“I was scared I was going to screw up my kid like I was screwing up myself.”
Brian “Head” Welch became incredibly successful in the late 1990s and early 2000s as a guitarist with the Grammy-winning metal band Korn.
But as his career took off, he spiraled into the world of addiction. Alcohol, methamphetamines, sleeping pills, and Xanax were wreaking havoc in his life.
After his wife left him, he became a single father to his very young daughter, Jennea, which only intensified his need to get sober.
Then a friend invited him to church…
It was during this visit to church that Brian first realized that a life with God was even a possibility.
Afterward, he heard his young daughter singing some of the explicit lyrics from one of his songs, and it struck him in a way it hadn’t before. He knew that he had to make a change for her.
Brian decided to surrender completely to God, and checked into a hotel room to detox from drugs. As he was lying in his hotel bed, he prayed that God would heal him from his addictions.
“I just looked up and I just said, ‘Father? Do anything you want to my life.”
He left renewed and at peace after this time of detox.
Despite all of his success with Korn, Brian decided it was time to leave the band – and a $23 million dollar record deal – to focus on raising his daughter. He wanted to make up for lost time and become the father he knew she needed.
In this new phase of life, Brian began writing his own songs, something that was brand new to him, and he even wrote a song for his daughter.
However, as is often the case in our walks with Christ, Brian’s life was not perfect after he accepted Christ.
He relapsed into alcohol abuse for over a month before quitting again and struggled with severe rage as he dealt with his anger problems.
The story of Brian’s addictions, his relationship to the band, his faith, and his often-painful-yet-evolving relationship with his daughter are all revealed in the new documentary Loud Krazy Love.
The documentary began as the story of why Brian left Korn, but eventually took on a new shape and storyline when Brian’s daughter, Jennea, began to struggle.
Because Jennea had seen and experienced so much at a young age, she was dealing with things that she didn’t even realize until she got older.
Her dad was often gone on tour, but during the times she was able to travel with him, she saw many things that negatively affected her. She also had to deal with being cared for by a variety of different people, her mother leaving, and her dad going through intense financial struggles after leaving Korn. In addition to that, Brian was still trying to learn how to be a good father and to fix the damage he had already done to their relationship.
As Jennea entered her teen years, she began to struggle with anxiety, depression, and cutting, along with suicidal thoughts. She took to social media to share these difficulties, because she really wasn’t sure how else to deal with the way she was feeling. Her dad helped her to get counseling, and enrolled her in a Christian boarding school in Indiana, both of which helped her immensely.
As the two filmmakers who created Loud Krazy Love reveal, they wanted the documentary to “humanize and normalize what a real faith might actually look like . . . Our real lives are just as messy and tumultuous.”
One of the filmmakers, Trey Hill, noted: “You have a choice in what to do with the most shameful stuff in your life. You can choose to stay trapped by it or you can choose to face it head on, and I hope that people who are trapped in their shame will come away with the ability to see at least two steps in a different direction.”
After some difficult years of counseling and working on their relationship, Brian and his daughter have developed a strong bond of trust and love.
Jennea explained her motivation behind revealing her life in Loud Krazy Love: “I wouldn’t be doing this if it wasn’t to help other people. There are so many kids that can relate. It was hard, but that kept me driven.”
In 2013, Brian decided to return to Korn, which was a controversial decision in many Christian circles. Despite what had happened in the past, Jennea was comfortable with him rejoining the band.
Brian’s friend and fellow bandmate, Reginald Arvizu (also known as “Fieldy”), has also become a Christian and continues to tour with Korn. Much like Brian, Fieldy struggled with addiction before he eventually realized his need for Christ.
The two men have been interviewed about their decision to continue to be a part of Korn despite song lyrics that many Christians feel are inappropriate.
Fieldy had this to say: “There’s just so much power of being used in Korn. I can reach so many people and know what I’m about, not what Korn’s about. I want to try to follow the Bible the best I can, because I know it’s going to give me the best life.”
In an interview, Fieldy noted that Brian said he felt God tell him “These are my people” when he looked out at the crowds attending a metal band concert.
Brian says he realized at this moment (and after time with God, as well as what he considered confirmation from two different pastors) that he was supposed to return to the band to reach this specific group of people that God loves.
“These are my people.” Where most of us see a bunch of sinful fallen rock’n rollers, God sees His people in need of His Love, and God is using Brian and Fieldy to reach them.
Please pray for Brian and Fieldy as they continue to try to live out their own Christian faith while ministering to the rest of the band and the people who attend their shows, and pray that Loud Krazy Love can help bring healing to many people struggling with addiction and mental illness.