Froggy leaps into the spotlight


Froggy the Band

Froggy the Band during their music video for “7/11 Nachos”

Brooke Feenie, Morgan McClain, and Fiona Clark never thought that they would be known for a cheesy song about convenience store nachos; yet, here they are. They make up Froggy, a “riot grrrl” punk band local to the Montgomery County area. The teens, composed of a current North Penn senior, North Penn grad, and a Central Bucks West senior, started making music together in mid-2020, during the lockdowns due to the Covid pandemic, and their shared love of punk rock, irreverent humor, and feminist values have led to what their band has become today. I had the chance to sit down with this up-and-coming group to gain insight into their musical exploits.

Q: Let’s start out with the basics. How did you guys start the band?

Morgan: So, I met Fiona through my music school, School of Rock, and I met Brooke through a friend, so we’re just friends, but separately. And, I just posted on my Instagram story, “Who wants to start a punk band?” because I was bored in quarantine, and they both responded, and I was like, “Okay, well”, and then we did it.

Fiona: Yeah, I didn’t meet Brooke until Froggy was already a thing in-person, because, y’know, quarantine, so there were Facetimes before we actually got together. And so, it wasn’t for a month until I met Brooke at all.

Q: How did you guys decide on Punk for the style of the band?

Brooke: Well, I think we’re all very obviously quality-forward, and we’re always thinking that feminism, and putting women up in punk is really cool. I definitely wanted to play stuff that was fast, and that had meaning to us, so, Riot Grrrl, Punk, whatever you wanna call it, it’s there.

Morgan: Personally for me, I’ve always seen punk as one of the best genres because you can pretty much do whatever you want; there’s really no criticism. Punk is like a free expression, for example, in any other genre, they’d be like, “Oh, that solo just doesn’t fit it,” or, “That’s not good enough,” when you can just do whatever you want with punk. And it is love, and acceptance, and not critical. That’s what I love about punk so much.

Q: What were your prior experiences with music, instruments, all that?

Morgan: Each of us has a little bit of a background, I think. Growing up, I did a little bit of singing, a bit of theater, and I was really into – don’t laugh – you know, performance, and singing, and I played violin for a few years, but in seventh grade, I decided to learn some new things. So I got into guitar, and since then, built it up by playing bass and I guess a little bit of ukulele with that, so kinda whatever I’ve gotten into and building up from that.

Brooke: I always wanted to get into music growing up, because my dad would play punk stuff for me from a young age, so I would play Descendants or MXPX, which is very dear to my heart. One year for Christmas, I was like, “I want a guitar,” and he got me a bass instead, because he said, “The world needs more girl bassists.” I thought, “Whatever,” but I ended up liking the bass a lot, and I can still play guitar pretty well, but they’re both fun for different reasons.

Fiona: When I was in elementary school, one of my friends started taking lessons and being into band stuff, I was so jealous. I was like, “That is so cool! I’ve gotta learn an instrument!” And I wasn’t very good at guitar, because I’ve already tried guitar, so I decided to do drums, and then – and I was like twelve – here we are.

Q: How’d you come up with the name “Froggy” in the first place? It’s very distinctive.

Fiona: I guess I came up with it, as a joke, because we were just, like, “Let’s brainstorm some band names,” and then Brooke and Morgan had really good names, and I was like, “Froggy.” It was some sort of inside joke at the time, I don’t know. And then, I don’t know, we just kinda went with it. We thought, “That’s actually pretty good!” and it stuck.

Q: Let’s talk about “7/11 Nachos”, alright. That was your guys’ big thing. How did you come up with that?

Brooke: I, through my teenage years, which I guess I’m still in them; that makes me sound old. I would watch a lot of Beavis and Butthead, and listen to this band called “Screeching Weasels,” and they have a song called “7/11”. Beavis and Butthead are always eating their nachos, and I was just like, “I have to try this,” because I get obsessed with this groupie stuff. So, my friend’s mom took me to 7/11 one night, because she felt bad about something. I forget what it was, but she was like, “Get whatever you want.” So I’m like, “This is my chance. She’s gonna buy me whatever I want.” So, I got the nachos. And I was like, “Mmm, these are really good. I’m gonna get Fiona and go to 7/11 to get more of these.” Just to be funny, and make my friends like me or whatever. But, I actually really liked them, so I was like, “I bet I could make a song about this.” I go through things where I’m like, “What do I wanna write now?”, and then I just finish the whole song, and it’s trippy. Usually, it ends up good, sometimes it ends up bad. But, I was just sitting there, waiting for something, and “Bang!”, there it is.

Fiona: And then it became a fan-favorite, y’know? Before we published it, we played it at our first gig; it was like a solo, small music festival. And we played it for the first time, and everybody went crazy over it, y’know? The reason we put it out as one of our singles was because we thought that, like, “We need a single, like, what are we gonna do?” And then, I was like, “Hey, my mom really likes this one,” so we thought we could give it a shot, and that worked. I’m really glad we picked that one.

Q: Did you ever expect, in your wildest dreams, for 7/11 to actually respond to that, and to sponsor you?

Morgan: Yeah, no, it was crazy. It was the craziest thing, and our first ever interaction with them was them commenting on it, and said, “We’ve been listening to this for days.” And that’s as far as we thought it would get. But it was still the biggest thing in the world for us since we probably didn’t even have, y’know, that much of a following at that point. And then, a few weeks after, I think, or a week after – something like that – we got in contact with them about doing the whole thing.

