Food & Drink

The Weirdest Food & Drinks on Celebrity Tour Riders

The most appealing part of being a celebrity -- aside from the money, fame, sex, private jet rides, not going to jail for egregious crimes, and the ability to own dozens of mini-horses -- is definitely being able to make a rider.

For the filthy, uninitiated bourgeois, a tour rider is a list of demands and expectations given to a venue before the arrival of a star. Specifications may be made for travel, stage set-up, backstage dressing rooms, and, of course, food and drink preferences. This means celebs can request homemade banana bread, NO CITRUS FRUIT, or even a full, heavily seasoned chicken (all real, actual demands on this list) every time they make an appearance.

Why do we cater to celebrities' fickle predilections? Because they are the equivalent of modern-day sun gods, and we need to appease them. Look, six packs of Lunchables are way cheaper than building a pyramid.


In order to perform to the best of his abilities, the world's greatest mediocre dancer requires "assorted soups," a bottle of honey, and an array of vitaminwater, among other things. The rider very specifically prohibits any pork products in the assorted soups (Drake is half Jewish, l'chaim!) and requires exactly one bottle of pinot grigio -- which is pretty much the most Drake thing ever. I'm assuming he brings his own tissues. 

Jack White

Jack White is a profoundly weird dude -- and this is coming from a fan. Case in point: his rider requires homemade guacamole. And not just any homemade guac, it actually lists a specific, nuanced recipe to be made in advance of Mr. White's arrival, with instructions like "...careful not to mush the avocados too much. We want it chunky."

Robin Williams

Robin Williams had some very specific, mayo-based tastes. He needed "large bowls" of the following: egg salad, pasta salad, and Chinese chicken salad. Williams also specifically stated he needed "fresh homemade soup, (No SYSCO)." I don't envy the concert-venue employee who had to slave over a Bunsen burner backstage.

Taylor Swift

If Princess Swift is to arrive at a venue before 11am, the venue is required to provide the following: three boxes of Kraft mac and cheese, one stick of butter, one Grande ICED caramel latte w/ two Sweet'N Lows, one Grande ICED Americano w/ two Sweet'N Lows with soy milk, and one slice pumpkin loaf. Which confirms my suspicion that she does say "Starbucks lovers," in that song I don’t like.


In Beyonce's dressing room -- heated to the exact temperature of 78 degrees, mind you -- there must be a "juicy baked chicken" waiting for her. This chicken must be "HEAVILY SEASONED" with fresh garlic, season salt, black pepper, and cayenne. She also specifically needs Aquafina water, and "all necessary condiments," which begs the question: what condiments are necessary in the first place?


Pre-show, Adele sets fire to her vocal chords with "very best quality red wine" (which is literally the opposite of what I ask the liquor store guy for) and a pack of Marlboros. In very bold letters, she specifies "NO CITRUS FRUIT," probably because it could damage her throat. But then again, so will a pack of Marlboros.

Jay Z

Beyonce's husband, who apparently is also some kind of musician himself, has a fairly simple tour rider, with only one idiosyncratic request: HOV needs peanut butter and jelly sandwiches before he goes out on stage. I'm fairly certain "Hard Knock Life" is an ode to the days before he heard of "chunky-style," which accounted for approximately 98 of his problems back then. 

Bill and Hillary Clinton

The former president/future first man and the future president/former first lady have refined tastes. Included in the lengthy requirements for dinner and lunch preparations, are dishes like stuffed Cho Cho, boiled pumpkin, homemade banana bread, grilled snapper with tropical salsa, pumpkin soup, and Taclie's homemade rum pie. Finally, the truth about the Clintons' relationship is out there: they are bonded by a mutual love of pumpkin. 

Van Halen

Perhaps the most notorious tour rider demand of all time, Van Halen's supposed distaste for brown M&M's looms so large, the urban legend-busting website Snopes had to get involved. Here's the truth: David Lee Roth and crew DID have a clause in their rider requesting a large bowl of M&M's, with the requirement that all brown ones be removed. They even caused $80,000 worth of damage when their candy demands weren't met. Talk about an "Eruption," amiright?

Katy Perry

Katy Perry probably has the most elaborate and therefor annoying rider on this entire list -- which isn't too surprising. Queen Katy's list of culinary needs aren't that strange alone, it's the sheer number of requests in her six-page (!) rider that sets her apart. Her needs include two bottles of pinot grigio, frozen strawberries, a bowl of whole fresh organic grown fruit, a plate of fresh-cut crudités (to include cucumber, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, snap peas, celery) w/ ranch dip, and the life blood of four virgins. OK, I made that last one up. 


Apparently, the only thing Kanye loves more than himself is delicious, nutritious yogurt, as he calls for both "four small Yoplait yogurts," as well as "one tub plain yogurt (for dipping)." What is Yeezy dipping in this tub o' 'gurt? It's unclear, but he does require two packs of gum, and one bowl of Sunkist salted pistachio nuts (no red coloring). Which answers nothing.

George Carlin

(Un)surprisingly, there were no requests for "Blue Food" on Carlin's rider. There was, however, a bold warning for those picking up the milk: 2% low-fat was UNACCEPTABLE. Carlin also required enough celery and carrots to equal one large salad, stating that DIP IS NOT REQUIRED. Grab two cold, skinless chicken breasts and wash it all down with a six-pack of non-alcoholic O'Doul's, and you'll be dining like the one of the greatest comedians of all time. 


Eminem might seem a little prickly on the surface. I mean, he did write a five-minute-song about killing his wife in front of his 2-year-old daughter. But how mean can someone be if they require six packs of LUNCHABLES backstage at their shows? Slim is relatively low maintenance. He does have one water stipulation though: exactly 48 bottlesNO EVIAN. This is a man who knows precisely how thirsty he will be, on any given night. I can respect that. 

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Wil Fulton is a staff writer for Thrillist. His tour rider would request one thing and one thing only: cherry-flavored Pez, no dispenser necessary. Follow him: @wilfulton.