My name is BRIAN “THE HAT” Duckworth. I am a Country and Swing Cover singer/songwriter. I was born April 1952 in Oldham, Lancashire, England and raised in a small cotton mill town called Middleton, 7 miles north of Manchester. My mother worked in one of the many cotton mills and my father worked for the north western electricity board. I was the youngest of two, my sister was 2 years and a half years older than me.
Growing up in the fifties I had an amazing childhood as I was born only 6 years after the end of WW2 when comradery was still high. No one had more than any one else, the tv had not yet gone on sale we only had a radio. No DVDs no computers or electronic games we had to make our own entertainment We had lots of street parties and it was safe for children to play out unsupervised.
My first introduction to Country music was listening to Jim Reeves on the Louisiana Hayride on the radio. or seeing Roy Rogers and Tex Ritter singing on the Saturday morning matinee for children at the local picture house. I first started singing when at the age of 12yrs old I joined the Middleton Parish Church Choir as an alto choirboy. It was to be the grounding for what would much later become an ambition.
I travelled to Salzburg Austria with the choir in 1965 to hear the Vienna Boys choir in concert and also to sing. We had music lessons at school but we did not have the encouragement that we should have had to take up an instrument so I never really took an interest other than singing. This is something I have come to regret over the years. At 15yrs I left school with no qualifications I guess I was a slow learner and as the classes had 35 to 40 kids in each subject the teachers did not have the time to spend going over things with individuals who could not understand.
I joined the army as a boy soldier straight from school rather than go into the cotton mill, which served me well as we went back to school and I gained the certificates that I had previously missed.
The sixties were great times for a young man growing up, we had the music revolution and the young people’s movement, Hippies, flower power, Ban the Bomb. mods and rockers biker gangs I was a rocker I didn’t like scooters, I laugh now just thinking about it.
My career started in the entertainment business in 1972, I started out working back stage as a Stage Assistant at my local Repertory Theatre where my love for the business quickly blossomed.
I spent the next few years touring around the UK working at various Theatres and gaining experience in the workings of shows achieving Stage Manager status. However it was not enough I wanted to be out there under the lights.
After a particular heavy weekend doing a change over of shows i had an argument with the Director over the set not being finished in time for Dress rehearsal which resulted in my being dismissed for arguing in front of the cast. This however proved be the turning point for me as the Director was an old friend of mine He immediately offered to give me small parts in plays and musicals I had found my vocation.
My stage Name back then was Brian Deane I thought it was better than my real surname Duckworth which I thought was too ordinary for the posters lol. Vain I know but hey you have to be a bit quirky in this business right.
I then started singing in Local bars and clubs which gave me a whole new outlook of this satisfying, exhilarating and sometimes cruel business that we love. Like most Artist’s in this business I had to take other jobs in between to help with raising a Family but the call of the stage was never far away.
Then in 2003 at the Age of 51 divorced and a free Spirit I moved to Kos Island Greece and started to rekindle my career as a singer.
Then in 2012 the economic crisis hit Greece so I as forced to move again, this time with my new Austrian Soul mate Silvia we moved to my present Location in Austria and started all over again to build a new performing platform.
I don’t think I’ll ever be a so called Star but hey the world is a whole lot different when you’re out there under the spotlight and long may I continue to enjoy it. I am now a member of the Texas Country Music Association.Inc which was a thrill to me to be invited… Me an Englishman lol.
I started to write songs just 3 years ago as now in my 60s I seem to have more time and patience. I have written about 10 or 12 songs up to now but I have only recorded and published 4 due to the cost involved in hiring musicians and studios this why I now regret not learning to play an instrument.
Still I am happy to be doing what I enjoy doing the most entertaining. If I have one piece of advice to give to any budding musician or songwriter it would be. Never lose sight of your goals in life never give up trying and it is never too late. Or as an old friend once said….
Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today, because if you enjoy doing it today you can always do it again tomorrow.
Rock My Way To Heaven
Am I Wasting My Time
I’ll Just Run Away.
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