Full name: Sarah Rose Chernoff
Nickname/pseudonym: Mimi Malone
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Where do you live now: Los Angeles, CA
Bands you are drumming in currently: The Franks
What you do for a living: Touring musician and badass
Tom Tom Magazine: When did you start playing drums?
Mimi Malone : I started playing the drums about 3 or 4 years ago when The Franks formed. Ron, Jean and I were sitting in my parents house jamming away, me on the drums, and I realized I wasn’t so bad. And from there my drumming career blossomed.
Tom Tom Magazine: Reason that you started playing drums?
Mimi Malone : I started playing because, A) franks needed a drummer and it was not gonna be anyone else other than me, and B) because it’s a fun instrument to play. Takes a lot of energy and enthusiasm. I love that.
Tom Tom Magazine: What is your favorite drum set-up? Why?
Mimi Malone : I love my drum set up cause its weird. I am a righty but I play lefty, so its an open handed style. I dunno if that makes sense, most drummers scoff at me when they see my style. But it’s comfortable for me, so suck it. My dad is a lefty and always had his drum kit set up like that, so whenever I would fool around on them it was that way.
TTM: Do you play any other instruments?
If so … how does that effect your drumming?
MM : I play keys and I sing as well. Singing is really my main instrument, I would say. A lot of the time, I feel like my drumming effects my other playing rather than vice versa. I am very drawn to rhythm and time, so I like incorporating that sensibility into my singing as well as key playing. You can really make singing as rhythmic as possible.
TTM: What do you consider to be the most challenging thing about the drums?
MM : The most challenging thing about playing the drums is being able to maintain strength and energy in a live setting. Its really really hard for me. I am a weakling.
TTM: Most notable show you ever played?
MM : Most notable show I have ever played as a drummer would probably be one of our first shows at this place in Glendale that doesn’t exist anymore, called The Scene. Jean got rowdy and kicked over the mic stand and the sound guy asked us to leave and never come back. It was funny. I love it when Jean sticks it to the man. Even though it was such a mild act of aggression in my opinion, not worthy of getting kicked out.
TTM: Have you experienced any setbacks as a female drummer?
MM : There are definitely set backs to being a female drummer, the main one being that right off the bat people don’t take you seriously. Not everyone, but tons from sound guys to other bands. It sucks but it’s a bit of an inevitability. Women have a lot to prove it seems, but I am up for the challenge. I never let it get me down, it only fuels me to be better and prove them wrong.
TTM: Who are your favorite drummers?
MM : I don’t have tons of knowledge of different drummers in history, but I do know Moe Tucker is rad. I love The Velvet Underground and love that she is a female representing in a fantastic band. I think she was also one of the first people to introduce the cocktail kit in a rock setting. I could be wrong about that so don’t quote me.
TTM: What are some of your other hobbies / interests?
MM : Other hobbies include cooking, watching Real Housewives, loving my dogs, and firepitting in my backyard with my friends.
TTM: Who are some of your favorite bands right now?
MM : I love so many different bands right now from Black Lips to Beach House. Such an array of sounds, but all worthy of recognition. Others off the top of my head would include, Twin Shadow, Liars, Little Dragon and the list goes on. But my favorite band of all time: Joy Division, duh.