BulletBoys were formed in 1987 in Los Angeles, California by former King Kobra members Marq Torien (also formerly of Ratt) on vocals, Mick Sweda on guitar, Lonnie Vencent on bass and Jimmy D'Anda on drums. The group were strongly influenced by AC/DC and Van Halen with Torien drawing comparisons to Van Halen singer David Lee Roth. After signing a deal with Warner Bros., the group released their debut album BulletBoys in 1988 with the album peaking at number 34 on the Billboard 200. The group released two singles, a cover of the classic O'Jays tune, "For the Love of Money" (which peaked at number 30 on the Mainstream Rock Chart and number 78 on the Billboard Hot 100) and "Smooth up in Ya" (which peaked at number 23 on the Mainstream Rock Chart and number 71 on the Billboard Hot 100) with both receiving airplay on MTV. They released their second album, Freakshow, in 1991 however the album only peaked at number 69 on the Billboard 200. The single "Hang on St. Christopher," a cover of the Tom Waits song, peaked at number 22 on the Mainstream Rock Chart. The group released their final album with Warner Bros., titled Za-Za, a name suggested by guitarist Anthony Gallo taken from The Godfather Part III character Joey Zasa, in 1993, however it failed to chart, as well as the album's singles, while both Sweda and D'Anda left the group the same year. The group continued and released Acid Monkey in 1995 through Swordholio/Perris Records however they disbanded soon after.
In 1998, the group reformed, with Torien and Vencent adding former Guns N' Roses drummer Steven Adler and future Guns N' Roses guitarist DJ Ashba briefly with a tour of the US planned with Faster Pussycat, Bang Tango and Enuff Z'nuff. In 1999, Ashba left the group to form Beautiful Creatures with Bang Tango singer Joe Lesté while Adler left also sometime after, going on to form Adler's Appetite in 2003. A compilation album, titled Burning Cats and Amputees, was released in 2000, through Deadline Records.
In 2002, Vencent was rumoured to be involved in a tour of Europe with former Anthrax members Joey Belladonna, Dan Spitz and former W.A.S.P. drummer Stet Howland while former drummer Jimmy D'Anda formed the group Zen Lunatic with John Corabi (formerly of The Scream and Mötley Crüe) and [tevo Bruno (formerly of Revel 8). D'Anda went on to tour with George Lynch as part of Lynch Mob and opening up for Dio around the states during 2001.. In 2009 D'Anda played drums for former Warrant singer Jani Lane doing shows in California, New Mexico and Nevada. In September 2010, Jimmy performed at the Groove Remains the Same, a tribute to John Bonham.
The BulletBoys cover of The O'Jay's R&B song from 1973 entitled "For the Love of Money" appears briefly in the 2003 TV movie "Behind the Camera: The Unauthorized Story of 'Three's Company'".
Remaining members Torien and Vincent, released the group's fifth album (their first in 7 years), titled Sophie, in 2003 which featured a guest appearance by former Skid Row singer Sebastian Bach. A tour was to follow, with L.A. Guns, however this was soon cancelled after an incident with the group's bus driver. Guitarist Keri Kelli, who was filling for Tracii Guns in L.A. Guns, performed with BulletBoys before leaving at the insistence of L.A. Guns drummer Steve Riley. Jason Hook was briefly a member of BulletBoys during this time. In 2004, Torien toured with Stephen Pearcy (formerly of Ratt), Joey Belladonna (formerly of Anthrax), Ron Keel (Keel, Iron Horse) and Jason McMaster (Dangerous Toys, Watchtower) as part of the "Bastards of Metal" tour.
In January 2006, the group were announced as support, along with Bang Tango, to Stephen Pearcy on his tour, however they soon pulled out while they performed at the Raven's Heart benefit concert, which featured members of Guns N' Roses, Queens of the Stone Age and Dio among others performing also. Torien also announced that BulletBoys were to reunite and record a new album stating:
“ 'In 2006 there will be a BulletBoys reunion and I wanted to let you know that on your show. The powers that be are working on it right now, so you will be seeing the BulletBoys out there. But, I wanted to let everyone out there know that we will be coming back out and that we are coming back out for our fans as well as for rock 'n' roll. But I don't really feel that I should be out there touring if I don't have anything new to offer to the musical community like a new fresh record. So that will be happening. A new BulletBoys record will be coming out this year. It's time to go at it and it's time to get it back together again...' ”
Drummer Jimmy D'Anda stated that none of the original members were involved in the reunion album soon after, while Torien stated that only D'Anda was "resistant to the idea" with the other former members (Sweda and Vincent) willing to return. However a reunion failed to materialise. BulletBoys went on to tour with the Tracii Guns led L.A. Guns and announced plans for a live album as well as an album of new material in 2007. The group released the live album, titled Behind the Orange Curtain, on April 3, 2007 through Crash Music while they were one of the confirmed acts for Rocklahoma in July of the same year. Also in 2006, the song "Hard As A Rock" appeared briefly in the movie Beerfest.
