Catching Up with Andrew W.K.
By Noah Michelson
I'm just a big fan of sex in general, so, gay sex, straight sex -- the more the merrier. And I just want everyone to revel in their own sexuality and do whatever they want to do. And, if some people get freaked out, that's the whole point. That's what so great about New York, to me, too.
Speaking of "the gays," I saw the clip of you on Kathy Griffin's show. How did that episode come about and what are your thoughts on Kathy?
I first became a fan of Kathy Griffin seeing her on Seinfeld, where she played this character who was designed to be the most annoying person of all time, which was just such an amazing idea for a character. And then to have this woman pull it off so artfully and really nail the vibe. So that's when I first saw her and I saw that she was getting her own show and that it was doing well. By the time they invited me to be on the show, it was kind of at its peak. I think it was sort of the last episode of one of the seasons that we did. I was aware that she went on dates with people and they asked me to go on one of these dates. And, without meaning to insult her, I didn't take it so seriously in terms of it actually being a real date. They found out that I was already engaged, or maybe I was even married at that point. And they said, "What are you doing? You can't go on a date." And I said, "I didn't really think it was a serious date." But they said, "It is!" I said, "OK. Well, I'm going to talk to my wife and we're going to break up for this one day and then we'll get back together." And my wife was fine with it. And Kathy seemed OK with that, too. I also wasn't aware that she was this gay icon. It wasn't until I went on the date when every 10 seconds some guy would come up and be like, 'Kathy, I'm just so psyched to meet you!' We went to the Duplex, which is a gay establishment by any definition that most people would use here in New York. And, again, she was just overrun by fans. And then I started to feel a little bit like a third wheel -- kind of like, Why did I even go on this date? But it was amazing. She was very nice. She's very nice. And I wasn't sure how she was going to be, if she was going to be nice to me, especially. Very nice and very professional -- just [snaps fingers] pop on! She looked good, too.
Let's talk a little bit about your wife, Cherie Lily. Her act is so gay.
She's obsessed with gay culture. She came up in the modeling industry as an agent in New York. She started in Chicago, where she grew up, and then she moved to New York. She moved here to pursue her own dreams as a performer but she liked the vibrant culture of the modeling world and the fashion world and she really thrived because she has a very buoyant spirit. But, eventually she broke off on her own and became just a performer. Now she also works in fitness. She's sort of making her own vision that she can do all the things she loves like, exercise, make music, dance. But she never lost that connection to the gay culture that she got from the modeling business and a lot of her best friends here are either from that business or worked there at one point. As big as this city is, you're aware, it's also very tight-knit and no one can say no to Cherie. She's a very charming woman and she stole my heart and is stealing the hearts of many other men around this city in different kinds of ways.
Finally, what would you say are the most important elements to throwing a good party?
When it comes to partying, I think that the most important thing is to do what appeals to you and to let everybody else do the same. I always was bummed out when someone said, "You have to drink more this," or, "You shouldn't be drinking," or, "You have to be dancing now. Why are you standing against the wall?" That just was distracting. If everybody could just do what they enjoy at that moment and let everybody else follow their own will then I think there would be just celebration -- not only at a party but around the world. That could be the state of the world, I think you have to do what most appeals to you without any compromise as long as it doesn't interfere with someone else being able to party.
Close Calls With Brick Walls/Mother of Mankind is available in stores and for download on March 23. For more info on Andrew W.K., including details on his upcoming appearances on the Warped Tour, head to his website.