Ex-Simple Minds manager reveals pain of brother’s death

Bruce Findlay and his brother, Brian. Picture: Jane Barlow
Bruce Findlay and his brother, Brian. Picture: Jane Barlow
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music mogul Bruce Findlay has spoken of his heartbreak following the death of his brother – six years after he gave him a kidney.

Brian Findlay passed away last week at the age of 80 after a fresh battle with kidney failure saw him put back on dialysis and undergo a leg amputation.

The two brothers became well-known after they opened the first in a string of successful record shops – dubbed Bruce’s – in Falkirk in the 1960s, before launching in the Capital.

Bruce, who went on to manage Simple Minds, paid tribute to a brother he called his “hero and mentor”.

The 72-year-old said: “I’m absolutely gutted. He was a very alive person – a great person. It’s gut-wrenching.

“Some people become old even in their 50s, but Brian was a party animal. He loved to party, and he loved music, theatre, culture, football, horse racing. He lived life right up until he died. He was terrific.

“We went through so much together. Our lives were very intertwined – what with being partners in the record stores and with the kidney operation. We were very close.

“He had a really good life and an interesting life. He worked right up until he became too weak – he was 78 when he retired.”

Bruce donated his kidney to big brother Brian in July 2010 following hundreds of tests to ensure he was a suitable match.

Brian, who ran The Deacon House Cafe just off the Royal Mile before retiring two years ago, was placed on the transplant list in 2008 after doctors warned his kidney was deteriorating at a dangerous rate.

Over the last year, he had been put back on dialysis as his body started to reject his brother’s kidney.

Bruce praised the treatment Brian received at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, and said his brother had passed away peacefully in his sleep one week after his 80th birthday.

He said: “The ERI [staff] were just amazing – really helpful, and looked after him as best they could. We are going to have a little collection for them at the funeral.

“Although we are gutted and really sad, time heals.”