunchables’ box of crackers and ham and cheese slices? You probably took some to school when you wanted to skip the healthy sandwich your mom had made for you. This childhood snack food is what Eminem prefers to chow down on after a gig. Weird.
10 Paul McCartney - 6 Floor Plants And Various Flower Arrangements
The former Beatles legend has some understandable demands when he’s on tour. Being fiercely vegetarian and a strong champion of animal rights since the early 70’s, Paul McCartney likes to ban any form of fur, leather, or meat from his dressing room. Fair enough. What isn’t quite as understandable, however, is McCartney’s bizarre and overly-specific demand for various plants and flower arrangements.
Backstage at a Paul McCartney gig, expect to find (as specified by the man himself) 6 full and leafy floor plants, plants that are as full on top as they are on the bottom, no tree trunks in sight, and 3 different arrangements of white Casablanca lilies; pink and white roses and an arrangement of well-mixed freesias with plenty of foliage. Not exactly a picky guy, then?
9 Drake – Chapstick And Soap
We all knew Drake was a pretty laid-back and humble dude owing to his love of doing charity work and showing extreme kindness to his fans, but some might assume that the rapper still plays the celeb game by living it luxuriously on the road. Not so.
Apparently, a few bars of soap and a good quality chapstick is all that the honey-voiced rapper needs before and after his shows.
Drizzy simply makes the request that his dressing room has some Nivea chapstick and peppermint soap. We get why a singer might favor some moisturizing chapstick while on tour, but what’s with the peppermint soap? According to Drake, it’s the type of soap that “tingles the body and clears the mind.” Whatever works for you, man. He also likes to kick back with some Jack Daniels or a bottle of Heineken (presumably after he’s had a pampering peppermint shower, that is).
8 Beyonce – Seasoned Chicken And Pepsi
Beyonce may have the nickname ‘Queen Bee’, but when it comes to her dressing room requests at least, she doesn’t exactly have typically diva-like tastes. A lot like her hubby, Bey would rather have some tasty after-show snacks waiting for her than expensive décor and luxury furnishings like some other celebs on this list.
According to Bey’s people, the bootylicious singer only ever makes the modest request that she has a plate of chicken wings seasoned with cayenne pepper waiting for her and a case of Pepsi drinks to wash it all down with. Other than food requests, Beyonce likes to have fresh bath towels laid out after a show and a few rose-scented candles burning (what girl doesn’t want these things after a super sweaty workout anyway?).
7 Taylor Swift – Coffee And Liquorice
Taylor Swift might be one of the highest paid musicians on the planet, but you really wouldn't know it from her super cheap rider list. Proving to be just one of us when it comes down to it, the Shake It Off singer likes to have a few coffees before starting work, preferably Starbucks caramel lattes. And as for her dressing room items?
A selection of snacks, ice cream, and the cutest of all, a bag of Twizzlers red liquorice.
Taylor’s list of dressing room snacks is so low-key it kind of sounds like the kind of ‘menu’ most of us have had at a slumber party when we were kids. No sign of typical celeb pretension here, Taylor just likes to celebrate the end of another gig by pigging out on junk food, and we love it.
6 Mariah Carey – 20 White Kittens And 100 White Doves
We couldn’t make this list without her. The queen of all divas, Mariah Carey is (surprise surprise) not as humble as other celebs when it comes to backstage demands. Her regular rider list includes things like her dressing room must have a plain and non-patterned couch, bottles of chardonnay on ice, and that all corners of the room are draped in black. But it’s when she performed in London a few years back that the demands got way too indulgent.
In a Christmas show at a London Mall back in 2009, Mimi requested that her dressing room be filled with 20 white kittens and 100 white doves.
Her reason? “Because sometimes, life is for dreaming.” Unfortunately, the British organizers eventually told Carey to dream on because the whole thing was a health and safety nightmare. She’s probably still fuming about that to this day.
5 Jennifer Lopez – An All-White Dressing Room & Coffee Stirred For Her
J-Lo may be in close competition with Mariah for the biggest diva on the road because her rider list is more than a little excessive, even when she's being hosted at charity events! Being a demanding diva on your own time is bad enough, but to keep it up when there's a charitable cause involved? Kinda insensitive, don’t you think, Jen? Apparently not.
Wherever she goes, Jenny from the block likes to make sure that her dressing room sticks to the same theme every time—all-white. This means white furniture, tablecloths, flowers, candles—you name it. Even the food served to her needs to be white! White fish, tic-tacs, gum? J-Lo doesn’t allow other foods in case they stain the décor. If she finds the tiniest spot on her cream scatter cushions, you better hope you have your resume in order...
4 Alicia Keys – Scented Candles And Tuna
This multi-talented lady is pretty laid-back on tour. In fact, the most diva-ish thing we could find on Alicia Keys' list of backstage requests is that she has menus on standby from 3 different nearby restaurants in case she wants to order in. I think it’s safe to say that we all have a drawer full of restaurant menus at home! We might be ordering takeout instead of gourmet grub, but still, at least Alicia doesn’t demand a personal chef or personal ‘coffee stirrer’. After performing her set, the Girl on Fire singer likes to
cool things down by drinking chocolate almond milk and snacking on tuna sandwiches and fruit.
The only non-food item Alicia reportedly asks for to create a little atmosphere is a couple of mall-bought Glade candles. Nice.
3 Adele – Tea, Fruit, And Chewing Gum
British singer-songwriter Adele might be a global superstar, but the girl definitely knows how to keep it real on tour, mainly because she sticks so closely to her English roots by being more than a little obsessed with tea. “I used to drink 20 cups of it a day–with sugar.” She wasn’t kidding. That’s why
Adele’s dressing room requirements are that she has to have 6 large mugs and a kettle that won’t let her down!
Adele has since cut back on her tea habit to help with her weight loss, but the pop star likes to get her sweet tooth in slightly healthier ways now whenever she’s on the road. In-between gigs, she likes to make sure that her dressing room has a selection of fruit and a few bottles of honey.
2 Grace Jones – Vintage French Wine, Oysters, And Champagne
The iconic performer is known for being more than a little intense and hot-headed in interviews. And by the sounds of things, she’s not much different behind the scenes of her shows. If you work as Grace Jones' assistant, you’re at your own risk if you don’t have the best of the best waiting for her in the dressing room.
After a show, Jones apparently routinely asks that a dozen Findelcrae or Colchester Oysters are on ice, but don’t dare open them for her
(Grace Jones and only Grace Jones gets to shuck her own oysters). She’s also only happy with a very specific wine variety–an after-show tipple has to be either French vintage red wine or bottles of Louis Roederer Cristal Champagne. Jeez. We can imagine many a poor backstage assistant has been on the receiving end of a wine-related rant from this crazed lady.
1 Lady Gaga – Lots And Lots Of Smoothies
After another storming set for her little monsters, it turns out that Miss Gaga simply wants a bit of a health kick. ‘Bit’ of a health kick might be a slight understatement, though, because she likes to transform her dressing room into a portable smoothie station! Gaga might ask that an assortment of frozen berries and Greek frozen yogurt is ready and waiting for her after a show, but she apparently brings her own blender and makes them herself.
On a scale of 1 to Mariah Carey, this seems pretty far-off full-flung ‘diva’ behavior.
Even for times when she's not in a smoothie mood, Lady G still likes to keep things healthy by snacking on things like wholewheat crackers, veggie hot dogs on toothpicks, and plates of fresh fruit.