Interview with Daniel Johns

(Dolly magazine)

We've been hanging to get the goss on our fave rockers and Dan finally let the dirt fly. Check it out, man... silverchair unplugged!

Question: How has life changed for you since you've become famous?

Answer: Nothing's really changed around Newcastle but we're away nearly every weekend now, playing gigs. Apart from that, everything else is just normal.

Q: What about school? Do you get more attention there?

A: No, that's just the same as it was. No one congratulates us and no one gives us shit. They're just pretty normal about the whole thing. We ask the principal never to say anything about us.

Q: Which school?

A: Newcastle High. It's where we all met. We've got another three years here before we can escape.

Q: Does having a record deal make it hard for you to concentrate on school work?

A: Yeah, it makes it pretty hard. You are always thinking, like, marine studies and music.

Q: Who's the brainiest band member?

A: We're all about the same. None of us are really dumb and none of us are really smart. We're in the middle.

Q: Do you get any time to yourself?

A: Not during the week. After school, we have to do interviews and we have homework or band practice.

Q: Do you get strict rules about homework before music?

A: Not really. My parents don't say anything about homework and that. They say if I do crap it's not going to look too good. They just say, "do what you can."

Q: What sort of things, outside music, are you interested in?

A: Oh, we like to surf. We just usually go to the beach or go play pool or something. We've cut down a lot on surfing and we miss that a lot. We used to go every weekend and all through the holidays. Now we go once a month, if we're lucky.

Q: What's the story about girlfriends?

A: We don't really have time for girlfriends because we're always away. It would be a waste of time because you'd never get to spend any time with them.

Q: Have you had more interest from girls these days?

A: No, not really. It's just the same.

Q: But isn't it part of the deal being in a band that you get lots of women chasing you?

A: Yeah, we meet a few backstage. There are no big groupie fans or anything. We just talk to them - that's all.

Q: What's your taste in girls like? Do you like the grungy look or the more sophisticated kind of chick?

A: Er, I'm not saying anything about that! I'll get in trouble!

Q: Who would you rather do it with, Kylie Minogue or Courtney Love?

A: Oh, God. Neither!

Q: Do you argue at all over women?

A: No, not really. We don't go 'round calling women dogs. We just go, "Aahh, they're all right."

Q: What was the Big Day Out like?

A: It was unreal. We met The Cult and were talking to them for a while. We went a few places with Offspring.

Q: Did they give you any advice?

A: Yeah. You Am I -- we've talked to them a few times and we know them pretty well. They give us similar advice to the other bands. They're really cool.

Q: What are the record companies like?

A: They are pretty cool about the whole thing. We signed at the start for one year and we recently signed again for another three albums.

Q: When the first single came out, how many songs did you have?

A: We had about 10. The songs on the first EP were about the time when we were influenced by Soundgarden and Pearl Jam and all the Seattle bands, except for Nirvana. We don't really like Nirvana that much. The second single was more influenced by Soundgarden and Helmet.

Q: Did Kurt Cobain's death affect you?

A: Sort of. They kind of made the grunge thing. But we didn't go home and cry or anything like that.

Q: Where was the video for Pure Massacre filmed?

A: At an actual gig in Sydney. We filmed a few for the video but they weren't quite right. So we said, "We'll film one more and if it's no good we'll do something else." That was the most intense gig we've ever done. There were two balconies, people were jumping off them and the PA. There was one guy we know, John, and he said he was going to jump off everywhere and he ended up slashing his leg. He was jumping off the balcony and landed on something sharp. He came backstage after the gig and went "Look what I done!"

Q: What do you do in your dressing room before a gig?

A: We sit around or sit back and play Sega.

Q: Who manages the band now?

A: Our parents do all that because we don't want to get a manager yet.

Q: Have they laid any rules about money or behaviour?

A: No, not really.

Q: What's it like working in a studio?

A: Our producer is great. He also worked with the Baby Animals.

Q: Are you releasing stuff outside Australia yet?

A: Yeah, we're going over to England and I'm really looking forward to the flight. I've never flown that far before. I've heard it's really cold over there. I hope so -- I really want to see snow.

Q: Is being a rock musician the best job in the world?

A: Yeah, it really goes off!

Also, in the "Letterbox," some girls wrote in this about the guys:

"...When we met them recently in Adelaide we got to hug and kiss them, too. We got to spend at least three hours with them. We got their autographs and photos with them, we got to meet Daniel's and Chris' mums (who are heaps nice). And we got to hear them do their soundcheck, even though we kept getting kicked out.

What we say about...

Daniel: He is definitely not quiet! He talked to us heaps.
Ben: Ben was heaps nice and is definitely the best hugger!
Chris: He was quiet and overwhelmed by all the teenyboppers.

Sneaky silverchair secrets...

Daniel drew a whole picture of himself for one of our friends. He's a heaps wicked drawer.
Daniel told us they were an anti-drug, anti-alcohol, anti-everything band.
We met silverchair on the 22nd April which happened to be Daniel's 16th birthday!