Ever wonder how to make it in love or how to make it in the music biz?  Well the leads in PORCHES. and Frankie Cosmos are going for both and they’re doing it together but at the same time, apart.

porches-frankie-cosmos-polaroid

featured image photographed by Quinn Moreland

all other images photographed by ERIN FONSECA

Love is a special thing and us at SHK acknowledge that.  To that end we found two lovebirds in a very special circumstance.  Not only is love hard but holding together a band is too.  These two manage both and they do it together.  Aaron and Greta (Or Ronnie and Frankie), the leads in both PORCHES. (http://porchesmusic.bandcamp.com) and Frankie Cosmos (http://ingridsuperstar.bandcamp.com), are in one of the best relationships we’ve heard sung about.  As put by one of their biggest fans “It’s a never ending love story.”

So how do they do it?  Keeping together a loving relationship and even singing about its intimate details for all to hear is a powerhouse move that we can get behind.  So, we went out and found these two.  We managed to talk with them in their cozy Greenwich Village apartment over some generously offered and much needed coffee… — NICK STEWART

porches-frankie-cosmos-greta- close-up

SO TO GET US STARTED, WHEN DID Y’ALL START YOUR RESPECTIVE BANDS?

AARON:  Um, porches started in 2010 or maybe beginning 2011?  I started it myself and then the current line up of the band has been what, since a year ago?  A year and a half we’ve been the current five piece.

GRETA:  My band started technically, I guess, between a band and starting to play with Aaron, uh, two years ago or something.  But I was making solo music and not playing shows and no one had heard of it before then.  So I’d say two years.

WHERE DID YOUR PSEUDONYMS “RONNIE” AND “FRANKIE COSMOS” COME FROM? 

Aaron:  Ronnie and Frank?  Ronnie started when Greta and me started dating.   One of my friends had called me Ron and I casually said I wanted it to be my new nickname and Greta started calling me that and quickly so did everyone else and then since I had a name I kinda felt like I should come up with one for Greta.   Then she introduced me to this guy Frank O’Hara so I started calling her frank or Frankie and that’s where it came from.  And then the cosmos was something we were talking about, throwing the word around.

GRETA:  Yeah it was like a theme Aaron was writing about a lot when I first met him was the cosmos

YOU HAVE A SONG CALLED “THE COSMOS” IS THAT RELATED TO THESE NAMES?

AARON:  It’s related but its not directly referencing Frankie cosmos necessarily

ON THE SUBJECT OF NOT BEING DIRECTLY RELATED TO “FRANKIE COSMOS,” IN A LOT OF SONGS YOU TWO DO REFERENCE EACH OTHER.  HOW OFTEN DOES THAT HAPPEN AND IS IT AN INTENTIONAL EFFORT?

AARON:  In that song “The Cosmos,” the line “I wanna go dancing in the public eye” was originally one of Greta’s lyrics and when we were recording that part of the song I didn’t have any lyrics for it.  I remembered Greta had said that before so I called her and asked if we could like share that lyric you know?  I think its fun sometimes to kinda have some sort of a conversation.

GRETA:  Yeah, a cross-reference.

AARON:  Between our bands you know?  Greta has a song called “hi there Ronnie underwater.”  But that’s not a lyric in the song.  So on a demo I just recorded the chorus “hi there Frankie underwater.”

GRETA:  Its just, if you’re paying attention really closely you can notice that reference but like, people probably wont

AARON:  Yea it’s more for a personal thing.  It s just fun to tie our imaginary characters together just to talk about in the songs and stuff.

GRETA:  I think that’s a really nice thing.  And its partly on propose and partly just that when you’re dating someone, that’s who your gonna write about.  I feel like as an audience member to our music, myself, its fun for me to tie them together.

YOU MENTIONED DANCING IN THE PUBLIC EYE.  DOES THAT EFFECT YOUR RELATIONSHIP IN THAT PEOPLE CAN HEAR ABOUT IT IN YOUR SONGS?

