Platinum selling band returns to Scunthorpe


Naj reunited with founder member and frontman of platinum selling american rock band Wheatus, Brendan B Brown, after 17 years, and ahead of their gig at The Lincoln Imp on Sunday 18th November 2018.


This is what Naj had to say:


It was a pleasure to chat to Brendan and poignant for me. On 28 April 2001, I reported on Unison’s Campaign for a Living Wage gig in Manchester, where Wheatus made their debut UK live appearance. 17 years later, I welcomed the opportunity to be one of the first to chat to Brendan after he landed in the UK.

As part of their 2018 UK and Irish Tour, the band who became widely known for their UK platinum selling single Teenage Dirtbag in 2000, have chosen to perform at The Lincoln Imp in Scunthorpe, which has been named by online concert promoters, Gigmit, as one of the UK’s top three small venues behind Liverpool’s world famous Cavern Club and Leicester’s The Shed. The venue has hosted the likes of Paul Young, The Hoosiers, Crazy Town, Gareth Gates, Adam Bomb and Australian X-Factor winner Reece Mastin, as well as dance / electronic band, Everyone You Know.

Brendan said,” It’s great to be back in Scunthorpe. Thank you for supporting us back then. We always talk about Scunthorpe and laugh but you know Scunthorpe is where it all really started for us. That’s where it really started happening. It’s been so long and we are celebrating by working on a twenty year anniversary album due for 2020. We’ve had a lot of support in Scunthorpe so thank you.”

Will Nicklen, Crown Promotions at The Lincoln Imp, said, “It’s great to have Wheatus coming back to Scunthorpe. They were the last band to play at the old Baths Hall before it was rebuilt. They are super fun live and always put a great set on for the fans.”

Brendan added, "It was really tough for us when we started between 1996 and 2000. Then we got a record deal and after our single Teenage Dirtbag went platinum in the UK, the support we got here influenced what we did next and set us off on our journey.”

Teenage Dirtbag is from their self-titled debut album, Wheatus, which was recorded in Brendan’s mum’s basement. It was on the soundtrack to the film Loser in 2000.

Brendan said, “Being a New York band, it was special to see my song playing over footage of the World Trade Centre, as it would have been one of the last times the towers were featured in a film.”

Wheatus colour on steps (c) Wheatus 2018

It’s been quoted as saying Teenage Dirtbag is timeless and has reached subsequent generations. Brendan told me it’s the fan’s music, he’s just the author. He said he has been astonished when kids know the words to his songs.


This year was supposed to be the band’s first break from touring since 2009. Whilst they have been very busy working on their seventh full-length record; they are back touring again in the UK into December.

Brendan said, “We were supposed to be taking a break but we got a call, the fans wanted us back over here, there is a lot of love for us in the UK.”

It’s also poignant that local band Suckerfish are in talks about a reunion at The Lincoln Imp following a sold-out gig at the same venue also twenty years ago.

When asked what advice he would give to local bands, Brendan said, “Be different. Be unique. Always be looking for ways to stand out.”

I asked Brendan if he had a message for the Scunthorpe fans ahead of their gig on Sunday and he told me to thank everyone for the support, for all the love!

The gig, which is supported by MC Frontalot, will be a celebration of the fifteenth anniversary of the Wheatus fan-favourite LP, Hand Over Your Loved Ones, which they have remastered and will be played in full on most nights as well as of course their UK platinum single, Teenage Dirtbag and other songs. They also have a new single out called Lullaby.

Like many other fans in Scunthorpe, I am looking forward to this much anticipated gig on Sunday night.


Naj was guest on BBC Radio Humberside's Culture Nights show with Kerrie Marsh and Loren Fox once again talking about how Scunthorpe continues to produce world class creative talent and attract hugely successful bands like Wheatus. 

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© Wheatus / American rock band Wheatus.