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Male Actor – Jacob Young
Whether or not his face is familiar and well known to countless “General Hospital” fans, Jacob Young’s music will come as a welcome surprise. Rakishly rockin’ yet instantly infectious, the sort of tunes that get you fired up for top-down free-wheeling, Jacob’s self-titled CD heralds the arrival of a spirited singer bound to turn the music scene on its ear. And if you don’t think a 21-year-old TV heartthrob, belongs in CD collections all across America, you’d better think again.
He nabbed a Daytime Emmy nomination for his work on CBS’s “The Bold and the Beautiful,” yet music was actually Jacob’s first love. “When I was a kid, being in choirs and musicals were a way of life for me,” says Jacob, who grew up in the small town of Roy, Washington. Entering his teens during the Pacific Northwest’s sonic explosion of the 1990s was pivotal to Jacob’s musical development. “Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Nirvana,” he recounts somewhat reverently. “I remember first hearing ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ in 8th grade.”
Jacob’s own music draws from the fount of rock ‘n’ roll but bursts with contemporary pop style that’s John Mellencamp meets Sublime. First single “Life Is Good,” inspired by the life and death of James Dean, rocks out with an unexpected Tex-Mex touch. “Let’s Get Lost” has all the excitement and energy of a drag race to blissful oblivion, while “Rock Me Steadily” one of Jacob’s personal favorites, is a breakneck speedy tale of perilous infatuation. Tempering Jacob’s rebel side are strong, un-sappy ballads like “8 Hour Love Story,” with its twinkly keyboards and wistful words, and “You Don’t Have to Be Alone,” with its’ graceful guitar and subtle strings. And whether rocking out or reaching out, Jacob’s sexy, slightly rough-around-the-edges voice delivers the goods.
“‘Rock Me Steadily’ is a song I wrote about girls/women for they’re very important in my life and I think it’s very flavorful. ‘Sleep Tonight’ is about having your 15 minutes of fame,” Jacob says. As to the album as a whole, he adds: “It’s all about the way of life.”
After his step-mother passed away when Jacob was 16, he briefly moved into a foster home, then headed for San Diego where his birth mother lived and put himself through private school by working at a local Denny’s. “I really had to become a man and take care of myself, but if it wasn’t for those life lessons, I wouldn’t be where I am today,” Jacob says philosophically of those challenging times. “You can’t let outside influences affect you; you have to stay on the path that you choose. All I cared about was making sure that I’d do it one day at a time.”
Did he ever! After only three months of auditioning, Jacob landed a role on the daytime drama “The Bold and the Beautiful” at age 17. Despite long hours on the set, he kept working on music, writing songs on guitar and making demos. He made up his mind and asked his manager to get him a record contract. After exploring major label options, Jacob’s manager felt strongly about going with a respected music industry maverick and began negotiations with Artemis Records Chairman and CEO Danny Goldberg. He inked his deal with Artemis right around the time he started General Hospital. ” I knew it would be very demanding, doing the show by day and recording at night, but I enjoyed it,” he says. “If you really love what you’re doing, it’s got to be fun.”
Jacob Young’s forthcoming CD is a combination of his originals and collaborations with such established songwriters as Eric Lowen (Lowen & Navarro), Billy Steinberg (“Like a Virgin”) and Mark Hudson (Aerosmith). Produced by Steve Lironi (Baha Men, Black Grape, Hanson) with executive producer Steve Greenberg (Baha Men, Hanson), Jacob also worked with a host of cutting-edge and classic musicians to give the album its distinctive sound. “DJ Swamp put a lot of interesting samples on it, and Guy Pratt, he worked with Pink Floyd and some other bands back in the day, played some awesome guitar,” he says. “Sugar Merchant is a rapper who does a little flow on ‘Rock Me Steadily.’ It’s an honest this-guy’s-life kind of album that deals with temptations and tribulations, chasing after dreams and just kicking back, falling in love one minute and breaking free the next.” These are all things Jacob Young is dealing with himself right now, so it’s only natural that his CD sounds as fresh and real as it does. Yet with a twin-engine career going full throttle, a budding film career and certain Hollywood man-about-town status, it’s safe to agree with his debut single and say that for Jacob Young, life is good. Very good indeed.