Frankie Lindia on playing with David Lee Roth.

Early in 2020, I had the opportunity to talk to talented guitarist/multi-instrumentalist Frankie Lindia. Frankie had recently landed a dream gig, namely as part of the guitar arsenal for the one and only David Lee Roth! As a lifetime die-hard Van Halen fan, this was definitely in Lindia’s wheelhouse.

I had originally posted this interview in March of 2020 as part of an article for another publication, and now share the interview portion here!

Frankie Lindia

When you are teaching students, do you ever have someone approach something in an unorthodox manner that makes you stop and think “hmm…that’s actually pretty cool”?

FL: YES! I have a lot of students that have their own unique ways when approaching a new instrument. It’s so interesting to see how someone approaches something on a clean slate. I love to help guide them in keeping it natural feeling yet implying certain proper techniques. If someone is approaching an instrument their own way, but I see it potentially affecting their playing in a negative way, I’ll say something. 

How did your album “Creatures of Habit” take shape?  Did you record in a home studio or book time? Was it a culmination of song ideas you’d had for years, or did you write for the record?

 FL: For the Creatures process I did everything myself. Literally all of it- and on purpose. It was a tremendous learning experience and work load to take on but I wanted it since I have the studio and enough gear to make something sound at least “decent” to me. Haha! I had a bunch of pieces to songs and eventually started laying things down. Unlike my previous original bands Diamond Lane and Legal Tender, I wrote more in the studio and on the spot… and although I prefer having EVERYTHING ready to record before that process- I must say I enjoyed a different work flow. The last song I wrote was “Reflect”. Just a couple weeks before I printed the CD’s I just shot the song out. To me it doesn’t really match the album but I really just felt it needed to be there! Why not right? Ha

As a multi-instrumentalist, what “normally” comes to you first for a song idea? If you are away from any instruments, do you typically hear a melody? Chord progression? Drum beat?

FL: As far as song processes go, I USUALLY come up with a riff/melody then build a progression around that …other than that I’d say a rhythmic idea is second- whether it’s drums or even a rhythmic riff. I love progressive, odd time grooves.

Can you shed any light on how you came to be part of David Lee Roth’s band?  To your credit, Roth obviously has very discerning ears and knows what and who will work.

FL: Roth fortunately came about through a referral by a good friend of mine! It’s such a pleasure working with DLR and such an amazing learning experience. Van Halen is my number one band, so the word surreal doesn’t even do justice!! I look forward to the future.

I would argue that the “in the know” guitarist recognizes that much of the really cool stuff is in EVH’s rhythm playing. It must be fun being able to dig into those parts,  especially with Roth himself performing with you? 

FL: Yes- EVH is a rhythm MASTER! I always knew the whole catalog and as an obsessive EVH inspired teen, I knew the rhythm parts as well. So being able to project that along with doubling some leads was amazing! Add that along with playing with the coolest musicians that I can now call friends, along with DLR himself??! And boom! MAGIC! Beyond grateful! 

How many guitars do you take to a show with Roth as opposed to a gig with Wheel in the Sky? Is it more, about the same?

FL: Honestly I’m a simple guy!! I only bring a back up! 2 guitars total! Always set up and ready to go 

What have you observed as far as differences in promoting your own music, versus joining an established “machine” ?

FL: Oh man. Night and day difference. I grew up in a local band and hit it hard. Then joined another and was hitting it hard! Honestly- if you do that and put in the work, promotion, networking, practicing, etc- it’ll catapult you into becoming a better all around person, especially if you get an opportunity to join a well oiled machine. It’s so important to be able to have your skills in your craft but also your business, while always remaining humble and grateful. Get your work done, have fun, be musical, stay inspired, always progress, set goals. 

What are your goals beyond 2020? Can we look forward to another solo album, or a collaboration?

FL: I’m Always planning for the next move! I will always be playing and taking on new projects as they come. That’s just me. I’ll always play music, and teach. I have to! Haha

Whatever opportunity presents itself- I’ll go from there, but what I’m doing now is concentrating on teaching and building my business! I love it so much. Playing music is a part of life, an extension of me, personally. Some understand, some don’t and that’s ok! I’ll be working with many artists in the future, along with more solo albums! Also- my EVH/CHARVEL team has me doing awesome demos for new equipment, and that’s always so much fun! Check out the killer gear with EVH Gear and CHARVEL Guitars- all the new lines of guitars and amps are just outrageously awesome! Stay tuned and follow me! 

Instagram: Frankie_Lindia


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