After sorting through thousands of emails, letters, and phone calls, we've put together a list of the most Frequently Asked Questions related to the recent "ANDREW W.K.", "STEEV MIKE" and "12/17/04 CONCERT" events.
***PLEASE NOTE: The information in this "FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS" is directly related to several specific areas and is NOT representative of the general topic of "ANDREW W.K."***
First, we'd like to use this opportunity to thank all of ANDREW W.K.'s passionate fans. Your support has been overwhelming and has certainly enabled us to always move forward, continue, and progress. Next, we want to assure you that there is no reason to worry - when it comes to A.W.K., you have nothing to fear. Every piece of this process is being handled carefully and completely, and we'll continue to keep you informed as the situation develops.
Lastly, like anyone truly devoted to his or her calling in life, we strive to perform our duties in a highly principled and just manner, and we believe that we produce the finest results possible considering the conditions.
We hope that the following "FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS" will shed some light on the issues and topics you've been wondering about. Most of all, we hope this will serve as a reassuring disclosure regarding the music we all feel so strongly about. Thank you again for your heartfelt loyalty.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
Q: Where is Andrew W.K.?
A: "ANDREW W.K." is currently in the process of making the 3rd full length ANDREW W.K. album.
Q: Who is Kristine Williams and why is she writing on the websites?
A: Kristine Williams has been involved with ANDREW W.K., Inc. and AWKworld.com since the release of the first album, "I GET WET". She has contributed writing, computer design and programming, as well as work in the administrative offices at The Louise Harland Corporation. Kristine Williams has recently been assigned the responsibility of maintaining the website operations. The current situation has made it necessary to have additional specialists, including Kristine Williams operate and oversee the ANDREW W.K. websites.
Q: Is Andrew W.K. dead?
A: No. "ANDREW W.K." is alive and well.
Q: Who is Steev Mike?
A: STEEV MIKE is the Executive Producer and Creative Director for the ANDREW W.K. albums "I GET WET" and "THE WOLF". STEEV MIKE's contributions to ANDREW W.K., Inc. and "ANDREW W.K." personally, have proved incredibly effective, and for this reason STEEV MIKE has always been well regarded within the organization.
Q: Are Steev Mike and Andrew W.K. the same person?
A: No. "ANDREW W.K." and STEEV MIKE are not the same person. In the past "ANDREW W.K." has stated that he used to call himself STEEV MIKE, however this does not indicate that they are in fact the same individual.
Q: Did Steev Mike hack into the Andrew W.K. websites?
A: Due to circumstances beyond our control, we are unable to comment at this time.
Q: Did Steev Mike write all of Andrew's music?
A: As stated before, STEEV MIKE is the Executive Producer and Creative Director for the "ANDREW W.K." albums "I GET WET" and "THE WOLF". In the music business, individual producers contribute to the making of an album in many different ways. Sometimes producers work very closely with the development and inception of an album, other times their efforts are directed towards the guiding and supervising of the production process. STEEV MIKE's ingenuity will always be respected and highly regarded.
Q: Is someone pretending to be Steev Mike and trying to discredit Andrew?
Q: Do you know if an A.W.K. fan is making all those websites?
A: There are well over 50 websites registered to ANDREW W.K., Inc. Recently there have been complications with a small handful of these sites, namely www.WeWantFun.com and www.AndrewKW.com. The decision was made to dismantle these and other related sites until further information regarding their malfunction becomes available.
Q: What is The Louise Harland Corporation?
A: The Louise Harland Corporation is a division of ANDREW W.K., Inc. and is managed by PNFW LLP located in New York City, at 156 West 56th Street, NY, NY, 10019 USA. The Louise Harland Corporation is responsible for many areas of operation within ANDREW W.K., Inc. and "ANDREW W.K.".
Q: Who makes the music and writes the Andrew W.K. songs?
A: All of the ANDREW W.K. music is administered by ANDREW W.K. MUSIC, Inc., which is part of ANDREW W.K., Inc. The recordings and songs themselves are owned by ANDREW W.K. MUSIC, Inc. and THE UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP. "ANDREW W.K." performs the vocals in studio recordings and in concert. All songs are made by "ANDREW W.K."
Q: Is it true that Diane Warren is the songwriter for all the A.W.K. music?
A: As previously stated, ANDREW W.K., Inc. is and always has been solely responsible for all related "ANDREW W.K." output, including but not limited to recorded music, video and television, merchandise, and any other items or productions using the name "ANDREW W.K.". Statements to the contrary are false and should be ignored.
Q: Is it true that someone else "made-up" or "created" Andrew?
A: ANDREW W.K., Inc. is and always has been solely responsible for all related "ANDREW W.K." output, including but not limited to recorded music, video and television, merchandise, and any other items or productions using the name "ANDREW W.K.". Statements to the contrary are false and should be ignored.
Q: What are all the number codes about?
A: We urge you to dismiss any sort of "codes" which may have been presented on "ANDREW W.K." websites or other forms of communication including the "(212) 714-4646" telephone number. "ANDREW W.K." has never and will never communicate through "codes" or "coded messages". "ANDREW W.K." prides himself on being honest and straightforward in all his efforts to share information fairly with his fans.
Q: What happened at the concert in New Jersey?
A: On December 17th, 2004, "ANDREW W.K." was scheduled to headline a sold-out concert at the Rexplex in Elizabeth, New Jersey as part of WSOU Radio's "Holiday Bash". At approximately 11:00PM the concert began and continued through it's full duration - there were no major problems reported and those involved from ANDREW W.K., Inc. and WSOU Radio agreed that the show was a success.
Q: Is it true that there was an Andrew W.K. look a like at the New Jersey show?
A: Many contradicting statements report that there may have been a person (or persons) dressed in clothing deliberately assembled to replicate "ANDREW W.K.'s" appearance. It is not known whether this was done with malicious intent or simply to pay tribute to the "ANDREW W.K." image. It has been noted that WSOU Radio had several employees dressed as various holiday characters appropriate for the evening's theme. It is largely assumed that the "look-a-likes" were simply "ANDREW W.K." fans, enjoying an opportunity to dress up as "ANDREW W.K.". However it has yet to be confirmed exactly what occurred. We encourage you to ignore further reports unless issued from "ANDREW W.K." or ANDREW W.K., Inc. directly.
Q: Was it really Andrew who was on stage during the show?
A: Yes. "ANDREW W.K." was on stage for the entirety of the 12/17/04 concert in New Jersey, performing lead vocal and piano, and keyboard parts.
Q: What happened to Andrew after the concert?
A: Due to circumstances beyond our control, we are unable to comment at this time.
Q: Where does Andrew live?
A: Due to circumstances beyond our control, we are unable to comment at this time.
Q: How can I talk to Andrew? How can I meet Andrew?
A: "ANDREW W.K." is well known for his easily accessible personality. At this time "ANDREW W.K." is unavailable.
Q: I have a plan to help save Andrew. How can I get to him?
A: "ANDREW W.K." appreciates his fans and friends love and their outpour of devotion and concern. Please be advised that "ANDREW W.K." is not in danger or in need of "help" in any way, nor does he request the assistance of anyone outside of the immediate company. We encourage you to continue your support for "ANDREW W.K." by participating in the music and all that it has to offer.
Q: Is Andrew W.K. actually an actor hired to play a role?
A: "ANDREW W.K." is dedicated to making the most exciting music possible and committed to providing fans with a truly stimulating experience. Please refer to the article "WHO IS ANDREW W.K.?" for more information.
We will continue to update and revise these FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS as needed.
|WHO IS ANDREW
ARTICLE BY NICK SHEEHAN December 2004
Who Is Andrew W.K.? The question should be WHAT is Andrew W.K., and the answer is that Andrew W.K. is simply a title used to identify the efforts made by many to enjoy life to the fullest. It’s people coming together in certain spaces at certain times to expend energy and celebrate in an atmosphere of total freedom. It’s a feeling, a pure physical feeling of euphoria, excitement, love and energy. It’s a space each and every one of us can open in our lives for freedom, pleasure and fun. It’s a challenge to live up to our own potential and to recognize that life is too short for second thoughts, second-guesses, recrimination or regrets. It’s the realization that the only thing that can ever stop us from translating our dreams into reality is ourselves. And it’s a reminder that we have a duty to ourselves to squeeze every drop of joy we can out of every day we live. Finally, Andrew W.K. is a family of people dedicated to making the most of the opportunities life presents them. A bunch of people using this music as a tool, gaining energy and inspiration from it, and putting it to work in their own way. It’s a full-on confederation-of-fun, which is open to anyone and everyone who wants to come and join this never-ending party.
Of course Andrew W.K. is also a person. A guy who has set himself the goal of making the most exciting music he can. And that music itself has a goal. The music wants us to feel good. To be happy. To give us butterflies in the stomach. To pump adrenaline through our veins. To send that strange electricity up our spines. To make our scalps tingle and our feet bounce.
