Frankfurt, May 2017 – Interview on Rockstage Riot 

The first time we came across THE BLUES AGAINST YOUTH was in 2010, when the one-man band from Italy was part of a rather unusual line-up at Frankfurter Raumstation (see below for further details). Almost seven years later, TBAY graced our shores again with his guitar, bass drum and hi-hat, the jingle ring as well as a whistle that emits duck sounds when blown. This time round the gig was at the Dreikönigskeller. After the show, we asked the artist to answer some questions for us.

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"Apprentice" LP reviews

Santa Fe New Mexican Magazine Check article 
Apprentice by The Blues Against Youth. This is a one-man band from Italy, that one-man being a Roman guy named Gianni TBAY. (TBAY. Think about it.)  He sings and plays guitar (lots of slide!) and drums. His sound is reminiscent of American one-man bands like Scott H. Biram and John Schooley, with both country and blues roots and a D.I.Y. punk-rock sensibility.
This album starts off with a slow and purdy blues instrumental called “Keep It Goin’.” At just over a minute long, however, this really is just an invocation to the blues spirits. The faster-paced “Medium Size Star Bound” is the real opener. It features some tasty picking and lyrics about career frustration (“Medium size star bound/They can make you drown/Turn you upside down/But they can’t take your heart.” And in the middle, where you might expect a guitar solo, Gianni gives us a whistle solo. No, it’s not played on a whistle instrument — he actually whistles a melody. Truly whistling is a lost art in rock ’n’ roll.
One of my favorites here is “Got Blood in My Rhythm,” a jaunty number that would work for either the Rolling Stones (Exile on Main St.-era) as well as Dinosaur Jr. And did I say something about country roots? There’s a stunning cover here of one of Hank Williams’ saddest songs, “I Heard That Lonesome Whistle Blow.”
The album’s most impressive number is the title song, a seven-minute hard, gritty blues. Coming from out of nowhere, there’s an electric organ solo that’s nothing short of spooky. I’m not sure if this is Gianni or another musician. All I know is that it works. By Steve TerrellCheck article - The Journal Of Roots Music
by James G. Carlson
check article

Italian one-man band, Gianni TBAY, who records and performs under The Blues Against Youth, has released a new LP on Beast Records. Tilted Apprentice, this twelve-song record is the artist's third full-length to date, and features a fair amount of material which suggests that he is ever dedicated to pushing his project forward. Still marked by primitive electric blues, alternative country, and rootsy rock 'n' roll, The Blues Against Youth's Apprentice is a bit less rugged and dirty than his previous efforts, though decidedly of equal quality - the main differences being that these newer songs are somewhat more ambitious in composition and clearly show an improved musicianship.

Slightly distorted hollow-body six-string picking, steady foot-drumming, and vocals that might as well have been born in the mud and humidity of deep-south America or the dust and vast open spaces of the southwest, the songs on Apprentice all bear the distinct sound stamp of The Blues Against Youth. From the brief instrumental picker "Keep It Goin'" to the seven-minute title track and album closer "Apprentice," Gianni holds the listeners ear, providing a musical experience which begs to be repeated.

Gianni TBAY has proven himself a productive artist over the years, with a few 7" EPs, a split record with The Ribeye Brothers and another with The Cyborgs, and three full-length albums. He has also toured quite a bit, playing many shows at home and abroad, and sharing the stage with the likes of Bob Log III, Urban Junior, The Cyborgs, The Jackets, Reverse Cowgirls, King Automatic, The Big Sound of Country Music, Wasted Pido, Movie Star Junkies, and O Lendario Chucrobillyman, among many others.

With The Blues Against Youth, Gianni doesn't just do the one-man band scene proud in specific; he also possesses a great deal of worth in the international roots scene in general. And the Apprentice release further proves this.

Scott's Music Reviews 

BAY is a one man Italian band by a guy named Gianni. He has made a few records I could see on Discogs.  He has a few guests on four of the tracks but all the rest he plays himself (guitars, bass drum, high hat, vocals, noises). The opening track, Keep it Goin’ is a short intro guitar piece that leads into the footstomping slide guitar blues work out called Medium size star Bound.  Nice blues guitar playing. Barbed Times has a bit more of a country twang to it and features Andrea on harp and Marquerite on backing vocals. Instead of Nothing is a super catchy track. Andrea returns on the harp for Somebody settles down.  Next up is a Hank Williams cover, Lonesome Whistle Blow, a very laid back track.  Call it Quits kicks up the energy level again with some more intense guitar playing. Boundless is an uptempo track with Yuri providing a frantic guitar solo. Wish Pile Blues is sung in a different style and has a quite happy vibe and includes a whistling section.  Got Blood in my Rhythm is another foot stomping good time blues track. The CD ends with the 7 min long title track and features some nice organ playing and a chance for some longer instrumental sections and a strange spacey instrumental at the end of the track.  I enjoyed the record quite a lot..  Check it out..
By Scott aka Dr. Space

