This is a topic that has been hotly debated in recent months, with it becoming a repeated question throughout pop culture discussion forums and celebrity gossip circles ever since Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Barker became a couple.
Now. If I have learned ANYTHING from doing these deep dives, I’ve learned that Hollywood is fucking small. And there is an insane amount of crossover in the hook-up world. If you’ve read any of the other deep dives I’m sure you’ve been surprised a few times at the amount of crossover there (remember when Hailey Bieber and Scott Disick went on a date?).
Soo, this rumor, while it seems kind of wild n far fetched at first, is … pretty believable? Lets get into it.
First thing to note here is that Travis Barker and Shana Moakler were married between the years of 2004-2008.
So, giving some more background here – in 2006, Paris Hilton “dated” Travis Barker for a while.
They were caught (& some nosy employee probably lost their job over leaking) making out at a club on Sept 12 2006. Click the link for the TMZ video.
If it wasnt for this leaking and going viral, would Paris and Travis have ever decided to go public about their relationship? IDK.
Paris denies that there is anything between her and Travis a few days later, saying theyre just good friends. But..,
I found another pic of them from Sept 20, 2006 kissing again:
So, I mean, regardless of if they were just friends or not, they were clearly happy to be kissing on more than one occasion.
I also found a picture of them going out in disguises LOL, with Paris wearing a black wig:
Oh !! And there’s another pic that is supposedly them kissing on a 3rd occasion, in September at a club but it was too nondescript for me to say anything definitive. You can see the pic yourself on this sketchy 2006 gossip blog. LOL.
Paris went to Amsterdam with Travis and the rest of Blink 182 around the end of Sept 2006.
Paris, of course… brought Kim. Per the article linked above:
“AMSTERDAM, Netherlands, Sept. 29 (UPI) — U.S. socialite Paris Hilton and Blink 182 drummer Travis Barker recently enjoyed the nightlife in Amsterdam, Netherlands, as a couple,” Us Magazine reported.
“Professional nightlife sidekick Kim Kardashian went along as well,” the report said.
I knowwww I know.
You’re probably like wait! but wasnt Travis still married to Shanna? They were married from 2004-2008?
The answer is…yes. They were still married.
Their relationship was extremely chaotic, very on-and-off most the time.
In Travis Barker’s autobiography, he wrote the following passages regarding the Sept. 2006 Amsterdam trip, his feelings towards Kim Kardashian, & what happened in the months/years following it:
“Kim was Paris’ assistant. She got all of Paris’ belongings together wherever we traveled. I kept on secretly checking out Kim, telling Lil Chris, ‘I don’t care if she’s [Paris’s] closet girl, she’s fucking hot,’” He wrote at the time, about a trip he took to Amsterdam with Paris Hilton.
When they were all back in LA, he wrote:
“[Kim and I], we went to dinner, we went to lunch. You might think I would be doing the worst things with this girl because of her sextape, but it was the exact opposite of any other encounter I’ve had with a woman: with Kim, I wanted to be nothing but a gentleman to her. It was so weird.”
“How could you not stare at Kim? Mind you, I enjoyed hanging out with Paris, but… I love curvy girls. Kim was eye candy. I was no way disrespectful to Paris, but I couldn’t keep my eyes off Kim!”authors note: this book was written by Travis in 2015
Also, I feel like this is relevant enough to mention at this point, on October 3rd or 4th of 2006, Shanna and Paris got into a fight at a nightclub about Travis. Lol.
To give a bit of perspective on where (& when) we are in pop culture right now:
In February of 2007 Kim Kardashian’s sextape with Ray J was released.
In October of 2007, the reality show, Keeping up with the Kardashians, first aired.
2007 was the year Kim began being more widely recognised by the public, and this is also the time she started intermingling with more of the various Hollywood crowds, or to put it simply, this is when she started venturing out to groups outside of just Paris and her current friends and hook ups. At least from my research. Now…lets move on.
In 2007-2008, Kim Kardashian became very close with Aubrey O’Day, attending a LOT of events as a duo.