In 2009, they released their sixth album, titled 10c Billionaire, on Chavis Records. The material was originally written in 2006 with plans, by Torien, for a new project using the same name, however they eventually released it under the BulletBoys moniker. In October, original bassist Lonnie Vincent returned to the group while guitarist Tony Marcus (XYZ, Arcade, Vicious Delite) was also added to the lineup with a tour of the US announced soon after.
In January 2010, the group were confirmed to play the Stockholm Rock Out Festival on April 30 of the same year. In March, the song "Smooth Up In Ya" appeared briefly in the movie Hot Tub Time Machine. In April, the group were confirmed to play another Festival, Rock N America, that took place July 23–25.
A new rehearsal of Bulletboys took place in July 2010, in Los Angeles with Mick Sweda, Jimmy D'Anda, Lonnie Vincent and vocalist Andrew Freeman.
On August 28, 2011; Former drummer Johnny Giosa died in a car accident in Los Angeles at the age of 42.
2014 has seen the return of co founding bassist Lonnie Vincent to the lineup and new drummer Shawn Duncan who replaced Stephen Jude Mills which the band announced in a press release on June 10, 2014. Currently the band's bass player alternates between Chad MacDonald and Aaron Samson.
Enuff Z'Nuff is an American rock band from Blue Island, Illinois. Founded by singer Donnie Vie and bassist Chip Z'Nuff, this Chicago area band is best known for their charting singles "Fly High Michelle" and "New Thing". Enuff Z'Nuff has continually recorded and toured throughout their career of more than 30 years, .
VENREZ – lead vocals, harmony vocals, lyrics
What do you say to a guy who at 56 years old says “I’m starting a rock ‘n’ roll band and I’m gonna do the impossible with it.” In the case of Venrez, the man in question, you say “I know you will.”
Already a successful movie producer in Hollywood, when Ven (as he is known to his friends) formed his rock band in 2011, the detractors were everywhere. Now, 4 years later, Venrez has self-released three well-received, well-reviewed LPs (Sell The Lie, American Illusion, and Children Of The Drones), toured the world numerous times with legends such as Alice Cooper and Slash as well respected and established bands like Buckcherry, Fuel, Hardcore Superstar, and punk legend Richie Ramone, and won a global following on his own terms by doing it the hard way, sweating it out with his crack band in front of packed houses the world over. And the front man has no plans of slowing down anytime soon as, he says, “When I’m on stage with my guys, looking out and seeing the crowd bob and weave, I gotta say there’s nothing on earth that feels as good as fronting Venrez.”
JASON WOMACK – guitar, vocals
Multi-instrumentalist, producer, songwriter and co-founding member of Venrez, Jason Womack is the band’s secret weapon. After several years playing bass and writing for Juliette Lewis and The Licks, touring the world with her extensively, Jason found himself back in Los Angeles with a burning passion for new adventures and challenges. Once Jason and Ven met (through a strange set of circumstances involving a tiki hut, a mutual friend and their mutual passion for creation), they almost immediately began working on music together which would soon lead to the formation of Venrez. With a lifelong interest in science, those in the Venrez inner circle refer to Jason as “The Professor” and not without good reason. Equally adept at guitar, bass, drums, keyboards, and singing, Jason puts all the music and melodies to Ven’s lyrics. As the band’s producer, he then rehearses and records the band himself creating and crafting the unique sonic pallet that constitutes the Venrez sound. One of the most sought after and respected musicians in the influential Silver Lake music scene, Jason brings an entirely unique perspective to music and an intensity to performing that make him the perfect foil for Ven’s laid-back cool.
CHARLES RUGGIERO – Drums
Charles Ruggiero was born to be a drummer. The son of world renowned jazz musician Vinnie Ruggiero, Charles spent his early years surrounded by the “who’s who” of Jazz. There was always music around, and with musicians like Art Blakey, Philly Joe Jones, Freddie Hubbard, and Jon Hendricks coming to spend time and play, it was only a matter of time before he caught the bug and asked his father to play the “bang-bangs”. Charles has played with the likes of Marilyn Manson to Motorhead and now with Venrez.
NICO D’ARNESE –Bass The band welcomes Nico back after joining us for our first headline tour ever in March 2015 of the UK and our Spain and UK tour in May of 2015 with Richie Ramone. Nico brings that original Venrez bad ass bass sound to the band that keeps our rhythm section popping.
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