Posted by themusicsover on June 18, 2010
Frank C. Starr
1958 – June 18, 1999
Frank C. Starr was a charismatic lead vocalist for hard rock bands, Alien, SIN, and most famously, the Four Horsemen. Raised on Long Island, NY, Starr eventually landed in Los Angeles to take his shot at the big time. After a short run in a band called Alien, Starr began to make a name for himself fronting a band called SIN through the mid ’80s, but struggled to get noticed in the same Sunset Strip scene that gave us Guns ‘n Roses, Ratt, and Great White. After the band called it quits in 1984, Starr landed in the Four Horsemen, a rock band that took its cue more from ’70s rockers like Lynyrd Skynyrd or AC/DC than such contemporaries as Poison or Faster Pussycat. After self-releasing a four-song EP in 1989, the band were snatched up by Rick Rubin’s Def American label and went into the studio with Rubin producing. The resulting album Nobody Said It Was Easy, garnered enough critical praise and fan support to land them on the road touring with the likes of Lynyrd Skynyrd and the Black Crowes as well as regular video rotation on MTV. But all this wasn’t enough to translate into significant album sales. At the same time, word was getting around that Starr was developing a reputation for his drug use and subsequent run-ins with the law, reportedly leading to a stint in jail on drug charges forcing the label to drop the band. But all were false claims according to the band, the only reason they were dropped was because of poor record sales. The sudden rise of grunge as well as some internal fighting seemed to be the end of the Four Horsemen, but after some personnel changes, they regrouped and began working on a new album in 1994. But after losing original drummer, Ken “Dimwit” Montgomery, to a drug overdose in September of 1994, the band suffered another serious blow on November of 1995 when Starr was struck by a drunk driver while riding his motorcycle along Sunset Blvd in Los Angeles. He went into a coma and never recovered and eventually died from those injuries on June 18, 1999.