Proper Rockers Since the '90s, Buckcherry Is a "Finely Oiled Machine"

Buckcherry first made a name for itself in 1999 with its debut, self-titled album, earning a rep for reviving Sunset Strip rock 'n' roll a la Mötley Crüe. But singer Josh Todd tells New Times the band's influences have always been all over the place.

"When my mom used to clean house, she would play old Rod Stewart, Kenny Rogers, and Willie Nelson records," he says. "The first record my dad ever gave me was by the Eagles. Then I used to sneak into my sister's room and listen to her Billy Idol and Prince."

"I used to sneak into my sister's room and listen to her Billy Idol and Prince."

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Growing up in Orange County, California, Todd said it was his indie-punk rock record collection that really got him itching to rock. "I had been in bands since I was 16. They all kind of fizzled, usually because of drugs and alcohol. Once I cleaned up my act, [lead guitarist Keith Nelson] and I started writing songs in my apartment that we recorded on a 4-track."

Out of that came Buckcherry who, with songs like "Lit Up" and "Dead Again," brought hedonism back into the end-of-the-century rock mainstream. The band got opening gigs for Lenny Kravitz and AC/DC. Seven albums and a few decades later, Buckcherry is still touring the country, including a June 25 date at the Pompano Beach Amphitheatre.

Its most recent album, Rock 'n' Roll, pays tribute to the genre of music in the title, even if it does feature a guest spot by country singer Gretchen Wilson that would make Todd's Mom proud. "We always wanted to create an album with that title. After 20 years, we thought it was the right time," he says.

After the hardship of completing 2013's Confessions, Todd says it was a joy to write this record. "That album was exhausting," he says of the band's last full-length effort. "I wanted to capture the seven [deadly] sins in song. Normally, when I come against the wall writing a song, I'll hit on another subject. But I felt a huge obligation to do the seven sins justice and get the songs right."

In between the two records, Buckcherry found the time to complete its first EP, Fuck, on which each of the six songs finds a way to incorporate that naughty word into its title.

The energetic Todd says Buckcherry has no plans of slowing down on recording and releasing new music. "Fuck is the first of three EPs we're going to release in a box set. We're working on the second EP now. Then, next year, we're going to release a new full-length. We're a finely oiled machine."


7 p.m. Saturday, June 25, at Pompano Beach Amphitheatre, 1801 NE Sixth St., Pompano Beach. Tickets cost $28 to $68 plus fees via

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David Rolland is a freelance writer for New Times Broward-Palm Beach and Miami New Times. His novel, The End of the Century, published by Jitney Books, is available at many fine booksellers.
Contact: David Rolland