Andrew W.K. is a man of many talents

Fans can always expect the unexpected from madcap New York mega-rocker Andrew W.K. He just started the label Skyscraper Music Maker, filmed the Cartoon Network show “Destroy Built Destroy” and launched Manhattan nightclub Santos Party House. W.K. contrasts the monolithic sound of his 2001 “I Get Wet” debut with “55 Cadillac,” a new set of solo piano improvisations he’s re-creating in concert with the Calder Quartet on Wednesday at the Swedish American Hall. 

So you’ve also become a motivational speaker? Yeah. And I formally started in 2005, I guess. I landed my first lecture at New York University and I’ve been doing it ever since at colleges and regular venues. It’s been a really unexpected and amazing way to perform.

What message do you convey? I try to do my message rather than say it. And the message is the mode of delivery as much as anything else, which is just a person doing what they want to do. It’s about figuring out what you really want to do and the believing that you actually can do it. I live in that state of freedom, so I thought I’d do whatever I could to provide that for other folks.

But don’t you ever get depressed? For sure. Everybody has different moods they go through. But when I’ve felt sad, I’ve wanted to feel sad — it wasn’t forced upon me, it was a choice. And it’s really much more enjoyable if you revel in it. So I decided that I wanted to get to place where I could watch my life like it’s a movie that I’m getting to live.

You played classical piano at age 4. Is your new album a regression? The whole point of it was not to regress, but to just play the piano. And not even play anything that was supposed to be good or impressive, but to just play and see what happened. And it was a very scary feeling. I wanted to dismantle everything, just to see if I could withstand the terror of it all.

Do you own a ’55 Cadillac? Well, I did — that car you see on the CD cover. But I sold it right after we did that photo shoot, just because it was so over the top. Just driving it down the street was the most intense thing I’ve ever done. And trying to find a place to park, especially in Manhattan? Now that was a true odyssey!

 

IF YOU GO

Andrew W.K. with the Calder Quartet

  • Where: Swedish American Hall, 2170 Market St., San Francisco
  • When: 8 p.m. Wednesday
  • Tickets: $25
  • Contact: www.ticketweb.com

Andrew W.K.artsentertainmentOther Arts

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Small, impassioned crowd celebrates the Fourth of July with protest for affirmative action

Lawmakers and marchers urge voters to pass Proposition 16 in the November ballot

Union threatens legal action after Police Commission expands use-of-force policy

San Francisco’s police union is pursuing legal action after the Police Commission… Continue reading

Giants announce health guidelines for Oracle Park

The San Francisco Giants announced Friday that the organization’s maintenance team will… Continue reading

Restorative art on the inside and out

Curator Ericka Scott organizes exhibition of works by prisoners

City Attorney seeks to recoup ‘illegal profits’ gained by Walter Wong through city contracts

San Francisco will seek to recover “illegal profits” gained by well-known permit… Continue reading

Most Read