While they routinely sell-out concerts all throughout Europe, Toronto’s Danko Jones haven’t quite reached the same level of success here in Canada. Will that change with their newest record Rock and Roll Is Black And Blue? Tough to say but if you need a nice healthy dose of ass-kicking rock n roll, look no further than these guys. With new drummer Atom Willard (Offspring, Angels & Airwaves) in tow, the always entertaing Danko Jones recently spoke with Here Magazine about the group’s new record as well as performing with some of his childhood heroes.
How did you land Atom Willard, your new drummer?
Atom showed up to a show of ours in Los Angeles in 2005 or so. A year later, we met up again and started keeping in touch. Anytime he emailed, he would always tack on “If your drummer breaks an arm or a leg, let me know”. It was something we assumed was a joke. But then not too long ago, we arrived at a point where we needed a drummer and [Danko bassist] JC said we should see if he really meant it. And he did.
If you don’t mind me saying, your personality off stage you strike me as a very humble and almost timid but on stage, you’re the complete opposite.
It has never been hard to bridge those personalities because the person on stage is me. I’ve always been an excitable, hyper-active, energetic type of person, on stage and off stage. I’ve always been a bit of a loud mouth. Being on stage just brings it out naturally.
Did you ever dream that you’d be sharing stages with the likes of Guns N Roses, Motorhead and more?
I had absolutely no idea. To be completely honest, those moments that I’m sharing the stage with Lemmy or Axl Rose singing songs that I grew up listening to, it doesn’t get a whole lot better than that.
Is it nerve-wracking to be on stage with your heroes?
Jello Biafra called me up on stage to sing Too Drunk To F**k and I totally blanked on the lyrics. He just stood there looking at me [laughs] but he was so great about it. Moments like that are my favourite times. You don’t think about it, you just go for it. You can bask in it afterwards.
Article published in the October 18, 2012 edition of Here Magazine