Five years ago last month, Jacob Young left Pine Valley when the venerable ALL MY CHILDREN was canceled after 41 years and went “home” to the welcoming arms of B&B, the soap he cut his teeth on when he was just 18 years old. “I can’t believe it’s been five years,” the actor reflects. “They’ve been full years since I’ve been back. Rick has achieved a lot of his life goals: coming back to the company, running the company for a time. He found the love of his life and is finally a father. He has accomplished a lot. It’s been a great ride for Rick, and there’s still more to come. He’s got a little arc headed his way.”
Though still a vital part of the Forrester family as they deal with patriarch Eric’s health crisis, he’s not currently front burner. Many actors would get antsy not working every day, but not Young. He’s taking advantage of the down time to get back in the recording studio, and thanks his wife for not letting him sit around the house. “Christen heard me playing different songs and writing different songs and said, ‘You really need to talk to your friend Jeff.’ My friend Jeff Marino is the band leader and the drummer for Darius Rucker, who’s had multiple No. 1 hits in country music, not to mention Hootie & The Blowfish! So, I sent off some of my original stuff and Jeff said, ‘I’ll give you my two cents, man. You need to come down here [to Nashville] and record this,’ and so we’ve been collaborating with some other writers, along with my own original stuff, and I’ve been going back and forth to Nashville and laying tracks down. I cannot tell you how lucky I am. All the guys I’m recording with are all working with top country musicians. Adam Schoenfeld is Tim McGraw’s guitarist. They’re all just super-good.”
Young credits his new home life with getting his creative juices flowing again. Last year, the actor moved his family to rural Utah looking for a more peaceful environment to raise their children. But there was another reason, Young reveals. “I secretly only told a couple of people this: While I never stopped playing guitar, honestly, I wanted to have some inspiration to start writing music again, and seeing the mountains around me and living this lifestyle has really helped bring out that raw emotion again. It started in my first week out there. So far, I’ve laid eight songs down, which is a pretty darn good EP we’ve put together. Utah takes my breath away. It’s what I’ve always wanted. I didn’t know where I was going to end up landing, but it is what I envisioned. It’s the peace of mind I’ve been looking for for a long time.”
Young concedes that there was a little culture shock to overcome at first. “While the cost of living is better, there are not a lot of restaurants in our direct vicinity, which we miss,” he says. “And while we’re not near the ocean anymore, we have a great big reservoir out there in the summertime. There are beaches, and people wakeboard and go boating and paddleboard, so it really feels like we’ve got the best of both worlds — and there’s a great golf course close by so I can still play my golf.” And happily, he adds, commuting to L.A. hasn’t been too taxing. “I typically fly into L.A. the Sunday before we start shooting, but it can be daunting at times. The other day, I had to come in the day of, because there were no flights available. Everything was booked! So, I had to get up at 3 a.m. to get there. I made it in plenty of time, but you try not to do that just in case there’s some sort of delay. Happily, I haven’t had any problems other than that. The hardest part is just not getting to see my family at the end of a workday.”
Speaking of family, it turns out Young’s children share his passion for music, as well. “There’s one song I recorded that Molly loves and she’s always saying, ‘Daddy, play that song again,’ and she loves to dance around the house. Luke has shown some interest in guitar, so I gave him one of my guitars and he was thrilled. He goes around strumming it all day. He also decided to pick up the bongos and he told his mom he wants to get a drum set, so maybe for his birthday. Christen’s the one who suggested it! I told her we could try those digital pads, which would be quiet, or he could wear a headset and hook it up to a speaker, but she’s like, ‘No, he really needs to have the real thing.’ I said, ‘Okay. You said it, not me [laughs].’ I’m working on putting a music room together. We have a den that we like to play in, but I have an extra room downstairs that’s not being used, so I need to set it up as a soundproof audio and recording room. We can put Luke’s drum kit in there with my computer and my board and I can start working on music down there, too, with him.”
With his life in such perfect harmony, Young notes, “I am a really lucky human being. I have a wife who loves me, who has taught me how to be a better person, who has made me stronger in every way possible, and I can’t imagine my life without her. She picks up where I lack and I hope I do the same. We’re a good team and we’re raising three lovely children. Every day is a wonderful day with her, and I just want to continue to be the best dad I can be. I love acting, and having this time to write and record has been a blessing. I’m going stay active and do whatever I can in the arts and whatever will come will come. I’m not going to overthink it. I’m just going to do what I love.”
Just The Facts
Birthday: September 10
Hails From: Renton, WA
Wedded Bliss: Married wife Christen on May 13, 2007
All His Children: Son Luke, 7, daughter Molly, 3, and daughter Grace, 6 months
My Three Soaps: B&B’s Rick, 1997-1999, 2011-present; ALL MY CHILDREN’s J.R., 2003-11; GH’s Lucky, 2000-03
Award Shelf: A five-time Emmy nominee who won for Outstanding Younger Actor in 2002 as GH’s Lucky
New Music: You can follow Young’s country music trajectory at www.instagram.com/jwycountry.
Breaking New Ground
Young says he couldn’t be more proud of being a part of last year’s groundbreaking transgender storyline, when Rick proved to Maya that her past made no difference to him. “I praise Brad [Bell, executive producer/head writer] for his forward thinking on that, and the entire writing team really took the ball and ran with it,” he says. “We did what society has been trying to do for awhile now, which is to promote acceptance. I’m so proud of the way they wrote Rick as that all unfolded. Love is love, man. My hat’s off to them and I’m thrilled that they believed in me enough to play a part of telling that story.”
Did You Know?
- Young attended his idol Jerry Lewis’s 90th birthday bash at The Friars Club in April.
- His self-titled CD, Jacob Young, had the misfortune of being released on September 11, 2001. “That really detoured me from going back out there [with his music] and maybe I took too long to try it again, maybe I didn’t. But, it feels right to be doing this right now.”
- In 2006, he played the part of candlestick Lumiere on Broadway in Beauty and the Beast.