You most likely don’t know who Aubrey is. Before researching for this post, I personally didnt know anything about her other than the fact she dated Jersey Shore’s Pauly D for a while, and she was on a season of Celebrity Big Brother that I watched back when I was in college.
That being said, I researched her and her past just so we all have a bit more context here:
Aubrey O’Day rose to fame when she was about 21 years old.
She was deemed the “breakout star” of P. Diddy’s ridiculously popular MTV show Making the Band, specifically the third iteration of it, “Making the Band 3”. Making the Band 3 had three seasons, all focused on Aubrey and her girl band, Danity Kane. Apparently, she had a pretty die-hard, semi obsessive fan base… as seen in this 2018 Glamour article about her.
“From her first audition for Diddy, it was a given that—spoiler alert—Aubrey was going to win the show. And although she did so with four other women, there was no question she was the Diana, the Gwen, the Fergie, the Beyoncé of the group that went on to become Danity Kane “
“I couldn’t look away from Aubrey, the one with the aggressive blond highlights, ridiculously flat abs, and impressive collection of crop tops. Diddy couldn’t either—at one point while watching her dance, he asked if she “hung around black people” because she moved like it; a compliment coming from him.”“Help, I Can’t Stop Thinking About Aubrey O’Day”, Glamour.com, 2018
Aubrey and her band were so popular at the time, that when they dropped their first album on August 22, 2006, it debuted at #1 on the Billboard top 200 charts, and stayed on the charts, in various positions, for 24 weeks following that.
These stats are like…a massive deal in the recording world, so it’s wild to me that I never heard of them but I’m sure this one hit wonder, flash-in-the-pan kind of pop star/pop group thing happens more than we realize.
Why am I telling you this?
What does this have to do with anything?
I say all of this to give you an idea of how popular Aubrey O’Day specifically was, since she was (per Diddy’s comments on the show) the face of the band, and subsequently, the main focus on the show.
And, like I said – she hung out with Kim A LOT during this time:
On June 24 2007 Kim & Aubrey are pictured together all night at a BET Awards reception party.
The next day, June 25th, they are posing together at the BET Awards event here (some photos I can’t embed here due to copyright ownership, but the link will take you to the picture and date).
Then on June 26 2007:
So thats like, 3 days in a row.
I dont hang with anyone 3 days in a row unless I either HAVE to, or .. I’m pretty close with them.
July 21, 2007 at a LA Direct Magazine expansion party at Republic:
October 15 2007, shown backstage at the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week at Smashbox Studios:
October 21 2007 they were at Kim’s 27th Birthday Party at Les Deux (sidenote, do y’all remember The Hills & how iconic Les Deux was!!!! It was the early 2000s version of The Nice Guy or Craig’s, honestly):
April of 2008:
So … that is a little backstory.
But so, the summer of 2008 is when it gets interesting. 🥴
Apparently… on July 4 2008, Kim Kardashian and Travis Barker DID in fact hookup.
Aubrey O’Day tells the story.
Back then, 2006-2008, was 100% Aubrey’s “peak”.
Aubrey was invited a ton of places, and, in-between Kim’s sex tape release in January 2007 and the KUWTK reality show not debuting until November 2007, Kim was practically glued to Aubrey’s side for many events, including the ones listed above.
Back then, their friendship was super beneficial for them both.
But now…present day? Aubrey is one of those former it-girls that is …or seems to be, kind of desperate for relevancy. Idk. I know its hard to imagine in 2022, but in 2007-2008, Kim was not taken seriously by most major media outlets or industry event hosts.
So .. with all of that being said.
In 2020, Aurey O’Day spilled some tea for us:
She is sharing her best and worst 4th of July stories, and her ‘worst’ story is what stands out.
I hate long walls of text, so.
I will put the relevant parts of her post here:
“I was BFFs with Kim Kardashian during a fourth.”
