Patrick Brown

He tried to fake his way to fame and got caught red-handed. Or did he? A conversation with a false rock god.

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Hesperia, California, is a dusty city of fewer than 100,000 people in the Mojave Desert, about a two-hour drive northeast of downtown Los Angeles. Far from the glitz of Hollywood, it’s a city of squat houses with high chain-link fences surrounding dirt yards. The purple snow-capped San Bernardino mountains loom on almost every horizon.




On the week I visited, a big white tent was selling freshly cut Christmas trees in a vacant lot between a Chevron station and a Wendy’s fast-food restaurant. The smell of pine sap hovered over the arid plateau.

I’d come to the High Desert because it’s the home of one of the internet’s most recent - and most reviled - viral stars: Jered Threatin, a hard rock musician who performs simply under the name “Threatin”.

A month earlier, Threatin had become an international laughing stock, after a small army of internet sleuths revealed that he had tried to fake his way to stardom using paid Facebook likes, YouTube views and bots.

He had uploaded deceptively edited film footage that appeared to show him playing to sold-out crowds, lied about a non-existent award and album sales, completely fabricated an entire US tour, and used it all to secure a 10-city tour of Europe and the UK.


As it would turn out, that was all just the tip of the iceberg.


By the end of it, his bandmates had abandoned him, his final stops in France, Italy and Germany were cancelled, and the internet was in a frenzy over the young man’s downfall.


“The guy’s clearly a delusional rich kid,” scolded a commenter on one of the dozens of articles that helped unravel the hoax.


“A simple conman,” read another. “I'm surprised he hasn't gotten the hell kicked out of him yet. I'll do it for free.”


His own brother, Scott, an extreme metal musician still living back in their hometown of Moberly, Missouri, had warned me not to bother coming to California to speak to his now-infamous younger sibling.

“It's all smoke and mirrors with Jered,” he wrote to me via Facebook. “He'll lead you to believe there’s something big to get you to bite... only for you to be let down. Be careful.”


Scott went as far as to wonder if Jered might rent out some kind of party mansion in anticipation of my arrival, to convince me that he really was an international rock star. But my GPS instructions led me to an ordinary-looking, single-storey house on the side of a thunderous four-lane freeway lined with fast-food restaurants and superstores.


When I rang the doorbell, a woman with long reddish-blonde hair and librarian’s glasses answered the door. It was Kelsey, Jered’s wife. I recognised her from her Instagram account, which had briefly gone dark as the internet mob descended upon her, demanding to know her level of complicity in her husband’s scam.


Read in full here:


Worth reading the whole article as it's quite funny. In effect this chap seems to have planned his way to fame and I wouldn't be surprised if they make a movie about this and therefore by default this guy will get his fame! 

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Reminds me of that call centre worker in Scotland who took a photo of himself in his grandfather's army uniform and created a wikipedia page painting himself as a war hero.  He was invited to be the guest of honour at some charity event. :lol:

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