Harmonic Distortion (UK)

One man, three chords, twelve songs and a few pals! Third LP from Rome's one-man blues band!
The third LP from Italy's Gianni TBAY is that rarest of beasts, a blues album that appeals to purists and neophiles alike. Firmly rooted in delta and country blues but infused with a 21st century suss and swagger, it's suitable for back-porch or boutique festival alike. This time round the one-man band has enlisted some backing from his musician pals to flesh out his take on gutbucket blues.
TBAY's primitive beats and sophisticated lyrics, honed via relentless gigging, are intact throughout the album's twelve tracks, but benefit from the input of the extra musicians. (Check out the virtuoso guitar shredding on 'Boundless' or wailing harp on 'Barbed Times'.) Unlike a lost of blues records there's enough variation to keep the listener interested; party blues, stomping blues, travelling blues, plaintive slide-guitar laments, it's all there! Equally at home playing Southern boogie (Somebody Settles Down) or paying tribute to his country influences via the album's sole cover (Hank Williams' Lonesome Whistle Blow) TBAY's latest outing has a train load of authenticity and spirit. Hitch a ride why dontcha! (UK)

Gianni Tbay is The Blues Against Youth, a one-man band combining vocals guitar and rhythm section. Gianni opens Apprentice with Keep It Goin’, an appropriate title for a one man band who has to do it all himself! The blues has a country twang on this guitar led instrumental warming us up for the rest of the album. He does have some guests who join him to ring the changes. They make an appearance on the country blues number Barbed Times with Marguerite Patrignani on backing vocals and Andrea Cruciani on harmonica that gives this one man band some extra musical weight. The Hank Williams number Lonesome Whistle Blow, slows the tempo down and we are sitting on a back porch chilling with The Blues Against Youth. This mood soon changes with a kicking number Call It Quits the guitar chugs, the guitar is forceful. The guitar keeps centre stage with Boundless and he is joined by guitarist Yuri Pierini the rhythm is Boundless on this number. The speed is fast and the solo from Yuri is fast and furious. The blues is back and the tone has a twenties recorded feel from the one-man band that is determined to entertain with songs, vocals and a whistling, making this a happy blues number. The music is foot stomping back porch blues that changes textures and tempo. Another instrumental The Lake before the album closes with a seven minute track that tacks us on a completely different direction. The title track, Apprentice is a talented apprentice piece, long instrumentals, distorted vocals it is sort of prog-blues taking a spacewalk. The longer instrumental piece has some delicious organ from Guglielmo Nodrai who was the sound engineer throughout. The closing track is an interesting take on roots music, yet doesn’t quite fit into the tone of the other eleven numbers. Perhaps this is an intro into the follow-up album by an experimental one-band that engages and entertains.

Swiss Records (CH) 

Auch in Italien hat man den Blues. Wen wundert dies bei solchen Regierungsverhältnissen. Gianni Tbay aka The Blues Against Youth, die One-Man-Show aus Rom, lässt ihn auf seinem dritten Album «Apprentice» rau aber auch gefühlvoll aus den Boxen dröhnen. Nach dem Anhören der zwölf Songs mit atmosphärischen Ausflügen nach Paris, Texas, zum Boogie von ZZ Top oder einem gelungen Cover von Hank Williams ist eines sicher: Ein Lehrling (Apprentice) ist Gianni Tbay ist beileibe nicht mehr. 7 out of 10
By Robert Pally

New Underground Music (Dutch) 