“She was hooking up with Travis Barker at the time and we were at his house… he was really dope. Shanna, his ex, supposedly was threatening to slash her tires, so they asked her to park her car somewhere else.“
“[Instead of staying there], We took off and went to some B.S. celeb Malibu parties where she wanted to be photographed, so I was running around from house to house in an uncomfortable dress and high heels to appease that.“
“We headed back to Calabasas and got on the freeway late [due to traffic], and ended up in her Range Rover as the fireworks started. I was super annoyed because I absolutely LOVE fireworks and have always been in memorable places watching them every year.“
“I asked her if we could pull over so we could get out and experience the fireworks. So we did. And we sat on this patch of grass watching them and all I remember feeling is relieved to see the beauty of them.“
“As we watched them, Kim turned to me and said, “You know, last year I was on a yacht with Paris at [some beautiful location, don’t remember], and this year I’m sitting on a plot of grass in Calabasas with you.”
Hahahaha. I was like “oh…cool.”
Now… I know, I know.
Y’all are like “well shes a clout chaser!! she is just making it up!”
But then…so if Aubrey made all of that up…
Tell me why Page Six covered a story on July 25th of 2008, less than a month later, about Shanna pouring a drink on Kim…
In 2008, Shanna tells Page Six:
“Kim was sending Travis [dirty] text messages and e-mails, and this was when Travis and I were working on [staying together],” Moakler told Page Six. “When it happened, I asked her, ‘What are these e-mails?’ Kim had no answers for me. She was blatantly disrespectful.”
Moakler says she wouldn’t even have gone to the party if she had known Kardashian was going to be there.
“I was going to leave, but I’m a human being. I get upset. I wasn’t drunk, and I confronted her. She ruined my marriage and my family. If I get passionate about it, they call me crazy,” Moakler relates.
She says that Kardashian’s boyfriend at the time, Reggie Bush, tried to calm them and she said that “I told him, ‘Your girl’s a whore.’ “
“I told him what I knew, which was that Kim sent Travis messages to meet up secretly.”
Kardashian retaliated on Monday by strolling around in a T-shirt from Travis Barker’s Stars and Straps clothing line, in front of the paparazzi.
“It was in the poorest of taste,” said Moakler. of the T-shirt incident.
Note: I swear to God I remember seeing the photo of Kim wearing the shirt mentioned in the last line in a TMZ article but I CANT FOR THE LIFE OF ME FIND IT ANYWHERE. Please let me know if you were able to find this photo!
Now, after all of this, Kim comes out with a very publicist-friendly semi-apology, where she denies anything happened. She does admit to being petty and wearing the Travis Barker shirt though, saying (per the article):
“Secondly, it was immature of me to wear a Famous Stars and Straps t-shirt out the other day. I just wasn’t thinking.”
She also puts another statement out through sources to TMZ, where she says that Travis isnt her type, and either her or the article strongly imply this is because Kim prefers black men.
As we know now, she does like skinny tattooed men like Travis Barker, or….
I don’t know….
Pete Davidson? (read his entire dating timeline that lead up to him and Kim, date-by-date, here).
“A source really close to Kim tells us KK is laughing because Travis ain’t her type — as in, he’s white and Kim doesn’t go there.
KK thinks Shanna is “clearly jealous,” adding the drink Shanna threw at her hit her in the foot, not the face.”
Side note: She was also seen holding hands and being romantic with Nick Lachey (Jessica Simpson’s ex-husband) back in 2006. So it wasn’t true back then either. She also married a white guy at one point as we all know LOL, but anyway! Not important here.
Oh also – Travis Barker denies anything happened as well, for the record.
But then again, so did Paris, regarding him and her, even though there was a lot of evidence…… but anyway.
Back to the timeline, Shanna responds to Kim’s apology, saying:
“I have for some time now avoided Kim Kardashian at all costs. I’ve avoided events, parties etc. in order to not see her.“
“I received emails from her mobile device of VERY inappropriate conduct between herself and my husband at the time, that were NOT at all “friendly” and very much “romantically” inclined. I spoke to Kim Kardashian, asking her to please stay away from my family as we are trying to heal after a very trying time, and… she agreed, and then failed to do so.“
“If I had known Ms. Kardashian was going to be at the [4th of July] BBQ in Malibu I wouldn’t have gone. One day women will realize when you destroy families there will be angry and hurt ex-wives to deal with. I still have these emails, and I won’t release them as not to embarrass my ex and my family any further.“
“I find it sad that these types of events take center stage over the other positive things that I do in my work and life but I will not ever stop being brutally honest and staying true to myself. Not even for Hollywood.”
