Our interview for today is with the very first woman in rock – Suzi Quatro. She needs no introduction but here we are: Suzi is a bassist and vocalist who has had a 57 year long career and doesn’t plan on stopping anytime soon. In just a couple weeks she will be releasing her latest album, “The Devil In Me”. We hope you enjoy this interview!
What drew you to play music and bass specifically?
I am a percussive musician.. I started age 7 on bongo drums.. then went to classical piano (percussive instrument).. then to playing with the school orchestra , getting to first chair in the percussion section.. then teaching myself bass… all percussive instruments.. it is the way I am musically wired.
Interesting. What was your journey from having your first hits in music to then landing the role Leather Tuscadero on the hit television series “Happy Days”?
Well.. that is a long involved question.. I started professionally at age 14 in our first all girl band ‘The Pleasure Seekers’… in 1971 I was discovered by 2 different record companies and offered a solo contract.. I took the English offer, Mickie Most.. spent 18 months recording with no success, formed a UK band, then Can the Can number one around the world in May 1973… the non stop hits and touring all over the world including America, Japan and Australia.. and while on tour in Japan was asked to come and audition for Happy Days.. which I did.. I landed the role.. 3 seasons.
You will be releasing a brand new album, “The Devil in Me” in just a few weeks. What about this album are you most excited for people to hear?
The original Suzi Quatro.. on fire… totally on fire… fresh, energetic, being comfortable in my skin… and some beautiful ballads.. it is a great album.
I look forward to hearing that. You’ve described the album as the best album in your career. At what point in the writing/recording process did you know that this one would be your best?
Right from the start.. it had a vibe to it.. Richard and I had already gotten our feet wet with NO CONTROL, we knew the partnership worked.. and after getting our feet wet.. WE DIVED IN.
Incredible. If “The Devil in Me” came out in the ‘70s, which song would be the biggest hit?
omg.. that is so difficult.. could be the title track.. could be Betty Who.. could be Motor City Riders.. in fact.. there are no ‘fillers’ on this album.. . which is remarkable.
That’s good to hear. I’d say you’ve had a lot of success over the past 50 years you’ve been in the industry. I want to know how you define success and do you believe you’ve reached that?
It’s now 57 years…. how do I define success.. well.. it’s achieving your goals, and yet not achieving your goals.. always having something to reach out for is important…keep the hunger alive.. keep the flames lit… keeping the need inside… and.. staying normal. ‘that’ is success.
Being one of the very first women in rock, I’m sure you’ve experienced a lot of sexism in the music industry. How did you deal with that? What advice would you give to someone currently facing that?
I am not ‘one’ of the first women in rock… there was nobody before me…. I did not have a blueprint. I was THE first.. it is my legacy… How I dealt/deal with it.. simple.. I have never and don’t do now, gender. I am a musician, plain and simple. That is the right way to approach it.
I love that. If you weren’t a musician, what do you think you’d be doing?
Well.. that’s difficult.. I think you have to broaden that to if I was not in the ‘arts’.. because I do act too and have done a little of everything this industry has to offer. As an alternative career.. I would have gone into psychology or been a criminal lawyer.. both appeal to me.
Where can people find you and your music online?
The usual places.. Spotify, Youtube, all my sites.. I am on Instagram @suziquatroreal… website – www.suziquatro.com, Facebook both private and official, streaming.. normal outlets for this day and age.
Shannon Wilk is a Connecticut-based music industry creative; bassist and photographer. She has brought her bass guitar skills to stages all over the country in various bands, most recently The Heartless and Alice Loves Alien. Dubbed the “female Rudy Sarzo”, Shannon has a unique and captivating stage presence in addition to her distinctive playing style. Since beginning her professional career in 2019, she has made waves in both the live music scene and the digital world, playing legendary stages such as the Whisky A Go-Go and the Monsters of Rock Cruise, as well as accumulating nearly 1 million views across online platforms.At 17 years old, Shannon Wilk has become a force to be reckoned with in the rock n’ roll scene. In addition to her blossoming music career, she has continued to showcase her passion for live music through concert photography. From KISS to Foo Fighters to Evanescence to Yungblud and more, Shannon has captured rock royalty through her lens. In 2018, she launched her own publication, Rockin’ Interviews, where she has connected with beloved ‘80s heavy metal artists through her independently produced podcast.