The One White Lie That Launched Black Veil Brides

At just 23 years old, Black Veil Brides founder and vocalist Andy Biersack has achieved the only dream he ever had: He’s in a band.

“I never any other interest except to be on stage, playing music…My one goal from the time I could talk was that I was going to be in a band,” he says. But, in an interview with Warped Tour founder Kevin Lyman, Andy explained how the success of that band hinged on one chance meeting, wherein he told one small lie.

At the time, Andy was a high-school dropout who had moved to LA and had a lot of time on his hands. He was dating a girl who worked in the film industry, and he’d often spend a lot of time just hanging around sets.

“I happened to run across this gentleman on one of these sets who was also very bored,” he explained, “We would just start to talk, and at one point, he said to me, ‘well, you have a band, right?’ And the reality there was that I did have a band, but the band consisted of me and a bunch of songs I had worked on and written back in Kentucky and Cincinnati, but no actual members.”

The “gentleman” was Patrick Fogarty, a director and cinematographer, who directed music videos. He offered to direct a music video for Andy if he could get a band and a budget together — neither of which were things the 17-year-old had access to. But somehow, Andy says, he convinced Patrick to shoot the video for a low rate.

“For whatever reason, I think maybe he liked my hubris, he agreed to it.”

The video went viral, and, as a result, helped Andy and his band get signed to Standby Records. All because Patrick believe in Andy, and because Andy believed enough in himself to stretch the truth. Now, BVB has a huge following, and Andy has a new solo project in the works. Which, he says, is pretty lucky — and he is thankful for the opportunity every day.

“If you’re not enjoying what you’re doing, then it’s probably not the right field to go into. I know a lot of band guys who complain about having to give an interview and having to get up early. To me, we should be so lucky…If you’re lucky enough to get what you want, you should pay attention to it, and study it, and live it.”

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Hanna Brooks Olsen is a writer and editor for CreativeLive, longtime reporter, and the co-founder of Seattlish. Follow her on Twitter at @mshannabrooks or go to her website for more stuff.