This blog is dedicated to all things Frank – past, present and future.

Monday, October 12, 2015

South Oaks - ( ( ( transmissions ) ) ) - (Sep. 2015)

This project actually started a year ago when we were asked to contribute a song for a Long Island band compilation. We went into My Low Studio in September of 2014 and recorded “Planet X”. A year later, the comp still hasn’t seen the light of day so we included it on this release. 

Eric Hoffman was the drummer on “Planet X”, but our schedule of getting together once a year proved to be too demanding so he bowed out for the ( ( ( transmissions ) ) ) session. His logical replacement was Steve Johnson. Steve was already our engineer (and owner of My Low Studios) and probably our biggest fan. Plus…he’s a pretty good drummer to boot.

For the most part, the songs on ( ( ( transmissions ) ) ) are in keeping with the traditional South Oaks sound. Two songs, though, are a bit of a departure...or break new ground (however you choose to see it). Reflection On The Sea” is kind of pop oriented…sad pop, that is. It’s a little out of our comfort zone but yet it totally sounds like us. Our last outing had “Echoes of Laughter”, which was also a departure, so maybe that’s our thing.

The other new-type of song is “APOLLO IV”, a bass solo (essentially). Jim brought that one to the table and he’s also the performer. It’s named after his Apollo IV bass, which he composed it on and only feels comfortable playing it on. The thing is, the electronics inside the bass stopped working a while ago so we were forced to record it with a mic, acoustically. Alone, it was a little compromised sonically and didn’t sound like the rest of the album. But then we added some atmospheric noise in the background and it just gelled – that electro/acoustic thing.

My opinion; this is our strongest recording yet. But, then again, I always fall in love the the last thing I worked on.

You can download ( ( ( transmissions ) ) ) for FREE at our bandcamp page or by clicking the link below…

01- APOLLO IV (†)
02- Planet X *
03- Last Laugh
04- Sword of Damocles
05- Belief
06- Reflection On The Sea
07- Grand Design
08- Forever and Ever After That

We always like to celebrate our new releases with a video for each song. Here they are…


"Planet X"

"Last Laugh"

"Sword of Damocles"


"Reflection On The Sea"

"Grand Design"

"Forever and Ever After That"

Follow South Oaks on Facebook.

Jim Burns - vocals
Frank Fusco - guitar
Kevin Purcell - bass
Steve Johnson - drums 

Monday, January 5, 2015

Franklin Mint - Contact (2014)

For all intents and purposes this here collection of glorified demos is my solo album. 18 years in the making! I wrote these songs between 1996 and 2002, but only started recording them since 2005, on again, off again (mostly off). Five of the songs were uploaded to a myspace page back in 2008, but I remixed them for this release. The rest of the songs have been left in different states of unfinished until now.

These songs would've been Jagunda songs if I could've kept that band going, but that wasn't in the cards. There's still a few more songs from the '96-'02 batch not represented here. Some I haven't recorded yet and some I did record but aren't worth sharing.

Hope you like it.

[DOWNLOAD] Franklin Mint - Contact (2014)
01- Blast Off For Kicksville
02- Get To It
03- Shadow of a Doubt
04- On The Brink
05- Positive Affirmation
06- The Man With The Bag-O-Cans
07- No End
08- Gimme Five (I’m Alive)
09- Change Your Ways
10- Cruisin'
11- Rock 'N' Roll Son
12- Dig Deep

Here's a few of the songs to sample...

"Blast Off For Kicksville"

"Shadow of a Doubt"

"Positive Affirmation"

"Change Your Ways"

Friday, December 26, 2014

2014 Christmas Card


Happy Holidays!
Hope You Get Everything
Yo Asked For!


Thursday, July 17, 2014

South Oaks - and of tomorrow… (May 2014)

We had fun recording the last EP so we did it again. Jim, Kevin and I each contributed two songs and we worked on them via email – because we live too far from each other. Once we added our own parts and got them in a good place we went back to our friend Steve Johnson's studio (My Low Studio). Again, like last time, we didn't practice beforehand, just straight to record. We recorded the basic tracks live, then I went back for some guitar overdubs and Jim went back for final vocals.

[DOWNLOAD] South Oaks - and of tomorrow… (2014)
01- Keep Your Judgment Day
02- When Humans Roamed The Earth
03- Halo of Stars
04- See With My Hands
05- Echoes of Laughter
06- Free To Follow

And to coincide with the EP release, I cut a video for each song…

"Keep Your Judgment Day"

"When Humans Roamed The Earth"

"Halo of Stars"

"See With My Hands"

"Echoes of Laughter"

"Free To Follow"

You can also download and of tomorrow… free at the South Oaks bandcamp page.

Jim Burns - vocals
Frank Fusco - guitar
Kevin Purcell - bass
Eric Hoffman - drums

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

"I'm Thinking of an Animal" -- elephant (2013)

I almost forgot to post this one. Back in June of 2013, my friend Billy Kelly (whom I collaborated with in the past) asked me to contribute to his "I’m Thinking of an Animal" segments. WXXI in Rochester, NY had already been airing the first four segments he created. It was then picked up for national distribution by American Public Television and asked Billy for seven more one-minute long segments, each featuring a different animal.

