The most famous musical alter egos

Artists and musicians have continued to embrace this idea

Stars Insider

04/09/20 | StarsInsider


Sometimes stars just don't feel like themselves. Musicians like Madonna create alter egos to explore different sides of their personality. This is more than a stage name like Bruno Mars or Lady Gaga: we're talking fully-fledged personalities. Take The Beatles, who revolutionized themselves with Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. Bored of their band image, and bursting with creative energy, the boys draped themselves in technicolor clothes and formed new personalities. In other cases, artists changed things up for a chance at commercial stardom. In 2002, Christina Aguilera created "Xtina," introduced for her 'Stripped' album. It was a success, 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 "bad" side of their personality. Beyoncé broke records with 'I Am... Sasha Fierce,' a double album which introduced Sasha Fierce, who taught 'Single Ladies' how to act like a 'Diva.' Around the same time, Miley Cyrus was winning over the world with Hannah Montana. Cyrus plays a high school student, while Hannah Montana is the teen pop sensation.

Then again, this is all after Eminem shocked the world with Slim Shady. The rapper wrote lyrics so shocking we can't even quote it, but got away with it by blaming it on his blonde doppelgänger. 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 making a mockery on live TV. Rest assured—his fans were delighted, and critics were quite impressed too.

In 2019, Madonna returned 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 singing in English, Spanish, and Portuguese too. But it was not the first time Madonna's created a new identity. Click through this gallery to explore her history with alter egos, as well as the most interesting alternative identities in show business.


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