This music wants to be your friend. Pure and simple. It’s here to love you unconditionally. If you are willing to put your faith in it, it will never let you down. This music is a dynamo. A perpetual motion machine. A source of unending unstoppable power. If you are feeling down, the music is here to give you a hug and tell you that everything’s going to be okay. If you are riding high, the music is here to support you, and push you on to even greater heights. It’s yours to use however you need to use it – unflagging, unfailing, and everlasting.
Although this music is the product of Andrew W.K., the person, he does not place himself above it. Instead, he derives the same pleasure, excitement, strength and hope from it that his most ardent friends and fans do. He is a participant in this music and the community it has forged. This is not an exclusive club. There’s no red velvet rope in front of the door. There’s just a steep cliff overlooking a whirlpool of liquid electricity. It’s not a question of someone else permitting us to share in this. It’s a question of us having the faith to throw caution to the wind, and our bodies in the vortex.
This music is meant for sharing. It’s a font of eternal energy. The music is strengthened, not diminished by our sharing of it. It’s not something we need to hoard, or jealously guard. It’s not something to hold over anyone’s head. It’s not private property. It’s public energy. There’s no hierarchy here. The person who found this two years ago is no more or less important than the person who found it two seconds ago. Or the person who will find it two years from now. We are all on this quest together and we will all share equally in its rewards. There are no dues to pay. All you need to do is listen, trust and feel. Once you put your faith in this, it cannot be taken from you. Nothing can tarnish it. It will live inside you. Even if Andrew W.K. himself were to denounce these songs, it would not and could not besmirch or belittle them. Nor would it lessen the enjoyment we derive from this music.
There’s no right or wrong reason to like this music. And there’s no good or bad way to discover this music. Whether you heard it in a video game, or your friend gave you a CD, or you downloaded a song off the internet, or you heard a song on T.V., or you read about it in a magazine, or you came to a concert, or you found your way here in one of a thousand other ways, it doesn’t matter. All that matters is that you felt it. And even then, maybe you didn’t feel it. Maybe you hated this music when you first heard it. Maybe you thought it was stupid. That it was some kind of joke or put-on. Or maybe you wanted to believe in it, but you’d been let down by other things in the past, so you took a ‘wait-and-see’ attitude towards it. Maybe even now you’re still not sure what to think about it. That’s okay. If and when you do decide to be a part of this, the doors will still be wide open, and no one will say, “I told you so.” And if you decide never to make this music part of your life, then that’s okay too, because hopefully you’ve found other things that give you the same pleasure and excitement that this brings us.
Do you believe in passion? Do you believe in a world that's huge, and strange, and full of wonder and mystery? Where everything we come in contact with is new, and inspires us with awe. When we have no difficulty in believing in things, no matter how weird or unconventional they appear. When we can get so intense about something, that we literally vibrate with excitement just thinking about it. True passion denies us the need to qualify or justify our likes and dislikes to other people. We can love things for their intrinsic values, or for reasons that are ours and ours alone. When we think of our selves, do we think of a time when we were better? A time when we had the confidence enough to say, “this is awesome” without worrying what anyone else thought about it? A time when we went with our gut feelings, because we had no other basis on which to judge things? A time when the ‘sophisticated’ language of boredom, cynicism, and apathy was utterly incomprehensible to us, an alien tongue.
How can we cultivate our passion? It’s not a question of regaining something lost. The spark is in all of us. It’s a pilot light just waiting for us to give it some gas. The music can help. The music is a product of enthusiasm, love, and belief. The very D.N.A. of this music is encoded with pleasure, passion, and truth. It’s like a tapestry – a million million filaments of fun woven together to create one perfect expression of joy. Each song is comprised of layer upon layer of igneous exhilaration and sedimentary intensity, compressed, and sandwiched together into a mountain of euphoria. It is absolutely immense, a gargantuan wave of molten ecstasy pulsing in our ears,
setting our hearts and brains aflame. The music transmits its exuberance and joy to us directly. It is 10,000 volts shot through jumper cables crocodile clamped to our sense of pleasure. The music encourages and demands that we re-embrace the world, and try to accept everything it has to offer.
If you can, try and go to an Andrew W.K. concert. And if can go to a concert, try and lose it completely while you’re there. It’s not hard. You’ll probably see a lot of other people whipping the place up into a frothing maelstrom of total insanity. Andrew will be one of them. You should be too. Of course, just as there are no rules for enjoying the music, there are no rules for enjoying the concert. If standing against the back wall sipping a soda is the best way for you to enjoy the festivities, then, by all means, sip away. If shirtless slam-dancing in the midst of the human cyclone is more your style, then – go for it. And if bouncing up and down throwing handfuls of confetti and candy in the air puts a smile on your face, then bounce, bounce, BOUNCE! The concert is an opportunity. It is exactly what you make of it. It is a chunk of time and a cube of space where anything is possible and everything is permitted. There are just two golden guidelines. “Do Unto Others...” and “Do What Thou Wilt.” The rest is up to you.
Okay. So maybe by now you’re thinking, but what about Andrew W.K.? The guy. The one with the white t-shirt and long wet hair and sometimes bloody face. Shouldn’t we be talking a bit about the guy that makes this music? Maybe we should. Let’s get some solid facts on the table.
Andrew Wilkes-Krier is born May 9th 1979. He’s born in California, but his family soon moves to Michigan. His mother enrolls him in piano lessons at the age of four. At the age of eight he is caught attempting to sell homemade faux ‘vintage’ baseball cards to a local collectibles shop and is grounded for the summer. He spends time cutting up, organizing and filing away pieces of paper in his bedroom. He stays up at night dreading piano recitals, and pushes himself to master the b-flat minor scale. He gets a digital keyboard and in junior high-school makes his first tape of songs. Throughout junior high school and high-school he plays keyboards and drums in various Michigan bands. He also continues to record solo music. Various other projects are conducted in these years. Writing, photo-montage, magazine publishing, sculpture, mail fraud, theft, vandalism, self-tattooing, part-time jobs, and the manufacture of counterfeit footwear all consumed Andrew W.K.’s time.
At the age of 17, one year early, Andrew graduated from high school. Rather than attend the Chicago Institute of Art, to which he’s been accepted, he decides to move to New York City, to work on the music. He is now 18 years old. The music that comes to him at this time lays the groundwork for all that is to follow. Andrew focuses all his energies on making the most immense, thrilling songs he can. His goal is simple. Make the most exciting song he has ever heard. Then, make another one... even more exciting. Using a broken four-track and a re-assembled PC computer, he painstakingly builds the songs, stacking track upon track upon track. The songs slowly become soaring cathedrals of sound, a series of spiraling platinum towers, each more glorious and beautiful than the one preceding it. And still he is not satisfied. He wants better equipment to record the songs. And he wants a band to play them.
Andrew sells gumball machines at a sleazy Manhattan vending company and hocks Opera-tickets out of mid-town box offices, at the same time he does D.I.Y. to the extreme: making flyers and handing out CDs and tapes of his songs to strangers on the street - trying to find other people to play in his then non-existent band. He plays concerts wherever and whenever he has the chance, and he plays coffee shops, and basements and a fluke-of-a-gig art festival in Brussels. At the same time he plays at dozens of scarce basement clubs, up and down the east coast. He records two solo EPs: “Girls Own Juice” and “Party ‘Til You Puke.” He still has no band. When he plays live it’s with a drum machine, a keyboard, a microphone, and sometimes a backing CD and guitar. It’s not ideal, and it’s not perfect, but then – what is? Andrew makes the decision to say 'yes' to everything. Given the choice between doing ‘something’ or ‘nothing’, Andrew chooses ‘something.’ This is important.
Andrew sends a letter and CD to his favorite drummer, Donald (D.T.) Tardy, member of the death metal band Obituary. He does not expect a reply. Donald phones Andrew and says he’d be happy to play drums in the band. The band is formed. The initial line-up includes guitarists Erik Payne, Frank Werner, Jimmy Coup, bassist Gregg Roberts, keyboardist Jeff Victor as well as Donald and Andrew. At the age of 21 Andrew signs to Island records and begins recording his debut album “I Get Wet.”
The process is time-consuming and intensive and exacting and laborious. All in all, from start to finish, it takes nearly two years. The album is recorded in studios in New York, Los Angeles, Michigan, Colorado, Minnesota and Florida. Armies of engineers are involved. Most of the songs contain more than a hundred tracks. Each melody line is composed of forty sounds combined. Every second of every song is microscopically engineered, yet the feeling the songs convey is one of immediacy, a feeling of full-bore ballistic bliss that belies the meticulousness of their construction.
