Josh Todd grew up in Anaheim Hills, California and later moved to Lake Forest, California. Early on, Todd fronted the Hollywood glam rock band Slamhound. He eventually met lead guitarist Keith Nelson through their tattoo artist (Kevin Quinn). The duo made a few demos before being joined by bassist Jonathan Brightman and drummer Devon Glenn, calling themselves Sparrow. Sparrow began performing around the Hollywood club scene, receiving a strong, local following due to their old school rock and roll vibe, and were signed to DreamWorks Records shortly after. The group changed its name to Buckcherry after receiving a cease-and-desist letter from a record label called Sparrow (owned by EMI). Although Buckcherry is a spoonerism of the late Chuck Berry, the group said it was inspired by a drag queen acquaintance of theirs named Buck Cherry. Buck Cherry was also the pseudonym of John Armstrong, guitarist for 1980s new-wave group The Modernettes; it is not known if there is any inspiration or relation.
The band released its self-titled debut in 1999 to critical praise and certified gold sales. The album, produced by Terry Date (Soundgarden/Mother Love Bone/Pantera/Steve Jones/Deftones), included the hit singles "Lit Up", "For the Movies", "Dead Again", and "Check Your Head".
After adding rhythm guitarist Yogi Lonich to the lineup in 1999, Buckcherry toured nonstop in support of the debut album, including opening for Lenny Kravitz on his Freedom Tour (1999) and participating at the infamous Woodstock 99, before going back into the studio in 2000 to work on a follow-up, Time Bomb (2001). The second album was considered a disappointment by many critics, and it did not fare as well on the charts. Allmusic noted that "For a second record, it's surprising how jaded and nihilistic they are already. Buckcherry performed opening dates for AC/DC in the spring 2000. From August 2001 through January 2002, as tension over the musical direction set in, Jonathan Brightman, Yogi Lonich, and Devon Glenn each successively left Buckcherry, and were replaced by Dave Markasky, Josh Fleeger, and Matt Lawrence, respectively. Josh Todd and Keith Nelson still planned to continue the band, and began the writing process for a third album. The album was never completed, however, and the band was put on hiatus in July 2002.
Josh Todd and Keith Nelson performed together along with ex-Guns N' Roses members Slash, Duff McKagan, and Matt Sorum (also of The Cult) at the Randy Castillo tribute concert. Speculation ensued that Josh Todd would become the lead vocalist of the Project headed up by Slash, Duff McKagan, and Matt Sorum. Josh Todd spent a month in the studio, reportedly completing 10 songs, but was abruptly dropped from the project by Slash. Todd was quoted as saying, "It was amazing, the band was slamming, and then Slash just came in one day and just shit-canned the whole thing". In his autobiography, Slash says the reason was because he was displeased with how Todd's voice sounded when they played the material back. Scott Weiland of the Stone Temple Pilots was eventually chosen to helm the band that would become known as Velvet Revolver. Keith Nelson was given a songwriting credit on Velvet Revolver's track "Dirty Little Thing". Nelson then went on to write and produce on various records.
In 2005, Josh Todd reformed Buckcherry with Keith Nelson and new members Stevie D. of Automatic Black, Jimmy Ashhurst, and Xavier Muriel. In 2006, the band released the album 15 to commercial and critical success. It resurrected the band with hits "Crazy Bitch", "Sorry", "Everything" and "Next 2 You".
Back on September 11, 2006, another lawsuit had been filed against the band, their current record label, and other related companies on behalf of a sixteen-year-old girl who claimed she was coerced into appearing topless and in various sexual scenarios at a concert while the band was playing a sexually-related song. According to sources, however, all participants in the video had to show proof that they were over eighteen years old and sign a release form further reaffirming their age. Band attorney Skip Miller is quoted in several news stories as stating, "This woman filled out a release form with false information. And once it was determined this woman was underage, the video was removed."
On April 15, 2008, Buckcherry announced they would be touring as part of Mötley Crüe's Crüe Fest, along with Papa Roach, Sixx:A.M., and Trapt. The tour began July 1, 2008, in West Palm Beach, Florida.
On September 16, 2008, the band released their fourth album, Black Butterfly, which debuted at number 8 on the top 200 charts. It was the number one rock album that week. That year, Josh Todd was featured on the album This War Is Ours by Escape the Fate. He sang co-lead vocals in the song "10 Miles Wide" and backing vocals on "Harder Than You Know". In 2009, he was featured in the music video for "10 Miles Wide".
