Duquette Johnston


Duquette Johnston, a founding member of the breakout 90s indie band Verbena and now an acclaimed solo artist, joins Rhett from Birmingham, AL. to talk about his new album, Social Animals, and the road to his creative life. Duq explains the evolution of his creative process, why he’s never had a Plan B, and how he eventually worked through the fear of success that was holding him back.


By his own admission Duquette Johnston has lived a “wild, incredible life,” but even that might be underselling the three-act 25-year journey that’s led to the Alabama musician’s new album The Social Animals. In bringing the new album to life, Johnston drew from his indie rock past to unite a remarkable group of collaborators. This team included producer John Agnello – known for his work with Dinosaur Jr as well as recent albums from Hop Along, Waxahatchee, Twin Peaks and Kurt Vile – and a band anchored by longtime Sonic Youth drummer Steve Shelley. Through their spiraling guitars and cavernous beats, Johnston shares deeply-learned messages on the common theme that “we can lift each other up. We can change things, if we keep our hearts in the right place.”

Be sure to listen to Rhett’s interview with David Wax, the other half of David Wax Museum.


Wheels Off is brought to you by Osiris Media. Hosted and produced by Rhett Miller. Co-produced by Kirsten Cluthe in partnership with Nick Ruffini (Revoice Media). Editing by Justin Thomas. Production Assistance by Matt Bavuso. Music by OLD 97’s. Episode artwork by Katherine Boils. Show logo by Tim Skirven.


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