The most famous musical alter egos
Sometimes stars don’t feel like themselves. Musicians like Madonna create alter egos to explore different sides of their personality. It’s more than a stage name like Bruno Mars or Lady Gaga: it’s personalities in their own right. Take the Beatles, who revolutionized with Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club band. Tired of their group image and brimming with creative energy, the boys drape themselves in technicolor clothes and form new personalities. In other cases, artists changed things up for a chance at commercial stardom. In 2002, Christina Aguilera created “Xtina”, featured on her album “Stripped”. It was a hit, with fans and critics falling in love with Aguilera’s racy new role.
Creating an alter ego is nothing new and has been around for centuries. Robert Louis Stevenson popularized the concept with “Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde”. Artists and musicians have continued to embrace this idea, often creating a “good” and a “bad” side to their personality. Beyoncé broke records with “I Am…Sasha Fierce,” a double album that featured Sasha Fierce, who taught “Single Ladies” how to act like a “Diva.” Around the same time, Miley Cyrus was winning the world with Hannah Montana. Cyrus plays a high school student, while Hannah Montana is the teenage pop sensation.
Again, this is after Eminem shocked the world with Slim Shady. The rapper wrote lyrics so shocking we can’t even quote them, but got away with blaming his blonde doppelganger. After ditching the alter ego, Eminem brought it back for “The Marshall Mathers LP 2” in 2013. The rapper was back to bleaching his hair and poking fun at live TV. Rest assured, her fans were thrilled and the critics were very impressed as well.
In 2019, Madonna returns to the fray with a new record. The icon released ‘Madame X’, creating an alter ego of the same name. The new album featured Madonna also singing in English, Spanish and Portuguese. But it wasn’t the first time Madonna had created a new identity. Click through this gallery to explore his story with alter egos, as well as the most interesting alternate identities in show business.