Francis John Miller (born 2 November 1949) is a Scottish rock singer-songwriter.
Miller wrote for and performed with many recording artists and is best known for his album Full House, the single “Darlin'” and his duet with Phil Lynott on the Thin Lizzy song “Still in Love with You”. In 1978 Bob Seger remarked that Miller “was a huge influence” on him.
Miller, with elder sisters Letty and Anne, was raised in Colvend Street, Bridgeton in Glasgow, by his parents, Cathy and Frank. He played football for the school team and Harmony Row Boys Club, his love of football probably inherited from his maternal grandfather Archie Kyle who was signed to Glasgow Rangers FC. He attended Sacred Heart Primary School and was an altar boy at the Sacred Heart church.
He first became aware of rock and R&B through his mother’s record collection. She had a fondness for Ray Charles while his sisters introduced him to Little Richard and Elvis Presley. He identified instinctively with Little Richard’s flamboyant aggression, once saying “The music was alive, exciting, I loved it. I realised later that I could get my own aggression out through music. R&B and Soul Music, I just knew was what I really loved”. He started writing songs at the age of nine after being given a guitar by his parents and wrote “I Can’t Change It” when he was twelve years old, this song was later recorded by Ray Charles. At 16 years of age, whilst still at school, Miller had his first audition in the Manhattan Club, Bridgeton, Glasgow, and was chosen in preference to Saul Byron to sing with The Deljaks. After a couple of years it was on to West Farm Cottage and then a soul outfit called Sock It To ‘Em JB which featured good friend Jimmy Dewar.
Miller began singing professionally as a teenager with a Glasgow band called The Stoics. In mid 1970, he moved to London to further his career. In 1971, he joined forces with the guitarist Robin Trower, who had just left Procol Harum. Miller introduced fellow Glaswegian bassist and vocalist James Dewar to Trower and the three of them, along with ex Jethro Tull drummer Clive Bunker, formed Jude in July 1971, but despite significant coverage in the British music press, they broke up in April 1972 without recording an album. The Miller and Trower composition “I Can’t Wait Much Longer” later appeared on Trower’s first solo album Twice Removed from Yesterday.
Later in 1972, Miller signed a solo recording contract with Chrysalis Records, and recorded his first LP Once in a Blue Moon, with record producer Dave Robinson. The album was an early example of pub rock, and featured backing by the pub rock band Brinsley Schwarz. Miller received consistently good reviews, although his singles and albums were not chart hits, Chrysalis continued to invest in his talent. In 1974 Miller sang “Still in Love with You”, as a duet with Phil Lynott; the song appeared on the Thin Lizzy album, Nightlife. Miller’s second album High Life, was produced and partly written by Allen Toussaint and recorded in Atlanta, Georgia during 1974. Although two album tracks, “Shoorah Shoorah” and “Play Something Sweet”, subsequently provided hits for Betty Wright and Three Dog Night respectively, the album was not a commercial success.
Miller’s next album The Rock (1975) was recorded in San Francisco using the producer Elliot Mazer, who had co-produced Harvest for Neil Young. The next album Full House (1977), was produced by Chris Thomas. The lead off track “Be Good To Yourself” became Miller’s first UK Top 40 hit, peaking at No. 27 in the UK Singles Chart during June that year. In 1978 Miller hit the UK Top 10 with the song “Darlin’ “, which peaked at No. 6 on 14 October 1978. “Darlin’ ” also made the Billboard “Bubbling Under” chart in the US, peaking at No. 103. The next single penned by Miller “When I’m Away From You” rose to No. 42 in UK, but failed to chart in US. A few years later, the song became a US Country No. 1 hit for The Bellamy Brothers.
Miller suffered a brain haemorrhage in New York City on 25 August 1994, while writing material for a new band he and Joe Walsh of the Eagles had formed with Nicky Hopkins and Ian Wallace. Miller spent five months in a coma; when he emerged, he was unable to speak or sing. He then went through rehabilitation The BBC Television documentary Stubborn Kinda Fella (1999), featured Miller and his battle to recover. In this documentary, Rod Stewart stated that Miller “was the only white singer to have brought a tear” to his eye.
Miller is no longer able to perform, but a new album containing old takes with Frankie was released 2016. The album, “Double Take” contain 19 songs brilliantly mastered and produced with artist like Rod Stewart, Bonnie Tyler, Joe Walsh, Elton John, Kid Rock among others who are performing duets with Frankie. (by wikipedia)
And here´s one of his finest bootlegs, recored live at the famous and legendary Paradiso Club in Amsterdam during his very sucessful European Tour in 1979 …
What a sjow, what a concert … including his excellent band …
Listen to one the finest singers of good ol´ Scotland !
And enjoy these rare recordings !
Recorded live at The Paradiso Club, Amsterdam, May 11th, 1979
Excellent FM Radio Broadcast
Fran Bryne (drums)
Tex Commer (bass)
Ed Deane (guitar)
Nick Judd (keyboards)
Frankie Miller (vocals, guitar)
Steve Simpson (guitar, accordion, violin)
01. Pappa Don’t Know (Miller) 3.42
02. When I’m Away From You (Miller) 3.19
03. Cold Turkey (Lennon) 5.10
04. Ann Eliza Jane (Miller) 4.03
05. Falling In Love With You (Miller) 6.36
06. When Something Is Wrong With My Baby (Hayes/Porter) 5.17
07. Be Good To Yourself (Fraser) 3.02
08. Is This Love (Marley) 3.40
09. Ain’t Got No Money (Miller) 5.58
10. Down The Honky Tonk (Miller) 5.27
11. Let’s Spend The Night Together (Jagger/Richards) 3.34