Billy gave me a list of animals to choose from. I chose "elephant" and came up with a concept using my daughters kindergarten class. Check it out above.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

2013 Christmas Card


Whether you like it or not.

To see our past Christmas cards, click here.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Jeremy & Me

In my last post I mentioned the loss of my friend and coworker, Jeremy Yuricek. With this post I'd like to celebrate some of the work he and I created for Toyota. Jeremy was integral to our “Happy Hands at Home” projects. These were projects (film, print, digital) that we created entirely in-house. Typically, we had a very limited budget when it came to these projects – that's why we did them in-house! In many ways, these projects were more rewarding to me than our more high profile ones, mainly because I got to create something out of nothing with my friend.

"Prius Storybook"

Our Chicago region asked us to create a video featuring the Toyota Prius for the Shedd Aquarium. My team came up with a storybook concept and Jeremy took the art directors hand painted illustrations and brought them to life using a mix of stop-motion photography and After Effects animation. Currently showing before every aquatic show at the Shedd Aquarium.

Collaboration: Rebecca Snyder, Jonathan Granof, Frank Fusco, Rick Rosenberg, Jeremy Yuricek

"Picnic" (Eli Really Does!)

We needed a storm to disrupt our picnic scene in this Toyota/Eli Manning spot, but it was a nice day and we didn't have the budget to hire a fancy special effects team. So Jeremy rose to the challenge and created the storm in the sky by compositing multiple stock footage scenes.

Collaboration: Frank Fusco, Rick Rosenberg, Jeremy Yuricek

"Only Better"

"Only Better" was a campaign we ran during 2011. Jeremy helped get it off the ground by shooting an internal mood video (see the full mood video here). The video talked about how Toyota is constantly improving, while depicting an evolution of a logo design in time-lapse. The client liked the mood video so much they had us cut it down to :30 and they aired it as an anthem spot (above). P.S. Those are my hands.

Collaboration: Frank Fusco, Tim Leake, Jeremy Yuricek


We shot this for Toyota Parts & Service. Jeremy filmed my hands (again) trying to complete a puzzle, with one irregular shaped piece. We always joked that we needed to shoot one more "hands" spot to complete the trilogy.

Collaboration: Ari Bazinsky, Mariam Farooq, Frank Fusco, Rick Rosenberg, Jeremy Yuricek


Another spot for Toyota Parts & Service. Stop-motion animation showing the creation of a handmade car.

Collaboration: Ari Bazinsky, Mariam Farooq, Frank Fusco, Rick Rosenberg, Jeremy Yuricek

Toyota Parts & Service posters
The idea is in the headline: "If you're not using genuine Toyota Parts & Service, you're no longer driving a genuine Toyota." One morning Jeremy and I met up at a Toyota dealership in New Jersey and we took some photos of badges on the backs of vehicles. We then hired a 3D designer to alter the names. Above are just two of the posters (we did a total of 4). "Yarish" was featured in an issue of Archive magazine (Vol. 3 - 2011).

Collaboration: Frank Fusco, Tim Leake, Jeremy Yuricek

"Dasher Personal Training commercial" (Life After Santa)

I've shared the "Life After Santa" campaign on this blog before (here). For the most part, I took the lead on this project (shooting and editing) but Jeremy was my righthand man. He was responsible for lighting and sound during the reindeer interview sessions. He also color corrected all the videos, did some shooting, created websites and even starred in "Cupid's Story" (at the 2:50 mark). The most fun he had was when I asked him to create a cheesy commercial for Dasher's personal training business (above). He did a great job.

Collaboration: Frank Fusco, Rick Rosenberg, Tim Leake, Alexi Maslatzides, Jeremy Yuricek


After the big Toyota recall we created this spot to reassure our customers that we are still driven by quality. Jeremy took my illustrations and animated them into a :30 TV spot.

Collaboration: Frank Fusco, Tim Leake, Jeremy Yuricek

"Presidents Day Sales Event"

Jeremy took our art directors artwork and brought it to life. Funny animation.

Collaboration: Mariam Farooq, Jonathan Granof, Frank Fusco, Rick Rosenberg, Jeremy Yuricek


This campaign was created for our Denver region. We did 7 spots, each depicting reasons to own a Toyota, especially in Denver (like weather, above). We called it the "Flip" campaign because of the way Jeremy animated the art.

Collaboration: Frank Fusco, Freddy Jana, Marc Stolove, Tim Leake, Jeremy Yuricek

"3D FJ"
Toyota's FJ Cruiser is a unique vehicle that could only require a unique approach to creating a special website. Tim Leake and I created a simple, printable PDF which could be assembled into a 3D cut-out that featured an optical illusion. Mirroring the optical effect of the cut-out, the site's interface was a floating cube that rotated within a 3D space. When we presented the concept to Jeremy he wasn't sure if he could pull it off. But being the persistent and determined person he is, he made it happen.This project was in consideration for Cannes Cyber Lions in the Interface & Navigation category. (Check out the website here.)

Collaboration:  Frank Fusco, Tim Leake, Jeremy Yuricek

If you'd like to see more of Jeremy's work, check out his website.