was once a hero; a member of a team who believed illusion was
the ultimate weapon.
He was also an idol
to millions, performing in concerts around the world. Then the
team disbanded, and after a stormy relationship, Brad Turner
returned to the dark place he thought he'd never return -- a
world of drug abuse and depression. This is Behind the Music,
July 12, 1999 -- Brad Turner.
Brad Turner was
born on August 15, 1960 in Madison, Wisconsin. The son of Bradley
Turner Sr. and Eugenia Turner, Brad learned at an early age
that he had a knack for music.
The knack led to
several chances for young Turner to sing in local restaurants.
Talent shows followed, and an appearance by an eight-year-old
Brad on "The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson" got
people loving the "cute little kid from Wisconsin."
In high school Brad
started his own band, T-5, and he and friends grew to even more
In 1982, the band
broke up. In 1983, Brad Turner embarked on his solo career.
But it wasn't until late 1984, when Matt Trakker, founder of
a team of heroes called MASK, called Brad in, that the popularity
of Brad Turner began to soar.
Brad joined the
team and acquired a mask called "Hocus Pocus," which
projected holograms. An expert motorcyclist, Brad drove a cycle,
Condor, which could go at extended hyperspeed. The cycle
also had an anti-matter ray which served Brad on several occasions.
Even though Brad
would often have to leave in the middle of concerts for important
MASK missions, fans understood.
Meanwhile over on
the other side of the fence, Vanessa Warfield had associated
herself with who would soon be Brad's arch enemies -- the Vicious
Evil Network of Mayhem -- VENOM for short.
The terrorists known as VENOM soon tried to play it straight
by becoming racecar drivers. It was at that time Brad acquired
a new vehicle. He also had a new flame -- Vanessa Warfield,
the girl who worked for the wrong side of the law. Sexual tension
existed between the two that was undeniable.
In December of 1986,
the unexpected happened. Miles Mayhem was caught and placed
in prison, where he remains today. The catch was attributed
to none other than Vanessa Warfield herself.
After the Mayhem
trials, Brad and Vanessa admitted their feelings for one another.
Vanessa even bore a child, a son, who is now twelve years old
and living a peaceful life with his grandmother. Their quick
courtship led to marriage. Things couldn't seem to get better
for the Turners... but one thing was for sure: With MASK gone,
and the relationship with someone deemed unsavory by the media,
Brad Turner's popularity took a nosedive.
While Brad toiled
in financial trouble, his wife had been doing what she had plotted
all along -- she had returned to crime. When Vanessa Warfield
was arrested on January 13, 1988; the world was shocked -- but
none more than Brad Turner. Suddenly his happy life with a wife
and a successful career were gone.
Shunned, Brad had
turned to alcohol and drugs. He had considered suicide. Old
friends such as Matt Trakker weren't able to help.
"I really thought
he was a lost cause," old friend Hondo McLean said. "Suddenly,
he wasn't the Brad we all knew. He was... different. Despondent."
Bruce Sato agreed.
"The man in the leather jacket should not get wet."
At one point Brad
Turner had sunk so low as to buy drugs from one of his enemies
-- a former VENOM agent turned drug lord named Sly Rax. Rax
served from 1991 to 1996 in prison before being killed in a
While Brad succumbed
to his demons, Vanessa Warfield gave reformation another try.
Warfield, in a relocation program, dyed her hair blond and married
another musician, named Kurt Cobain. Now
going by the name of Courtney Love, Warfield is a member of
the popular band Hole, and is doing very well. Brad and Vanessa
haven't spoken since 1992.
Under the recommendation
of Matt Trakker, Brad enrolled in an anti-drug program and claims
it has been a success. Brad has also worked very hard at rebuilding
The rebuilding hasn't
been without bad moments. In 1998 Brad attempted to appeal to
a younger generation by joining the popular "boy band"
'N Sync. It didn't work. Adding to Turner's frustration, former
MASK agent Julio Lopez joined the wave of Latin pop stars and
has had great success -- something that has eluded Turner for
over a decade. But Brad is confident.
"I will make
my comeback," he says.
And we'll be watching.