Brian Molko : biography
On the 10th of December in 1972 in a Belgian city Brussels a boy was born – a future musician Brian Molko. His father, an American of Italian-French origin and a banker, dreamt about profession of a financier for his sons, but only the eldest son followed his example – he made his own company in New York. Brian’s mother, from a family of Scottish Jewish, was a deeply religious Catholic and owing to her views she left her dream to become a dancer in youth. When Brian was five years old, his parents got divorced, and Brian with his mother went to Luxemburg – the country, which he called mercenary and conservative.
Life was difficult for the boy, who inherited father’s ambitions and mother’s artistic skills – he was considered an outsider in a private closed school “American International School of Luxemburg”. Though his classmates described him as a friendly and merry guy, he remembers school years as awful time. He was a stranger for ordinary boys’ interests. He was an extrovert outwardly, but he grew unsociable and was keen exceptionally on music and theatre, but not on sport, as the majority of his classmates. At the age of eleven Brian happened to play his first small role in a play on Shakespeare. He was interested in make-up at that time, made it skillfully and liked to try on women’s clothes. Mother took him to the church and made to take part in religious seminars, but such bringing up collided with Brian’s rebellious character and collapsed, when hormones started to play in the teenager’s blood. Mother saw his son as a priest, but was strongly disappointed, and for many years her relationship with Brian was bad.
Brian experienced physical joy of love very early – at the age of fourteen. His first woman was a French girl Carol, who was two years older than Brian. According to Molko’s theatrical inclinations, this affair was very romantic. And at the age of sixteen Brian mastered a guitar – and for the whole life he stayed faithful to it, as to the most loved and desired woman. In youth he devoted himself to the guitar, though it didn’t prevented him from studying well. Though, this diligence finished with the school.
At the age of sixteen Brian went to London to become an actor. He entered the Goldsmith theatrical college, on the dramatic department, where he got good mark only on practical lessons. Music was main for him. By that time Brian had found a composer’s talent, and when people heard him singing, they called the young musician’s voice “exotic”. Besides music and actor’s skills, Brian successfully studied the life of London alternative bohemia. For five years of studying in the college he loved in poor London regions, where he experienced sex, rock-n-roll and drugs. He was especially partial towards Asian women, since childhood he loved the Eastern culture.
The history of making the group “Placebo” reminds the history of famous “Rolling Stones” – right after finishing the college Brian Molko met his classmate from the Luxemburg school Stefan Olsdal on the underground station, his friend had a guitar with himself. A conversation about music in the London underground was determining for both guys and the British rock. Brian invited Stefan on his concert in Saturday, and Stefan, imbued with his music, offered to compose music together. The first name of their group was “Ashtray Heart”, but soon it was changed for “Placebo”. The group’s drummer was Steven Hewitt, an old friend of Brian, and recorded by guys songs later were included in their first album. But Hewitt, who was bound by the contract with the group “Breed”, couldn’t give Molko and Oldsdal enough time, and he was replaced with Robert Schulzberg, with whom Stefan had played together some time.
The first “Placebo” concert took place in January of 1995 in Covent Garden, then several performances in insignificant places followed. Besides concerts, the group sent their songs to recording companies, and on the 30th of October the single “Bruise Pristine” was recorded on the label “Fierce Panda” – the second side of the record was devoted to the group “Soul”. The end of the year was spent in tours with groups “Whale” and “Bush”, and in January of 1996 their single “Come Home” took the third place in indie-charts. This winter the group signed a contract with the company “Hut recordings” and had a very fortunate acquaintance with David Bowie. Bowie, who took “Placebo” on warming up of his concert, appreciated their creative work, and in 1997 on the celebration of David fiftieth anniversary the group played as close friends of David.
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