I met Todd Youth not long ago and gave him a copy of my book (This Music) and told him about an idea I had of doing a book on his life, growing up in the hardcore scene. He seemed to like the idea. The first interview we did resulted in this piece, “Under 18.” I’m hoping to do more, but we’ll see what happens. Todd Youth is one helluva busy guy. — Lewis Dimmick
It was Skinhead Youth’s first show. My father walked into CB’s with two cops. I was thirteen. I hadn’t been going to school. I’d been running away. After hanging out at A7 until five or six in the morning, going to school didn’t seem that interesting.
I was into music, this kind of music that people didn’t understand. People walked across the street. They were scared of you. Or they wanted to kill you because you were a freak.
Bad Brains was my first show. I remember walking into CB’s and seeing a room full of people who looked as fucked up as I felt inside. For the first song I was standing up front. By the second song I had been pushed all the way back to the pool tables.
When my father walked in with the cops I ran out the back doors and down into a basement and hid. I saw a pair of boots walk by and knew they were looking for me. It was Raybeez. He put a ski mask over my head and walked me in through the back door and onto the stage. I played the whole set like that.
After the show I got in a car with some girl and went to her house in Philly and stayed there a few days. When her parents went to work I would come out and shower. When they came home I had to hide under the bed.
Then I was staying on 6th Street between Avenues B and C. It was me, Roger, Amy and Raybeez. One day there was a knock on the door. It was my father and two detectives. I had been staying out late, drinking, getting high, having sex with girls, but now it was time to go home.