Get To Know: Brian Young
RUDI (Belfast’s first ever punk band), The Tigersharks, The Roughnecks, and The Sabrejets – just some of the many bands Brian Young has fronted over the years.
His current outfit The Sabrejets, are a stripped down, hard hitting, revved up, psychobilly white knuckle ride, who draw their influences from 50’s rock ‘n’ roll, T. Rex and The New York Dolls. They have played support to the likes of Chuck Berry, The Damned, Imelda May, and Bo Diddley, and their new album is due for release later this year. Get to Know Brian Young.
Where you’re from: East Belfast (cue ‘wise men of the east’ jokes.. yawn)
Favourite venue: Currently, The Black Box, Belfast – though I still miss The Rotterdam, the (original) Harp Bar and the Pound…The Errigle can be great too and I just heard the Menagerie is having live bands again which is good news. Proper greasy in yer face rock’n’roll works best in hot, sweaty, lowlife dives.. not sterile corporate enormodomes..
Last gig you attended: Best in recent memory were Texas wild man Jesse Dayton at the Errigle, and ultra swanky Chris Isaak in Dublin. Two gen-u-ine kool-kats and both absolutely brilliant showmen!
Favourite album: New York Dolls – ‘New York Dolls’ – it’s almost impossible to pick just one album – but this slab o’ boss wax changed my life! Back in the distant mists of time when I was about 16 I tried to set up a UK NY Dolls fan club with my erstwhile buddy one Steven Morrissey of Stretford, Manchester. The club never did get off the ground but the Dolls changed both our lives forever – though his musical endeavours were somewhat more successful than mine!
Which local music do you rate: I don’t care when or where music comes from – I either dig it or (in most cases) I don’t! Truth is, I feel more in common with oddballs like, for example, the Cramps, or Panther Burns, than with any ‘local’ scene. Like the man says..’it’s not where you’re from but where you’re at!’
Favourite gig you’ve attended: Too many to mention but here goes! T.Rex – Palace Lido, IOM 1975, Bowie – Wembley Arena,London 1976, Dr Feelgood(w/Wilko) – Whitla Hall, Belfast 1976, The Clash – McMordie Hall, Belfast 1977, Johnny Thunders Allstars – Lyceum, London 1978, Ramones – Hammersmith Odeon, London 1978, The Jam – Wembley Arena, London 1978, Only Ones – London Poly 1978, Prince – Wembley Arena, London 1984, The Cramps – Brixton Academy, London 1990, Chris Isaak – Town & Country, London 1991, Link Wray -Shepherds Bush London 1995, The Blasters – Renfrew Ferry, Glasgow 2003, Stray Cats – Brixton Academy, London 2004, New York Dolls – Meltdown London Festival Hall 2004, Heavy Trash – Kings Head, Belfast 2008, Levi Dexter & Jackrabbit Slim – Ace Café London 2010 and arguably best of all Nick Curran – Ubangi Stomp, Dublin 2010…and many others!
Most memorable gig: With RUDI undoubtedly the Queens Hall in Leeds April 1982. Our last gig supporting the Jam on their Trans Global Unity Express Tour , biggest audience we ever played to (thousands!), our single ‘Crimson’ had just been made ‘Single Of the week’ in Sounds and we got called back for a genuine encore too! Sabrejets wise, too many to mention, but we’ve had some great support slots to folks like Chuck Berry, Imelda May, Bo Diddley, Sylvain Sylvain, Jessie Dayton, Jason & Scorchers, the Damned and many others – you can catch us in May with my longtime faves The Blasters in the Oh Yeah Centre as part of the CQAF.
Describe yourself in 5 words or less: Old enough to know better. (too far gone to care)
What got you into music: Seeing T.Rex play ‘Jeepster’ on some kids TV show when I was about 10. I became a huge T.Rex fan and was lucky enough to meet Marc and the band and see them play in 1975 in Douglas, Isle Of Man. He gave me a T.Rex songbook and I vowed to return home and learn to play the guitar and follow in his footsteps. Within a few months RUDI were up and running…so now you know who to blame!
Most valued material possession: Either all my Johnny Thunders memorabilia (met him lots of time, a really charming, funny, kinda shy guy when away from his scummy drug buddies/vultures), my 1974 Triumph Daytona T100R, or my Gretsch guitars. But frankly nothing is as important to me as my long suffering wife Liz and our three German Shepherd dogs, Joy, Eve, and Pearl.
What’s next for you: Working hard on the Sabrejets killer new album with the multi-talented producer Dean Stevens, in his ace new studio One30two recordings in Holywood – due out later this year on top international rockabilly label Raucous Records.
Catch The Sabrejets supporting The Blasters at The Oh Yeah Centre Belfast, as part of this years CQAF on Sunday 6th May – tickets & more info here