Frank D’Esposito perfoming live. Photo by Victoria D’Esposito.
While eating at her favorite diner, an older lady approached drummer Bobby Rondinelli about giving her grandson drum lessons. Rondinelli had played for famous hard rock groups such as Rainbow and Black Sabbath in the 1980s and ‘90s. The woman’s grandson, Frank D’Esposito, was only in the third grade at the time.
Rondinelli was reluctant, claiming he was focusing on giving lessons to young adults, but he gave in.
In the following years, D’Esposito worked hard at his craft. He played in Long Island-based rock bands while studying with Rondinelli.
“Frank is a great guy,” said Chris Parrett, bassist for Bad Animals, a Heart tribute band based in Long Island, New York. “He’s a great and motivated player and is always working on the next thing to bring what he’s involved in to the top.”
Today, D’Esposito, now 21-years-old, tours with hard rock band, Brand Of Julez, and is excited for his future.
“I can’t think of anything else I’d rather be doing,” D’Esposito said.
Brand Of Julez recently recorded their new single, “Take It All Away.” The song was recorded and produced by Mike Ferretti, famous for his work with alternative metal band Sevendust. D’Esposito and the band recorded at The Barber Shop recording studios in New Jersey.
“I learned a lot,” D’Esposito said. “It was a great opportunity for the band and now we have our work on Spotify and iTunes.”
On May 25, the band will embark on a seven-week tour, playing many gigs out west. The group will be headlining some shows and be the opening act at others.
“Touring can be fun,” D’Esposito said. “You make a lot of connections, and I get paid to play drums.”
While playing in San Francisco last year, D’Esposito met Justin Kier, drummer for heavy metal band Otep. Kier was able to help D’Esposito get an endorsement with Paiste cymbals.
“That was a dream come true,” D’Esposito said. “I love Paiste cymbals. All my favorite drummers use Paiste, including Bobby [Rondinelli] and John Bonham from Led Zeppelin.”
In between touring, recording and band rehearsal, D’Esposito works part-time as a bar-back at Katie’s Bar in Smithtown, Long Island.
“Brian, the owner (of Katie’s) is very nice,” D’Esposito said. “He’s taught me a lot about running a business and communicating with others.”
On May 4, D’Esposito’s new project, Bomber, will be playing a show at Katie’s Bar. Bomber is a tribute band playing the music of Motorhead, one of D’Esposito’s biggest influences.
“Frank pays attention to detail,” said Steven Marchese, a hard rock guitarist based in Long Island, New York. “He loves Motorhead, so I would imagine they’re gonna sound great.”
D’Esposito continues to learn and make new strides. But, it all began with a love for rock and roll and Rondinelli.
“I learned a lot from Bobby,” D’Esposito said. “He’s the first professional musician I met. I’d like to say he’s proud of me.”