GRETA:  That’s so funny that dancing in the public eye is the lyric because it’s like, were in the public eye, I hadn’t thought about that…

AARON:  I think if anything its cool, I mean if they like both bands then to have even more of an entrance into the relationship and see the similarities.  Its like an inside thing.  Its good to give them the whole picture.  I don’t think it’s affected our relationship.

GRETA:  No I mean if you’re writing a song about a fight or anything problematic its definitely more intense cause the other person is thinking “well hey you’re exposing something really personal.  Some fans and friends even send emails saying “that songs really sad, are you and Aaron ok?” but I’m just writing a song.  It’s not always that I’m exposing something or we’re having a problem.  It definitely is intense but it doesn’t cause actual relationship problems it just means people read into the songs too much sometimes.

porches-frankie-cosmos-aaron-close-up

HAS EITHER OF YOU WRITTEN A SONG WHERE THE OTHER ONE HEARD IT AND FOUND SOMETHING UNKNOWN ABOUT THE RELATIONSHIP?

AARON:  No, maybe like, I’ve gotten more insight into how Greta was feeling about a particular thing or a lyric would come up and I’d go “that’s what it is that’s bothering you?” something like that.

GRETA:  Ill often ask Aaron about his lyrics and be kinda prying if it seems like its about having a crush on somebody.  Ill get really sensitive about it.   It took time for me to learn but we’re pretty good at acknowledging that it’s just the other person’s creative process.  Not every art piece is a journal entry.

AARON:  Yea even if it does hurt sometimes to hear a song or I’ll be worried about how I’m perceived after people hear a song where I’m doing something bad, I don’t want to interfere with Frankie cosmos’ songs you know?  And I don’t want my songs interfered with from being scared of writing something, so we try to keep it open.

GRETA:  Its also really nice that we play in each others bands so the fact that both bands plays songs that are older and that aren’t about each other, we both, by playing in each others bands, I think for me personally its empowering to play those songs and not be in the crowd listening.  Instead I’m up there having a really good time playing that stuff.

SPEAKING OF PLAYING IN EACH OTHERS BANDS, ARE THERE EVER ANY SCHEDULING ISSUES?  WHO PLAYS WHEN ETC…?

AARON:  Yea just recently since you’ve (Greta) been playing more shows.  I think it’s happened two times where we weigh which is a better opportunity for which band.  For example, we got booked to play for this band “Widowspeak” while Frankie Cosmos would be on tour.

GRETA:  Yeah we’re coming home early to play that show but its nice cause I’m in PORCHES. too and I want that opportunity for porches too.  I’m not just gonna go get mad for coming home a day early

SO WOULD YOU SAY BEING IN EACH OTHERS BANDS HELPS?  DO YOU FEEL MORE INVESTED?

AARON:  Yeah I’m sure that helps a little bit but PORCHES. is my baby and Frankie Cosmos is Greta’s baby.  Were both rooting for each other though.

GRETA:  We both care about both bands.  I care about both bands equally.  I was just saying the other day that if porches was given the opportunity to go on tour for a year, and Frankie cosmos wouldn’t be playing that whole time, I would do it.  Id say fuck it I’m just gonna do this band.

AARON:  We take it as it comes.

GRETA:  As long as were able to be making our music right now its good yeah.

HAVE YOU EVER PLAYED A SHOW TOGETHER?

GRETA:  We’ve done it.

AARON:  A few times.  It’d be great to do a tour together too sometime.  Greta thinks it’s not the same fan base though.  I think it would be a great fit.

GRETA:  I think my fan base is more specific and small so if I were to tag long on a tour, people might not like Frankie cosmos as much.

porches-frankie-cosmos-together

LIKE THE LYRICS YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT EARLIER, DO YOU EVER CONTRIBUTE TO EACH OTHERS BANDS?

