‘Get your head down, work hard, enjoy life, look after your loved ones and make sure the community around you is a beautiful place and whatever else happens further afield it doesn’t even matter’.
Franko Fraize is an independent British Rapper from Thetford. He describes himself as ‘a man from a small town in England making songs about my small town in England’.
We were lucky enough to catch up with him just as he finished his set on the Access stage at Latitude.
What’s your connection with Access?
‘Access has always been one of them things on the doorstep. Kids from where I am from go there. I started speak to Ian [Partnerships manager] who helped me out and got me a few bits and pieces. Ian’s a connected fella and a good fella as well. That’s the thing with Access, you have big celebrities like Ed Sheeran, but real knowledge is what it gives you more than any other college. I’ve been into Access and done a talk about being independent and getting into the industry. I see some good talent there and I’ve kept in touch with people since.’
So how long have you been doing music for?
‘The last 3 years have been mad. It’s proper broke through the parapet but I’ve been doing it for around 8 years. I started rapping about my town, to rapping on beats but I never thought it was the right sort of backing. So, I put a band together so they could play all my tracks and it just appeals to crowds differently. So, you go from doing these grimey raves, which was good, but now I feel I’m setting out my own storm. Adults and kids can get into it as it’s getting a wider appeal.’
Who are your influences?
‘Everyone says Mike Skinner from The Streets who I’ve done some work with. The thing is when you get compared to him, I feel like I am trying to do my own thing and not tread on anyone’s toes. I went to see Mike, we had a good chat and he followed me on twitter and he has given me his blessing. I’d say he was an influence mixed with a little bit of old school indie. My music is a real festival outfit because it feels so good. It’s very loud and energetic and it’s working so I’m happy.’
What are your lyrics about?
‘Life really. The thing is for me, I always related to music like most people do. I live in Thetford, a working class environment, which doesn’t mean it’s all rubbish. We see the bad, but we also see the good. I just try and write music for really normal life because that’s the life I’ve lived.’
What one piece of advice would you give to our students wanting to make it in music?
‘To make it in music, I really believe that you have got to be content on who you are and the music you’re making. You’ve got to be the governor and if you haven’t got the integrity of who you are and what you’re doing, you will crumble with it.’
Franko Fraize is currently on tour around the UK. His plans for next year are; ‘ we are just going to try and smash it’.
To keep up to date with what he’s up to, head to his social media @frankofraize