A lengthy interview with John on Resident Advisor

This seems to be a very exciting time to be a John Frusciante fan. Resident Advisor, the website that broke the news of the Trickfinger full release has graced us with another interview. Even though they talk about an enormous number of fansites and a cult of people who apparently have nothing else to do; it is a very insightful read.

The whole interview can be found here and some excerpts are below the image.

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Some excerpts

Acid stuff was a start for me to learn to start thinking in numbers rather than physical movement. Numbers were already a big way I thought in terms of the guitar, but yeah, using numbers for rhythm was a different way of thinking for me. The acid stuff was the beginning of me learning to think in a completely different way, but it was about three years after that that I was able to do the really fast breakbeats with the Black Sabbath-y stuff. It seems like it was a good two years before I even got started using samples, really. I felt like I needed a few years of training under my belt understanding step programming before I was going to jump into chopping up breakbeats.


Is the communal aspect of live performance something you’re interested in?
I’ve been to Autechre shows where people are dancing, but I’ve also been at shows where they’re sitting on the floor with their head in their hands. I have friends here in town who put on raves and stuff like that, but I’ve never been drawn to doing that. I guess because I played so much live music for a long time, it seems really foreign to me to go on stage and do that. Aaron and I tried to do it a couple times, and it was as if the universe was against it happening. Playing live is not something I have any interest in. I’ve definitely had my fill of it. Performing for me is just repugnant. I appreciate the idea of being on stage and people responding with their bodies. I like being a part of it from the audience perspective.


I think in general, the greatest, most important ideas that have ever occurred in mankind have come from individuals, people who are not worried about what people would think but had some kind of internal guidance from their imagination, and who made it their objective to do their will, regardless of the danger it might put them in, or regardless if people might want to kill them or disagree with them. I think it’s really important for people to trust their inner guidance and not let the outside world be their guide. To me, letting the outside world be your guide is like being a slave, and I think that who we really have to thank for any progress mankind has ever made have been leaders, people who were uncompromising and people who spent time cultivating their imaginations and weren’t afraid to be alone and weren’t afraid to be different.

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  • ILA

    It doesn't say "Armin van Helden" anywhere, they compare one of John's tracks to Armand van Helden's sound, who is, in fact, a very much alive and existing House DJ and producer who is a part of Duck Sauce.

    • Iva

      Guess they fixed it in the meantime, then. We are aware of who both Armand Van Helden and Armin Van Buuren are, but for a while, they were a single person. Genetic engineering FTW.

  • coldcode

    Wow, thanks for having those google alerts on, Iva! 😀 I love those interviews almost as I love the music.

  • freddy

    "I'm using the songwriter portion of myself when I'm writing music. It's essentially what I do when I get out my guitar and play along to music. I'm not thinking of new parts—I'm learning them. I can write stuff that a guy would never write because your brain won't memorize it. It's a reverse-engineering kind of writing music. I've gradually come to see the work I do as someone who sits around and plays guitar with records as being the other side of what I do when I create music, the idea that my brain would one day work like that was a magical dream for me which I slowly turned into a reality. "

    I don't really get what he's tryin to tell, do you??

  • Garyyac

    Maybe the best live musician of his generation says performing live is repugnant. A tad disheartening.

  • Iva

    In case you wonder where the comments have gone – don’t worry, they’re queued and they are being imported right now. This is a better system than the one we used from 2008 to err, earlier today.

  • gounei

    Maybe, but if you compare performances from 2003 vs 2007 you can see he was no longer into it. Even the solos sound less inspired.

  • Ben Weston

    There’s also the fact that once art exists there can be not much point in simply recreating it. If he’s already one of the greatest to ever do it then perhaps he just feels that no better solos could be played by him. The Chilli Peppers are fine without him, I’ve seen them live with Josh and he is just as incredible as John, less technically proficient but arguably his penchant for soundscapes allows the rest of the band more room. It’s a different flavour, but John (and the rest of the Chillis) have always been about expanding music.

    A couple more cafe gigs would be nice, and i don’t believe someone who changes as much as John would be expressing repugnance as anything other than a temporary state of being. He’ll play the Paradiso again one day, even if it’s decades away. Bring on the Mos Def collab I say.

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