Volume 92, Issue 53

Tuesday, December 8, 1998



Orchestra Swings to their favourite attitude

Photo by Chris Wahl
ONE OF US IS REPEATED. CAN YOU FIND WHICH ONE? The answer to this conundrum will be told tonight at The Embassy as the Johnny Favourite Swing Orchestra hits the stage.

By Aaron Wherry

Gazette Staff

You can call the Johnny Favourite Orchestra a lot of things, but don't call them swing.

"The unfortunate thing about swing is that it rhymes with thing," Johnny Favourite explains. "So then you get the 'swing thing.' Then the issue comes up of, 'how long will this swing thing last?' And the answer is, well it's been around longer than your newspaper, or as long as people like looking nice, having a good time, being happy and dancing with one another.

"It's pop music, that's all it is. Swing music was the first pop music, when it was cool, you collected the albums and you had heroes."

As it turns out, apparently a lot of things about the Johnny Favourite Orchestra require explanation. Such as the giant inflatable penis they used on stage during their performance at the Summersault festival.

"We bought that off some drunk chicks in Fredericton who were having a bachlorette party," Favourite laughs. "We were out backstage and we started to get loaded because we were a little bit nervous and pretty much anything went. We had squirt guns and candy and then one of the boys inflated that and kept it behind his band stand and then whipped it out at one point and started tossing it around."

Of course the contents of those squirt guns also requires some explanation, as they were filled with vodka. Better still, this performance was an all ages show.

"I don't fucking care," Favourite snaps. "What, because the government says you're old enough to go on your own to a giant concert and go to a mosh pit where you're fucking risking life and limb, but no you can't drink alcohol? Fuck 'em. I mean, how loaded can you get with me squirting you in the mouth with a squirt gun. Rules are meant to be broken. The legal drinking age in most countries in this world is being able to walk into the bar on your own two feet."

According to Favourite, the live fun isn't just something they displayed at Summersault. Rather, it's something they try to do at every stop, just to a different extent.

"Our live shows are better than that. That one was kind of sloppy and kind of lame because we didn't get to go into the crowd and stuff. I'd say our live shows are more fun. Some people say it's great seeing us live and I'm a cross between Henry Rollins, Ozzy Osbourne, Ferris Bueller and Eric Cartman from Southpark," Favourite says. "And some people might say I'm a big fucking fat drunkard with a chip on my shoulder and a microphone."

Needless to say, Johnny Favourite has his own unique view on the band and their behaviour. "We don't act any certain way. We don't try to be anything. I think we walk that fine line between dorky and arguably cool. I always assume that everyone likes us because we're just having a good time, it's all tongue in cheek and we don't take ourselves too seriously. But as my friends back in Halifax say, 'It's Johnny, either love him or hate him.'"

Whatever your opinion, Favourite has only one hope as he rolls into London – to "tear it up."

"I'm not promising anything, but we're gonna have fun and if other people have fun, then so be it."

To Contact The Arts and Entertainment Department: gazette.entertainment@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 1998