I was so tempted to write about Frankie Clarke of Frankie and The Studs without mentioning her Dad – Gilby of Guns N’ Roses, or The Runaways, or Suzi Quatro because I want the music to stand on its own. But I quickly realized that it’s pretty much impossible because these things are what make Frankie Clarke, Frankie Clarke.
Frankie isn’t manufactured, she’s not jumping on a bandwagon or riding the wave of what’s popular, she just plays the music she loves, that she grew up on, and it’s in the blood that pumps through her veins. It just so happens that her father was in one of the biggest rock and roll bands on the planet. Gilby also grew up as a teenager in the 70s and I’m sure Frankie was exposed to his record collection early on. Those influences are on prominent display on F&TS new EP – High On Yourself.
Obviously having a famous father can have its advantages (he produced the EP) and its drawbacks but I get the sense that none of that really matters. Frankie like most of us, lives and breathes rock and roll, and it shows. It’s like she stepped out of the Almost Famous set into real life. She’s a throwback, a Joan Jett, a Suzi Quatro and she has the music to back it all up – unapologetic power chord glam punk rock and roll.
High On Yourself is out now and I’m pretty sure Frankie & The Studs is going to be a favorite around here.
Frankie + The Studs is….
Frankie Clarke- lead singer + rhythm guitar
Ronnie Simmons- lead guitar
Johnny Martin- bass
Matt Lucich- drums
Tell us how you put the band together…
It all started when I put out a video doing a cover of “Hot Child in the City” and I didn’t have a band at the time, but I started getting asked to play shows. I remembered that my dad had worked with a guitar player on another project named Ronnie Simmons, so I asked him if he would be interested and he brought along Johnny Martin. Matt Lucich actually recorded the drums on the cover, so he jumped on board too. Once we all got together we were all on the same page and we get along so well, we knew we had something rare and we became a band.
What influences Frankie & The Studs lyrically?
Angst. I’m a typically happy person, but music is my outlet to let out my anger.
Describe your sound as a cocktail – what would it be called and what would be in it?
I’d say we’re a “power punch”… flavorful but still hits you hard. Meaning I think we have some elements of pop, but our music is still in your face rock n roll.. hits you like the tequila in a punch bowl.. I don’t know if that makes any sense.
What songs do you remember most from your childhood?
The Beatles are the first band I have a memory of. I loved “Yellow Submarine”, still do. Also, Kiss was my first favorite band, and my favorite song was “War Machine”. I was obsessed with Gene Simmons.
If you could pick any time and place to travel back to for music, where would you go and what year would it be….?
If I could bounce between New York and London in the 70’s that would be my dream. I’d love to see the glam rock scene first hand, but also go to CBGB and see the Ramones.
What tunes are currently on heavy rotation for you…?
I’ve been on a Cheap Trick binge lately. Like super old school stuff like “He’s a Whore”. As far as new bands… I’m highly anticipating the new Paramore album so I’ve been going back and listening to a lot of them.
If you could tour with any band/artist right now who would that be and why?
My dream is to tour with Green Day. It would be full circle for me because that “American Idiot” album is what influenced me to start a band… Well, that and that movie “School of Rock”.
Give us your 10 song playlist for the tour van/bus/plane/preshow?
She’s One of the Boys – Nick Gilder
Blackmail –The Runaways
The Wild One- Suzi Quatro
Beat on the Brat- The Ramones
He’s A Whore- Cheap Trick
Do You Wanna Touch- Joan Jett
Diamond Dogs- David Bowie
Mambo Sun – T. Rex
New York Groove- Ace Frehley
Be My Lover- Alice Cooper
That’s just my playlist though… Usually Ronnie is the band DJ..
When you’re not playing and have some time off, where could we find you…
I’m always doing something music related.. If I’m not playing I’m at a show or going to a bar on a good music night.
What’s up for the rest of 2016 and 2017?
We just finished filming a new video so we’ll be releasing that soon! As well as we’re in the studio recording a couple new tracks. As for the rest.. You’ll have to wait and see!