Brian Welch

Brian Welch

Infobox musical artist
Name = Brian Welch
Img_capt =
Img_size =
Landscape =
Background = non_vocal_instrumentalist
Birth_name = Brian Phillip Welch
Alias = Head
Born = birth date and age|1970|6|19
Died =
Origin = Bakersfield, California
Instrument = Vocals, guitar
Voice_type =
Genre = Alternative metal
Nu metal
Christian metal
Occupation = Musician, songwriter
Years_active = 1989–present
Label = Driven, H2C, Warner, Rykodisc, Immortal, Epic
Associated_acts = Brian Head Welch, Korn, Limp Bizkit, L.A.P.D., Toy, Pierct, Creep
URL = [ Official site]
Current_members =
Past_members =
Notable_instruments = Ibanez K7

Brian Phillip Welch (born June 19, 1970), better known as Head, is an American musician best known as the former one of two guitarists of Korn, and a major influence in the rise of the nu metal movement. Welch left the band in 2005 due to contrasting personal beliefs, to focus on life as a father and as a born again Christian. He has since embarked on an eponymous solo project, of which his debut solo album, "Save Me from Myself", was released on September 9, 2008.


Welch was raised in the industrial farm town of Bakersfield, California. Early in his life, Welch claims that he was different from most kids and was picked on a lot in school. His one passion was music. Welch had started playing the guitar at the age of 10. His first guitar was the legendary Peavey Mystic, what he refers to as "the most metal looking guitar you have ever seen." Originally, he expressed interest in playing drums but his father pushed him to guitar since it was quieter. While in high school, Welch met Reggie "Fieldy" Arvizu, in 7th grade. Reggie also started at guitar, but Brian said Reggie wasn't very good at the guitar, so he suggested he play bass since it was easier and it stuck. Brian's first band was called "Pierct" which is pronounced as Pierced. Growing up he was a very big Ozzy Osbourne fan.

Personal life

In 1995 Brian's girlfriend Rebekah gave birth to a child, but she decided to give it up for adoption. When she got pregnant again, they decided to keep the child. On July 6, 1997, Welch's wife Rebekah gave birth to their second daughter, Jennea Marie Welch. The band was scheduled to be on the UK version of Ozzfest but dropped out before it started so that Welch could be by his wife's side. He and his wife have since divorced and Brian has custody of their daughter. The two reside in Arizona.

From the early stages of Korn, Brian used methamphetamine on and off until 2005 when he and Rebekah got divorced and he developed a consuming addiction to the drug, which led him into a deep depression. His addiction, along with wanting to spend more time with his daughter, of whom he had recently gained custody, was a key reason for his leaving the band in 2005.

On how he got his four-letter moniker, Welch says, "I got a big head...go get me any hat, and it won't fit. 'Cept this one, cause it's stretchy..."

On February 22, 2005, Korn's management announced that after almost 12 years, Welch had parted ways with the band, citing that he had "...chosen the Lord Jesus Christ as his savior, and will be dedicating his musical pursuits to that end." [ [ Brian 'Head' Welch Leaves Korn, Citing Moral Objections To Band's Music] . ""] [ [ Brian Welch Explains Why He Walked Away] . ""]

On March 10, 2005, Welch was baptized in the Jordan River [ [ Ex-Korn guitarist baptized in Jordan River] . ""] with a group of believers [] hailing from Bakersfield, California. He has declared that he has rid himself of all drugs in his "own personal rehab" with God, in which he had checked into a hotel room and sat in his bed for hours.

Welch and Jonathan Davis have attacked each other in the media since the former's departure. After he said that Davis and the rest of Korn care only about money, Davis responded in kind, opening a rift between them that may or may not have been resolved. But recently in an interview with in which Welch was asked about his book and Korn's reaction to the book and the attacks in the media he made earlier at the band:

How did the other members of Korn feel about your having written the book? Do you still talk to them and know what they think about it?

"They heard that I'd written it, and there was rumors going around in Hollywood that I was totally trashing them and that it was a "tell all" book about everything they did and I did. And so they actually wrote two songs on their new album bashing me about the book.

"But once I heard that they were concerned about the book, I sent them a copy and put a note in there and said, "I love you guys. I didn't trash you like people say. Read it yourselves. It is what it is." And now they're doing interviews, and I've read that they're totally cool with the book, and it's not what they thought it was going to be. So everyone's happy. But, now they've got two songs hating on me on their record. But it's cool. It's all good. I love them, they love me. I think maybe I deserved those songs because of some of the stuff that I said after I quit the band. So it's all good." [ [ Former Korn guitarist Brian 'Head' Welch talks to Beliefnet about leaving the rock star life after finding becoming a Christian. - ] ]

In July 2005, Welch appeared on CNN's feature-format program "People in the News" where he admitted to having been addicted to alcohol, methamphetamines, Xanax, and sleeping pills [ [ Paula Zahn Now: Guitarist Finds God] . ""] before being reintroduced to the Christian faith.

Following his conversion to Christianity, Brian went to some of the more poverty stricken areas of India to build orphanages or "Head Homes". He visited a tribe of head hunters who were apparently reduced to cannibalism because of lack of food.

Welch has been tattooed with the words "Matthew 11:28" ("Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest."), Matthew 6:19 ("Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal.") and Matthew 5:8 ("Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God."). He also has a Jesus tattoo on his hand. Many have claimed that this is to keep him from masterbating but in his biography, Welch says that he starts everything with his right hand, and when he starts something new, he wants Jesus to be right there with him for guidance.

