'Celebrity Heads' Interview: John Pearce from Justice Crew (Heads Up eMag WIN17)
*This interview was originally published in headspace Chatswood's Heads Up eMagazine Winter '17 edition. To receive the Heads Up eMag free every quarter, delivered straight to your email, simply subscribe here.
John Pearce from Justice Crew
Justice Crew shot to stardom in 2009 originally as a dance troupe after winning the fourth season of Australia's Got Talent. Since becoming a pop music group after signing a record deal with Sony Music, they've been nominated for eight ARIA Music Awards and toured with Chris Brown, One Direction and Pitbull. Their discography also includes two number-one singles including "Boom Boom" which was certified six times platinum and "Que Sera" which remained on top of the charts for nine consecutive weeks, making it the longest-running number-one single by an Australian act since the ARIA Charts began in 1983. We caught up with frontman and local boy, John Pearce (pictured third from the left) for a quick chat.
What was life like before Justice Crew?
John: Life before Justice Crew was simple, I'd just finished high school and wasn't really sure what I wanted to do with my life and which direction to take it. I loved dance, athletics and I was working part time at Aldi supermarket and studying fitness at TAFE.
What have you learned about yourself along this journey?
John: I've learned to embrace every moment and make the most of any opportunity thrown at me. Meet new people and be open to new ideas and to learn.
What things have you learned about life since all this started?
John: I have learnt that not everything happens the way you want it to, even though you work so hard and you feel you deserve it. I have learnt that whatever happens, happens for a reason and that everything will turn out how it should in the end.
What's the coolest thing a fan has ever done for you?
John: The coolest thing a fan has done for me was make a teddy bear and copy all my tattoos by drawing them onto it. It had my hairstyle and they even made it look like the teddy was wearing underwear I used to wear.
'Que Sera' explored themes such as friendship, harmony, reflection and an appreciation of life, what do these things mean to you?
John: These are the most important things to live by, surround yourself with positive like-minded people and keep your head up no matter what. Friends/family are the biggest supporters and are always there through your ups and downs. Life is important and should be cherished and spent with the ones you wish to spend it with.
You've been lucky enough to share the whole experience with your twin brother, Len, how much did it help to have someone there to go through it all with?
John: It's awesome having my twin brother there, sharing accommodation, the stage, the spotlight and it's so much fun. Even though we were all like brothers, Lenny was someone I could open up to if something wasn't right.
What things or people inspire you?
John: Friends and family are always the ones who inspire me. People that constantly take risks and people that live an optimistic life.
What advice would you give your younger self?
John: Be confident, don't listen to negativity, and follow your gut in what you want to do.
What were your best and worst memories of high school?
John: Best memories were hanging with friends, socialising and playing sport, winning the relay every year at state athletics and dance rehearsals with the AthElites (my high school dance crew) at lunch times.
Worst memories were having to do assignments and speeches in front of the class.
If you weren't doing what you're doing now, what would you aspire to be?
John: I have always aspired to be an Olympian in athletics
What do you do in your spare time?
John: I do some personal training, go to the gym, relax, socialise.
Your life must get pretty hectic at times, what do you do to stay mentally healthy?
John: Communicate with my loved ones, have a laugh sometimes and not take everything too seriously. I always take a step back and really soak it all in, even though I'm never getting enough sleep from doing early radio shows and TV and travelling constantly. It's all life and I won't get another opportunity like this, so I just make the most of it and live it up.
You've got heaps of young fans, many of whom might be going through a tough time with their own mental health, what advice would you give them?
John: There's always someone out there to talk to, make sure you speak to someone if you're feeling down about something. Never bottle it up, things will always work out in the end.
You've been interviewed so many times- what's the one question you wish someone would ask you, but never do?
John: "How long do you think Justice Crew will last?"
And what would be the answer that question?
John: It's hard to tell, 7 years on and we're still touring. I originally thought we would be done after one year and I would be back working at Aldi- aiming for the 10 year mark!