Charles M. Young, the music journalist who was among the first writers to champion punk rock in the United States, died on Monday after a year-and-a-half-long battle with brain cancer, according to reports in Rolling Stone. He was 63.
A graduate of Columbia University’s Graduate School Of Journalism, Young broke through into music journalism in 1976 when he got a job as Rolling Stone‘s associate editor. Once there, he brought the burgeoning New York punk scene into the national spotlight with stories on The Ramones and Patti Smith, among others. Young also wrote one of the first American cover stories on the notorious Sex Pistols, and he remained a champion of several bands that were subject to Rolling Stone‘s critical derision, including The Eagles and Van Halen.
Young left his position in 1980, but he continued writing for both Rolling Stone and Playboy. Aside from music, Young was also quite politically and socially active: he was a participant in the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations, and he also set up meeting spaces for Alcoholics Anonymous in New York.