AskDefine | Define busted

Dictionary Definition

busted adj
1 (used informally especially of bones) fractured; "my arm is busted"; "I got my head busted in the fight"; "can't play with a busted baseball bat"
2 suddenly and violently broken open especially from internal pressure (`busted' is an informal term for `burst'); "a burst balloon"; "burst pipes"; "burst seams"; "a ruptured appendix"; "a busted balloon" [syn: burst, ruptured]
3 out of working order (`busted' is an informal substitute for `broken'); "a broken washing machine"; "the coke machine is broken"; "the coke machine is busted" [syn: broken]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • /'bʌstət/


  1. Broke; having no money.
    I'd like to help you, but I'm busted.
  2. Caught in the act of doing something one shouldn't do.
    I saw you take that cookie from the cookie jar! You're busted!
  3. Tired.



having no money
caught in the act


  1. Indicates that the person addressed has been caught in the act, whether by the speaker or a third party.
    They saw you take that cookie from the cookie jar! Busted!


  1. past of bust


Extensive Definition

Busted were an English band consisting of James Bourne (rhythm guitar), Charlie Simpson (lead guitar and occasionally drums), and Matt Willis (then called Matt Jay; bass guitar). They sold over 1 million singles and 2 million albums in the UK, winning BRIT Awards, Record Of The Year and performing on several sellout arena tours.


The bands initial line-up consisted of James Bourne on Guitar and Vocals, Matt Sergeant (Willis) on Drums, Owen Doyle on Bass and Vocals, and Ki Fitzgerald on Guitar and Vocals called The Termites. The latter two members were sacked later that year.
The Termites went through a name change to Busted and briefly placed Tom Fletcher as Lead Guitar and Vocals alongside Matt Jay (Sergeant, Willis) on Bass and Vocals and James Bourne on Rhythm Guitar and Vocals. Although after two days in the band, Tom later was replaced by Charlie Simpson, although Fletcher was kept on for other projects that later led to him being a member and main songwriter for his own band, McFly, who supported Busted on their UK tour in the early part of 2004. He would also co-write on both albums that Busted released with James.
With Charlie on board, they set about looking for a record deal in late 2001, and were even at one point offered a much bigger deal with Pop Idol judge Simon Cowell on his SycoMusic label, which they turned down for many reason, Simon Cowell also stated he wanted to make Busted the next Monkees. The band finally signed with Universal Island in early 2002 without a Drummer therefore had relief Drummers.

First album (2002-03)

The band were launched in August 2002, making their first appearance on the cover of Smash Hits with the headline: "Meet Busted: They're Going To Be Bigger Than Rik Waller!", making it a first for any pop band to appear on the magazine's cover before releasing a single. Their debut single, "What I Go To School For", a song written about a teacher Matt had at school, was finally released in September 2002, reaching #3 in the UK charts and beaten to number 1 by Pink's "Just Like A Pill". Their debut eponymous album was then released, initially charting only around the Top 30, but receiving favourable reviews from The Guardian and Q magazine.
The follow up, "Year 3000" which was written about James Bourne's obsession with the film Back To The Future then followed in January 2003, and was a massive success, reaching #2 and ending up as one of the biggest selling singles that year. By this point, the band's success was going stratospheric as they embarked on a small theatre tour that sold out quickly. In April, their third single, "You Said No" (originally titled "Crash & Burn" on the first edition of the album, but then renamed after the Space Shuttle disaster in America that month), they finally reached #1, and Guinness Hit Singles certified them as the first band to have their debut three singles enter the top 3 in an ascending order.
Shortly after, recording began for their second album while the debut album was re-released with new tracks and an enhanced CD section. It would go onto sell 1.2 million copies by the end of the year, making Busted the second-biggest selling band in the UK after Coldplay. The debut album's final single, "Sleeping With The Light On", hailed as "a post-Bon Jovi hair pop classic" reached #3 in August 2003, beaten to number 1 by Blu Cantrell's Breathe.

Second album (2003-04)

The band started the autumn of 2003 with a win for Favourite Newcomer at the National Music Awards, as well as Best Band at that year's Disney Channel Kids' Awards. After this, the band launched the promotional trail for their new album, "A Present For Everyone" and its lead single "Crashed The Wedding", which beat off stiff competition from Britney Spears' comeback single with Madonna to send them to #1 for the second time that year. More edgy than their previous album, Charlie said that it had some "harder, Good Charlotte type vibes coming through on this album". This album would also go on to reach sales of over 1 million copies. The band ended 2003 with a nomination at Record Of The Year for "Year 3000" (they lost out to Westlife, who won with their #1 "Mandy"), the announcement of an arena tour for February the following year, and a Monkees style Christmas TV special on ITV1, which attracted good ratings for its 4pm time slot.
2004 was to start successful, but prove to be their final year together as a band. Things started off very well, as the band's arena tour (with support from label and management allies V and McFly) was met with exceptional reviews and massive ticket sales, and aside from another #1 and another top 3 hit (those being "Who's David?" and "Air Hostess" respectively, the second and third singles from their new album) they also picked up Best British Breakthrough Act and Best Pop Act at that year's BRIT Awards. James had even been noted at this point as one's of pop's key songwriters by The Observer, alongside the likes of Max Martin and Xenomania.
They then headed over to America to release a self titled album that was a mixture of their first and second album. Their exploits were captured for the TV series "America or Busted", about Busted's attempts to achieve success in the United States, which debuted on MTV UK and Ireland in November of that year. Over the course of the series, it saw Busted's attempts to 'break' America dwindle as interviews fall through and performances remain limited both in terms of audience size and press attention, although radio had started to pick up airplay by December of that year, almost too late.
Whilst the band was out in America, they were then invited to record the theme tune to the brand new "Thunderbirds" movie that was coming out that summer. Released as a double-a-side with the album track, "3am", it gave them their fourth and final #1 in August 2004, staying at the top for two weeks, the longest they had ever spent at the top, and would later go onto win them "Record Of The Year" in December that year. However, the release of the 5th single from their second album, "She Wants To Be Me" failed to chart due to its lone formats being a download and a limited edition pocket sized CD, both of which breached chart regulations at the time. Perhaps more worryingly, their live album "A Ticket For Everyone" could only reach #11 in November. The band embarked on another sell-out tour that November, but fans began to fear the worst.