Andrew sustains many injuries while under the influence of the music. During his first UK concert he receives a serious head trauma and is rushed to a hospital from which he later goes missing. At another concert he kicks himself in the face, bloodying and almost breaking his nose. A slippery cake-induced spill off a high stage in Mexico city results in his almost breaking his legs on a wooden slab far below. A guitar cord mishap on a stage in L.A. breaks Andrew’s foot and he finishes the night signing autographs from an ambulance. He continues the tour from crutches and a wheelchair. These and countless other scrapes, cuts, bashes and bruises do not slow him down. Andrew and the band have played over 400 shows since "I Get Wet" was released. Whether incidental, accidental or deliberate - nothing can stop the music. It must be played, and it must be heard.
City after city, country after country, tour after tour – the music spreads itself and gathers its friends, one by one, person by person. Groups of rabble rousers begin to appear at shows holding banners, throwing confetti, wearing home-made t-shirts, distributing sweets. Magic is created. Insane alchemy. Concerts become parties, and parties become explosive celebrations of life, and these, in turn, become revelatory, life-altering moments of pure joy. Fansites appear and grow on the internet. Fan conventions are organized and attended by dedicated super-fans. They raise the standard of fun, and proudly march under it. A family is forming. Two new guitarists: Kendall Andrews and John Sutton are added to the live band when Jimmy Coup leaves the group. The band also adds a second live drummer, Rich Russo, which helps enlarge the sound to even more expansive proportions. Stage manager and Andrew W.K. mascot, Big Daddy becomes a concert tradition in his own right. People with everything, something, and nothing in common are united in their excitement and belief in this music.
Interviews are given and taken and received. Andrew speaks of truth and strength and love. He extols the virtues of living in the moment, of loving without restraint and of taking pleasure where we find it. He tells us that the world is a bottomless treasure chest overflowing with opportunity, excitement and riches – and that all we need to do is reach in and take whatever we want. He reminds us that there’s no shame in being passionate, in believing in things wholeheartedly, in giving ourselves totally to the things we care about. He demonstrates that there is no weakness in being compassionate, in allowing ourselves to be moved by art and music, or in looking up to things with awe and wonder. Finally, he encourages us to become invincible, in body, spirit and mind. To cross every boundary, to tear down every wall, to annihilate the things within us that might stop us from maximizing our pleasure in life. To be strong enough to accept everything, to take it all in, to make it all our own.
As time passes, there is more and more give and take. At the beginning the songs searched for sympathetic ears – for those ready, willing and waiting for something to believe in. Now the music has found its family. A flesh and bone foundation for all that is yet to come. The energy is now passed back and forward, from Andrew to his friends and back again. It is a circuit. It is an endless source of power, arcing between two poles. With every cycle, the force increases, the feeling amplifies, the electricity multiplies.
The 2nd Andrew W.K. album, “The Wolf”, is a result of this exchange of energies. The songs are inspired by and a tribute to our music-forged family and all it aspires to be. The songs are new, but they meet us and we greet them like old friends. They are already a part of us because they are made of us. We have lent them our faith, our
belief, our energy and our fire. They are manifestations of the new world gestating inside us. They are forged from that insane electricity the music gives to us and calls from us. “The Wolf” is another firm step towards the golden horizon. And as Andrew has said so often – it is just the beginning. “The Wolf” was recorded in a non-stop, six month recording marathon in which Andrew completely defied his own conventions and set up one studio in New York City - a complete switch, after having recorded “I Get Wet” in eight studios. The recording process was fast and furious, with Andrew belting out all the feelings that had been created and forged in the depths of this new musical powerhouse. Andrew also chose to play all of the instruments on the album himself. Committing to vast song-structures and even more dynamic rides of feeling, the resulting album is a statement of completely self-actualized euphoria. It's like a group yell, emitting from an endless array of instruments all played by one hand, reflected in a hall of mirrors. The last lyrical statement on “The Wolf” takes us right back to the beginning of the album.
The very beginning.
But the beginning of what? I don’t know. But I have an idea. Maybe it’s the beginning of US. Of you and me and him and everyone. Of all of us, individually and together. A fresh start. A new page. A clean slate. Proof positive that yesterday doesn’t matter. That nothing in the past can harm us, or hurt us, or limit us, or touch us in any way. Now is what matters. Now, and every moment after now. Every second that passes is a new beginning. Every day is made up of 86400 new chances to change ourselves and everything around us. We shouldn’t waste even one of them.
Music is pleasure. It is concentrated, compressed, condensed, coagulated joy. It is the harnessing of divine energies. It is the channeling of celestial ecstasies. We are lucky. Andrew is doing the work for us. He is building the vessels to carry that sound back to us. He is digging a network of trenches from the earth to the heavens. It is his work that brings the boiling sonic magma to our ears, that sound of impossible magisterial glory. Our job is to listen, and believe, and share the excitement and fun.
We are throwing the party to end all parties. This is just beginning. You are invited.
We are like little wooden tugboats moored at the edge of a great stormy sea – quaking and shaking at the thought of that immense roiling ocean. We are like helium balloons, tethered to the earth by wrought iron cables, straining for the sky, yet held back by our fear of the unknown and the uncertainty of freedom.
This music is the push we need. The music urges us to dive in that tempest tossed sea. To laugh with wonder in the foam flecked maelstrom. To scream with joy as blue-white bolts of lightning spear the surging black waters. The music says DO IT. Snap the cords that bind you to this earth. Launch yourself into the future, unencumbered by the dead weight of the past. Soar into the stratosphere and plunge into the very heart of the sun. Set off a chain reaction, a symphony of supernovas, a trail of interplanetary fire that spans the cosmos. Above all, LIVE, and live HARD. There is nothing between us and the world that we want. Nothing stands between us and happiness. Utopia is inside us. It dwells in our brains, our hearts and our guts. Let the music guide you there. The music is your sliver staircase to the kingdom of Joy. Bound up the shimmering steps three at a time, and let nothing stand in your path. What at first might appear to be insurmountable obstacles are little more than the shadows of our own fears. They are as flimsy and insubstantial as wet tissue-paper. They cannot stop you. Tear into them. Annihilate them. With the music at your back, you are invincible. Let go.
Let the music work on you.
Feel the buzzing in your brain. Feel the swarming in your skin. Feel the double-beat of your heart, hammering against
your rib-cage like a motorized battering ram. Ball your firsts. Flex your excitement. Glut your appetite for bliss. Laugh out loud. Jump for Joy. Grab life with both hands and dig your fingers in deep.
Listen to the songs. Take their strength and make it your own. Use the music. Fight your fears. Conquer your weaknesses. Murder your self-consciousness. Break the slippery gray spine of your self-doubt. Perform self-surgery. Cut away all that you don’t need. Remove anything that holds you back. Dig graves and label them fear, jealousy, cynicism, misanthropy, pessimism and doubt. They are cysts on our souls. The music is white-hot and pure. Use it to lance them. Drain away all that is small, petty and weak, and leave only strength, purity and love.
The songs are precise mathematical equations. They work chemically on the body and brain. They are the result of thousands of man-hours spent in pursuit of groupings of notes, which will transport us body-and-soul to seventh heaven. Our flesh becomes dense with euphoria. Our brains boil in their own cranial soup. Muscles twist and jerk and spasm and flail. Our skulls are the sites of massive, blinding detonations. Nitroglycerine pumps in our veins. Gelignite is packed in our vertebrae. A full-fledged end-of-the-world firework display bursts blisteringly behind our eyes. All becomes red chaos. All laws, rules, and even our very understanding of space and time are lost in a chaotic kaleidoscope of sound, image and sensation. The music fortifies us. It pours into us, filling every hollow space – warm and solid and strong. It is a physical sensation of fullness, of completeness, of total and unyielding resilience. It is preparing us for the final assault. We are getting ready for a full-on frontal attack. We are going to storm the walls of paradise. We are going to blast down the golden gates of heaven. We are going to make the citadel of joy our home. We will make the elysian fields our stomping grounds. This music is our clarion call.
We march, an iron column, feet tramping, a sound of unified, undiluted power and belief. We will shake the foundations of the earth and split the skies. Our party will wake the gods. We will rouse them from their slumber and ransack their heavenly homes. We are a speeding bullet-train to the back of the beyond. We are flying forever toward an eternal dawn.
And when we get there, we are coming back. And when we come back, we will re-make the world. It will be the second-coming of human-beings. When we come ripping, it will be a tidal wave of liquid euphoria crashing across continents. The music will erupt spontaneously, deliriously, a hail of blazing gemstones from the skies. The earth will burn in the fire of universal and uncompromising love. No one will be left untouched. Even the most withered hearts will bloom once more with the spirit of everlasting glory. This music is the anthem of a new world. It is the promise of the transcendent beings we will become when all that IS will BE beyond imagination. We will do all this, and a lot more besides. We are a mile high and a mountain wide.
