brian newman, More
Away From the Grime

"I'm looking to play music and to be an entertainer for the rest of my life," says Brian Newman, who's about to release a new album featuring covers of obscure songs, like "Home" by Willie Nelson. "Longevity is in my mind," adds our tattooed man. "I don't want a flash-in-the-pan type stardom."

IMG_8149Brian's black panther tattoo

"Most of my tattoos are traditional, old school, Sailor Jerry'ish tattoos with a little modern touch. They're done by a fantastic girl, Becca Roach, at North Star Tattoo. I also got a few tattoos from LA. There's a new one -- a black panther -- I got from Oliver Peck out in Long Beach. When I played with Lady Gaga at the BBC Radio 1 Weekend, I had a day off, and I was staying near Frith Street Tattoo, so I walked in and said, 'Dude, I want a tattoo. Let's put a London Rat.' "


When we asked Brian to reveal an experience of failure that propelled him to make greater decisions, Brian told us, "While I was playing music in New York, I took a job as a restaurant manager at a steakhouse. I got a call from a very well known singer from the 50s and 60s. He was going to Japan for 10 days, and I knew the place I was working at wasn't going to let me go, so I put in my two-weeks notice and got away from the grime."

IMG_8152Brian's Sailor Jerry tattoo

"99 percent of the people that come and see me don't know that I have any tattoos at all because I always wear a suit. If they saw me on the street with a T-shirt and jeans, they would never pick me out. I like the mystique and mystery of not having tattoos on my hands and neck."


Watch Brian's Closet now.

Share this story
view more on youtube
other inspiration