Charlie Simpson's time spent outside the band with other bands was beginning to cause tensions within the band, illustrated when he failed to turn up for several appearances over the course of 2004. Rumours then started to circulate that bitter rows not too dissimilar to that of when All Saints broke up escalated, but these have all subsequently denied by the band in their later solo ventures.
Simpson announced to the other Busted members on 24 December 2004 over a phone call that he was no longer a member of the band. Although this was never talked about Matt and James feared this would happen after an announcement on their last sell-out night in Wembley Arena for "A Ticket For Everybody... Else Tour" from their managers that Charlie may be leaving to pursue Fightstar full time. On the 13 January 2005, Busted's record label announced a press conference was to be held in London the following day. The next day, the 14th, it was then announced to everyone present that Busted were splitting up after Charlie’s departure weeks before. After two and a half years of success Busted would be no more.

Solo careers

Charlie, is currently in Fightstar (a post-hardcore band which differs greatly from the music Busted recorded). They formed a year prior to Busted's split, which was then the force behind the split. Fightstar have released 1 EP and 2 Albums, They Liked You Better When You Were Dead, Grand Unification and more recently One Day Son, This Will All Be Yours, all being released in both the UK and the US.
James went on to release music through his punk band Son of Dork. 2 of 5 of the members have now left the band after reports that the band hadn't met up for months. There are reports that the band has disbanded for good, and Bourne is now pursuing a solo career after his performance in NYC. As well as working on Son Of Dork Bourne has been writing for many artists including Melanie C, McFly, JC Chasez, Pat Monahan and the Jonas Brothers.
After a brief stint in rehab after the Busted split Matt set up a solo career, releasing singles in 2005 and 2006, Up All Night, Hey Kid, Don't Let It Go To Waste, and Crash for the film Mr Bean's Holiday, all except the latter of which came with his album Don't Let It Go To Waste. Matt also appeared on, and was crowned winner of the 2006 series of I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!. After a failing Solo Career Matt has turned to presenting. So far he has presented The Brits and more recently ITV 2's I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here Now! alongside his girlfriend Emma Griffiths, the pair are due to get together again for E! presenting the BAFTAs Willis also confirmed at the V Festival 2007 that he will be putting together a new band for late 2008.

Court Case

James Bourne, Matt Willis and ex-manager Richard Rashman are facing a £10 million royalty battle with former members Ki McPhail and Owen Doyle who claim to have written three of bands key singles. What I Go To School For, Sleeping With The Light On and Year 3000 all gained top three status in the UK charts. The court case is set to begin in February 2008 and is likely to include the likes of Simon Cowell as a potential witness. The court case has since been extended to Monday, 17 March 2008 at half past 10






  • Busted released two books "The Official Story" all about their lives and "On Tour" full of photos and stories from their first Arena tour in 2004.
  • Busted contributed to the Band Aid 20 production and sung the line "Here's To Them" and the chorus "Do they know it's Christmas time?"
  • Matt Willis had a crush on his dance school teacher and is the inspiration to the song "What I Go to School For"
  • During the height of their popularity many rumours that Busted do not play their own instruments or write their own songs began circulating. British guitar magazine Total Guitar interviewed James Bourne to try and prove the rumours false or true although a definitive conclusion was never reached.
  • Teen sensations The Jonas Brothers have covered two Busted songs - "What I Go to School For" and "Year 3000". The cover versions have changed key lyrics in both songs in an attempt to make the tracks more "family friendly".
  • Busted had three stand-in musicians for their big arena tours. They were Chris Leonard (Ex-member of Son of Dork) on guitar, Damon Wilson (now Matt Willis' drummer) on drums and Chris Banks on piano.


External links

busted in Catalan: Busted
busted in German: Busted
busted in Estonian: Busted
busted in Spanish: Busted
busted in French: Busted
busted in Indonesian: Busted
busted in Italian: Busted
busted in Hebrew: באסטד
busted in Lithuanian: Busted
busted in Hungarian: Busted
busted in Dutch: Busted (Britse band)
busted in Japanese: バステッド (バンド)
busted in Norwegian: Busted
busted in Polish: Busted
busted in Portuguese: Busted
busted in Swedish: Busted

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