Just a Chat: Joe Hansen from Grinspoon

By Gabrielle Zgrajewski


Amongst the excitement of the Grinspoon Guide To Better Living Tour Announcement, I was lucky enough to have a chat to Joe Hansen, bassist for Grinspoon about the good old tour days, the upcoming tour, good music and deserted islands? Read below!

GZ: So, tell us, how did Grinspoon come together?

JH: Phil Jamieson (singer) and Kris Hopes (drums) were playing in a band in Port Macquarie, Pat Davern (guitar) and I were playing in a band in Lismore.  We met in Lismore at a jam session and it kind of just made sense. Phil and Kris needed a bass and guitar player, they were a drummer and singer. It made sense at the time, it was a happy accident.

GZ: Did  you think that all these years later, you would be celebrating the bands 20th Anniversary?

JH: Its pretty crazy, in those days you never really thought down the track. We never really looked further than the next album or the next gig. Next thing you know, its been twenty years. Its pretty wild, but its been good. We’ve had a few ups and downs but we are all still hanging in there and love each others company.

We never had a big strategy, so we just take it one step at a time and you look back and gone “Oh ghee, we’ve done seven albums now”. You never really expect that you would still be going twenty years later.

Just to make one record is such a cool thing to do. It’s so awesome and we are lucky enough to done it as long as we have and to have an audience and do what we’ve done.

GZ: Are you excited to go on your 26 date national Guide to Better Living tour?

JH: We’re playing the whole Guide to Better Living album from start to finish so that’s what I’m looking forward to. It’s a bit different cause [our tours have] never been like this. But it should be fun to go back to our first record. A lot of the songs have always been on our set, but some songs that haven’t been played since they been released will be played too. So its exciting to play through the whole record.

GZ: Talking about tours, is there any memorable gigs that you played whether there was a crazy fan getting on stage or meeting a specific band?

JH: It’s hard to pick something out of thin air. We had fun on the warp tour we did in the late 90’s with Unwritten Law, a band from San Francisco. We just did standard rock and roll partying behaviour too which was fun.

GZ: Is there any favourites off the Guide to Better Living album?

JH: Not really, theres a few songs we’ve had on our set since its been we’ve released the album. Although, listening back to the album, I’m looking forward to playing “Rail Rider” which is a kind of different song for us. Its going to be a cool one to play, its epic, there’s a few different parts in it compared to the normal Grinspoon song.

GZ: So, what music have you been listening to recently?

JH: International Noise Conspiracy is one of my favourite bands so I’ve been listening to them. They also have a few members in another band called Refuse, their some of my favourites. I’ve also been reminiscing with Sound Garden since Chris Cornell passed away. Also, I’ve been listening to Super Unknown a lot too.

Also, Violent Soho is one of my favourite bands, so Ive been listening to them a lot lately. They’re such a great band. I was watching them a few years back at Splendour in the Grass, during the bands [Grinspoon] break and there was this humungous crowd. I started thinking about our gigs in the day and thinking “F*ck that was fun”.

GZ: Just a fun question, but if you were stuck on a deserted island with one other band member who would it be? Why?

JH: *Laughs* Oh, I dont think I’d take phil cause he’s useless, so is Pat. I think Kris. Drummers are pretty handy and have survival skills. I think he’s the one Id have to go with. The others are hopeless, I dont think we would survive very long. The rhythm section have to stick together.

GZ: Anything else you would like to say?

JH: Come along to our tour. We are doing the album then some other songs as well that’s not on there as an encore. Hopefully everyone out there comes along and has fun!

Thanks Joe for the fantastic interview and we will definitely see you there for your tour!
Click here for tour dates



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