Photo Credit: Jerry John
Interview with Frankie Palmeri, Lead Vocalist of Emmure
HHM: Hello, I’m Harley with Hellhound Music, how’re you today?
Frankie: I’m good.
HHM: Can you tell the listeners your name and what your role is in the band Emmure?
Frankie: My name is Frankie Palmeri and I sing for Emmure.
HHM: So you guys are going to be on the upcoming Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival starting here in a little less than 2 weeks, who are you looking forward to the most being on this tour?
Frankie: Nobody, maybe Rob Zombie.
HHM: Do you prefer playing festival shows opposed to normal club shows? The Mayhem tour definately brings in some pretty insane crowds, size wise.
Frankie: I think festivals are cool because you get to play to so many people, and you can possibly reach new fans. I don’t really mind though, I have fun regardless, so as long as I am having fun and the crowd is interacting it’s cool. I don’t really have a preference.
HHM: For people coming out to Mayhem who have never been to an Emmure show what would you say to get them to stop by the stage and catch your set?
Frankie: If you don’t want to miss the best band playing, make sure you come watch our set.
HHM: You started Emmure when you were sixteen and now recently turning twenty-seven your views on some things have changed. How do you feel lyrically you’ve changed over the course of these records?
Frankie: You are talking me going from boy to man. I started this band when I was just a kid, just turned twenty-seven last week, so my outlook on things has changed drastically. I have spent that last eleven years of my life on the road, playing music, putting out records. My whole perception of things is completely different then when I started this band. It is hard to really sum it all up what it really is. There have been many hurdles that I have faced personally, creatively, financially, just everything. I am still working hard, I think that is really the biggest lesson of it all. Hard work pays off, we have worked really hard to get this far, and we are going to continue to work harder, to get farther. We are going to do whatever we can to maintain our status as being one of those bands who you must see. Our fans are amazing, as long as they are there, we will still be there.
HHM: Your last album “Slave To The Game” was your highest charting record to date, do you feel like the new material you guys are going to put out will surpass the last record?
Frankie: I don’t really care about billboard numbers, I think the billboard is a really sad idea of what the music industry is all about right now. Not many people are buying records anyways. We are not a band that gets radio play, we don’t do Saturday Night Live, or any NBC late night shows. We don’t have a label that puts millions of dollars into promoting us. We are a band that tours full-time. If people buy our records it is because we are out there in their town promoting it. Do I think that our new material will surpass “Slave To The Game” creatively? Yes, I do. I think that our new material is some of the most angry, most moving stuff that we have ever written. That is what I am looking forward to the most about putting out a new record. I don’t really care about billboard numbers, I think that is a complete farce. Everyone downloads everything, people steal music constantly, and that is just how it is. If people dig it enough to buy our album that’s great. If they don’t buy it, or they download it and they fall in love with it, and come to a show and sing along to every word, that’s cool too. We don’t really care, that’s not really what we are about. As far as I am concerned we are a band that makes heavy, aggressive music, if we get on the billboard at all that’s awesome, but if we don’t I don’t care.
HHM: Speaking of new material, when can we expect a new album?
Frankie: We are writing right now, hopefully we can get in the studio after summer ends. We are writing currently and it’s coming out pretty good, but as far as a release date, I don’t know, sometime in 2014.
HHM: Can you tell me the craziest tour story you can remember?
Frankie: Every story I have from tour is crazy. I can tell you an old one that I think is pretty funny that we were reminiscing the other day. We used to tour in a van, that we put a tv in, like a regular small tv old school set up. We had a PlayStation2 hooked up and we would play this game where whoever was driving at the time would be playing Guitar Hero watching the tv in the center console of the van, not a console in the dash, just a tv in the van, they would watch the tv and play guitar hero and someone else would steer the van as we are driving down the highway. We did a lot of crazy, stupid shit when we were younger.
HHM: I saw an interview a while back that you did about the game Street Fighter, and I really enjoyed what you took away from the character “Ryu” in Street Fighter 2 where you said “that you will always strive and continue, it’s not about “getting the medals” it’s about constantly working, and constantly moving forward to be whatever is it you’re meant to be”. When you walk off into the sunset (as Ryu did) after this Mayhem tour ends, what is the “next challenge you are seeking”?
Frankie: I want to maintain longevity as a band I think is the number one thing. I want to be a band that outlasts. A band who can continue to go and create, still bring people to shows to have a good time. In the music business you are not promised anything at all. We have made it pretty far and have lasted pretty long. We have lasted longer than a lot of bands that we knew coming up in the game did. Bands that we have toured with, or played shows with have disappeared off of the face of the Earth, forever, but we are still here. We want to continue to be that band that is still here, still making really heavy albums for our fans to enjoy and for new fans to come to appreciate. Every four years there is going to be a new fifteen year old kid who goes, “I’m pissed off at society, at the world, at my parents, at people who have betrayed me.” We are a band that encompasses the coming of age story. Growing up inside music as I have, I think has been able to have our band become that for people. We talk a lot about adversity whether it be with romance, internal conflicts, problems with people you work with, or friends who have let you down, it’s universal. We are not a band that just talks about one certain thing. I read lyrics and stuff from other bands and I just don’t get it, I don’t even get what they are talking about. I don’t understand where it is coming from. People that don’t write from personal experience, or don’t write from the heart, or what they have been through, I just don’t understand what they are writing about, it just doesn’t make sense to me. We are a band that prides ourselves on being real. I write about things that have happened to me, other than “Slave To The Game” which is a poor example of that, other than maybe a few choice tracks. What we have accomplished in the past I think we will be able to rehash into the future and continue putting albums out.
HHM: Thank you for taking the time to do this little preview for us! Everyone go check out Emmure and many many more on the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival tour coming to a town near you June 29th- August 4th!
Frankie: Very cool!
Interview by Harley HHM
Photo Credit: Jake Owens
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