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Daniel Johns


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Daniel Paul Johns (born April 22, 1979) is an Australian vocalist, composer, guitarist, and pianist, best known as frontman of the rock band Silverchair. He is also part of The Dissociatives. In 2007, he was ranked at number 18 on Rolling Stone's list of The Twenty-Five Most Underrated Guitarists.

Growing up in Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, his interest for music started when he was 8. He, Ben Gillies and Chris Joannou formed their band at the age of 12, originally named the Innocent Criminals.

The band's career began when they were just 14 years old, signing to Murmur Records in 1994 after their demo "Tomorrow" won a competition by the SBS TV program Nomad. The single was then picked up by radio network Triple J. Their first album release was Frogstomp, in 1995.

In 1997, the band released Freak Show followed by Neon Ballroom in 1999.

In 2002 he was ready for the release of what he regarded as his band's masterpiece, Diorama. In 2003, he went on hiatus from Silverchair.

Johns has worked in several side projects, notably in The Dissociatives and "I Can't Believe It's Not Rock" with dance musician, Paul Mac. The Dissociatives album was recorded in London by Johns, who [penned] the lyrics and melodies, and Paul Mac who was involved musically. A few months later, they regrouped in Sydney and Newcastle to finish off the project. The Dissociatives toured with musicians Kim Moyes on drums, Julian Hamilton on keys, and James Haselwood on bass.

In late 2005, Johns and Silverchair joined up again and put rumors of a split to rest by announcing the production of a new album titled Young Modern. The new album was released on March 31, 2007, and was followed by the huge 'Across The Great Divide' tour with Powderfinger.

Over the years, Daniel Johns has gone through many changes in his equipment. He owns a diverse range of guitars, and each guitar he uses live is in a unique tuning for different songs.

Currently on tour, Johns is using a black '72 Fender Telecaster Deluxe for all songs in standard tuning, such as "Young Modern Station" and "Ana's Song (Open Fire)", a yellow '72 Fender Telecaster Deluxe for all songs in standard which require a capo, such as "Those Thieving Birds/Strange Behaviour" and "If You Keep Losing Sleep", a green Paul Reed Smith Custom 24 in dropped-D tuning for "The Door", a Paul Reed Smith Standard McCarty in dropped-B tuning for "the Lever", a black Gibson Les Paul Custom in Open C# tuning for "Emotion Sickness", "Without You", "Israel's Son" and "Freak", a Rickenbacker 330/12 semi-hollow 12-string in standard tuning for "The Greatest View" and a Maton EM325C semi-acoustic with a sparkle finish in an unusual tuning of F-C-G-D-G-D, used for songs such "Tuna In The Brine" and "Luv Your Life". Johns also uses a Gibson SG Heritage tuned half a step down for "Straight Lines".

Johns first used Marshall JCM 900 amplifiers for Frogstomp, but by the time of Freak Show, switched to Soldano Hot Rod heads. Until 2005, Johns was using Marshall cabinets, however, he has changed this setup. He now uses Hiwatt Hi-Gain cabinets with his Soldano amps.

He also uses Vox amplifiers in the studio.

Johns uses a large variety of pedals. His current pedalboard consists of: a Digitech Whammy, a Little Lehle Switcher, Radial Loopbone, 2 Soldano footswitches, BOSS DD-20, BOSS TU-2, Radial Big Shot Mix, BOSS OC-2, Electro-Harmonix Micro Synthesizer and a BOSS GE-7.

Johns moved out of his house when he was 18. He has two younger siblings, brother Heath and sister Chelsea.

In mid to late 1997, during the Freak Show tour, Johns began to show the physical signs of his internal struggle with fame and clinical depression. He appeared thinner and thinner, and on advice from his therapist, moved out of the family home into a unit to try to take a break and recover from the stress of touring. However, for the first half of 1998, he spent little time outside the house, and became more and more withdrawn with his imposed seclusion having the opposite effect as was intended.

When the band's next album, Neon Ballroom, was released in early 1999, it was obvious to the public and the press that Johns was dangerously thin. After rumors that he was suffering from a drug addiction, Johns decided to clear the air and gave an interview with Rolling Stone Australia to finally explain that he had developed anorexia nervosa. At his thinnest, Johns claims that he weighed less than 50 kilos, or 110 pounds. He was praised for his honesty and thousands of young people were able to connect with his battle with self-esteem and their own body image issues. The magazine received the biggest response of its history. With Neon Ballroom came the acclaimed single "Ana's Song (Open Fire)" about Johns' battle and inner feelings struggling with the condition. Further confirmation came in 2004, when Johns spoke at length to ABC interviewer Andrew Denton and revealed that at one point he had considered suicide.

By 2002, Johns appeared to have recovered from his internal trauma, However, just as his album was due for release Johns was struck down by a severe and rare case of reactive arthritis. His joints became inflamed and locked up, with any movement being painful, so that he could no longer play guitar or do everyday things. He spent most of 2002 unable to perform. It was feared that he may not be able to perform for years, if at all, as the disease takes many months to recover from, and sometimes returns after many years. Still unable to play for extended periods, he performed again in October 2002 at the ARIA awards ceremony. The guitar line of "The Greatest View" had to be changed so Johns' hands would not lock up. His recovery proceeded apace, allowing Silverchair to perform an extended Australian, European and North American concert tour.

In July 2007, Johns unwittingly created a scandal after he claimed, on national youth station Triple J, that he had shared a joint with his then-wife Natalie Imbruglia, Australian Federal MP and ex Midnight Oil frontman Peter Garrett and Bono of U2 in November 2006, while listening to a demo tape of Silverchair's new album Young Modern. Anna Wood's father Tony Wood suggested that Garrett submit to a drug test,despite Garrett's assertions that he had not touched marijuana since his 20's and Johns countering the claim by claiming it was a joke. He also said that he thought it would be obvious that it was, seeing as both Peter Garret and Bono were publicly against drugs.

Johns once dated singer Fiona Apple. He announced his engagement to long-time girlfriend, actress, singer and model Natalie Imbruglia in late 2002, and they married on New Year's Eve 2003. However, on January 4, 2008 it was announced they were divorcing, stating, "We have simply grown apart through not being able to spend enough time together." However, the two remain friends. He is now dating a new upcoming model Louise Van De Vorst.




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