Roots Rock, Rockabilly Revival, Alternative/ Indie Rock, Retro Swing, Retro-Rock
Party/Celebratory, Earthy, Joyous, Exuberant, Rowdy, Confident, Rousing, Rollicking, Playful, Freewheeling, Reverent, Fun, Energetic, Amiable/Good-Natured, Rambunctious
Guitar, Songwriter, Vocals
Massapequa, New York, USA
Claim to Fame
Soundtrack, Actor/Actress, Music Department
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Profile Bio Text
Brian Setzer (born April 10, 1959) is an American guitarist, singer and songwriter. Setzer was born in Massapequa, New York. Beginning in January 1980, he has fronted the popular rockabilly band, the Stray Cats. After performing locally from New York to Philadelphia under various band names with no real success, singer and lead guitarist Setzer, drummer `Slim Jim` Phantom (born James McDonnell) and bassist Lee Rocker (born Leon Drucker) decided in June 1980 to go to London, England where they believed people would better appreciate their sound and style.
To get the money for their plane tickets, Brian, Lee and Jim went to Sam Ash Music on 48th Street to sell their instruments and gear to the store, and rather than negotiating simply sold all of their equipment for just enough money for three one-way plane tickets. Upon their arrival, they decided to call themselves the "Stray Cats", a name suggested by Rocker because of their status as `strays`. After performing for only a few months they drew the attention of British producer Dave Edmunds and released a series of successful singles in the UK, which countered the already-entrenched punk scene in London with the more simple stripped down rockabilly sound, which immediately caught on with the youth. After releasing several singles and two albums in England, the Stray Cats finally caught America`s attention with the 1982 album Built for Speed, which included the two Top Ten hits, "Rock This Town" (#9) and "Stray Cat Strut" (#3). This album was basically a re-release of many of the songs from the two previous albums: the self-titled "Stray Cats" and "Gonna Ball" (they have never been released in America). Their follow-up 1983 album Rant `N Rave with the Stray Cats included the two successful singles: "(She`s) Sexy + 17" (#5), and "I Won`t Stand In Your Way" (#35). In the mid-1990s Setzer once again resurrected an older form of youth-oriented music, swing and jump blues music, when he formed The Brian Setzer Orchestra, an ambitious 17-piece ensemble project, which released four studio albums, a Christmas disc and several live releases between 1994 and 2002. His group`s biggest success (and Setzer`s outside the Stray Cats) came in 1998 with the release of the album The Dirty Boogie which cracked the top ten on the US album charts and featured a hit single, a cover of Louis Prima`s "Jump, Jive and Wail".
Setzer has been married three times: to DeAnna Morgan from 1984 to 1992, with whom he has a son, Cody, to Christine Schmidt, from 1994 to 2002, with whom he has two daughters, and Julie Reiten, a former singer with the Dustbunnies, in 2005 (they met when she auditioned - and was hired - as a back-up singer for the Brian Setzer Orchestra in 2000).
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Brian Robert Setzer (born April 10, 1959) is an American guitarist, singer and songwriter. He first found widespread success in the early 1980s with the 1950s-style rockabilly revival group Stray Cats, and revitalized his career in the late 1990s with his Swing revival band, The Brian Setzer Orchestra.
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Music Profile Complete
Full Name at Birth
Brian Robert Setzer
Music Genre (Text)
Rockabilly, rock and roll, swing revival, jump blues
The Brian Setzer Orchestra, The Bloodless Pharoahs, Stray Cats, The Tomcats, Drake Bell
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