On June 17, Andrew W.K. released the tenth anniversary edition of his blockbuster debut, I Get Wet, a.k.a. the best album ever.
I am hopelessly, sometimes painfully, obsessed with Andrew W.K. Like clinging to a flimsy explanation of the stupid island on Lost, I desperately need to understand the decade-long piece of performance art that is his music and public persona. If you only know Andrew from righteous super-hits like “Party Hard” and “She Is Beautiful,” you’re missing the weirdest parts of this story and you should spend a day on the internet trying to grasp just how weird this gets. Swirling around his anthemic, positive party jams is an endless mystery – where did Andrew W.K. come from? Is there more than one Andrew W.K.? Is the current Andrew W.K. the same as the original Andrew W.K.? Is Steev Mike, credited as a producer on many of Andrew’s recordings, a real person, or an international party conglomerate led by Andrew’s father? What is the deal with all those Japanese albums? I’m not kidding, this shit is real as hell and I need to know the answers. Sometimes it keeps me up at night.
If I could make a living interviewing Andrew W.K., I would. Here are a few of my favourite encounters with a man who might not even be real.
From Exclaim! TV’s Garageland, February, 2008
This was our first encounter. We made Valentine’s Day cards together. I still have one in my wallet. Is that weird?
Talk Show Night at Juicebox Manor aired on AUX from February, 2009 to June, 2010
The only conceivable follow-up – eating ice cream in bed and making prank phone calls.
Filmed as a promo for our short-lived talk show, we got all the musician-buds who had appeared on it to read part of this holiday message. I e-mailed Andrew to ask if he had a way of filming himself, and he sent this freestyled manifesto of goodwill and New Year’s joy.
From Exclaim! TV’s Garageland, July, 2010
Andrew comes in about halfway. He spent the whole interview standing on his tip-toes and unblinkingly staring at me when I would ask a question.
Most recently, Andrew came to my new house to do this podcast, in which I ask him about the possibility of mystic symbols being used in his records and then we try to hum a Subhumans song together. You can listen to the magic here, or download and subscribe to the podcast here.