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Daniel Johns Opens Up About “Serious Anxiety Disorder” In First Talk Show Interview In 12 Years

Written by Sam Murphy on May 16, 2018

Daniel Johns has given his first talk show interview in 12 years, delving into his struggles with anxiety which led to a number of public incidents.

Johns sat down with Andrew Denton on Interview for an in-depth chat where Denton directly asked him what was going on in the period following the release of his debut solo album Talk where he was arrested for driving under the influence amongst other things.

“I wasn’t well but it wasn’t what people thought it was,” he said.

“I have had a pretty serious anxiety disorder for 15 years and it got really bad at a point, I was not coping and I didn’t know how to deal with it.”

Johns said he begun “self medicating” with “alcohol” because he was “not coping”.

“Since then I’ve done therapy and a lot of other stuff like medication to stop shaking,” he continued.

Around that time many of his fans also expected him to tour Talk but we didn’t see any shows after a debut solo show at the Sydney Opera House.

It was stage fright that prevented him from doing so with Johns saying, “I was just too scared. I was just too worried.”

He also opened up about not feeling worthy of his success, something he initially brought up with Denton when they stay down together 12 years ago.

“I feel like I was pretty lucky,” he said of his initial success with Silverchair.

“I’m always trying to prove that maybe I’m worthy of that to myself.”

Johns is currently collaborating with Luke Steele as DREAMS. They have been releasing new music and also made a live debut at Coachella earlier this year, marking Johns’ return to the stage.

It seems he still thinks his masterpiece is ahead of them though as he wants to make, “something that is so real and honest” that is “tediously long and painful”. He is also trying to write an opera but that “feels unattainable”.

Johns assured Denton that right now he’s “really happy” despite his head being “chaotic”.

He will return to the stage in Sydney with Luke Steele as DREAMS for Vivid Sydney. A full-length album from the pair is still to be announced.

For help or information regarding mental health, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.

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