Silverchair Frontman Reveals Battle with Anorexia

Silverchair Frontman Reveals Battle with Anorexia

June 10, 1999 12:00 AM ET

Daniel Johns has a secret he's only now telling -- and anyone's free to hear it. The Silverchair frontman has used his music, rather than the Ricki Lake show, to reveal his on-going battle with anorexia nervosa, an eating disorder that primarily affects women.| "Ana's Song (Open Fire)," the new single from the trio's Neon Ballroom, is a frank assessment of Johns' life with the disease, an addiction to starvation that, he says, made him "eat what he needed...to stay awake."

"I've been told that it's when you feel like you've lost control of your life and you start really controlling anything you can control," says Johns, "and it just so happens to be the one thing no one can tell you what to do."

The lyrics to "Ana's Song" can't be misinterpreted: "And you're my obsession/I love you to the bones/And Ana wrecks your life/Like an anorexia life." Johns explains, "I wasn't eating and it went on for about six months to a year."

Today, Johns still appears quite thin and confesses, "I don't think you can ever be totally cured from something like that until you go and get professional help, but it's definitely better than it was before." Johns says he'll seek more diligent treatment once this tour is out of the way.

"I'll do it once we've done all this album stuff, when I've got more time to focus on myself and not just the music."

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

Music Main Next
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.


We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Money For Nothing”

Dire Straits | 1984

Mark Knopfler wrote this song with Sting, and it wasn’t without controversy. The Dire Straits frontman's original lyric used the word “faggot” to describe a singer who got their “money for nothing and their chicks for free.” Even though the slur was edited out in many versions, the band, and Knopfler, still took plenty of criticism for the term. “I got an objection from the editor of a gay newspaper in London--he actually said it was below the belt,” Knopfler told Rolling Stone. Still, "Money For Nothing," undoubtedly augmented by its innovative early computer-animated video, stayed at Number One for three weeks.

More Song Stories entries »