On the Couch with Sammy J

ABC-Sammy-JWho is Sammy J?
He’s a guy who grew up being a massive nerd then somehow managed to turn being a nerd into a career.

What would you do differently from what you do now?
I’d spend less time using admin as a procrastination device and more time getting straight into creative work. If I was half as passionate about writing as I was about filling out my quarterly tax forms, my output would blow you away.

Who inspires you and why?
Young performers who put on shows at festivals – because they’re not restricted by either a profile or a need to make money – in the same way that mid career artists are – so you see fresh and fierce ideas in their purest form.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
I’d hack into the internet and return it permanently to the World Wide Web of 1998, when it was mainly chat groups and very basic websites servicing my main passions – The Simpsons, Phantom comics, and X-File theme music played on a MIDI keyboard.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Canberra, because I’m a nerd. And even though everyone makes fun of it, the joke’s on us because all our taxes go there and they have nice galleries and museums and the place reeks of politics and that makes me happy. Come at me, readers.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
I used to always take people to the children’s garden at the Royal Botanic Gardens back when my kids were little, but now they’re slightly older, so I can’t really just take randoms there without kids. Instead I just take them to the actual gardens, because they’re still pretty amazing.

What are you currently reading?
About three different Burke and Wills books. I fell into a deep Burke and Wills hole recently and I’m still struggling to get out of it. Once I start a book I have to finish it but I’m in too deep and I need someone to help me. It’s almost like the reading of these books is my literary equivalent of trying to cross the continent and I’m worried the whole thing will end with me perishing on page 487.

What are you currently listening to?
Who Shat – a true crime podcast investigating who shat at someone’s wedding. (Spoiler, it wasn’t me.)

Happiness is?
Half a glass of sav blanc in the interval of a theatre show where it’s cold outside but warm inside and the dress code is chilled and there are a few people you weren’t expecting to see there but whose company you really enjoy.

What does the future hold for you?
Lots of different projects, some of which will suck, some of which will be good, but all of which will have that sweet Sammy J flavour that you’ve come to know and love. Then death, of course.

Sammy J is the host of Melbourne Breakfast on ABC Radio. For more information, visit: www.abc.net.au. For more information about Sammy J, visit: www.sammy-j.com for details.

Image: Sammy J – courtesy of the ABC