Born: February 25, 1982
Robert Edward McCracken was born in Provo, Utah, but grew up in Orem, Utah, and was raised in a Mormon family. He attended Timpanogos High School for a brief time, before dropping out at 16. Before joining The Used, he played the trumpet in a local band called I’m With Stupid, starting at age 12.
The eldest son of the household, Bert enjoyed a happy home life as a child, but as he grew into a teenager his views conflicted with his parents. He rebelled against his parents and against their Mormon religion by going to other churches. As a teenager Bert was against drugs and he edited a straight-edge magazine, “Drugs Suck,” until engaging in a physical bout with fellow straight edgers, thus driving the drifting 15-year-old in a different direction, culminating in drug experimentation. He became addicted to crystal meth, then continued his self-destructive behavior by dropping out of high school; soon after, he was kicked out of the house at the age of 16. For some time he was homeless until he found enough money for an apartment, moving in with girlfriend Kate. After the relationship fell apart he was again living on the streets and sinking deeply into drug addiction, until he finally chose to return to his parents’ home in late December 2000.
Bert credits his childhood best friend John Schueler with keeping him sane during this tough time. In January 2001, when the band called Dumb Luck (which later became The Used, then consisting of Quinn, Jeph and Branden) were looking for a singer, Quinn knew of Bert and he was invited to try out. After being given music that the band had written without words, Bert wrote the lyrics to what would become “Maybe Memories” and returned the next day with a newly recorded version of the song. The band welcomed him immediately, and renamed themselves “Used”.
*The following video is from Berth, which you can purchase HERE!