Youth Defense League singer Nick on leave from Eater for racist Oi/NYHC past
One of the biggest stories in the food world this week is also music related. Eater.com's recently promoted restaurant editor and "professional carnivore" Nick Solares was put on leave from his job after it came out that he had a racist punk rock past. Gawker says: "The suspension came a week after former associates of Solares began sending reporters links and photos documenting his past life as a skinhead."
And to quote part of a long essay by Eddie Huang at Grubstreet ("on the Oppressive Whiteness of the Food World"):
Wednesday night, six days after video surfaced on message boards, Nick Solares posted an apology: “I was a British kid who wound up falling in with a group of white-pride American nationalists, and while I was part of this group I believed the hateful things that they believed, and helped spread the message,” he wrote. “I am deeply ashamed by this, and I made the decision decades ago to disassociate myself from far-right politics and fully disavow the bigoted and dehumanizing ideologies they represent.”
Eater then put him on leave anyway, a move Gawker does not approve of.
Ends up, Nick Solaras aka British Nick, was the frontman of Youth Defense League, a notable 80s NYHC band. They may now be more known for their fascist views than their music, but at the time the band was popular enough in the scene to appear on Revelations Records' 1988 comp, "New York City Hardcore - The Way It Is." Also on that comp were many legendary (non racist) hardcore bands who they regularly shared bills with at CBGB and elsewhere, like Bold, Gorilla Biscuits, Youth of Today, Sick of It All, Supertouch, Side by Side, and Warzone who YDL were especially tight with.
Check out some more old gig flyers below: