Eddie Murphy used to sing about his girl wanting to "party all the time." I wonder what he would've said back in the day if he ran into Andrew W.K. Perhaps he would've written a follow-up to that auto-tuned classic and had Rick James bopping his head up and down in the music video. Yes, in the world of partying, no one does it better than Andrew W.K. The California native is a lot of things -- he's a musician (listen to 2001's "I Get Wet"), motivational speaker, runs his own record label (Skyscraper Music Maker), and has a hit TV show (Cartoon Network's Destroy Build Destroy) -- but it's clear partying -- expressed in all his celebrated anthems like "Party Hard" and "We Want Fun" -- comes first on his resume.
On Friday, July 1, the man known for his bloody nose and jovial personality will be hosting a party with his wife/performer Cherie Lily at a club he co-owns (Santos Party House in New York City) for no particular reason --- for party's sake. "The man loves to party," his publicist explained in an email. I caught up with the often outspoken, never downbeat star yesterday, and asked him about the event, his TV show, and what's next for the party-maker. Read the party of non sequiturs below...
If people came with tag lines and theme songs, what would yours be when you walked into a room?
"I'm not here to impress you, I'm here to party with you."
Tell me about your event Friday night at Santos Party House.
My friends and I opened the concert hall and night club in downtown Manhattan. It's two floors, 8,000 square feet, and has the best sound system I've ever heard. We have more speakers than any other club in the city and the most beautiful sprung wooden dance floor (meaning they bounce a bit when you jump on them).
We built the place from scratch with our own hands and it's been a hugely satisfying and challenging odyssey. The party on Friday is what it's all about. Cherie Lily, and my co-owner Spencer Sweeney, have lined up an incredible bunch of performers, including: Jonte (one of the world's best dancers and choreographers -- he works with Beyonce a lot), Amanda Lepore (legendary nightlife personality, fashion and transgender icon), Cazwell (incredible dance musician and gay icon), and many more amazing performers. I'll be DJing, hanging out, and of course, partying. It's the most fun thing in the world.
You have a venue, a label, and a hit TV show... plus you've played the Warped Tour... You're quite prolific. What aspects of your career do you enjoy the most?
I enjoy it all. The whole thing is one big adventure called "being Andrew W.K." I can barely believe I get to be this guy. Other than that, the best part of my life is getting to do what I want every day. There is no greater blessing than that. My life wasn't always that way, but I had a revelation when I was 18 and moved to New York City to make it all happen. I can't think of a better way to spend my time before I die. I wish that freedom for everyone. I'm proof that it's possible. My dream was to become a professional partier, and it's come true.
Still, is there anything you haven't done yet, that you'd like to?
I have all sorts of dreams and goals and future visions, but I think it's best to keep them private. You'll see them when I do them. I think that's the best way. Sometimes the most power comes from keeping your dreams inside your head and letting the world in on your secrets through your actions, not your talk. I've learned that now. I would like to have a baby, though. Two babies. I want to form some humans from scratch with Cherie Lily.
Sweet. You released a bunch of material last year. What will the new album sound like? When will it come out?
The new album will sound like a party. It will come out as soon as it's finished. Hopefully next year. I'm spending all summer recording it and putting everything I have into it. I'm taking it song by song -- trying to make the most thrilling feeling possible each and every moment... trying to make the sound of what it feels like to be alive at the height of excitement and joy. That's always been my mission with everything.
What songs do you constantly listen to on your iPod?
I've not listened to a lot of music on portable players. I think iPods are awesome and love how they've expanded the musical horizon, but it hasn't entered my life too much. Even back in the days of Walkmen and portable CD players, I prefer speakers to headphones, unless I'm recording. As far as listening to music in daily life, I have all the songs I love in my head, so I hum them to myself, or whistle them, or sometimes just picture the sound of them in my head. I like to hear the sound of the world -- not block it out. New York City sounds amazing just walking around. Living here is the best to me, and I don't want to obscure any of its glory.
NY just passed marriage for all -- being a New Yorker, whats your take on this?
It's beyond comment. People should be able to marry whomever they want. Period.
Do you do weddings and bar mitzvahs?
Absolutely. I had the honor of marrying my manager and his wife in Los Angeles a few years ago. I was made a minister by the Universal Life Church. I've also been invited to perform music at people's weddings. I have one coming up soon. It's a great joy and privilege. My own wedding in NYC to Cherie Lily was the best party I've been to so far. We got married at Santos Party House. I went to a lot of bar mitzvahs in junior high school, but no one has invited me to one in a long time. Hopefully they will soon. I like the singing from the Torah.
Pure non sequitur, but is Rick Moranis underrated? Explain.
Well, he's not underrated to me. He had a huge impact on me and my friends when we were growing up. I still think about him all the time. I have tremendous respect for all his work, especially his brilliant singing voice and impersonation skills. His Woody Allen impersonation is one of the best impersonations I've seen anyone do of anyone. He's a master performer, entertainer, writer, actor, and has a completely unique charisma. I was the perfect age for his big hit movies like Honey, I Shrunk The Kids and the sequel. He more or less retired so he could dedicate himself to being a full time parent -- how can you not respect that? He's a master. One of the best of all time, at least for me.
For no reason, weigh in on the Red Sox/Yankees rivalry...
I'm pretty much just a passive observer of sports right now. I haven't felt really passionate about sports since I moved away from southeast Michigan -- I used to be a huge Pistons basketball fan. But I love all the passion and intensity that sports create in the die hard fans. I love anything that makes people so amped up. It's wonderful and very moving. I get chills just thinking about the Bad Boys era of Pistons basketball -- it was extremely emotional for me and my younger brother, Patrick W.K. He's a pro golfer now and has always been a real gifted athlete. The only sport I was ever good at was swimming.
Lastly, if you were a pro-wrestler, what would your name be and what would your finishing move be?
My name would be Andrew W.K. and my finishing move would be "PARTY."