So … that all played out in the media between like, July 20-28th 2008.
On July 30 2008:
Just to mention, this article & interview with Aubrey O’Day comes out, Kim is noted here as a close friend, safe to say she was probably telling the truth in her IG story earlier, seeing as they didnt have a fall-out after the July 4th Shanna v. Kim event.
Also, considering that in Aubrey’s re-telling, she mentions homes in Malibu(like Shanna did) and a lot of other pointed things that show that the story lines up with what was actually happening at the time, I feel like her story is at least …… believable.
I’m not saying it’s true, I dont know.
You dont know.
None of us will ever really know.
It isn’t easily disproven either.
It’s not like we can go “FALSE. Shanna was NOT at that BBQ.” or something… its all documented with these headlines.
But anyway. So all of that happened in 2006-2008.
Other noteworthy events:
In 2016, when there is literally nothing romantic happening between Kim, Kourtney, or Travis, Shanna brings up the claims again to Perez Hilton (infamous 2000s US gossip columnist) on Twitter:
I bring this up because there was really no ulterior motive for Shanna to drag them at this time in 2016, no current events were going on with Travis, or Kourtney, or the Kardashians that would make her want to randomly drag them/Kim.
And then, of course, there is everything that happened once Kourtney and Travis got together in 2021…
May 18, 2021: Shanna tells US Weekly that Kim was a main reason behind her and Barker’s divorce, saying:
“I divorced my ex [Travis Barker] because, I saw them — I caught them(Kim and Travis) having an affair.”
“Someone sent me all their [text] conversations, and I’m also close friends with people who were there, who witnessed while these things were happening.”
“He had already had an affair with Paris Hilton. And … at the time, Kim was Paris’ closet organizer, they were best friends. And he started using Kim as a model for [his clothing company], Famous Stars and Straps.”
“I asked him not to use Kim as a model because of Kim’s ties to Paris Hilton, because of Travis and Paris’s affair.”
“We were working on our marriage and trying to heal through the affair [he had with Paris], that infidelity, [but] he continued to work with Kim. And then I received all the text messages and the other third parties, they kind of let me know [about him and Kim]. It’s something I was well aware of.”
Then, on May 21, 2021,
Kim unequivocally denies that anything happened between them on her IG stories:
Somewhere in the middle lies the truth.
Something definitely went on between them at some point in time, it seems clear (to me at least!) that that’s true.
Travis and Paris were actively hooking up.. but publicly denying it.
Then once that ended, Travis took Kim out to dinners and wrote about an infatuation with her stemming from an Amsterdam trip with him, her, and Paris.
Aubrey says Kim and Travis had been hooking up at a July 4th 2008 BBQ party.
Tons of media jumped on the late July 2008 drama between Shanna and Kim.
Kim wore his shirt/clothing line the day after Shanna tried to expose Kim & Travis to the media.
It’s a lot pointing towards something happening, at some point.
I feel like the line was probably blurred, Shanna and Travis were probably on a ‘break’ … and Kim, she could have been on a “break” with Reggie too.
Or she was just being messy.
Or it was a one night drunk hook up and they vowed to never speak of it or admit to it.
Or it NEVER HAPPENED AT ALL maybe.
And all of the above are just coincidences.
Like I said:
The lines are blurred.
No one wants to admit they cheated. There are a LOT of things in the celeb world that we will never get definitive answers on.
No one wants to admit things that paint them in a bad light.
Sometimes, we get lucky and undeniable evidence comes out.. But … more often then not, we never know for sure.
There are some phrases I feel like are fitting to throw in right now:
Where there is smoke, there is usually fire…. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, it is probably a duck. Etc, etc.
Kim and Travis?
You can make up your own mind on whether something happened, whether they hooked up or not.
I collected all the evidence and information I could about it.
You can do your own research, check out everything sourced and provided, see if you can find more (and let me know so I can include updates!
But at the end of the day …