Rock And Rules: Peter Frampton

From finessing your craft to keeping your ego in check...

Rock And Rules – The guide to surviving a life in music, by those who know best…

Record-breaking rock icon Peter Frampton

KEEP TRYING

Never give up. We all have our ups and downs but basically I’m the eternal optimist in everything: health, music… life! I’ve been knocked down so many times. A musician’s career – even well-known – is up and down. I’ve learned how it feels to be at the very, very top, and I learned – even after that – how it feels to be at the very, very bottom. You’re either going to leave the business at that point, or you’re going to brush yourself off and say: fuck this, I’m going to do it! I’m going to bring myself back.

IGNORE THE TRAPPINGS OF FAME

It all seemed a little fake for me. Especially when I was in a band – like The Herd or Humble Pie – where fans ripped our clothes off… and it all seemed very funny to us! It was an adventure. You don’t expect it!

KEEP THE EGO IN CHECK

I think you’re allowed three weeks to have the biggest head in the world because you’ve finally succeeded, and then you have to bring yourself back to ground and say, look, I’m just a musician! People obviously like what we do but we’re the same as everybody else… it’s just we do something different than they do for a living. It’s my job. Even though it’s my passion, as well, it’s my job, just like everybody else has. 

GET THE CHEMISTRY RIGHT

With Humble Pie, me and Steve Marriott couldn’t have been more different, from our upbringing to our personalities. I can get along with just about anybody, but it was difficult sometimes. At the very beginning it was the fire between us that drew us together. We wrote together, and we had a true mutual respect. He had one of the world’s all-time greatest voices, but he wanted to share that. I think having me there meant he could pass stuff off on me, and share the limelight, and share the craziness. 

FOCUS ON THE END RESULT

I’ve worked with people that we are very similar, and we write great songs together. And I’ve worked with people that I wouldn’t necessarily write with, and the end results can be phenomenal. Opposites attract. I’ve written with a lot of different people and I enjoy it either way. It doesn’t matter. The end result is what matters. What you’re going for is the song. 

Rock And Rules: Peter Frampton

LEARN TO DEAL WITH THE PRESSURE

A call came through, and I got told ‘Comes Alive’ was the biggest-selling record of all time. Ever. And that’s when I got scared. I was petrified. Because I’ve always preferred to be number two or number three. I don’t want to ever be number one of anything again! Because it put so much pressure on me to come up with the follow up. Don’t listen to anybody else. Everybody has got their own agenda – it’s not yours!

SOME PEOPLE ARE BORN WITH IT – OTHERS WORK FOR IT

I believe that it can be genetic. That you are pre-disposed to be musical. My father was the greatest artist, but my cat drawing is two circles… that’s it! I have no talent in that area at all. I picked music up so quickly. I think so long as you work at it – especially with bands, it’s the time out there on the boards that turns you into what you want to be. You have to do it!

Catch Peter Frampton at the following shows:

November
5 Stoke on Trent Victoria Hall
6 Glasgow SECC
8 London Royal Albert Hall

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