Article by Nick Sheehan 2004
|The way it works is clear: love is love - and love will remain love despite loss and hardship - love will remain love when a person is born - love remains love at the moment of death and until the end of time - love remains love even in the lowest moment and the highest euphoria - love remains love through and through - regardless.|
|"I came to see that what counts in life is not the events that surround one, but the reflections of those events in one's consciousness. All of a man's life - his work, his deeds, his will, his physical and mental prowess - is completely and utterly devoted to, fixed on bringing about one or another event in the external world, though not so much to experience the event itself as to experience the reflection of the event on his consiousness." - M. Ageyev|
|Would you give up all you've
got to get the things you want? And would you give up all you want to keep
the things you've got? It's all pointing towards your desire! And even
more than that, it's about your effort! Trying and trying and attempting
and giving it your life the whole way through. When I decided I had to
move there I just did - but I did work up to it and get ready for it over
a few years time. If I had just decided out of nowhere, then I might not
have been able to pull it off. A lot of it was good fortune and luck, and
a lot of it was other people around who helped me - that's why everyone's
situation is different - the one thing that will be constant is this:
you've got to want to do it more than anything in the world, and you've
got to be willing to do almost anything to get what you're looking for!
Would you give up all you've got to get the things you want? And would you
give up all you want to keep the things you've got? We have to face our
fear! What's the worst that could happen? Go for it, and never stop
trying. Don't judge yourself on what you get, but look at how hard you've
tried and what you've given up and sacrificed. That's the way it's always
been looked at. We might never get exactly what we want, but we can always
try... and true effort is the whole point of living. Trying for something.
Your thing. It's about what it means to YOU. I can tell you a way to get
out of your current situation - LEAVE! That's right! Just leave! Save up
enough money to buy a one way ticket to wherever you want to go and bring
a bag full of food and as much extra money as you have. Now, it's very
possible that you might get to where you're going and immedietly run out
of money and have no place to stay and go freezing out on the streets, or
you might be able to work something out, or you might not - but you know
what? At least you tried! YOU ACTUALLY TRIED! You stopped thinking about
it and you stopped planning for it and you did something RIGHT NOW that
actually put you one step closer. I'm not saying that you should do
anything dangerous, but at the same time, what is life without adventure
and risk? |
When everything else is telling you NO but your blood and your heart are telling you YES - that's when you go. When you KNOW so clearly that it's not even a question. Fear doesn't enter into your mind, you have not only the will and the desire, but the true power to at least try to do anything that comes your way. If you always believe that you're heading to where you're going, than nothing can stop you, because every action will be pushing you to that destination, even if it means going through incredibly difficult challenges and obsticles - you are still on your own road, and you're not letting up no matter what! This is your chance! This is your time! This is your life, and this is what it means to live it - and while everyone else is telling you why you can't, you're going to SHOW them that you can, by trying, trying, and trying, over and over and over and over again. Until you die. That's what life is. It's a brief journey through some sort of understanding of time and space, and while we're here we might as well go for it. If you have what it takes, then you'll know that you have what it takes, and no one can tell you if you have it except YOU. So... do you?
All of our respect to everyone in the world who doesn't have it easy but refuses to make excuses, and decides to march forward without any expectations other than that which they expect from themselves. Power.
We're just being true to our words, and always working as hard as we can for the music and life that we believe in. Otherwise, what else is life for? What is the point of doing anything if you're not going to do it all the way no matter what? We have the ability to become selfish, so why wouldn't we? We have the ability to be lazy, so why wouldn't we? We have made it so easy for us to do nothing, so why wouldn't we? And everyone's encouraging us to and everyone's hoping that we continue to pay it out so that it allows us to become less than were able. We're living below our own standards and our own capabilities. We're not blaming anybody. I do the same thing; we're all doing it. But I know we can step it up a notch and I am not in anyway pessimistic about it. I'm completely optimistic and hopeful. There's younger people of ALL AGES who are going to raise it up to another level. It's going to be the second coming of human beings. It's going to be humans at their best. It's completely possible.
And why not start right now? That's how it's going to happen. It's not going to happen as a big overall movement with everybody doing it, "Okay. Ready. Set Go." It's going to be just start doing it right now. Just put other people in front of yourself, understand and accept. The person you hate the most and you're most angry at, understand every reason why you're angry at them. Understand every reason why they might be doing that. Understand everything. It's an unconditional acceptance. And that's borderline impossible, but man it's something to try for. And that's what it really is and it's so hard. Nothing good is ever easy. It's as easy as that.
We want to be strong and solid - in the heart and in the skeleton too. We don't want to ignore anything, and we don't want to obstruct anything from entering our life. We want to take on whatever comes and we don't want to edit the world just to make it easier to deal with. The world is what it is, and we expect ourselves to be strong enough and tough enough to handle whatever it brings. We care what is going on and we care what other people think, and we care about what we all do! WE ARE STRONG ENOUGH TO CARE! We don't put up a front of false confidence! Ours is true! Our confidence runs deep and it's set in the stone that is the strength that comes from all of us being in this together! You can walk into any hard day of life knowing that you have this music behind you and all of it's power to make you all right! We are standing by you! We can all do this! And we know that we can do our best when you are doing your best too. That's dead serious. No messing around! What do you think this! This can be whatever we make it! We have built it up from nothing, and already it has taken on a life of it's own. It's a life of OUR own! Always know that it is for you! It really, really is.
We are all living here at the same time. People have lived before us, and we can assume that people will live long after us, but right now we are here. So, no matter how hard we try to avoid it, we are part of a big group of people - no matter what. And even though we're spread out all over the globe, we are right next to each other. As the population continues to grow and grow we will find each other closer and closer to one another. And not only will we become closer due to the crowding of our relative spaces, but also due to advances in technology and travel, which shrink perceived distance between one another. The effects of this closeness can be seen in how we communicate, how we deal with space, and how we view ourselves in the midst of what surrounds us. It's only natural that many of us make efforts to live within a controlled environment that we create inside of the real world in order to protect ourselves from what we see as a threatening invasion of our "personal" space. And the personal space is not limited to the physical environment, but also to the psychological environment, which often seems to feel equally invaded. Some of us feel our identities are being threatened by what exists around us. And it's only natural that we amplify our own unique qualities in order to send a signal to the rest of the world that "we" are "we" and "they" are "they". For some of us, our quick fire reaction drives us into a reclusive detachment from what we feel is an unhealthy world. Rather than evolving, growing stronger, progressing, and meeting the challenges of a changing and developing world, some of us simply build up walls to close out and cut off what feels too threatening to deal with - building your own world within the world is a beautiful idea - to exist in a total organized civilization of your own. But the effort can be futile, because its very concept is based upon an absolute impossibility. It is impossible to live in a world that is not part of the world that we already live in. Or is it? Who knows... Humans are not any more individual than the molecules that make up every other thing on the earth. Everyone is part of something bigger. And why put all of our energy into pretending that the rest of the world doesn't exist? And why work day in and day out to barricade ourselves with thicker walls, when we can instead become stronger and grow thicker skins? We can become better at being people - which is superior to hiding. And by making ourselves better, everything will benefit.
The truth of the matter is that for far too long we have been given the luxury of our own individual pursuits over the pursuits of humanity. And while humanity will progress in some way or another no matter what, many of us, especially those of us privileged enough to make choices based exclusively on what we feel is right for ourselves alone, may not be contributing to a world that ultimately contains a lot more than just ourselves. But things are getting better! Always! Whether we know it right now or not! Every single element in the universe is striving to make progress. It is the universal inertia that cannot be slowed down and to fight against it is pointless. Clinging to lost values is not a heroic attempt to save what was once sacred, but rather a cowardly attempt to retain a sense of order in a very chaotic and ever changing world. It makes sense, and it will be O.K.!!! Right? RIGHT!
We think that in order for humanity to progress it is crucial that we look at ourselves as a group and less as an almost random mish mash of individuals and stuff. Or maybe, all of us together form one huge collective individual. Anyway, the act of avoiding reality by retreating into a private and exclusive existence not only holds back the individual, but also slows down the forward movement of the masses. As the saying goes "We are only as far forward as the furthest person behind". We are always approaching perfection! Perfection has not yet happened! You know? The best has never happened, and it never will... improvement is endless! And that is good! We will never reach a pinnacle moment! If we did than we would end... there is no final point! The existence of everything is based on this possibility! An absolute moment is the equivalent to a complete death! Everything strives on the constant desire to go further than last time. To stop this is to die. And even worse, to say that humanity has passed its pinnacle moment IN ANY WAY, is to say that our current existence is irrelevant. NOW is all that is relevant to what comes next! We are all in this together! We are all a part of it, so rather than hide from it; we might as well enjoy it!
