BulletBoys singer Marq Torien recalls auditioning for Mötley Crüe and hooking them up with John Corabi
BulletBoys frontman Marq Torien was recently interviewed by Chuck Shute for the Chuck Shute Podcast. The interview covers a lot of ground including Torien auditioning for Mötley Crüe just before John Corabi was considered for the band.
In terms of his relationship with Mötley Crüe, Torien indicated (as transcribed by Buzz Sprout with edits): “Not only close friends, but much gigantic respect for Nikki “Leader” Sixx, Vince Neil, Mick Mars and the great Tommy Lee. Those guys I have mad respect for because they taught me and they brought me into, into their thing. Yeah. Because we were all just a bunch of misfits from the island of Misfit Toys. So they brought me into their thing. We became really close man.”
Torien added: “It was a weird thing in the beginning and I never like tell the story. I told the story. I’m sure you’ve heard it. And yeah, people get very tripped up. The room gets real quiet. And I’m just like, ‘You guys, wait a minute, this is long time ago.’ And they go, ‘Was it really like that?’ No one’s gonna talk about it, but you’re talking to a kid that you know, is a brown skinned man but, Spanish, Chilean, English that came from the inner city. Never, didn’t speak a lot of Spanish but we worked very, very, very hard and diligent, and it was a lot difficult. I feel for people of colour to make it at that time.
In terms of whether it’s a true story that that he later auditioned to sing for Mötley Crüe, Torien confirmed: “It is.”
Torien continued: “It’s pretty much like and close to the height of the BulletBoys. I’m very close with Mötley and I love them to death still. We don’t get to see each other very often but I love them with all my heart. I still text Tommy, you know, all the time talking back and forth every once in a while. But yeah, there was a time where they were having trouble with Vince. And you know, I have mad respect for Vince. Vince is a friend of mine and I love them dearly. And I would call them. Nikki would call me in to talk about singing in the band, work together a little bit, work a couple pieces, like a couple of melody type of things. It was just hard. I couldn’t. I really wanted to help my friends but I didn’t want to leave my band. And we [BulletBoys] were coming up to the apex of our popularity, and Nikki and Mick are just like ‘You know Marq, I think we’re so close, I don’t think this is going to work. We’ve known each other for so long… We’re going to find somebody but can you do me a favour? Can you hook me up with with the singer for The Scream? The guy that you had opening up for you on the Freakshow Tour. I love that guy, he’s great. Great singer.'”
Torien added: “So I think I had a little bit of getting Johnny involved with Mötley because we had had them… I just got to be honest with you, before I tell the same story, I discovered John Corabi at Gazzarri’s playing in a band called Roxanne and I stumbled out of a limo, a limousine, completely drunk and high, and walked in and heard this guy, and I couldn’t bloody believe it. He was just amazing. So I knew some of my friends of mine from The Scream, they were looking — Bruce Bouillet and Johnny, John Alderete, were looking for a singer. So I found this guy, we became friends. You know, I was just like, ‘Hey, listen, I think I have a band for you to play in but I think you’re gonna have to leave this band… I love Johnny to death. So I was able to talk to them get John and Johnny on the phone, and they hit it off and he joined The Scream.
When it was pointed out that Corabi later would go on to join Mötley Crüe, Torien indicated “Nikki loved The Scream record and loved Johnny‘s voice and his writing. And that eventually put him into Mötley. Yeah, that record is incredible with them. I know it’s a different path for Mötley but they worked so hard on it. I got to hear some of the… I was privileged to hear , some of the roughs in the beginning, John was playing it for me and it was just incredible. We just sit in the car and then imagine, we were grabbing each other’s legs, you know? ‘Can you fucking believe it? Oh, my God! Dude this is incredible!’ When something’s magical, as a musician, as a writer, you get to that point where you just the excitement is like, ‘Aaaah!’ I’m still like that. So, at that time, I was just so proud of them. You know, because, ‘Wow! That guy went from here to here and quickly to put this thing together and but I could never join Mötley because there’s only one singer from Mötley Crüe in my opinion, that is Vince Neil. Vince Neil is the voice of Mötley Crüe. He’s a legend, a star and my brother, so it wasn’t something that I thought that I could really go and go, ‘Man, you know, I don’t think this is going to work.’ You know, maybe we thought it was already headed. Nikki was kind ahead of the game. He was like, ‘Ah well, you know, we tried it. I love you, but kick ass in the band…. But yeah, that’s pretty much it as far as my recollection of what the whole situation was.’