Het album, waarop Marguerite Patrignanì - achtergrond zang, Andrea M. Cruciani - mondharmonica, Yuri Pierini (Antares) - sologitaar en Guglielmo Nodari - elektrisch orgel (tevens geluidsman) op meespelen, bevat 12 nummers, waarvan "Keep It Goin'" de eerste is en daarin krijg ik een mooi kort rustig blues nummer te horen, dat hier en daar lichtelijk vals lijkt te klinken en over gaat in "Medium Size Star Bound", een schitterende uptempo blues song, die swingt. (luister naar dit nummer via de bandcamp link onder de recensie)
Daarna zet Gianni me "Barbed Times" voor en in dit nummer speelt hij een heerlijke blues song in een gemiddeld tempo en verzorgt Marguerite de achtergrond zang, waarna ik "Instead Of Nothing" hoor, waarin hij een swingende blues song ten gehore brengt.
Dan hoor ik "Somebody Settles Down", een lekker in het gehoor klinkende song, die enkele subtiele tempowisselingen heeft en in een niet al te hoog tempo gespeeld wordt, om gevolgd te worden door "Lonesome Whistle Blow", een fantstische rustige blues song met country invloeden, die oorspronkelijk door Hank Williams gespeeld werd.
In "Call It Quits" laat The Blues Against Youth me genieten van een geweldige swingende song, waarbij stil zitten geen optie is en in "Boundless" schotelt hij me opnieuw zo'n verrukkelijke uptempo song voor, die swingt als een trein en rock & roll invloeden bevat.
Vervolgens krijg ik "Wish Pile Blues" voorgeschoteld en in dit nummer speelt hij een uitstekend stukje nostalgisch klinkende blues in een rustig tempo, waarbij de zang ongeveer klinkt, zoals de eerste blues muzikanten het in de jaren 20 en 30 opnamen.
Verder hoor ik "Got Blood In My Rhythm", een jaren 50 gerelateerde song met lichte country invloeden, "The Lake", een heerlijk stukje instrumentale blues, dat in een vrij rustig tempo gespeeld wordt en "Apprentice", een schitterende blues song, waarin in de zang lichte invloeden van garagerock zitten en ook dit nummer wordt in een niet al te hoog tempo gespeeld, waarmee het album op gepaste wijze wordt afgesloten.
"Apprentice" van The Blues Against Youth bevat 12 werkelijk heerlijke blues nummers, waarbij ik me geen moment verveeld heb en ik kan elke liefhebber van dit genre dit album dan ook ten zeerste aanraden.

Alias, 2016

L'Unità, 2016
Classic Rock, 2016
Suffer Magazine, 2016 Italy

Rocks, 2016 Germany
442eme Rue, 2016 France

Dig It , 2016 France

"Trapped In The Country" (2013) reviewed on
Ratings: 4/5  - Article by James G. Carlson

If you are at all familiar with the growing one-man band scene, then you know it has been inundated with more than its share of blues punk and outsider country artists. But if one simply takes the time to rummage through them, much as a squatter does when he dumpster dives for everyday essentials, thoroughly and discerningly, one is sure to come up with quite a few that are worth a damn. One such artist is a one-man band from the largely populated Italian scene, who goes by the moniker The Blues Against Youth, and who not all that long ago released “Trapped in the Country,” the follow-up to his 2011 full-length “Pure at Heart Blues.” He didn’t release this one exclusively on his own Deer It Yourself Records, but teamed up with Johnny Hanke’s Off Label Records out of Germany. And he has decidedly improved on his already unique and impressive sound, which proves that this project of his is more than just having kicks, but also a lifestyle and an ever-evolving art form.
“Trapped in the Country” by The Blues Against Youth is eleven originals and one cover song, mostly consisting of country blues stomp and roots punk, with dirty guitar strumming, driving foot-percussion, little creative tempo shifts and pauses and frenzied bursts of twang thrown in here and there to keep things interesting, and of course Gianni TBAY’s torrents of distorted vocals. For this recording, as usual, Gianni played guitar, kick drum, hi-hat, kazoo, his invisible iron snare, and sang, all simultaneously, just as he would during a live performance. But unlike most of his performances, he brought in a small handful of fellow musicians to contribute to his latest material, with a range of instrumentation from harp and trumpet to banjo and guitar lead. And while what Gianni does all by his lonesome is perfectly adequate, the additional instrumentation truly enhances the recorded versions of these songs.
Aside from the cover tune, Honey Don’t by David Allan Coe (an excellent choice, incidentally), the rest of the songs on “Trapped in the Country” are Blues Against Youth originals. The ones that absolutely standout are On the Hill, a continuation of the sort of material Gianni wrote and recorded during his “Pure at Heart Blues” sessions, Soul Mercenary Blues, a brief detour into the land of sacred country blues, and The Man Who Feels Trapped, a straightforward piece of blues rock that is strummed and picked in turns. On top of those, there are Three Headed Demon, a fuzzed-out and stomp-heavy rocker, Out of 2012, a slow-moving country stummin’ song, and my personal favorite Gone with the Grill, a clean-channel chord-playin’, trumpet-blowin’, hi-hat-clankin’, and stream-of-narrative vocal delivery bit of musical experimentation.
The Blues Against Youth has been referred to as “the country rock primitive one man experiment,” and I would have to say that it is a pretty fitting label to stamp his sound with. And if you are interested in what exactly that sounds like, check out The Blues Against Youth online, or grab a copy of “Trapped in the Country” from Off Label Records.
For fans of: Lonesome Joseph, John Schooley, Birds Are Alive, Tongue Tied Twin, Pete Yorko, Dr. Albert Flipout & His One Can Band, Christian Beshore, and Stomping Nick & His Blues Grenade, among others. reviews "Trapped In The Country" (2013)