It is very possible for us to sustain the same existence that we have been, not necessarily in the physical sense, but certainly in the psychological sense, by simply refusing to acknowledge what exists in the rest of humanity and the world, or to provide a complete lack of support for any other reality other than the one we're fighting to protect from what is truly real. Admittedly, all this talk of what is "real" and what is in itself an unknown, but it is necessary to find common ground that all of humanity can stand and thrive. It can be seen as glamorous to position oneself in a mindset and a worldview that leaves only enough room for what exists within the brain of its owner, but this behavior is counterproductive and does NOT facilitate in any way for true dynamic creation, progress, or even a full enjoyment of the riches of life. The building of a private world within the real world is not something to be proud of, it is a last resort, or worse: a cop out - a way for the weak to hide from what truths frighten them. It is a cheap way to gain some sense of individual importance or character. And rather than build ones own personal values based on strength and accomplishments made while living in the wide open world, the individual easily awards themselves false accolades based solely on isolated achievements that occurred a private space with no real challenges to overcome at all. When you shut out every threat, every opposing view, every bit of difference you have eliminated the possibility of failure, of risk, and of true challenge! You have created the illusion of a safe haven in which to exist and thrive without having to deal with what's really out there. It is not real. It is the survival mechanism of those without the desire or ability to accept and persevere. It is directly against what thousands of years of progress have fought and died for. It is a total disrespect to the millions of people who have sacrificed their own lives in order to secure us the possibilities we have waiting for us. In no way are we stating that different groups should not think freely and openly and act upon their own beliefs, but the future of humanity lies in a continuing connectivity, which will elevate everyone. This is not intended to criticize any person who believes in what they choose. It is the opposite. This IS to say that each person deserves the right to think and feel what they choose, and act accordingly. And it also asks us to not complain and react against. It asks us to rejoice and act for. It says that we should challenge ourselves to lead by example and encourage those around us with support and assistance, and not unfounded objections and weak hearted protests. It does not say that people should accept everything. It says that people should accept what is true. Working towards the universal truth is the constant goal... someday attaining that truth will be the triumph of all mankind. It will NOT be a time when everyone believes the same thing, but rather when everyone understands the reality of the opposite - that everyone believes what he or she believes and we can put it together into one gigantic belief that embraces all mankind. It will not congratulate those who make efforts to leave the crowd. It will give thanks to those who make efforts to improve the standing of the whole crowd in general. It asks us to devote more of our energy and power into building stronger people and hearts, not stronger shelters and walls. It asks us to have the courage and the understanding to accept and appreciate all that the whole real world has to offer, and not to resort to eliminating and cutting down what is around us, simply because it doesn't give us an easy answer. The future of mankind lies in a strength that makes it possible to handle whatever challenges come up. The future of mankind does not lie in a further detachment from the reality of our respective situations. The future of mankind lies in efforts made on the behalf of many. The future of mankind does not lie in efforts made on the behalf of one. The future of mankind lies in embracing and encouraging richness and widespread differences, while at the same time understanding that those differences are supplemental and not fundamental. The future of mankind does not lie in championing one belief over any other (including this one!) and resorting to deconstructive critiques that do not facilitate any progress, but rather only lead to a further distance from one another. And it itself does not claim to be right or be correct and to even to do what it says it will. But it is trying. And it will keep trying to figure out more ways to try. Everything exists! We can make efforts to appreciate what is out there! We don't need to fight it anymore! We are doing O.K.! The answer is not in the problems! The answer is in the solutions! And the solution is not to hide away, or ignore, or abolish! The answer lies in loving it! Take a risk! Take a leap of faith off the cliff of holding back! Life is a huge adventure! Strap yourself onto it and ride it for all that its worth! Every little piece and part and thing! You only get to do it once! Open up your eyes wide and take a deep breath! Stretch out and step out into the whole huge world, and never stop going wider and bigger! HERE WE GO!!!
|There is a power that resides inbetween the glory of a moment and a feeling of crushing and demanding confusion that can all of a sudden appear, out of every single breath taken at will or taken by chance or taken at random or taken by force or taken by an automatic response. So, don't refuse to try to work around it, we have to work through it. Trade your life for a day of existence and a minute of power. Or take your life and love it for all it's worth. Never go up, and never, ever let down. Solid like an iron cube and a good stronghold on what is going to get you and give you what you want. But why only work on getting what you want, when you can get what WE want. We all will get what we want. Because all that we want is to try and get what we want. Regain the main core of our blood. Please get it going. The hearts of blood beat on our side. We are addicted to life.|
|All of our thoughts to those who are living. And all of our thoughts to those who are dead. COME BACK ALIVE.|
|NOW IS THE TIME! We've got to not live in total fear. It's hard right now, but it's just as important than ever! NOW IS THE TIME to really put forth the last ditch efforts and hard work to get it in while you can. NOW IS THE TIME to step forward and not stand back! NOW IS THE TIME to be less of a jerk and more of a friend. NOW IS THE TIME to put other people and other things in front of yourself. NOW IS THE TIME to do anything and everything you can to make the days as good as possible for as many people as you can! NOW IS THE TIME to stop waiting for later! NOW IS THE TIME to grind your hands down to the bone in a passionate effort to live a lifetime in everyday! NOW IS THE TIME to do stuff without worrying about what you won't be able to do later! NOW IS THE TIME to figure it all out! NOW IS THE TIME to help. NOW IS THE TIME to quit being a f*cking wimp! NOW IS THE TIME to do stuff rather than talk about it! NOW IS THE TIME to quit being down on stuff! NOW IS THE TIME to live like you deserve to be living! NOW IS THE TIME to love it! NOW IS THE TIME THAT WILL NEVER COME AGAIN!!! RIGHT NOW!!! NOW!!!|
|THE BEST BIRTHDAY PRESENT EVER WAS THE GIFT OF LIFE!!!|
|Hold on. Do not let go. And
never let down. Thank you. It's all just cool and fun and it is stuff. And
we like to get to it. And we like to get into it and get through. We are
so onto it so we can get away from what we have and to strive for more and
never settle. So we're always running away from what we have. And
sometimes what you have is wonderful. And to spend the rest of your life
searching for the possibility of something more when you had so much is a
tough call. Never satisfied. Just know what you have. And become satisfied
with never being satisfied and that is o.k. We have the ability to become
selfish, so why wouldn't we? We have the ability to be lazy, so why
wouldn't we? We have made it so easy for us to do nothing, why wouldn't
we? And everyone's encouraging us to and everyone's hoping that we
continue to pay out money that allows us to become less than were able.
We're living so below our own standards, our own capabilities. I'm not
blaming anybody. I do the same thing; we're all doing it. But I know we
can step it up a notch and I am not in anyway pessimistic about it. I'm
completely optimistic and hopeful. There's younger people of ALL AGES who
are going to raise it up to another level. It's going be the second coming
of human beings. It's going be humans at their best. It's completely
And why not start right now? That's how it's going to happen. It's not going happen as a big overall movement everybody doing it, "Okay. Ready. Set Go." It's going to be just start doing it right now. Just put other things in front of yourself, understand, accept. The thing you hate the most and you're most angry at, understand every reason why you're angry at them. Understand every reason why they might be doing that. Understand everything. It's an unconditional acceptance. And that's borderline impossible, but man it's something to try for. And that's what it really is and it's so hard. Some say we're still in the adolescence of humankind. Some say we're going to take the whole world out. We want to take the world out. It's going to be hard. Holding up your end of the bargain is our end of the deal. You have it all. Save it from death.
