General/Solo,  Red Hot Chili Peppers

The “Lost” Interview with John from 2004 published with a transcript

Fifteen years ago, around the release of Shadows Collide with People, John was interviewed by Steve Rosen. This interview never made it to the internet or print and was instead quietly posted online circa one month ago. The other day, Rosen decided to publish it with a full transcript on Rock Cellar magazine and now that John’s reunion with the Red Hot Chili Peppers is a trending topic worldwide, the views are skyrocketing.

You can listen to the interview on YouTube.

Here are some interesting excerpts from the transcript, at least in our humble opinion.

On what he considers himself to be as a musician

JF: What I consider myself to be above all else is a songwriter, and this is why I write songs. In the Chili Peppers I might write a whole song but its still just a guitar part. Ive been writing lyrics since I was eleven years old and Ive been getting better and better at it. And there are so many more from this period of time that arent on this [album]. There were about fourteen songs that were contenders to be for The Brown Bunny soundtrack for Vincent Gallos movie and five of them ended up on the soundtrack album.

On the sonic brilliance and high-end production of SCWP

You would characterize your production on this album as extreme?

JF: Yeah, Im really using the studio like an effect rather than just using the studio to represent a realistic representation of what we sound like playing together. Im using things like compression and echo and reverb in a very extreme kind of way.

On the fact that his sound is very recognisable

The sound and feel of your rhythm guitar parts are so uniquely you where did this come from? Can you describe your approach to rhythm playing, the way you strum?

JF: Its just something that comes from playing a while. I mean I can recognize most of my favorite guitar players playing. Theres something that makes no two peoples muscles and skin and the electricity in an individuals body like no one else. You can hear somebody like Jeff Beck playing one note and you know who it is.

On getting in the zone onstage

JF: Sometimes live in the Chili Peppers I get into that flashy rockstar lead guitar thing, but its more because of the energy of playing in front of an audience. Its not something that Im interested in musically, its more something I do because I get off on the interaction between the audience and the excitement thats generated in the exchange of love. And a lot of the time that will make me play in a way thats more blues-based and flashy and stuff.

If you’re not in the mood to listen via YouTube, you can read the full transcript on Rock Cellar Magazine website.

And if you are in the mood for more raw, live-on-air 2004 interviews, how about the ones with Virgin Radio and Deutchlandfunk. Ignore the weird characters, they will be replaced and the text is readable even with them in it.