Bullet Boys Interview

A little over a year ago, these guys were literally starving in LA. Today, they're being hailed as the next Big Thing in Rock. And, they just might be. Their debut album on Warner Bros. Records, Bullet Boys, rocks like no other album around. This much energy hasn't been found on a record since the original Van Halen debut album.

Bassist Lonnie Vincent spoke with us about the trials and tribulations of the Bullet Boys.

Q - From listening to the album, it sounds like you guys were putting everything you had into every single song.
A - That's exactly right.

Q - How long did it take you to record the album? I'm not talking about the mixing and mastering, just the recording.
A -I would say it took probably about 3 or 4 weeks. The album was mixed in 10 weeks. Done.

Q - What kind of a schedule were you on, did you work 8-10 hours a day?
A - Well, No, see that was the great thing about working with the legendary Ted Templeman, was the fact that we would come in thinking it was gonna be those 8 hour days and all that stuff, and actually we'd come in and we'd try to lay something down and if it wasn't happening, Ted would say, 'Let's go have a beer, or let's go get some lunch, and come back in and maybe get a track. Or maybe we'd come back in and it's still not happening, so he'd say, 'It's just not there today, guys, see you tomorrow. It was scary for us, 'cause we thought we weren't getting anything done, but then we'd go in, and boom, we’d get a track in one take. So, it was a real interesting way of doing things. I really enjoyed it.

Q - Before Warner Bros, signed the Bullet Boys what were you doing? How'd you survive? How did you eat?
A - Do the words Jack In The Box, Two Cheeseburgers for $.99 mean anything?

Q - Yeah, that's a fast-food restaurant in L.A.
A - They have a special, you can get two regular cheeseburgers for $.99. And we literally lived off those for awhile while we were writing our songs. And like Taco Bell, they had like $.79 Bean Burritos. We used to do things like that. We used to rehearse at my moms and my sisters, and they'd cook up big pots. But, basically, we were badly in debt, all of us, we were broke, and very disgusted because we knew the talent we had. It just couldn't have come along at a better time, because I don't know how long the band could've lasted without some financial help. We had a lot of good people around us, moral support.

Q - You guys are all from the L.A. area?
A - Yeah. I live in Redondo Beach.

Q - Am I correct in saying that you showcased for Warner Bros, at a rehearsal hall?
A - I can tell you what happened there. When we felt we were ready to showcase, our manager Dave Kaplan set up 6 major labels in 6 days. One day it was Geffen. The next day E.M.I./Manhattan was down, the next day Warner Bros., the next day Chrysalis, and so on. We would play for them, and basically you could feel the vibe. Someone would say, Yeah it sounds pretty good, you ought to develop a following and call us back, and we'll come back to check you out. We said OK, thank you for your time. See ya. We knew we didn't want a following in L.A. We wanted to look at the forest not the trees, so to speak. When Warner Bros, came in it was Roberta Peterson, who is Ted Templeman's sister, her and Felix Chamberlain are the Warner Bros, people who came down to see us. She loved the band so much, she went home and called her brother and said ' Hey, you gotta get down here and see these guys.' Ted came down the next day with his sister Roberta and we played him 40 songs, and he stood up and said, “Let's make a record”.

Q - I can hear some Van Halen influence on your album. Who's the Van Halen fan in the group?
A - Personally, I'm a huge fan of Van Halen, just like I'm a huge fan of Aerosmith, Led Zeppelin, Creedence Clearwater. There's many influences on us. Van Halen is definitely one of them. But, we're Bullet Boys, and that's what's important.

Q - You didn't do the club circuit.
A - No. We wrote songs. We spent time writing songs as opposed to playing all the clubs and getting an L.A. following, and that scene.

Q - How is it then, that so many groups will say, you have to get that L.A. following in order to get a record co. to sign you?
A - This is the bottom line to me. It's nice to have a thousand kids who follow you around L.A. but what is that to worldwide record sales? One thousand records? That's nothing.

Q - The philosophy seems to be, if you can win over an L.A. crowd, you can win over any crowd. And that is why record companies are so interested in a group developing an L.A. following.
A - O.K. Well, we proved that wrong, because we didn't play L.A. We played a gig two weeks before we got signed and we drew 4 people. So, that is definitely not true in our case. Now what most bands do might be good for them, but this is what's good for Bullet Boys.

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