America wasn’t quite ready for Suzi Quatro.
It was 1973. At one end of the spectrum, Carly Simon was releasing her “You’re So Vain” reflections on Warren Beatty, Marvin Gaye was topping the charts with his sexual healing of “Let’s Get It On,” and rock was a typical boys club that would soon get coated by a glam- and disco-fused era. Then there was Suzi, a petite, bass-playing monster with her teenage “Can the Can” growl of Put your man in the can honey.
In Suzi Q, directed by Liam Firmager, Quatro’s life is unraveled from her Detroit upbringing singing alongside her sisters in a ’60s psyche-rock outfit, her eventual move to England, and her “Happy Days” break.
Back home in Essex, England, Quatro is ready to go—jogging. Once she’s done with this interview, she’ll be off running. She’s always been running. “Nothing is slowing down,” says Quatro. “I must’ve been about 8, and I remember I went for my physical and then I heard my mom talking to the doctor afterwards. I was eavesdropping, and he said to my mom, ‘Mrs. Quatro, whatever you do, do not give that girl vitamins.’”
That doctor managed to capture her true essence early on. “It kind of explains me in one sentence,” laughs Quatro. “I’ve always had that kind of energy level, and I don’t where it comes from. I play hard. Then, I need to sleep hard when I sleep. But when I’m awake, oh boy, I’m awake.”
Quatro, who just turned 70—celebrated with her two children (from first husband and early bandmate Len Tuckey) and separately with her husband, who lives in Hamburg, Germany—is working on a new album with her son, Richard, a follow up to 2019’s No Control, is piecing together the script for a feature film about her life, and just released a lyric book.