|The thing itself, or that other person is doing nothing. Even if they were making conscious efforts to bring it down, it's ultimately always us who would allow them to do it or would allow ourselves to feel that way. More and more we don't want to do that. The things that we dislike we'll try to get ourself into. Then not only do we have another thing that we get to like then, which makes the life a little bigger, but then we also have a one less weak thing inside of us. Why do we? A great question, why, why not? It's something we know we can do. We really like, always have, even in our most dark days, which was when we were younger, we've always really liked liking things and the inspiration . . . we wish there was a better word. The overwhelming sense of excitement, well being, life affirming, adrenaline rushing moments that happen when we really love something. Whether it's a person, whether it's a place, whether it's a thing, whatever it is. We have never felt those feelings as much as when we've been playing or listening to music. We think people find that all in different ways. We think actually almost everybody can find it in music unless we try not to. Lately especially we really like love songs. If there was ever a style of song or a style of music that's definitely the favorite just because of the attention to melody and we imagine this nails-to-the-stone hard work that people put into making these songs. The great thing about love songs is that even if they're doing it to get money or sell more records or gain the popular new thing, they still have to make people feel good in order to get that. So that is the goal no matter what. We imagine these people trying to construct this and get across this feeling that's often times a reflection of what people are feeling. It's just so moving and so beautiful and it's human beings at their best and we like that. And what those songs are singing about, which is usually a love for another person or being moved or inspired by a person and your love for them and building your world. Lately especially we've envied that. We've been thinking about how we really want that in our life. But definitely craving that cause it sounded so wonderful and we knew and we can imagine what it is we knew that it was capable. We knew we could do that and we could feel that way and give that. We realized that the whole life and more now than ever before we have that through music and people and stuff. We could have no family. We could have no wife or girlfriend or boyfriend or husband no children of our own or anything and we could still have these people to live for, who deserve it. Who don't like us necessarily, but who like this one thing that we've managed to say we want to dedicate our life to as much as anything else, which is this. They're the inspiration, they're the reason for living and they give us something more than nothing and that all these other things that people are searching and trying to find in something and often in another person we already have more than anybody even deserves to have. We have it so much it's ridiculous - it's unfair how much we have it. That we ever think for one minute that we should ever feel lonely is obscene and unreasonable. And we realized that and we were so happy. We listen back to all of our favorite songs and we could put them or this music or what we get to do in the place of the person and it made perfect sense. All the words still worked. It's very, very, very, very moving to us and we feel very overwhelmed by it. We wish we had better words, we'll just keep saying these same words, but it's all-consuming and it makes us feel humble. A lot of people would give us a hard time early on when we were first really making efforts to work on things. We always thought it was odd when we would try to do something good or right and people would say you're not going to be able to do that forever or in a year you're gonna be a jerk and all these awful things, really having no faith in us. Ultimately we think they didn't have a lot of faith in themselves or something. But we are so, not determined to prove them wrong, but we thought maybe they're right, maybe a lot of people do become jerks when things go their way or things are good. But we've only become better and better and better. And we're not saying that as a boast or a brag, it's just fact that we are better now than it was two years ago. We're better now than six months ago. We're better than three weeks ago and we can point out specific reasons. Everything should always be getting better. The more successful this has become in terms of the quantity of people that are a part of it, the more insignificant we become. The more humble we are in it all because we realize that it's not us, it's not one of ours, it is all of ours. The minute that we give it to someone else, the more each person takes of it the less we have of it. And we don't want any of it in the end. I want it to be an even portion of everyone on the face of the earth ideally. Maybe that will someday happen, but if it doesn't we've sure had a blast trying. We have not made ourselves better, other people have made us better. Our friends, the people we meet on a daily basis from doing this - the people that play in this, our parents, our friends, our family, everyone are making me better. You just have to let them and so we are just letting them. Do you have a brother? Yeah we have a younger brother. Full-fledged. He's awesome, he's amazing. He loves music. He used to played saxophone. It's so sad cause he thinks he's no good at saxophone and he was great. For whatever reason, he got discouraged and gave up on that. You never know he might get back into it, but I thought he was great. I was impressed. He plays piano too and wants to take piano lessons, he's getting more motivated now. He's funny, he's eighteen and he just started college and he went there for golf. He was obsessed with golf and he has been for years. Like, "I am going to play golf. I want to be on the PGA Tour." All day, every day, playing golf for hours. That was it. He went to college, moved away. It was his first time away from home it was a big deal. I never thought of this, but I should of, I talked to him the other day, I asked him about golf he's like, "Hey you know golf is not all I'm about." And I said, "Oh I know Patty. Well you're still into it?" He said, "Yeah, but not as much. I'm getting bored with it. I like the competition, but I don't like the game." Of course he moves away from his life and the whole world opened up and anything was possible. He's like, "I want to play keyboard and learn how to play piano better and come on tour with you." I'm like "Patrick that'd be awesome. You have to do it. You totally can." He was like "Are you sure?" I was like "Yeah!" He's like "It's great because I already know everybody in the band!" I'm like "Yeah you gotta do it! We'd love to have you and you can bring your golf clubs on stage" and he said "No, I don't want to have that." So it was really interesting that it all changes, you know what I mean? Your whole life you wanted to be a doctor and you go to college and you meet someone who likes cars and you want to be an engineer. Being five years younger than me he dealt with the worst that I had to offer as a person. I apologize to him all the time. I apologized to him the other night when I was driving back from a concert and I was talking to my friend about how I felt bad. But he is stronger because of it and I told him "Patty I'm so sorry" and he said "It's okay Andy, I was mean to you too." I said "Okay, good. As long as it's even." People who go through hardships are ultimately centered. It's true. My friend pointed that out. They said a lot of the most collected together people you'll meet are the ones who have gone through the most crazy stuff. That's so true. It's not always the case, but the most together people I know, or the coolest people I know, the smartest, have been through a lot. We would follow these kids around, they were juniors and seniors and we were freshmen. We would follow them around like a good fifteen feet, twenty foot, maybe fifty foot distance and try to talk to them every now and then. They'd be mean, you know, they were punk kids. But way weirder than your average, I don't know if there is such a thing as average, but just weird. We can't describe them - Just hearing that and seeing that motivated us in ways that last to this day. And we still think about it every day. What are we trying to say with our lives? To take things as they are. We don't know, we're not trying to say anything really. We guess we're trying to say everything and at the same time say nothing. We really don't want to say anything. The most exciting thing to us is when you hear a song, or you see something or read something or meet a person or go to a place, any thing in the world and it isn't anything more or less than what it is. Is that rare? Just when you hear a song, what is it? What is it trying to say? We're trying to say that these notes going in this order at this tempo with these instruments played at this volume sounds great. That's what it's trying to say. With these words screamed with this bunch of people, just sounds, it's just so wonderful. And that's all we're trying to say and we want to say it over and over and over again. We're not trying to tell anybody to do anything. There's all kinds of other stuff that seems to come from that feeling of LETTING LIFE LIVE YOU and wash over you and not fighting it and not trying to figure it out or explain it because it's already all there. Realizing how big and vast and huge everything is and how lucky we are to be in the midst of it all and that most of us, whether we realize it or not, have things pretty good, are in a pretty good situation. It's unfair how good we have things. It's really unfair how good we have things. Feel better rather than worse. A lot of things. This is another thing that we don't feel the need to talk about or explain so much but there's many reasons and we can list off some of those reasons, but we only would ever need one of these reasons to give reason enough to do it. It's basically the golden rule. Which is to do unto others, as you'd want to have them do unto you. If we were there and we wanted to talk to us, I'd want us to talk to us, you know what I mean? I think a lot of these people that we get to talk to would do that for us and would do it for other people if they had the chance and we would hope they would. It's just an even trade. If they have the time and the patience to wait out there we're going to have the same. It just seems like the right thing to do. There's not that many times in life where we have such a clear choice. We're so lucky to have a clear choice of this is the right thing to do. A lot of times it's not so black and white. This is a very clear, right thing to do in our eyes. It's just the right thing to do. And we don't even have to think about it that hard. It's a challenge that we like. We like doing things that seem like they shouldn't be done. You know lines that are easy to cross. Again for us it's not easy or hard. There's a line, cross it. Just knowing that tomorrow may not come and we want to know that we gave more or less the best we could do on this night with this. We don't want to be lazy. We don't want to waste this. We have too many good things in our favor. We live this life of ease and we don't really want that too much. So we try to make it more enjoyable for us by facilitating it with a challenge, because a lot of times what people try to do is de-void it. A lot of our society is actually built up with trying to ease anybody of any discomfort or challenge at all. Especially, we think it's really easy for people who are privileged to achieve that and it's not very fun. We just feel better about things, knowing that people will be made happy, but we didn't take the easy way out. So all those things, above all the golden rule. Because what else is left? What else is the point of any of this? What is the point of anything at all except to try and make the experience of living life feel good? As humans we know a few of the things that are so special about us as far as we know so far is one we're unique to this planet. We're vastly different than any other living thing. And our ability of how we feel and how we are able to think. As far as we know, we've yet to meet other life forms from other planets or from around. Although, I for one believe they're there. It would be absurd to think that they're not, considering how vast things are. Never let down.|