AARON:  Well bounce ideas back and forth.  Not just in band practice.  With lyrics and stuff, I’ll ask Greta what she thinks of this or that.

GRETA:  Sometimes if I’m writing a song and I don’t know what chord should be under the melody I wrote, Aaron will just be sitting on the couch and tell me “A minor” or whatever I need.  He’ll know what chord it is I’m thinking of.  It’s good to have a partner in that.

ARE THERE ANY TIMES YOU DECIDE SOMETHING SHOULDN’T BE IN A SONG?  IS ANYTHING OUT OF BOUNDS?

GRETA:  I hope not.  I mean ill say to Aaron when he’s writing something that it sounds mean or hurtful but hell explain what it means and I’ll help him find a different way to say it but its not out of bounds to write it.  Its ok for us to write whatever we want.

AARON:  You have to turn off the relationship with band practice or at a show, which is not entirely possible.  You just gotta shut off what’s bothering you since its each other’s art and you really have to focus on that and not let other things get in the way you know?  It’s tricky but important.

GRETA:  I feel like I’ve gotten so much better at not requiring things from you during PORCHES. practice.  It took a long time to not want a hug during practice but he’s not giving a hug to anyone else at practice!

A COUPLE THINGS ABOUT THE LYRICS: IN FRANKLIN THE FLIRT YOU SING “I UNDERSTAND THE HURT YOU’D SPEAK ABOUT BEFORE YOU HAD ME ALL FIGURED OUT.”  WHAT’S THE MEANING BEHIND THAT?

AARON:  I don’t know really, it’s talking about how when Greta would flirt I would understand how I had made her feel when I was a flirt.  That she would speak about before she figured me out.

GRETA:  Before I realized you were serious?  That’s what I always thought.  I would get really hurt by stuff cause I didn’t believe he loved me, cause he wasn’t being good or something.  But then I figured him out.

AARON:  It’s kind of a diss to myself.  Like being overly simple.  It’s a vague feeling.  I used to be Ronald mystery and now I’m Ronald simpleton…

GRETA:  I still haven’t figured him out.  He’s still Ronald mystery.

THERE’S A PORCHES SONG “INTIMATE” WHERE AARON SINGS “I’M JUST A DITZ WONT YOU KISS ME ON MY LIPS.”  WHY GRETA, WOULD YOU KISS A DITZ? 

GRETA:  LOL, I don’t know, cause I love him?  That’s a really special song.  Aaron wrote it at my parents house while I was in school and then he left the second half empty for me to make record a part over.  It was before we were even dating and we had probably only kissed once.  The next day we recorded it and kissed under my piano.  It was literally the song we were writing to ask each other out.

GRETA, IN YOUR SONG “BOOGIE” YOU SING: “YOU’RE THE ONE I LIKE TO BOOGIE WITH.”  WHO DO YOU LIKE TO BOOGIE WITH AND DO YOU TWO BOOGIE OFTEN?

GRETA:  LOL that’s the best question!  I’d say you’re the one I like to boogie with (pointing at Aaron) and yea we boogie all the time.  I think I wrote that song when we were boogieing quite a bit.  We would put on music a night after Aaron had made a song and we’d boogie.  I’d be so excited a yell you’re the one I like to boogie with.

porches-frankie-cosmos-aaron-solo

IS THERE A FAVORITE BOOGIE SPOT FOR YOU TWO? 

GRETA:  Like a club?  I personally only boogie at home.  I feel like I’m a really good dancer but its only when I’m alone with Aaron that I can do it for me that’s the number one boogie spot.

AARON:  Yea same just home.

SO FINALLY, WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE FOR EACH OTHER’S BANDS?

AARON:  Great success, great victory.

GRETA:  The dream would be to both be creating music and have that be our jobs.  Porches fc world tour for sure.  For us to both make it would be the dream but I’d be fine with one or the other.  We’ll see what happens

 

Comments

comments