Marq Torien of the Bulletboys
Bulletboys lead singer, Marq Torien, 48, was arrested Friday the 13th in Pasco County, Florida for 'non support of child or spouse' it was reported by the Pasco Sheriff's Office. The Bulletboys, who rose to fame for 5 minutes in the late 80's on the strength of the hit "Smooth Up In Ya," are currently on tour supporting their latest release, 10c Billionaire.
So who were the Bulletboys again? Bulletboys have released six albums to date. Their debut, Bulletboys, has been their most successful, garnering the band a gold record. At best, the Bulletboys were a C-level hair band from their era. A-level...? Think Motley Crue/Poison. B-level...? Think Ratt/Dokken, etc.
The Bulletboys greatest asset and arguably, their biggest achilles heel, has been their uncanny ability to sound strikingly similar to their southern California predecessors, Van Halen. This Van Halen emulation was their calling card. Their ability to almost-sound-not-quite-exactly like the mighty Van Halen was briefly impressive back in 1988.
Now don't get me wrong. I like the Bulletboys. I'd take an early Bulletboys album over the later Van-Hagar era schmaltz any day. But I liken the Bulletboys to leftovers... sometimes I like them, but rarely. Leftovers sound like a good idea at the time, but usually leave you wishing you had something else.
So the lead singer gets busted for back child support? Who cares? Why is this news?
From a marketing, public relations, and promotions perspective, this ‘dead-beat-Dad’ scenario is pure gold for the aging Bulletboys. Question: What better way to revive a music career that barely came alive in the first place? Answer: Get bad press by getting arrested. The scenario is as old as rock-n-roll. Any attention, positive or negative, will move a few more CD's and get a few more folks out to see the live show. You gotta pay the bills right? Well, some of them in this case.
While not as sexy as car crashes and rehab, Torien’s stunt will work just as well. And this has always been the Bulletboys' modus operandi: take what's already worked and do it too. Starting a band in the 80's? Sound like Van Halen? Check. Career in the toilet in '09? Need to get in the news by getting arrested for not paying your baby-mama? Check.
Whether intentional or not, the move is great for business. Look, you’re reading about it now. And that's the point. Who cares if your name is dragged through the mud. This is rock-n-roll. You're back in the black baby! So rock on Bulletboys! You had to do it for the “mean green.”