|Our time has come! This is our chance, and to let it pass by would be an absolute disgrace! This is our time, and not just our time, but ALL people, it is ALL of our times! We are not just individuals - not each person on their own, but rather the entire human race grouped together - that is who we are! And it is our time! Our time has come! It has arrived, and it's a good thing that it's come now and not a moment later or it would have come too late! We are at the deadline! Today is the time to start doing all the stuff that we've been putting off, or saving for a rainy day - now is that day! This is the moment where all that you've done can been used to achieve all that you'll do! If you give everything you have you will get everything that you want! Everything for everything! It's a fair trade! For the first time we realize that if we don't do it, it's not going to happen! And if we don't do it right now, we won't be able to do it ever! This is it!!! And we also see that it isn't going to be easy! But we don't care! We want it too badly to be lazy! So bring it all on! In one giant overwhelming chunk!!! We are going to be able to do stuff that we never thought we could do before! Life is too short! So much of the time we're thinking about what we've done, and what we're going to do, but we need to think about what we ARE doing! Right now! And how do we feel about it? And do we want it to be something else - something better? And what is better? And what is the whole point anyway? And where do we begin? And why should we start now anyway? Because right now might very well be the last chance we will ever have! Because today might be the last day that we're alive - that anyone's alive! Tomorrow might not ever come, and we should work to do everything we can with the day that's given to us - and that way if tomorrow does come we will have earned it! Don't take the easy way out! Don't think about it later! Don't wait until you feel more like doing it! Live right now! Don't feel guilty and let it slow you down! If you do feel guilty then use that to drive you into doing all you can! Never stop trying to do more! The time for resting and taking it easy is over! The time for being easy on yourself is long gone! We no longer have that luxury! We no longer deserve that luxury! For far too long we have done too little with too much! We have taken everything and given nothing! It's not about us and it never has been! It's about everything else! It's not about you! It's about everything! It's not about YOUR world! It's about THE world! We keep on building up and defending this illusion that somehow we have the right to be selfish! We should not indulge in anything that keeps us from realizing that we are all in this together! We should be happy! We are alive - and nothing should get in the way of us being happy about that simple fact. Knowing that fact, and realizing it as truth, and I mean, REALLY realizing it, not just looking at it as some sort of cheesy philosophy that you hear all the time, but living and dying by it - that should keep you happy no matter what - NO MATTER WHAT! We hear it all the time because it's true. It's also pretty intense. And because it's so simple it can be overwhelming - but in the best way! It is not something to be afraid of! And if you're not afraid of it, good! Now go out and put it to use! We say that we know and understand everything - then why aren't we living like it? LIVE LIKE YOU MEAN IT! It's admiting that you're part of something bigger than just you, whether you like it or not. And a lot of the time, we don't want to be part of something bigger. We want to be us. We want to be the one person that is yourself, or myself, and we build our whole lives to fulfill ourselves and to confirm and reconfirm that we exist in this life for us. We are not living beyond ourselves, we pride ourselves on being individuals. And that is appealing and great, but it has so many limits! I don't really know what I'm talking about, and I need to do this as much as anybody! And for all those people out there who say "I know this already!", good, now go spread the word! Because this is not an idea or a concept, this is fact! This is true! So give me a chance! And give everyone else a chance, because this one chance is all we have! What is the point of being human? The point is to push ourselves farther! We should push past the point that seems comfortable and easy! We should aspire to do the stuff that seems completely and totally impossible and insane and work towards it always! And never stop trying! Never settle for less! Be hard on yourself! Demand way more than you feel like doing! Expect all that you have and then some! And never let it go! Never take it easy! Time is really running out! And this time it's for real! It's all coming down to this moment! And it has been for a long time! What are we going to do? Who are we trying to fool? Why are you pretending that today doesn't matter? Do not ignore it! IT MATTERS! What are we trying to prove? These are the actual DAYS OF OUR LIVES! YOU ARE LIVING YOUR LIFE TODAY! Everything you are doing, saying, and thinking! This is not a temporary time that we can mess around with! This is the whole thing! What are you going to do with it? What are you going to do in this crucial moment? This is serious! This is no exaggeration! It sounds dramatic and extreme? THIS IS EXTREME!!! And extreme times call for extreme measures! The human race has never been faced with the set of circumstances that we are faced with now! We can't pretend like this is just another day! This is THE day! This is TODAY! We have never been given today before! We hold it all in our hands! Go find a calendar and look at the date - whatever day it is, realize this: this day will never come again! There will never be another one of today! It is a one shot deal! What are you doing with it? What are you doing with your life? What are you doing TO your life? Imagine what other people would do with your life! Why do we waste our energy on stupid problems that mean nothing? Why do we waste it? Imagine what someone would give if they could live just one day in your life! How are you treating your life? How are you protecting and honoring this crazy miracle that has been placed in your care! You have the responsibilty! You have the duty! You have the obligation to live you life for all that it's worth! And this is the time to do it! And we are all being asked to go above and beyond! That is when things happen! As it has often been said: the truest crime is when good people stand by and do nothing! What are you? Are you a good person? What are you doing? Do even more! Take your starting point and push past it! Find something that is really hard and that you don't think you'll ever be able to accomplish - better yet, find something that will benefit more things and people than just you, and devote yourself to it! And don't give up! Stay committed! Stay strong! That is the answer! And it has been all along! And we all know it! The answer is to do everything for everything else! You should come last! And you should be proud too! And that should be how you come first! Bring others up to the levels that you take for granted! Give other people a fair chance at starting from where you start! Use what you've been given to give others what has been stolen from them! Maybe we can't do everything, but we can try! Always trying! It has been said that the only time you really fail is when you stop trying! Do something! As always, something is better than nothing! You can always find a million reasons to say no - to wait - to forget it - to ignore it - when are you going to start? It is too late when it's too late! When you look back and wished that you would have been a little less lazy and a little less scared and a little more driven? Do it because it is the right thing to do! Do it and expect nothing in return - only the satisfaction of knowing that you tried your best! This is why we're alive! This is our potential! This is our mission! This is our time!!! NOW!!! NOW!!! OUR TIME HAS COME!!! LIVE!!! NOW!!! OR NEVER!!!|
|This is not a revival. This
is not a return to the past. This is not a tribute to what has come
before. This is not anything. THIS IS EVERYTHING.|
ONLY YOU CAN MAKE IT HAPPEN. OUT LAST. WORK HARDER, AND EVEN HARDER. WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO MAKE WITH THIS DAY? YOU ONLY LIVE ONCE. DON'T BE A FUCKING WIMP. BE STRONG. HAVE COMPASSION AND UNDERSTANDING. LIFE IS SHORT. DON'T WASTE TIME. NO ONE CAN BRING YOU DOWN EXCEPT YOU. BE INVINCIBLE AND LIFT WEIGHTS. SEE THINGS AS THEY REALLY ARE. GIVE AND DON'T RECIEVE. DON'T TAKE WHAT YOU DON'T NEED. NO EXPECTATIONS BEYOND WHAT YOU CAN DO. EXPECT NOTHING IN RETURN. REMEMBER WHAT OTHERS DON'T HAVE. BE THANKFUL. WHAT REALLY COUNTS AT THE END OF THE DAY? STAND FOR WHAT YOU BELIEVE. FIGHT FOR WHAT YOU CARE ABOUT. DON'T FIGHT AGAINST WHAT YOU DON'T CARE ABOUT. NEVER LET DOWN. WHAT IS THE RIGHT THING DO? DO UNTO OTHERS AS YOU'D HAVE THEM DO UNTO YOU. DO NOT SETTLE FOR LESS. MAKE PEACE WITH WHAT YOU CANNOT CHANGE. STEP IT UP AND PUSH IT BEYOND TO EXCEED.
ABOVE ALL, LOVE.
|Our only expectation was to
do it in the first place.|
In my opinion, most of the stuff that is written here is not my opinion. It is not a philosophy or an idea, but rather... THE TRUTH. The things we're talking about are not easy at all - the truth is never really easy, but at the same time, it's really easy because it's undeniable. You just have to give in to it, and then start from there. Even though I write about all this from my own experiences it doesn't mean that these same things don't happen to a lot of people - in different ways, but with the same realizations. The realization that we can do better. And even though I realize these things, it doesn't mean that I can always live up to them all the time. I mess up all the time, but I'm trying... I think we're all trying, or at least trying to try. We're trying to live up to what the truth demands of us. And I am just like anyone else - I want to get better. I have down days too... how do you think I know about the good stuff if I haven't seen the bad? The bad stuff is all over the place, and always in the back of my mind, but we want to use our dissapointment, fear, frustration, jealousy, troubles and weaknesses to find out ways to get better. I'm not going to let the bad stuff tell me how to live. I don't want to be like that anymore. I know that the bad stuff is not the answer and not reality, but sometimes I can't fight it off. I can read all the stuff that I have written, and the brain still breaks. It's weird, because I can write about this stuff and talk about it and think about it, but actually living it is a whole different challenge - but it's a very worthwhile challenge. It's going to be okay. It's all going to be okay, you can promise yourself that. It can seem impossible to achieve the things you want, but you can - we can. I don't want to do it by myself, and I don't think I can. WE'RE IN THIS TOGETHER. This is happening to us at the same time. And we are going to help eachother out. I'm not better than anyone, I'm only better than I've been before - I'm just trying harder, and that's why I FEEL better - better about life. I was given a chance to try harder, and it was given to me by other people. If you're reading this then you are one of those people - you a part of that chance. Thank you. And as you're reading, remember that I'm not talking at you, I'm talking with you. Remember that I'm realizing the same things as you are. I'm not preaching from a higher level, I'm just talking about stuff that we're both thinking about. And remember that when you're going through hard times and feeling sad, or angry, or just plain bad, I have those days too, and I'm there with you, trying my hardest to get better. ALWAYS GETTING BETTER.
|This is not going away, this
is going to continue. I want to do more every year and just keep it going.
We’re only getting stronger and smarter and better. And the more it grows,
piece by piece, the more insignificant I feel in the best way. I want to
make it clear, and I feel weird saying it, but I really mean it - that I
hope people have as much belief in me and in the music as I have in them.
Whether it's this music or somebody else’s, I hope people can just stay
passionate about things because it’s all we have: believing in stuff.
