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© 2002
Interview: Bryan as a vegan

Animal Liberation Interview:

Hi Bryan, I believe you're a vegan.....when did you cut out all meat and dairy?

BA: i'm not completely vegan, i will accept tiny amounts of butter and i normally scrape off cheese when it's on top of pasta or something...i completely stopped eating dead creatures in 1989.

Have you ever found that it's difficult being vegan?

BA: well, it is. especially when you have to rely on restaurants. it can be grim. you never know what the soup base is made of or if they slipped a little bacon into your sandwich...i'm the worst dinner date.

What's the best part of being vegan?

BA: the concept that you are not ingesting rotting flesh sort of somes it up for me.

Why did you decide to go vegan?

BA: i ate a big steak in 1988 and never felt worse. that was it, boom. over. never again.

Can you think of any significant events while growing up that shaped your compassionate thinking towards animals?

BA: having dogs around us was great, that really shaped my compassion, but i also ride, and i love horses, so it wasn't hard to appreciate the beauty and intelligence of other creatures.

Do some people think that this is just a fad? That you'll change your mind and go back to eating animals?

BA: at first they did, but years later....no

What does your spouse, parents or your siblings think about you being vegan?

BA: i have quietly convinced my mum, brother and my band to switch altho' they are just vegetarians not vegans.

Could you envisage that there could be any songs from you, in the future, that would promote cruelty-free living?

BA: never say never

Do you hope (like I do) that everyone else will soon realise that there's no need to eat animals to stay healthy?

BA: i don't actively campaign for it, but i'd like to think so. ultimately you can't change people. for example, my dad doesn't want to know.

So, exactly what sort of things do you eat?!

BA: pasta's, rice, soups, roasted veggies, homemade pizzas, salads, potatoes..it's endless.

Have you found when you're touring that there's plenty of good vegan fare around? What's the best and worst country for finding vegan grub?

BA: it's very difficult, but getting easier all the time. many of the far east countries we play in are very hard to get things without fish bases or egg in them, so we travel with a cook on tour. our schedule is so different to other people that we have to have someone looking after the food. have you ever tried eating a full meal before you sing? it's impossible, you can only eat after the gig. that means dinner at 11:00 at night and what restaurant does that in every town...?!

Are you a good cook?!

BA: baked potatoes and salad...the best you've ever had

Have you had people making fun of your beliefs?

BA: no, on the contrary, many of them have converted.

With your friends at barbecues do you find that your hosts are sympathetic to your beliefs, and cater for you, or do you just end up eating fried onions on a plain bread roll?!

BA: i went out the other night with some Jamaican friends and they ate jerk chicken..i ate the rice and salad and it was fine! What are your feelings about zoos, circuses with animals, and rodeos?

BA: mixed. i think it's great for kids to see them because it educates about the unknown, but on the other hand, it sickens me to see the way the creatures get confined to small pens for the rest of their lives.

What's your point of view on factory farming: such as hens in battery cages, pigs in cramped stalls, and cattle feedlots?

BA: i absolutely hate it. it's no wonder so many people are ill and get cancer etc., i mean they're feeding animals with animals! it's no wonder mad cow disease started.

Is there one particular area of animal exploitation that you find particularly disturbing?

BA: supermarkets. it's too easy for people to just pick up hamburger and have no idea that it was a living cow at one time. people don't assimilate the two.

Do you know many other vegetarian musicians/artists?

BA: loads of them. Chrissie Hynde is the most intense of them all, but yes i know many.

How have you felt since you became vegan? Healthier... or on your last legs?!

BA: i cured myself of many allergies i thought were with me for my whole life. i used to have exema (skin rash). within two weeks of eating fruit in the morning and nothing else, it went away. i still follow that regime and it has never returned.other brilliant things are i have never had a weight problem and i have more energy than most people i know.

Would you encourage your partner or children to eat a vegan diet?

BA: without question. i couldn't go out with anyone unless they were veggie. my last girlfriend of 9 years converted to vegetarianism - of her own will, but she knew i was passionate about it. could you imagine kissing someone after a big hamburger? yuck.

Vitamin supplements - do you take them?

BA: i drink soya powder shakes with fresh carrot apple and apple juice everyday. you have to be careful about soya powders, as some can contain animal products. i use a product called "source of life - a burst of energy. you can get it in north america at: natural organics labs, amityville, NY, USA tel: 516 9575600. it's delicious and vegan.

How many people do you think you've influenced towards a cruelty-free lifestyle since 'coming out' and informing people of your beliefs?

BA: a friend of mine just had a baby and she has been bringing him up totally vegan. i think it could the greatest gift to have the choice to eat meat or not. i wish i had had the choice, but i know now. once you have the knowledge, it's hard to go back.

What do you want people to know about veganism and animal rights?

BA: if you love animals - don't eat them. also read "fit for life 2", it's a brilliant insight into what you are eating.