John Lydon still gets "nervous" before performing on stage.

John Lydon

John Lydon

The Sex Pistols and Public Image LTD legend has stormed live shows with both bands with his anti-establishment anarchy anthems, but the outspoken rocker has learnt no matter how hard you try nerves never go away.

But Lydon - also known as Johnny Rotten - insists having nerves is no bad thing because it drives his "adrenaline" up.

He said: "I still get nervous. When I first started I thought it was just me. I'd watch other bands and think, 'What confidence these singers have got!'

"Gradually you learn it's normal. What you don't learn is how to deal with it. I read books by actors on stage fright. I learned that nerves are an important gift. That's what you need to get your adrenaline."

The 59-year-old singer also insists he can't go on stage with a full stomach and spends the whole day ahead of playing a gig worrying he will let people down.

He told ShortList magazine: "I can't eat before I go on.

"The whole day is one of nerves. Fear of letting people down.

Once on: bingo! It's like the curtains open in the mind. It's a complete relief, and you become yourself. It's a strange process, but there it is."

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