The frontman for punk survivors Social Distortion
, singer/guitarist Mike Ness was born April 3, 1962, in Stoneham, MA.
Raised primarily in Orange County, CA, he was kicked out of his parents' house at age 15 and spent the years which followed in and out of jail and experimenting with drugs; after forming Social D
in 1979, Ness' struggles with addiction deepened, and after recording the now-classic Mommy's Little Monster in 1983, his self-destructive lifestyle (vividly captured in the 1985 documentary Another State of Mind) nearly broke up the band. After getting clean and sober, Ness reconvened Social D
for 1988's rootsy Prison Bound, followed in 1990 by the group's self-titled major-label debut, which launched the hit "Ball and Chain." After 1992's Somewhere Between Heaven and Hell, however, the band went on an extended hiatus, not resurfacing until White Light, White Heat, White Trash four years later. In 1999, Ness made his solo debut with Cheating at Solitaire. A covers collection, Under the Influences, followed later that same year. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi