Turin Brakes Or Not Turin Brakes?

Picture it, Toronto, 2007. I am a youthful 29 years old and working at a brewery, giving brewery tours and delivering beer. One day I meet a guy at the bar with an English accent and we start to chat. He tells me that his name is Sam, he is in a band called Turin Brakes and that he is going to be in Toronto for a while. Being a music guy I think cool, then go home and try to look him up on the Internet. Funny thing though, I couldn’t find any mention of a ‘Sam’ related to Turin Brakes, or even a good band photo to back up his story.

Sam starts to hang around the brewery and makes friends with some of the other employees. Next thing you know I am celebrating my 30th birthday and Sam shows up at my party with some of my co-workers. I snapped the above picture of Sam at my birthday party. That is Ricky’s old kitchen (notice the gray bottle opener in the background attached to the wood trim). The summer fades away and so does Sam.

Next thing you know it is 2010 and Ricky is reviewing a Turin Brakes show. I was immediately reminded of Sam. I have since been able to find some decent photos of Turin Brakes and have started to question his story. Hmmmm…..

Here is an update…from 2014

Posted on by Wade in Everything

About Wade

Transplanted east coaster now in Toronto. Lover of Canadian music and comedy

12 Responses to Turin Brakes Or Not Turin Brakes?

  1. John

    I know this guy personally and know that he lives in sussex, england. I truly believe that he is not in the band turin brakes and was possibly just a roady. He is to young and full of other stories

  2. Jaaket1988

    Worked with sam on a building site in Canary Wharf last year old us the same story. He s a nice bloke just full of it . He had a stroke on his 30th birthday party whilst we was working on the job

  3. tT

    The guy is still doing the same.. Pretending to,be someone he isn’t. He just ripped a load of people off in Thailand. Not a nice guy.

  4. JakeG

    The exact same thing is now happening in Berlin. Anyone have any additional information about him?

  5. Chris

    He’s now in Hastings uk with the same story.

  6. dbott

    worked with Sam several times over the past 10 years or so. Hugely talented writer & performer. Can’t judge on the personal situations of others, but definitely a serious artist with a serious catalogue, if maybe a little different to deal with.

  7. A Witness

    I met ‘Sam’ (Taylor??) recently at an ‘Open Mic’ evening in Hastings, and he is absolutely the guy in the above photo. He said many, many a thing, and being dubious and curious I googled him and came across this thread. He said that he was in the original line-up of ‘Turin Brakes’ and wrote nine of the thirteen tracks on their first album ‘The Optimist LP’. He said that after the first album he was asked to leave the band, and was paid one million pounds to give away all rights to these songs. He also said that he wrote ‘Fishing for a Dream'; which is interesting…as this song is from their third album: long after he apparently left the band. He said that he has been supporting ‘Echo and the Bunnymen’ on guitar. He said that he has written songs for both Pink and Avril Lavigne, of which have sold millions of copies. He said that for some time he was the ‘go to guy’ for songs for pop stars. He said that he was wealthy and could live the rest of his life on the money he had already amassed. Funny thing about him being so apparently wealthy; he manipulated his way into getting a good number of people to buy him a drink…as he had no money. His girlfriend was with him during the evening, and at the end of the night he wanted to drive back to their/his/her place, which was apparently a good drive out of Hastings (the girlfriend wasn’t having it as they had both been drinking), as otherwise (according to the girlfriend) they would have to stay at his mothers; who would make him get up to go to work in the morning…which he didn’t want to do as he had drunk the bar dry of gin. What’s this wealthy man doing working and having no money to buy his drink? Furthermore, he was impolite to some of the others there for the live mike; rude comments: not nice. The man can sure play guitar and sing okay; that’s a given: he can hold a tune. He got up behind the mic and sang ‘Underdog’ from Turin Brakes; of which he said he wrote. At the end of the song he kept playing the rift and adlibbed lyrics, which were ‘Peter Sutcliffe ain’t that bad’, and managed to get some of the audience to sing along. He came up to me afterwards and seemed to be getting off on that he got people to sing along with such messed up lyrics. He is obviously (to a degree) a talented musician, but seemingly has a far greater talent for serious lying and dark manipulation. A friend of mine that I was with on this evening messaged the ‘official’ Turin Brakes through Facebook. He wrote that he had met this Sam (Taylor??) who claimed to once be in Turin Brakes, and do you know of him? He received a reply, which was…’this Sam bloke has been a constant menace to many of the years…avoid! He is nothing to do with us’.

  8. A Witness

    …the Turin Brakes reply should have been ‘this Sam bloke has been a constant menace to many OVER the years…avoid! He is nothing to do with us’. And to add; the main reason why I have written what I have, is that I was conned by this Sam, of which I truly dislike the feeling of, and hopefully my words may serve to help another to not be conned. I did believe him during the evening, it was only after that I became dubious and curious. At one point in my life, Turin Brakes were of importance to me, their first album ‘The Optimist LP’ and their third album ‘Jack in the Box’ meant a lot to me. I told him as such and he gave me a hug, several times, and thanked me for my appreciation of ‘his’ music. He’s obviously an utter con artist and truly takes unbelievable advantage of pretending to have once been a band member. Thus, as Turin Brakes have wrote…’avoid!’.

  9. A Witness

    …and it’s ‘JackInABox’ not ‘Jack in the Box’. Opps.

  10. Peta sutcliffe

    ‘He seemed to be getting off on getting the crowd to sing about Peter Sutcliffe’…….I heard his next project is endorsing the Fred & Rose West string vest- perfect for all your deep garden excavation situations!
    You must be a daily mail journalist!! Christ there are some bitter, bored, spiteful keyboard cowards out there……..and I don’t even know the guy or care about it at all!

  11. esther malm

    i saw this guy in stockholm a few months ago and to be honest i thought he looked a bit dodgy when i saw him walking outside in the cold with no gloves on- not even mittens.
    so i followed him for a little way and sure enough he blatantly walked straight through a cycle lane, cool as you like, he didn’t even hesitate. he seemed like he was getting off on it.
    and a friend of mine told me that hes acting as rolf harris’ legal counsel- and thats 100% true- so you draw your own conclusions

  12. Matt

    August 2021 – This guy strikes again. Sam was spinning a yarn about being in Turn Breaks whilst having his hair cut in Eastbourne, opposite the rail station. He stated he was best mates with Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters. He could sort free tickets to their next gig as Dave is his daughter’s godfather. He stated he lives in Toronto, but was visiting his aunt during Covid lockdown and couldn’t get back to Canada. He said he was going to get us free tickets for Foos in 2022. Not holding my breath having found this page.

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