Suzi Quatro at Her Leather Best
Suzi Quatro was a successful recording artist of the 1970s who created an image of the ultimate leather rocker chick. A Detroit native (grew up in Grosse Pointe,), she even went to the lengths of wearing leather bikinis and leather boots by the pool, which got her quite a bit of press attention. It was quite scandalous behavior for the '60s and '70s.
Suzi proved an inspiration of other women rockers such as Joan Jett, who adopted a similar leather look.
|Suzi on "Happy Days."|
Ultimately, all the leather-wearing paid off when Quatro was picked to play the part of "Leather Tuscadero" on the hit television show "Happy Days." That is how many remember her, wearing leather and going toe-to-toe with "The Fonz."
Leather Tuscadero was in seven episodes of Happy Days. Suzi played "All Shook Up," "Heartbreak Hotel" and "Johnny B. Goode," among other classic tunes.
|I include a couple of different versions of this shot for "Rolling Stone" because it is so iconic|
Anyway, the pictures speak for themselves. Either you like the leather biker chick thing, or you don't. Suzi had her own band for many years, the "Suzi Quatro Band." However, there never was any question that it was all about Suzi.
The bass player's function, along with the drums, is to be the engine that drives the car... everything else is merely colours.
It was wild. I spent all of my time doing gigs, TV appearances, interviews, or recording. I could write a book--and probably will.
A bass should sound like a bass with the thump of the finger against the wood, like it began with stand up.
When you are famous, you never can be sure why somebody's being nice. You just have to develop a very good sixth sense.
I am flattered to have been the woman to have opened the door for female rockers to be accepted into the mainly male industry.
I've always done a bass and drum solo that lasts about 10 minutes. The main thing is to use it only when you need to.
Nothing heals like love and time
The bass and drums are the engine, and the key to good bass playing is it's not what you play, it's what you DON'T play that counts. You leave the spaces, they're more important than anything.
I made up my mind that I was going to be just like Elvis. It never occurred to me that Elvis was a man. I just wanted to be him. He had a huge impact on me, right down to that black leather jumpsuit he wore on the '68 Comeback Special.
I don't know, I don't pay attention to critics anyway. They either like me or they don't, you know what I mean? I am too long in the tooth to worry about that.
I had a musician father, a very religious mother who totally supported us. My mom gave me my moral code which, even if I was bad, I wasn't bad for very long.
I do think fame can distort reality. I've always felt that.
The hardest instruments for women to play are bass and drums. Drums because of the physicality needed and bass just because its heavy and it's not an easy instrument to play.
I do love acting. It's my second love and I would love to do more.
Suzi's "Stumblin' In" duet with Chris Norman was a top player on easy listening in the late '70s. Down at the roller rink, couldn't miss it. Right before the Eagles, right after the Starland Vocal Band, maybe shoehorned in there with some Linda Ronstadt....