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by Beggars & Thieves

Published 2012, Duration 4:53

Beggars & Thieves

98c1f182 1142 46c1 ac96 9d1b265fac86?ixlib=rb 0.3

Beggars & Thieves is a band initially made up of lead vocalist Louie Merlino, guitarist Ron Mancuso, bassist Phil Soussan, and drummer Bobby Borg. Phil Soussan and Bobby Borg left after the band’s first album and after some light touring, and they are pictured on the album sleeve/liner notes and credited as having played on it. They released a video for the song "Beggars & Thieves" from their first album. After that album, Beggars & Thieves went through some personnel changes. Soussan left to put together a band and write for long time friend Vince Neil's first solo project and Borg left the band. Mancuso, Merlino and producer Barbiero decided to carry on without them. In 1991, a new three-person lineup was formed—one that consisted of Louie Merlino on lead vocals, Mancuso on both bass and guitar and newcomer Bobby Chouinard on drums. And it was also in 1991 that Beggars & Thieves left Atlantic and signed with Epic. With that new Merlino/Mancuso/Chouinard lineup plus a new keyboardist called Alan St. John and producer Jim Vallance, the band recorded its second album—which probably would have come out in 1991 or 1992 were it did not for office politics. Unfortunately, Beggars & Thieves got caught in the corporate crossfire at Epic, which dropped the band without releasing that second album. Finding themselves without a record deal, Beggars & Thieves didn't record for any more major labels in the ‘90s. And when Nirvana, Pearl Jam and the grunge movement exploded commercially in 1992 and 1993, the majors lost interest in the type of pop-metal/hard rock that Beggars & Thieves specialized in. Instead of looking for the next Axl Rose (Guns N' Roses) or the next Vince Neil (Mötley Crüe), major label A&R people were looking for the next Kurt Cobain (Nirvana) or the next Eddie Vedder (Pearl Jam). But despite the commercial decline of pop-metal and hair bands, Beggars & Thieves kept plugging away. In 1997, Beggars & Thieves' second album, Look What You Create—the one that Epic decided not to release--, was finally released independently on MTM Music (although it had limited distribution). Two years later, in 1999, again on MTM Music and again working with producer Jim Vallance, the band could release their third CD called The Grey Album, where drummer Sammy Mangiamele replaced Bobby Chouinard, who could not finish his work on that album. Sadly, drummer Bobby Chouinard died on March 8, 1997. Beggars and Thieves is still performing in 2011, most notably at Vamp'd Las Vegas. Singer Louie Merlino sings for the Vegas-based band Sin City Sinners when their usual singer Todd Kerns is touring with Slash. In December 2011 the new hardrock magnum opus We Are The Brokenhearted finally saw the light of day with a worldwide release on Frontiers Records. The hardrock album produced by R. Bernard Mann and mixed by famed engineer/songwriter Kevin Churko (Ozzy Osbourne, Five Finger Deathpunch) received fantastic reviews all over the world. The first videoclip from the album for the single "We Come Undone" excited with a guest appearance by legendary rock guitarist Jake E Lee. The second videoclip for the song "Innocence" was first introduced by AOL / Noisecreep in June. R. Bernard Mann is currently producing Jake E Lee's comeback album with Red Dragon Cartel, which also features Ron Mancuso on Bass guitar.

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