Brooke: Yeah, honestly, being in the music industry and knowing people from it for so long, I learned to set your expectations extremely low, so we were very surprised when they reached out. We didn’t think it was real at first, either. We thought, like, “We’re being scammed.” And then they were like, “This is not a scam, I know it sounds like one.” So yeah, it’s crazy.

Q: Has their involvement helped a lot with your guys’ popularity?

Brooke: A lot of our popularity is pretty random, so, originally a lot of our stuff was getting around on TikTok, but then, our TikTok didn’t really grow.

Fiona: It did for a week, then it just dropped off, so…

Brooke: I was like, I mean, “I don’t really care, so.” That platform has definitely changed a lot though. It definitely helped us a lot as we started, and it got our streams up by a lot. 

Morgan: So maybe we’ll get our 10 cents from Spotify. (Laughs) I think they also discovered us through TikTok or Instagram’s version of it.

Brooke: Starting off, a lot of people did find out through it. 

Morgan: Yeah, we posted our first video and then got a big following from that, but 7/11 definitely helped. Especially in the area, because a whole lot of people are like, “Who is this? What are they doing?” 

Brooke: And, a bunch of – and I hate to use this term – a bunch of boomers were in their Facebook Groups, being like, “This band sucks because it’s not P!nk, and I thought P!nk was filming here.” People thought she was filming a video because she’s from here. Yeah, even though she almost never talks about it (the area), ever, they were like, “It’s P!nk! She’s from here!” That’s the thing around here.

Q: Are you guys still in high school? If so, which ones?

Morgan: I graduated, Fiona goes to CB West. I went to North Penn, I graduated last year.

Brooke: I’m doing virtual right now, and it is really bad. I guess I’ll have to come back to in-person.

Q: What has inspired you guys, both personally and professionally?

Brooke: For me, this band, “The Dead Milkmen”, made me not only want to start a band, but to sing, write stuff, and I do. And now that I know these guys personally, it makes it real for me. To be able to know the biggest inspirations to you is crazy. But then, also, I watch a lot of what people would consider ‘stupid humor’, like Beavis and Butthead, South Park, and Robot Chicken, stuff like that. And I see a lot of women out there, raising their voices, being real – “L7”…

Fiona: Definitely the original Riot Grrrl stuff, because it was purely just teenagers, and their music, the way they learned to speak with their voice and be heard about it was just inspiring. And a lot of punk, in general, was about, like, “Hey, let’s speak up against this, and rebel against this,” and that’s very important to us. I also found a lot of musical inspiration from grunge, and they do a lot of creative and big things, and we love the sound – guitar, stuff like that.

Q:  Has your guys’ growth in popularity allowed you to be better activists for some of the issues you’re passionate about, and if so, what are some of these issues?

Morgan: Honestly, I’d say we’ve been activists for stuff that we’ve believed in even before we were that popular.

Brooke: Yeah, we went to the protests and stuff together when we had just started out. Black Lives Matter, Women’s Marches and Rights, and all that.

Morgan: Yeah, we still decide to do that stuff as much as possible with our demand and schedule, but y’know, we do what we believe in. We’ve worked plenty of times with the Rainbow Room in Bucks County, and big queer bands because we always do the queer events and whatnot. Because, y’know, it’s very important that there’s a safe space for LGBT folks and a safe space for them to be heard and have their needs met, that’s very important. So sometimes we’ll play fundraisers and events, and, y’know, we love doing that. We’ll do whatever we can get our hands on, really, we can be vocal and heard about. Y’know, supporting that and doing whatever we can to help it.

Q: How about concerts? How many have you played so far?

Brooke: Maybe 50 at least.

Morgan: It’s only been a year and a half since we’ve started the band, and even then, we couldn’t play. We’ve been only playing out together for about a year now. But, yeah, a lot of them aren’t huge things. Some of them were really big crowds.

Brooke: Whenever we play PhilaMOCA we do really nicely, and we’re fortunate enough to play there two more times this year, so…

Morgan: And skate park gigs, too. There’s always a solid crowd, and they’re all really cool.

Q: Finally, what are your guys’ future plans for all of this?

Brooke: I wanna be famous and go on tour. (Laughter)

Fiona: If we can make a career out of doing this, that’s my biggest dream come true. Because, not only this being my job, but the fact that other people can hear our stuff and relate to it, and it being special in the arts, that’d mean so much to me. Something that I put out that means a lot in my heart that becomes something very meaningful in other peoples’ hearts and in the world means a lot to me. So there’s a lot of people doing that and like, it’s great to have that.

Brooke: I like being able to have my voice heard and stuff, like, I wrote “Midwest Emo Scum” about a very personal experience to me, and I’ll have people come up to me and message me being like, “Something like this happened to me, blah, blah, blah,” and I’ll be like, “Do you wanna talk about it?” And people have told me so much stuff, and the fact that similar experiences happen to so many women gives you that connection because, like, guys are gross.

Morgan: And same with “Silverskin” about bad experiences with a relationship in the past, some people come up to me, and they’ll be like, “Oh, I love this song, what’s it about?” And it’s a personal experience and I’m sharing a little bit about it. And, like we’ve said, we need more songs like that to be out there, so there’s more awareness.

Fiona: Yeah, I think shared experiences are like, super important and very cool to have, even for bad. But, overall, I do want a career out of music. I think it would be very cool.

Froggy can be found on Instagram here and their Spotify can be found here.