An Interview With Danko Jones: “I don’t believe acoustic guitars have any place in hard rock. That’s just my opinion”

Danko Jones has been a fixture on the rock scene for 2 decades plus now, and is someone you can always rely on for a dose of good time rock & roll. It was our pleasure then to catch up with him and discuss his current album, touring with Volbeat, what he gets up to outside of the band, and also when we might see him back here in the UK rocking faces on his own headline tour.

Always good to have you guys back, how’s the UK been treating you so far this week?

Danko: It’s been good, it’s only the 3rd show but it’s been going pretty good.

A Rock Supreme has been out a little while now, how has the reception been, both to the album itself and when you’ve played any of the material live?

Danko: It’s been alright, the new material has been going down really well live too.

Interesting title, what inspired that?

Danko: It’s just a rip off of John Coltrane’s Love Supreme

90% of your songs are about women or rock music – is that because that’s just what you want to write about or is it just writing what you know?

Danko: Well I don’t think we’re doing anything completely out of the box – every hard rock band has the same themes really, I mean, AC/DC pretty much has the same themes so I don’t think we’re doing anything particularly out of the ordinary. It’s interesting though that a lot of people bring that up! By now, it’s an established theme when it comes to rock music right? I mean, what else is a 3 piece hard rock band supposed to sing about? I think those themes are the best ones to match the power chords we play!

I’d agree with that! Do you ever have something you really want to say/get off your chest, but just think “nah it’s not us…”?

Danko: Nope!

Fair! I see you have your own podcast now

Danko: I’ve actually got 2 and been doing them for about 8 years now – before they were popular haha! We just recorded episode 203. 

does that mean you’re not going to do any more spoken word tours or radio shows?

Danko: No I don’t really do those anymore, stopped a few years back

At 6 years Rich Knox is the current joint leader in length of service behind the drums (along with Damon Richardson) – is this a genuine issue with the guy at the back, are they all just session guys or is it just a massive coincidence?

Danko: We’ve always just wanted to have one drummer, but for whatever reason we’ve never been able to get along with any of the drummers who held the post! Until Rich and he’s been doing it for 6 years and we’re having a great time with him.

Obviously John (Calabrese) has remained by your side on the bass, you’ve always been a power trio, has there ever been any thoughts of a 2nd guitarist at all?

Danko: Yeah we entertained the idea the first few years of the band, but we never went through with it and after 3 years just felt that at that point we weren’t going to do that.

What about the other direction – with even Blink 182 announcing some acoustic shows, ever had any desire to do anything more stripped back?

Danko: I don’t believe acoustic guitars have any place in hard rock. That’s just my opinion – lots of bands incorporate acoustic guitar into hard rock, I’m just one guy….

How does the rest of 2019 look for Danko Jones?

Danko: Well we’re pretty much on tour with Volbeat until December, then we have a couple of shows around our home in Canada and then that’s the year for us.

Any plans for a UK headline tour?

Danko: Well yeah we’d love to, I mean that’s one of the big goals of opening up for a big band like Volbeat and do the tour to generate the interest so that we CAN come back and do our own shows. We always manage to for every album, so hopefully that’ll happen mid-2020.

Being stuck here myself I’m not entirely sure of the wider effect, so has Brexit had (or going to have) any implications on you or any other bands coming over to tour?

Danko: Not that I know of yet, I mean, we’ll wait and see right? Everyone’s waiting to see what happens – not just the music industry. On this tour, where we’re the opening band a lot is out of our jurisdiction so very little trickles down to us.

See what happens when you come over to headline next year then ha ha!

Danko: Yeah ask me again then!

In closing, You’ve been going for over 20 years now and have shown no sign of slowing down, how do you keep it exciting for yourselves?

Danko: I just really like playing rock. It’s as simple as that.

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