Interview with Daniel Johns (Part 2) - Dolly Magazine

(Dolly Magazine)

Daniel was so excited about finally speaking to us last month that he just kept talking! Rock on dudes... here's the rest of silverchair's story.

How long have you been writing songs?

Me and Ben have been writing songs since we were about nine -- rap songs with no instruments. We only did rap because we couldn't do proper songs. Then when we got into about Year 7, I got a guitar and I started doing more complicated stuff.

When did you first meet Ben?

In fourth grade. I was just about nine. We just, one day, sat next to each other and started talking and shit, and that's what happened. But Ben and Chris knew each other from kindergarten. They go a long way back. They were pretty good freinds. Me and Ben started a band first, just playing in the garage.

What's the worst name you've called yourselves?

When we were in Year 7 we only played Elvis songs, so we called ourselves Short Elvis. We got rid of that after one gig.

So how did you arrive at the name silverchair?

Ben wanted to request something on the radio and someone suggested Sliver by Nirvana and I said, 'Stuff that, let's request Berlin Chair by You Am I'. He wrote it down wrong as silverchair and we liked the sound of it.

What's the bad side of being in a band?

You never have time to yourself.

Do you miss going out with your friends?


Have you had any problems with being famous?

A few people have been writing things about us that they've made up and writing things that we never said. People keep showing photos of us when we were 12 years old and it really pisses us off.

Do you have to watch your behaviour now?

When we're just around Newcastle we do what normal kids out here do. When we're out as a band, we just shut up and keep walking.

Does anyone give you a hard time?

No, not really. If they do, we turn around and give them heaps of shit back. We find something wrong with them and then burn them about it.

Have you ever had people picking on you?

No, they take the piss out of the name -- like coming up with Silver Hair and stuff -- but no one's tried to pick a fight.

What worries you?

It was pretty worrying when the first single went to number one and the second single went to number two. Because of the hype. And people think that we are going to be just one-hit wonders.

What do you do in your free time?

We never really get that much free time. When we are on tour, we go go-karting and stuff like that.

Describe yourselves in just a sentence or two...

We all joke around a lot and we are all really sarcastic with people.

Have any of you started shaving yet?

Whaaaat?!? I don't know. We don't talk about things like that.

Do you argue a lot over music?

We don't really like any dance music -- we hate it. We just listen to Alice In Chains and heaps of Led Zeppelin. A couple of years ago, that's all we'd listen to. We were always arguing over who was the best band. Ben would go 'Oh, Led Zeppelin are the best band' and I'd go "Nahhh, no way.'

Are you rich?

We got an advance from the record company but we don't really touch it. The first advance we got, we got rid of our crappy equipment and went out and bought some decent equipment. That's about the only thing we've spent money on.

What, there's no luxury items?

No, not really. We've got everything we need. We did a gig down at Wollongong at a Surfrider Foundation once and instead of getting paid, we got given a new surfboard each.

What sort of boards do you ride?

I ride a 6-foot-3 and Ben rides Malibu. We used to ride lids (boogie boards) but now we're full-on into surfing.

Do you get any pocket money?

Any money we get, we stick in the bank. We don't really spend it. We're not really making that much!

So does that mean you can't afford to trash hotel rooms yet?

No, we can't do that anyway because we are always staying with our parents!

What's one thing you'd like to do if you head heaps of cash?

To go to America with Ben and Chris and see heaps of bands. That would be unreal.

What next?

I've got a bit of English homework and then I'll just play Sega all night.

[Thanks to Sarah for the transcript.]