Johnny Borrell

Musician — London

Name, where are you from?
Jonathan Edward Borrell, I grew up (and am still growing up?) in London, Zimbabwe, Paris and the Basque Country.

Describe your style?
I like wearing other peoples clothes more than my own and I only follow instruction if it serves a purpose I can understand.

What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
Regina Spektor - in Barcelona around 2015. I wrote a song about it called the 'Pan-European Supermodel Song', but I don't think anyone guesses that the 'Gina' in the song stood for 'Regina'.
Best track was obviously Samson.

If you could be on the line up with any two bands in history?
Bob Dylan and The Band would be nice, I want them to play real sloppy, something like 'Million Dollar Bash'.
I could handle seeing Svatislav Richter play Beethoven in F minor, somewhere in Eastern Europe in the '70s.

If you could spend an hour with anyone from history?
Arthur "Blind" Blake in the 1920s could have taught me everything I'd ever need to know about the guitar and timing, but I'm not sure an hour would be long enough, can I bring a tape recorder?

Of all the venues you’ve played, which is your favourite?
Every year just outside Paris the national communist newspaper hold the Fête De L'humanité in the parc Georges Valbron. We played it once, supporting Iggy Pop, it was everything a festival should be, chaotic, vital and completely anti-corporate.


Johnny Borrell is best known as the frontman for indie rock band Razorlight.

Razorlight have recently reformed after a nearly ten-year hiatus during which Johnny released 2 solo albums and a string of singles. The most recent of which was 'My World, Your Life' in May 2018 and can be listened to below.

Razorlight will release a new album titled 'Olympus Sleeping' and head out on a UK tour in October 2018. You can listen to four new songs taken from the album and find out more about it here.

A song that defines the teenage you?
'Till The End Of The Day' by The Kinks. No-one can sing the lines "baby I feel good" and sound quite as sad as Ray Davies does here.

One record you would keep forever?
Anything by Little Anthony and the Imperials, even if someone stole my record player.

A song lyric that has inspired you?
"He not busy being born is busy dying."

From 'It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)' by Bob Dylan.

The song that would get you straight on the dance floor?
Anything by Dre... 'Love Is The Drug' by Roxy Music, anything by Charles Mingus.

A song you wished you had written?
'Good Fortune' by PJ Harvey, I feel like the gods must have sent me the prototypes before they finished the song and delivered it through her...

Best song to turn up loud?
'Hidden Charms' by Howlin' Wolf.

A song people wouldn’t expect you to like?
If I ever thought about what expectations people have of me, I'd be a shell on the beach.

Best song to end an all-nighter on?
Any form of soothing.

Any new bands you are listening to right now?
'Rock Stupid' by Fetiche is the greatest thing since waxed motorcycle trousers.

Name, where are you from?
Jonathan Edward Borrell, I grew up (and am still growing up?) in London, Zimbabwe, Paris and the Basque Country.

Describe your style?
I like wearing other peoples clothes more than my own and I only follow instruction if it serves a purpose I can understand.

What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
Regina Spektor - in Barcelona around 2015. I wrote a song about it called the 'Pan-European Supermodel Song', but I don't think anyone guesses that the 'Gina' in the song stood for 'Regina'.
Best track was obviously Samson.

If you could be on the line up with any two bands in history?
Bob Dylan and The Band would be nice, I want them to play real sloppy, something like 'Million Dollar Bash'.
I could handle seeing Svatislav Richter play Beethoven in F minor, somewhere in Eastern Europe in the '70s.

If you could spend an hour with anyone from history?
Arthur "Blind" Blake in the 1920s could have taught me everything I'd ever need to know about the guitar and timing, but I'm not sure an hour would be long enough, can I bring a tape recorder?

Of all the venues you’ve played, which is your favourite?
Every year just outside Paris the national communist newspaper hold the Fête De L'humanité in the parc Georges Valbron. We played it once, supporting Iggy Pop, it was everything a festival should be, chaotic, vital and completely anti-corporate.


Johnny Borrell is best known as the frontman for indie rock band Razorlight.

Razorlight have recently reformed after a nearly ten-year hiatus during which Johnny released 2 solo albums and a string of singles. The most recent of which was 'My World, Your Life' in May 2018 and can be listened to below.

Razorlight will release a new album titled 'Olympus Sleeping' and head out on a UK tour in October 2018. You can listen to four new songs taken from the album and find out more about it here.

A song that defines the teenage you?
'Till The End Of The Day' by The Kinks. No-one can sing the lines "baby I feel good" and sound quite as sad as Ray Davies does here.

One record you would keep forever?
Anything by Little Anthony and the Imperials, even if someone stole my record player.

A song lyric that has inspired you?
"He not busy being born is busy dying."

From 'It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)' by Bob Dylan.

The song that would get you straight on the dance floor?
Anything by Dre... 'Love Is The Drug' by Roxy Music, anything by Charles Mingus.

A song you wished you had written?
'Good Fortune' by PJ Harvey, I feel like the gods must have sent me the prototypes before they finished the song and delivered it through her...

Best song to turn up loud?
'Hidden Charms' by Howlin' Wolf.

A song people wouldn’t expect you to like?
If I ever thought about what expectations people have of me, I'd be a shell on the beach.

Best song to end an all-nighter on?
Any form of soothing.

Any new bands you are listening to right now?
'Rock Stupid' by Fetiche is the greatest thing since waxed motorcycle trousers.

Razorlight | Olympus Sleeping (2018)

Johnny Borrell | My World, Your Life (2018)

Johnny Borrell | Pan European Supermodel Song (Oh! Gina) (2013)

Razorlight | Wire To Wire (2008)

Razorlight | America (2006)

Razorlight | Golden Touch (2004)

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