Gianni Tbay is The Blues Against Youth and he’s on a -  more or less – one man mission to put the country blues in a small package and deliver it out to as many people as possible.  You’ve got to have the honesty in your soul to do something like that and “Trapped in The Country” displays nothing if not that very honesty.
When you’re doing most everything yourself, there are not a lot of places that you can hide and precious few opportunities to pass the blame.  So when “It’s Been A Long Time Mama” and “The Man Who Feels Trapped” strut by, you know that the attitude is that of the man himself.  Of course, the one man band approach is hardly new – the downright quirky Dad Horse Experience comes to mind – but The Blues Against The Youth isn’t about ploughing a new furrow or shining a light into the darkness.  The Blue Against Youth’s  raison d’être is to distil the essence of the past into something once more pure and while the sound might well be dirty, the concept is as pure as the driven snow all the way through these twelve tracks.
So whilst this is in many ways a one note – and twelve bars - album, “Trapped In The Country” still makes  a refreshing change from the polished until the shine hides the lack of content bands that have caught the blues in the endless loop of festivals.

Other "Trapped In The Country" album reviews...

Rumore (I)

 Dynamite! (Germany) - 5/5    

L'Unita (I)

One-Man Band Series, #25: The Blues Against Youth 
by James Carlson, One-Man Band Examiner - read article here

Italian songsmith and multi-instrumentalist Gianni Serusi, known in the obscure music world by the name of his "country rock primitive one-man experiment" The Blues Against Youth, has cultivated a very specific sound for the better part of four years. "Old road flavored compositions for the long lost ones" is how he refers to it. That is actually a fair description, too, as one can listen to his songs and easily detect the musical presence of both blues and rock'n'roll, along with a touch of country. At first one might be tempted to simply insert The Blues Against Youth's sound under "roots rock," but that doesn't quite do it justice. Nearly, mind you, but not quite. With a hollow-bodied electric six-string guitar, kick drum, voice, whistle, hi-hat, and an unusual piece of stomp percussion he calls his "invisible iron snare," he has developed his sound from a slower, more organic and traditional one to what it is now -- raw, gritty blues coupled with dirty, primitive rock'n'roll and outsider country.

True to the typical one-man band practice, Gianni works all of the instrumentation simultaneously, strumming, picking, stompin', and singing. Certainly not the easiest way to play music, the one-man band approach isn't for every artist, mostly since only a select group of songcrafters and multi-instrumentalists can do it, and do it exeedingly well. With his Blues Against Youth endeavor, Gianni Serusi has proved time and again that he is one of those select individuals, indeed that he is among the other noteworthy blues punk and roots rock artists in the scene, such as Pete Yorko, Lonesome Joseph, Birds Are Alive, Scott H. Biram, Reverend Deadeye, Honkeyfinger, and the like.

In addition to a 7-inch release and a split with The Ribeye Brothers, Serusi has a full-length studio album out titled Pure at Heart Blues. Although its ten songs wouldn't exactly appeal to blues or country purists, they are undeniably "pure at heart." That is, The Blues Against Youth's sound, though a wild jumble of styles, is pure in both its conception and delivery. And with such great originals as the title track "Pure at Heart Blues," "When the City is Dead," "It Must Have Been the Devil," "Miss Another Train," "Tevere Delta Blues," and "Just Don't Call My Name," Pure at Heart Blues is a remarkably solid full-length release which suggests the very real possibility of even better material in the future.

Blues Again(st)
by , Ontario Alberta
La lettura sociologica parrebbe suggerire che, in tempi di crisi, certo country blues calzi bene, perché perfetto per svolgere una necessaria funzione di catarsi. Ossia, mettendo in musica le brutture del mondo (e quale musica meglio del blues?), semplicemente non ci pensi. O magari ci pensi, ma le fischietti su un motivetto allegro in 4/4, senza rammaricartene troppo. Una spiegazione da salotto tv, lo ammetto, per illustrare un fenomeno come la fioritura della nuova scena blues di Roma. Senza citare i soliti noti, vorrei invece scomodare questa one man band chiamata The Blues against the youth, due album all’attivo, Pure at heart blues uscito nel 2011 e Trapped in the country di quest’anno, entrambi ascoltati ininterrottamente da giorni.
Ora diceva Rossellini che ogni nuova generazione dovrebbe ribellarsi ai suoi padri, altrimenti non avrebbe senso d’esistere. Quindi, lecito pensare che i vecchi, con i loro giradischi, bourbon e ricordi – quanto mai attuali – della DC, siano oggi più organizzati che in passato per la difesa dello status quo. E io è per loro che parteggio. Sarà che sto diventando vecchio e sono più per il blues e meno per la youth.

 "Pure At Heart Blues" reviews: