Andrew WK

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Andrew WK


“ We’re really trying to tap into that young person’s fantasy where there’s a monster truck going over a jump and an explosion is going off and a person with long hair is screaming through a megaphone and your mom is there and you’re fighting with your teacher,” explains Andrew WK. “That’s what the show is about.”

We’re really trying to tap into that young person’s fantasy where there’s a monster truck going over a jump and an explosion is going off and a person with long hair is screaming through a megaphone and your mom is there and you’re fighting with your teacher,” explains Andrew WK. “That’s what the show is about.”

Probably best known for a crazed approach ot partying and appearing on the cover of his 2001 debut album I Get Wet with blood streaming from his broken nose, Andrew WK is now working as a children’s television host. The white jeans/white T-shirt wearing party animal, who made his last Australian appearance at the 2007 Meredith Music Festival, has gone from blasting the crowd with his rock-or-die enthusiasm to marshalling kids through a high tech Lord Of The Flies-style reality program called Destroy Build Destroy. If you know Andrew WK, you know it makes sense.

“When they told me the concept for Destroy Build Destroy, I was in heaven. I could not have invented a better show for myself. It fulfils that fantasy that any young boy has had, or any person that appreciate explosions really,” he explains

The erstwhile rocker and NYC club owner was chosen to present the Cartoon Network program after making a guest appearance on Adult Swim’s Aqua Teen Hunger Force, which followed various weird gigs on VH1, MTV2 and Fox News. A regular job on a high-rating kids show represents just another feather in the cap for the accomplished pianist, advice columnist and cult personality. It also fits comfortably into his broader philosophy of living in the moment and enjoying every second of it.

“I really like television and always have, from the first time I was able to be on a real TV show. The lights and the set and all the people working behind the scenes – the very nature of it is truly thrilling to me,” he explains. “It reminds me a lot of music in that it’s very instant and disposable.

“When you play a song, that’s it, it’s over. You can record it, and you can record a TV show and watch it more than once, but the basic premise is it’s this thing which happens in that moment and then it’s over. It’s not an object, it doesn’t occupy a physical space; it’s pure experience. TV is just light and sound on a screen, and all that work you’re putting into that huge endeavour is just to make someone have certain kinds of feelings in their head. I love that; I love how absurd that is. To me, it’s like the best use of human resources in a way, because it’s just for joy. Yes, television is made to sell advertising space, but that only way it will truly succeed in selling advertising space is if it successfully creates that joy.”

In recent years, in between his on-screen and off-screen megaphone duties, Andrew WK has also spent time delivering self-help lectures at universities including Yale, NYU and Northeastern, espousing his personal philosophy and inviting the audience to share their own.

“I didn’t start out thinking, ‘I want to have a career where I do a billion different things.’ My job is just being Andrew WK and doing whatever seems cool, and it’s the best job I could ever imagine having,” he says, and his job includes getting the message out that life can be a big ball of sunshine, if you want it to be.

“I’m very, very, very, very fortunate, and I make sure to realise it every day, because it’s part of what brings more cool stuff into your life, I believe. I was also fortunate enough to have had a lot of mentors and role models who explained to me that life could be this way; that life could be fun, and you could have fun literally every day. It doesn’t mean you don’t have bad days or sad days or bad moods, but you realise that you can make a choice about how you want to perceive the world and what kind of life you’re going to live.”

He goes on to explain that he loved hanging out with older kids at school, because they seemed to have the keys to unlock a whole new world of experiences – music, movies, restaurants. He says he became addicted to having his mind blown, and has pursued the feeling ever since.

“In high school, I met people that told me to find out what makes me excited, what gives me that feelings of goosebumps on my skin, and then spend as much time being around that, or doing that or just thinking about it or whatever – fill your life with that stuff.

“If you make a friend who gives you that feeling, then you spend time with that friend; if you find a writer who you love, then read all their books; if you find out that your own writing does that, then you start writing. Following that feeling is very natural, we’re taught that from birth: certain things hurt, and we stay away from them, and certain things feel good, so we follow them. But you have to believe that it’s possible to really live that way, not just that one good day is a fluke. Your mission, your obligation in life, is to follow that feeling.”

And this is how Andrew WK has wound up doing what he does, which starts with making insane party music and extends through one-man talk shows, kids TV and who knows what the hell else. It’s a wonder he can fit it all in.

“You just map it out – a week on one thing, two weeks on another and a month on another… and somehow you find the time. There are a lot of people out there who are a lot busier than me. Obama, for example,” he grins. “I can’t imagine anyone busier than him.

“And everything I’m doing falls under a really specific umbrella, which is ‘Andrew WK’. I’m not working on a medical invention and a new kind of breakfast cereal. Everything I do is related to music, television and radio, and surrounding entertainment culture. In that way, it’s all very organic.

“When a project comes up, it generally springs off of some other thing. And I just say yes to everything, because you never know what will come out of it – it’s all just a big adventure for me. There are no rules.”

Party hard with ANDREW WK when he taps the BIG DAY OUT at Flemington Racecourse this Sunday January 30. He will also tear the partying roof off The Hi-Fi on Saturday January 29 – tickets from, 1300 843 443 and Polyester Records. And remember, every day is another chance to party.