August 9, 2011 SOUNDS ⁄  ANDREW W.K: PARTY HARD, BLOWDRY HARDER

Andrew W.K., aka Andrew Fetterly Wilkes-Krier (we also thought that stood for Wicked Kool) is the classically-trained rockstar and poster-boy for partying till your nose bleeds. But did you know how he keeps his tresses in check? Hold tight.

Hi Andrew W.K. So what’s your hair routine? Are you a get-up-and-go type or can you not leave the house without using products?

I think people with long hair have fewer “bad hair days”.  Especially me, since I like my hair to look very filthy and covered in bacteria. If anything, I sometimes add a little extra dirt, or throw some dish soap in my hair before going out.  It’s important to me that I look like myself, and I’ll use whatever it takes to get there, including make-up or dirt, or whatever.

How often do you cut your hair?
I cut all my hair off about 3 years ago and spent a lot of time wearing wigs and getting special hairpieces sewn in.  Since it grew back long, I’ve pretty much stopped wearing them and only trim the ends of my hair every few months.  My mom said it keeps your hair healthier when you trim the ends sometimes.

Would it be safe to say that your hair is an important part of Andrew WK, The Artist? You’ve had the same do since we can remember.
Definitely.  Hair is very important to me because of how it moves. Long hair creates that extension of energy from the body.  Hair still moves even after the body has stopped.  It shows a trail of movement. That’s why headbanging always looks so fucking awesome.  But if I wasn’t performing and headbanging, I would be fine to have short hair. I like long hair and short hair, but most times I haven’t been able to have the best of both worlds.

Are longer locks key to partying hard?
Absolutely not.  The only key to partying hard is doing what you love to do and allowing others around you that same freedom.  HAVING FUN = PARTYING.  HAVING FUN WITH PASSION & PURPOSE = PARTYING HARD.

How do you take care of your hair while on tour? I get the impression that personal hygiene must go out the window during something as gruelling as the Warped tour.
I don’t take care of my hair on tour.  I have tremendous respect for all performers who make themselves up before the show, but my performance style doesn’t demand it.  I shower about once a week on tour, sometimes more often depending on the venue we’re playing.  The longest I ever went without a shower was on a summer tour back in 2004.  I went for 33 days and ended up getting a really bad skin infection.  But believe it or not, I sweat so much on stage, I think it kind of washes me clean every show.  That sounds kind of ridiculous, but I think it might be working.

Have you ever had any hair accidents while playing live?
I once got my hair tangled in one of band member’s guitars.  My hair almost pulled the guitar out of his hands when I swung around!  It didn’t hurt too bad and it only took a few minutes to get untangled. Fortunately, we kept playing the song and the show went on.

Has anyone ever tried to grab your hair while you’re on stage?
One of the great things about being my hair being so covered in slime, oil, sweat, and bacteria is that it’s very slippery and hard to cling to.

Any tips for aspiring rockers attempting to grow out their own hair?
Don’t cut it.

Oooh! Shampoo regularly, or let the grease run wild?
I use shampoo once a year, on Christmas Day, when I go home to see my family.

Are there any other famous rock hairdos you admire? Who, in
your opinion, are the rock’n’roll hair greats?

There are many, many people out there who have had wonderful hairstyles. I’ve always liked Diana Ross’s hair.  I love all hairstyles that lash out at the world around them. I encourage everyone to have fun with their hair and get a crazy style at least once in their life.  Remember, it’s just hair and it will grow back.
It’s one of the only ways you can radically alter your actual body and your appearance and it won’t be permanent.  PARTY HARD!  PARTY HAIR!

 

By:  Charles Ubaghs

Photos:  Andrew W.K.