Uncle Franky’s

Joe Kottke and Elisabeth Oster

  Uncle Franky’s has began offering live music opportunities for high school bands. According to the CEO of the Plymouth location Steven Krelitz, ‘Grill Jams’ will begin happening two nights a month.
  “There is a ten dollar charge at the door, but this includes live music as well as a hot dog, fries and soda,” said Krelitz. According to Krelitz, when ‘Grill Jams’ was held this previous March, up to ninety people occupied the restaurant.
  Bands, vocalists and instrumentalists of all genres are welcome to perform, but performers must bring their own instruments, equipment, sound system and mixing, said Krelitz.
  “The feedback has been excellent since most of the attendees are students and parents of the performers,” said Krelitz.
  The Plymouth Uncle Frankie’s location has been operating for ten years and has offered performance opportunities since 2015, according to Krelitz.
  “It is important to help young students blossom with their interests and natural ability,” said Krelitz. “Playing music at a local small venue serves many purposes. It builds confidence and self-esteem, provides the necessary practice to improve, and allows others to share in their motivation.”
  Although Uncle Franky’s has a location in Northeast and a newly-opened restaurant in Fridley, the Plymouth location is the only one that offers performance opportunities such as ‘Grill Jams,’ said Krelitz.
  Along with ‘Grill Jams,’ 2 other nights of the month at Uncle Franky’s will be occupied by DJs, according to Krelitz.
  Former Uncle Franky’s performer Jackson Harkness helped create the idea of ‘Grill Jams.’
  “I got to know the owner, Steven by playing solo shows last year when Uncle Franky’s had an after 5PM upscale restaurant scene,” said Harkness.
  According to Harkness, he began working during the day at the hot dog and burger joint.
  “From just killing time during work, Steven and I wanted to combine the menu from the day with the music scene of the night, and therefore, we created Grill Jams,” said Harkness.
  “I believe talent starts at a young age,” said Krelitz. “Having a daughter who sang and played guitar from the age of 8, I have seen first-hand how wonderful and important it is to encourage young people to believe in themselves and follow their dreams.