Interview - Wilko JOHNSON
Wednesday 06th February 2013
Brin de Zinc - Chambéry
Hello Wilko, we are very pleased to welcome you again on rock-interviews.com
AM : You are in France for a farewell tour.
AM : How many dates?
Five...No six. We have done one in Paris last night, and now, here we are, tonight.
AM : Near Chambéry at the "Brin de Zinc" venue.
How was the gig in Paris last night?
I think it was very very good actually, but then I am biased. It was good.
AM : You will be in the UK for a couple of gigs too.
Are you aware that for one of your gig in the UK, the tickets
for the show costing about £17 were sold out in three hours,
only three hours?
These people tell me statistics like this, but they don't actually
really interest me, you see, because in the situation I am in,
I am kind of interested in other things, you know, not really
very interested in how quickly people buy tickets.
AM : But the staff discovered that tickets were being touted
online for as much as £167? What do you think of this kind of thing?
It's a terrible thing, and I wish I have got some because
I would like to sell a few for £150.
You went on a trip to Japan?
AM : How was it?
It was beautiful. Japan is always very good, I love Japan.
I have been touring there since the mid-eighties, we have
done about 25 tours there, and a couple of holidays I have
taken and I have many many friends over there, so when I
found out I was ill, I thought that the first thing I wanted
to do is well make sure I can go there before I go, and it
was excellent. We had a good time, we did two gigs in Kyoto
and in Tokyo and we raised over £12,000 for the earthquake
relief fund, so that was nice and we also went and saw some
Do you have a New CD or a DVD maybe in the pipeline?
The way things are at the minute, well let me tell you first.
Just before Christmas they told me I got cancer. Then to start
the Christmas they told me I got about 6 months, I feel healthy,
I feel fine, I could do gigs, so it means I have got to use
these 6 months and divide it up, but firstly, I wanna go to
Japan, so please give me two weeks, (holding his crossed hands
up to heaven) so I have got two weeks, two lovely weeks in Japan,
then I have done a week, while I was in Japan suddenly this
thing become global, I am global! So I was in lots and lots
interviews, all the national newspapers coming around, you know,
and photographs and all that, and also we have set aside a few
days because I want to make a final album. we did one day,
two days ago I think it was, and we got on very well and did
about 5 songs. We haven't much time, we don't want to fiddle
about, we just want to record it, but it's going to be really good.
There will be a final album.
AM : OK.
Let's talk about your autobiography. I don't have the book
with me sorry, but I have got this, it is called Looking Back at Me,
I love the cover of the book.
Yes, it's a good picture.
AM : Yes it is!
AM : The young Wilko and you now.
The old one, that's the word.
AM : Oh you're not too old!
I am not going to get much older, so it doesn't matter.
AM : So what is it about? It's about your life.
Yes it is. Initially this book was just going to be some merchandise,
you know, we just wanted some pictures of the band and a bit of text.
As Zoe Howe who did all the hard work actually began writing it and
interviewing me, it just became bigger and bigger until it turned
into an autobiography, and we were choosing pictures from everywhere,
not just rock'n'roll pictures, and I do believe that now with my changed
circumstances we are going to revise the book for a kind of final one.
Sorry telephone, that's terribly unprofessional you know having the
telephone ringing on, it is ringing, still ringing!
AM : It will stop...
That's clever! Anyway, we are going to revise the book to take into account the fact that I am shortly to be dead, so I have to write a word about that I think.
So you've been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
Do you suffer from physical effects at the moment? You look very good.
No, I feel absolutely fine, that's a terrible thing,
or it's a good thing, I don't know. I feel absolutely fine,
really fit, as I say I did two gigs in Japan.
There were very big gigs, hot gigs, long gigs, you know,
and I was fine. I feel this lump here, but it doesn't hurt
or anything but it's going to kill me.
AM : But you look well.
I am fine. The doctors say, maybe I can expect 5 or 6 more
months feeling healthy and then the cancer will begin to
work and then I won't feel so healthy.
Do you want to say something to your friends and fans?
The French ones or the ones from all over the world?
What can I say to my French friends and fans? Merci. I spent many many good times in France, I met very many nice people, ladies and that, God bless you all.
AM : Thank you very much for your time Wilko. We wish you a great gig tonight.