Andrew W.K. Likes to Party All The Time | Fly Magazine | By Mike Andrelczyk
Chances are, at some party in the last 15 years, you’ve spilled some beer while jumping around to Andrew W.K.’s 2001 amped-up party anthem “Party Hard.” But for the energetic rocker, the party doesn’t end when the keg is kicked. In fact, the party never ends. For Andrew W.K., partying is life.
Andrew W.K. made a splash in the pop-culture pool party with his 2001 record I Get Wet, which featured the musical version of Monster Energy drink, “Party Hard.” His song “We Want Fun” was featured on 2002’s Jackass: The Movie soundtrack and he’s recorded more than a half-dozen albums including a nod to his classical piano training with 2009’s 55 Cadillac – an album of improvisational piano rock. He’s also worked with everyone from Markie Ramone to reggae legend Lee “Scratch” Perry. And that’s just the music side of his career. He’s also a radio host, author and advice columnist and, like, 17 other things.
The man who often appears in a blood-stained, dirty white T-shirt looks like a maniac. And he is a maniac – a person who is obsessively enthusiastic about something. Andrew W.K. is obsessed with partying. But, not obsessed with drunken frat-guy partying. Andrew W.K.’s idea of partying is more akin to a philosophy of life rather than some raging, sweaty, booze-soaked bash (although it can be that too, at times.) To party, according to the Oxford English Dictionary, means to enjoy oneself at a lively gathering. For Andrew W.K. that lively gathering is called life. And partying, for him, is a daily celebration of all aspects of being alive, being in the moment and surrendering to the flow in a positive way. He’s a party evangelist. A party philosopher.
Andrew W.K. gave me a call last month from a New York City hotel room, while taking a break from preparing his weekly radio show – America W.K., which broadcasts, oddly enough, on Glenn Beck’s TheBlaze.com on Saturdays from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. Andrew W.K.’s intense, hard-partying rocker persona differs from the man on the phone – he’s thoughtful, polite and articulate. In his Village Voice advice column “Ask Andrew W.K.,” AWK dispenses some sage advice on topics ranging from dating with an STD to how to feel about terrorism. It’s a forum that also allows him to impart words of wisdom from his philosophy of partying.
Not surprisingly, the holidays are Andrew W.K.’s favorite time of the year. Because parties. (His holiday solo tour hits the Chameleon Club in Lancaster on December 13.) And one thing he wants you to know is you’re invited to party with him. Forever.
Mike Andrelczyk: Let me do a quick rundown. Rock star, music and TV producer, radio show host, actor, author, club owner, advice columnist, motivational speaker, ex-baseball card forger (note: that’s another story from AWK’s adventurous childhood – you can look it up for yourself) husband, father, partier.
Andrew W.K.: I just say “partier” because it encompasses all of that. I don’t think of them as different projects. I think of them as just one project called “Being Andrew W.K. and Partying as Hard as I Can.” This stuff just happens, I don’t sit down and say, “Next week I’m going to go work on X,Y and Z.” I used to think that the whole point of life was setting goals and being very specific about what you wanted to do. And there’s nothing wrong with that. I was very specific about wanting to go on an adventure. But once you decide to go on an adventure, the best thing about the adventure is you don’t know what’s going to happen. That’s what makes you have to rise to the occasion. If you set it all up in advance it’s not really an adventure at all. My only decision was that I wanted to become a partier on a party adventure and everything else is up to the party itself.