In May 2009, KISS announced that Buckcherry would be the opening band in their 2009/10 US and Canadian tour. On July 30, Buckcherry was featured in the Kerrang! Week Of Rock Tour with The 69 Eyes and Dear Superstar at the HMV Forum in London. Other bands in the Week Of Rock included Limp Bizkit, Youmeatsix, and Lacuna Coil. DragonForce was also supposed to play during the Week Of Rock, but pulled out.
On September 29, 2009, Buckcherry released their first live album, Live & Loud 2009, which they played some of their biggest songs such as "Sorry", "Lit Up", "Crazy Bitch", and much more. The album was recorded in May 2009 during their Canadian tour in Edmonton, Calgary, Medicine Hat, and Regina.
It was announced on February 22, 2010 that Buckcherry would be a part of Rocklahoma 2010 in Pryor, Oklahoma.
Bassist Jimmy Ashhurst is one of the characters in the book Sex Tips from Rock Stars by Paul Miles, published by Omnibus Press in July 2010.
Buckcherry released their fifth studio album, titled All Night Long, on August 3, 2010. The album was mixed by Mike Fraser. The first single from the album, "All Night Long", was originally going to be released to rock radio on May 3, but was pushed back to May 24. It was released as a free download to all fans who posted a pre-defined "tweet" on Twitter or a similar message on Facebook on May 4. The album has debuted at No. 10 on the Top Billboard Top 200 Album chart and was the No. 1 Rock debut. The single has just[when?] broken into the Top 10 of the Mainstream Rock radio chart, landing at No. 9.
The band released the holiday themed single "Christmas is Here" as a digital download on November 30, 2010.
From January 19 to March 18, 2011, Buckcherry toured with Hellyeah and All That Remains on the Jägermeister Music Tour.
As of June 2011, according to Keith Nelson, the band were already writing new material for their next album.
The band contributed the song, "Wherever I Go," for the Avengers Assemble soundtrack.
Buckcherry's sixth album, Confessions, was released 19 February 2013. The band is also planning on releasing a short film that ties in with the album. The first single from Confessions, "Gluttony", was made available for streaming on 7 December 2012.
Later that year, Buckcherry announced that they will be releasing their first compilation on October 29, 2013 titled "The Best Of", featuring 12 of their best songs.
Buckcherry announced that they will be releasing an EP in the summer of 2014 entitled Fuck. Every title of every song on the EP includes the word "Fuck". "Say Fuck It", one of the songs on the EP has been played by the band at their live shows. This song is a cover of the 2012 Icona Pop song "I Love It", with a few modifications in the lyrics. Fuck was released on August 19, 2014.
They took part in VampPark Fest on February 19, 2015, hosted by the rock band Vamps at the Nippon Budokan.
Their seventh studio album Rock 'n' Roll was released on August 21, 2015. On June 2, 2015, "Bring It On Back" was released as the first single from the album. A second single, "The Feeling Never Dies," which features country singer Gretchen Wilson, was released February 17, 2016.
In 2017 Keith Nelson and Xavier Muriel left the band due to disagreements with Josh Todd over the band's direction. The band brought in new members guitarist Kevin Roentgen and drummer Sean Winchester shortly afterwards.
On July 2, 2008, the first single from the Black Butterfly album Too Drunk... was leaked through BitTorrent. Shortly after the track was leaked, the band issued a press release and blamed pirates for the leak saying "Honestly, we hate it when this shit happens, because we want our FANS to have any new songs first."Josh Todd – lead vocals (1995–2002, 2005–present)Stevie D. – rhythm guitar, backing vocals (2005–present)Kelly LeMieux – bass (2013–present)Kevin Roentgen – lead guitar, backing vocals (2017–present)Sean Winchester – drums (2017–present)Keith Nelson – lead guitar, backing vocals (1995–2002, 2005–2017)Devon Glenn – drums (1995–2002)Jonathan Brightman – bass (1995–2001)Yogi Lonich – rhythm guitar (1999–2001)Josh Fleeger – rhythm guitar (2001–2002)Dave Markasky – bass (2001–2002)Matt Lawrence – drums (2002)Xavier Muriel – drums (2005–2017)Jimmy Ashhurst – bass (2005–2013)Studio albumsBuckcherry (1999)Time Bomb (2001)15 (2005)Black Butterfly (2008)All Night Long (2010)Confessions (2013)Rock 'n' Roll (2015)