Brian Phillip Welch, better known as Head, was born on June 19, 1970 in Torrance, California. Head is a founding member of the band Korn but left the band in 2005 to focus on his life as a father and to pursue a solo career after being baptized and converting to Christianity. In 2008 he recorded and released a solo Christian album, Save Me from Myself. Out of the one hundred Greatest Metal Guitarists of All Time, Head is ranked number twenty-six.
Brian Welch was raised in Bakersfield, California. He was picked on in school as a youth because he was different. His passion has always been music and Ozzy Osbourne is one of his major influences. Brian originally wanted to play the drums but his father insisted that he play the guitar instead so that he would not have to cart a drum kit around. At the age of ten, he began playing his first guitar, a Peavey Mystic. The nickname “Head” came from a reference his friends made about his head being too large for his body, which stuck with him throughout his career as a professional guitar player. Brian met Reginald Arvizu, better known as Fieldy, while he was in seventh grade. Fieldy also played the guitar but Brian did not think he was any good at it, therefore he suggested that Fieldy play bass instead.
Korn was formed in 1993 after the band L.A.P.D. failed due to the lead singer’s, Richard Morrill, drug addiction. Reginald Arvizu, James Shaffer, and David Silveria wanted to continue to play so they recruited Brian to their new band Creep. After they saw the band SexArt play, they took an interest in their singer, Jonathan Davis. John Davis had no interest in joining their band, but after he consulted with a psychic he changed his mind and auditioned. After John Davis joined them they decided to change the name of their band. John Davis suggested the name Korn, which they all liked because it reminded them of the movie, Children of the Corn.
Their self-titled album, Korn, was released in 1994. In 1995, Brian’s wife Rebekah gave birth to a child, which they gave up for adoption. In 1996, their album Life is Peachy was released followed by Follow the Leader in 1998. During this same year, Brian’s wife became pregnant again and this time decided to keep the child, Jennea Marie Welch. Korn was scheduled to be playing at Ozzfest in the UK during this time, but dropped out so that Brian could be with his wife and new child. Brian and Rebekah have since divorced, but remain in contact.
All the while, Brian was struggling with addiction to methamphetamines, alcohol, and other substances. His band mates were struggling with their own addictions as well. Despite all of his success, Brian disliked being on tour with Korn. After twelve years of being with Korn, their management announced on February 22, 2005 that Brian had exited the band. His reason for leaving the band was because he had “chosen the Lord Jesus Christ as his savior and will be dedicating his musical pursuits to that end.” On March 10, 2005, Brain was baptized in the Jordan River. He stated that he became drug free as a result of his own personal rehab with God, in which he checked into a hotel and laid in bed for hours. Before he converted to the Christian faith, he traveled to poverty stricken areas of India and built orphanages dubbed, “Homes for Heads.”
Brian’s solo career began in 2005 when he began writing and recording Christian music. His solo album “Save Me From Myself” was released in 2008. Brian still continues to write solo music and has since created and dissolved his own record label, Driven Music Group. Throughout his career with Korn, Brian primarily used Ibanez guitars. He and Munky from Korn had their own signature Ibanez guitars, the Ibanez K7. He now uses custom built baritone guitars from Ibanez.