In March 2008, Welch founded a record company with Mark Nawara and Greg Shanabeger called Driven Music Group. The company has a distribution deal with Warner Music Group and Rykodisc.

In a podcast with Headbanger's Blog, on May 30, 2008, Korn vocalist Jonathan Davis expressed interest in playing with Welch on the band's upcoming album, but stated that it isn't likely. [cite web|title=Headbanger's blog podcast|url=]

Brian Head Welch

As early as a week following his departure from nu metal band Korn,Corey Moss. "Brian 'Head' Welch Talks God To 10,000 In California Church", reported by [ MTV News] February 2005. Last accessed July 9 2007] Welch had claimed through press that a solo record was close to being completed, although there was no release date given, nor had he yet signed on with a label to distribute the record.James Montgomery. "Brian 'Head' Welch Aims To Save 50 Cent", reported by [ MTV News] March 2005. Last accessed July 9 2007.] A number of demos from these early sessions surfaced on peer-to-peer networks, among them "A Cheap Name," a song directed at rapper 50 Cent. He also recorded several other songs including "Dream" and "A Letter to Dimebag," the latter being an instrumental tribute to "Dimebag" Darrell Abbott, guitarist for rock bands Pantera and Damage Plan. In his autobiography, Welch mentions the songs "Washed by Blood," "Save Me from Myself," and "Rebel," which all have made the final track listing for the album.

Initially tight-lipped about the details, in an interview with MTV News Welch was quick to clear a few things up. Primarily, he was concerned that it was reported that his new songs wouldn't be "Christian music."James Montgomery. "Brian 'Head' Welch Hopes Solo Music Will Fund Skate Parks", reported by [ MTV News] March 2005. Last accessed July 9 2007.]

During his stay in Israel with members of the Valley Bible Fellowship of Bakersfield, California, Welch continued to write songs for his solo effort, confident that the music would speak for itself. "I want to make music that will help people. I want to use every dime of the money I make off the songs to build skate parks for kids," he said. "My life now is about helping kids." Originally, Welch contacted Fieldy of Korn to produce the album, but Fieldy made no response.James Montgomery. "Brian 'Head' Welch Explains Why He Left Korn", reported by [ MTV News] February 2005. Last accessed July 9 2007.]

On March 15, 2008, Welch announced he had signed with Driven Music Group, and had re-dubbed his album "Save Me from Myself", after his autobiography of the same name. Following this, his official MySpace profile went online, and the domain name for his official website was moved to [] . Welch has revealed that a tour is expected to follow the release of "Save Me from Myself". For the album, Welch contributed the majority of the instruments, but also hired other contributors, including rhythm guitarist Archie J. Muise Jr., bassist Tony Levin, and drummer Josh Freese for assistance. The first single, "Flush," was released on July 5, 2008, and a music video directed by Frankie Nasso followed on September 5. [cite web|title=Ex-KORN Guitarist BRIAN 'HEAD' WELCH: 'Flush' Video Available|url=]

Originally, Welch planned for the project to follow the "Head" moniker, but was persuaded otherwise, so as not to be sued by the tennis equipment manufacturer of the same name. Though the project has since been dubbed "Brian Head Welch," the album art continues to carry the imprint of the project's original title. The project's true title does appear on the spines of the packaging, however.


Welch's main — if not exclusive — guitar is an Ibanez 7-string. He also had made for him a K-14, a 14-string guitar set up just like a 12-string however with the low A and the accompanying octave string. Most were custom made guitars built and assembled at the Ibanez LA Custom Shop. During the later days in Korn, he, along with James "Munky" Shaffer, made a signature series Seven String Guitar called the Ibanez K7, which was distributed by Ibanez Guitars. He and Shaffer mainly used Mesa Boogie amps (specifically, a Triple Rectifier or Road King). Favored effects included the Digitech "Whammy pedal" [then known as the Digitech XP-100 Whammy Wah pedal] , the Dunlop UV-1 Uni-Vibe, Boss PH-2 Super Phaser, Boss CE-5 Chorus Ensemble, Rocktron Tremolo, and the Boss RV-3 delay. Brian's first ever guitar was a "Peavey Mystic". He later sold this guitar along with a practice amp to Korn's other guitar player James "Munky" Shaffer.

For his solo debut, "Save Me From Myself", Head has switched to using detuned six-string baritone guitars.



* "Neidermeyer's Mind" (1993)
* "Korn" (1994)
* "Life Is Peachy" (1996)
* "Live at the Palace" (1997)
* "Follow the Leader" (1998)
* "Issues" (1999)
* "All Mixed Up" (2001)
* "Untouchables" (2002)
* "Take a Look in the Mirror" (2003)
* "Greatest Hits Vol.1" (2004)
* "Live & Rare" (2006)
* "" (2008)

Limp Bizkit

* "Results May Vary" (2003):Welch helped with guitar on some songs for the album after original guitarist Wes Borland left the band in 2001. Some songs recorded with Welch were left unreleased, along with a number of songs from the sessions. Welch stopped recording with the band after Mike Smith became the Limp Bizkit's official guitarist. Welch is credited with playing the guitar parts in the song "Build a Bridge." He also played with Limp Bizkit at WrestleMania XIX, performing on "Rollin' (Air Raid Vehicle)" and "Crack Addict."

Brian Head Welch

* "Save Me from Myself" (2008)


* "Save Me from Myself" (2007)
* "Washed By Blood" (2008)


* "Who Then Now?" (1997)
* "Deuce" (2002)
* "Korn Live" (2002)
* "" (2008)


External links

* [ Official website]
* [ Official MySpace profile]

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