The attitude of: "I’ve done it all, I’ve seen it all, nothing impresses me, I don’t care, I’m over it" - that’s so weak, and it’s so small. There’s no reason to be afraid. There IS so much to be afraid of that the last thing we should do is BE afraid, you know what I mean? It’s all gonna end at some point. Hopefully not in our lifetime but it quite possibly could end tomorrow for all we know. And because of that, you should just live without fear.
And to repeat, in advance - Like more than you dislike. Try to challenge yourself in that way. No one’s been more pessimistic and jerky than I have, but we’re all trying to just get better. Let people get better! Let people improve and change their minds. Let it go. Let the past be that. Let the future be unwritten and be more patient. I know we can do it, and that’s what this music is all about. It might sound cheesy or corny or whatever. Have the courage to say no, it’s true and I’m gonna see it as that and not have to put it down to keep it safe. We’re really thankful and we know how lucky we are and how crazy this is and we’re not going to take it for granted and we’re not going to waste it and we’re gonna use it as much as possible to benefit as many people as possible.
|WE KNOW EVERYTHING AND
Nothing is wrong with this...
Who are we, who were we, and who will we become?
Why is it this way?...
Someone sees a group of people. Immedietly that person indentifies the group as people he does not know and is not friends with. He look closer at their age, haircuts, clothes, and body language. He starts to assemble ideas about them and what they enjoy, based on what he sees. He does not look at people based on who they are, he looks at people based on what they like and dislike. He does not consider the quality of someone's character, but instead the quality of someone's particular knowledge and how it relates to his own. He begins with comparing his own prefernces with what he assumes are theirs. He realizes that some of what they like might be similar to his own tastes, but because he is not already friends with them he assumes that their appreciation for those same things is flawed. He likes it for the right reasons, and they are faking it. He is cool, and they only wish to be cool. In fact, he actually begins to deny his own preferences in fear that they could actually be similar to theirs. He convinces himself that he "used" to like those things, or that he "never really liked it that much". He goes further and determines that anything they like is fake and even if they happen to know about the same things, he possesses a vast wealth of interests that they could never like, or even know about. He is sure that if he was to tell them what he's interested in they'ld probably just stand there and look confused, because they could never know about the "real" stuff that he knows about. He has continuously made efforts to seek out and horde the smallest and most obscure elements of life, in hopes that he can build a completlely unique identity around a set of preferences and aesthetics so cryptic and pointless that anyone else would be dumbfounded at the attempt - which is exactly his mission. And, in a heartbeat he is ready to throw out those same things that he was once so passionate about - as soon as others take some liking to them. As much as he claims to commit to his views, he is the first to abandon them when they become popular. When the other people that he so often complains about actually gravitate towards his protected sphere he will turn and run, for the last thing he wants is to give them what he has. He is the epitome of selfeshness. He has decided to intentionally avoid anything that is loved by many people. He prefers to adhere to things that most people don't like or don't even know about. He feels that the effort he puts into constantly adjusting his taste justifies his contempt for those that blindly follow what they love. He does not look for visceral satisfaction or true enjoyment in things, but instead a cheap self-righteous sense that his way is the only way. He contends that what he likes and dislikes is right and true, and is quick to dismiss other views as stupid and wrong. As much as he laments about the state of other peoples lives, he does little to repair the situation - instead he delves further into a self imposed solitary search for false virtue, and uses every opportunity to whine, degrade, and mock others. And as though he may speak like he wishes everyone would listen, he usually will only talk just loud enough to prick the ears of the most careful listener, only then to deny them any reward for their curiosity.
Finally, through careful planning, he is sure to leave himself plenty of escape routes, should someone call him on his own game. In the event that someone points out how unfair, pesimistic, cowardly, hopeless, weak and just down-right unfriendly he is, he is ready for a quick change of position, and he readily assumes the attitude of knowing about everything but not really liking anything. This angle provides him with an endless array of escape options should someone challenge the things he likes. At times like this he feels that he is above truly loving something, he is simply an observer - an educated and particularly refined individual who prefers merely to provide commentary on the pursuits of everyone else. In fact, he lacks the strength to live in the wide open world. But he can change...
If he knows so much about these people, why can he not just let them be? If he knows everything then why does he understand nothing? Why does he not understand that the very reasons that he does not like these things, are the SAME reasons that he should understand these things? Why can he not see that people are just trying to be happy? And not everyone knows exactly the right way to be happy all the time. Maybe they haven't grown up with supportive people that gave them everything they ever wanted and supported every idea. Maybe they did not live in a town or city that provided them with unique opportunities to learn and discover. Maybe they were not surrounded by peers and teachers that could show them new things. Maybe they are just discovering them now. Maybe they haven't been so privledged to have all that you have had, seen all that you have seen, and known all that you have known, and maybe instead of giving them a hard time, you could give them some of what you know. Share with them the things that you think are interesting - not with hopes of making them more like you, but just to give them some of the same opportunities and benefits that you were given. And maybe instead of holding back and keeping what you like private you can let them see it and experience it. And instead of criticizing and destroying you can encourage and build. If they play in a band and you think that the music they make is bad, or they listen to songs that you think suck - well, maybe they didn't have people to play them those cool songs you like, maybe they lived in a house where all the had was a T.V. and a radio. Maybe they didn't go to a school where there were cool bands playing concerts. Maybe just now they are finding out about music. And are you going to try to make them feel bad about it? What if you were them? What would you want someone to do for you? Introduce you to something? Help you in some way? Do anything at all that would lead to more and better things?
If they don't work at as good a job as you do - maybe they didn't have the money or the ability to get as high of an education as you. Maybe they decided that they wanted to pursue something more risky, and maybe it didn't work out. Maybe they've spent the majority of their lives battling hardships that you can only imagine. Maybe they value different things over profession, such as being a good mother or wife or member of society. Because you have a bigger house, does that make you better? Is the time you spend away pursuing a career and "providing" FOR your family better than spending time WITH your family? Because you can afford to spend, can you also afford to give? Some people decide to forgo empty comforts in exchange for the real comfort of knowing that they are directly responsible for good in the world.
Maybe they are doing the best they can with what they know. Maybe they are not doing something as unusual, or important, or valuable, or high-powered, or smart, or beautiful, or fancy, or exciting as you, but at least they're trying. You are no better than they are, you just have different things, experiences, ideas, friends - different lives. And if you can identify their problems then you can also understand them, and more importantly your own. That is compassion. That is for everyone. Including me.
We do not need to be at odds with the world. What job you have, what house you live in, what car you drive, what town you come from, what you look like, what you wear, what you listen to... those things do not count for everything. What counts most is how you treat people and how you make people feel. Do you think you are a good person? That is the center. The rest is the color around the edges, but with nothing at its center it is empty.
LIVE LIKE NO ONE IS WATCHING.
Why is it that we often react to the happiness of others with contempt? We are so quick to know why someone is the way they are, but we are so slow to understand it.
We have so much fire-power and yet we choose to waste it's fuel by burning our own potential.
Do what you do best, and let everyone else do the rest. And if you really did what you did best, then, oh boy, how powerful would you be.
"This planet has not been given to us by our parents, but rather has been loaned to us by our children." - Nate
The prosperous few and the restless many. We're living here and doing the best we can. Are we? Things are not fair - it is not balanced. Too few people hold too much, while so many others hold so little. Those that hold too much are aware of the imbalance, but instead of leveling the scales they do everything in their power to convince those with less that the things they don't posess is that which they should desire. In fact, the many who are poor also posses a wealth of riches that some of the prosperous can only imagine.
|What is it all for? What are
these holes that cannot be filled? Sometimes it might have been so long
since we actually knew who we were, let alone liked who we are - it's hard
to even find a starting point. We want to be like we were when we were
happy - were we ever? By clouding our own self doubt with complacency and
lethargy - numbing our clarity with escapism - doing anything to forget
the things we wish we would not remember - the responsibilities and
promises made to others and ourselves - how can we follow up - mistaking
disappointment with care - we just want you to not let yourself down - you
are curious about what others have found - you try it too and then it
takes you around - but in the reinforcement made by others who have also
taken that turn - initial reaction is doubt and cheap pessimism - at the
bottom there is a will to repair and to become something that you think
you might like better - some of those that are at your side agree - others
sneer as they are loosing your support in their own lows - you climb it up
and you are up - but it has been so long since you were anything but what
you didn't want to be - who are you now? - looking to gain respect and
admiration from those that intially brought you away leads to confusion
and dissatisfaction - you are great - you need to see that what you have
become is who you want to be and that there is still so much more to turn
- and that those that want you another way don't want who you really are -
this is you as you stand, without outside distraction or confusion,
without doubt or unnecessary fronts, without false attitudes or empty
predjudices - this is you as a true person - this is your starting point -
it's okay to change your mind and to get better.|
We don't want to take it away before it's been entirely given. The needless pressures we create to justify the tireless and trivial ups and downs that make up a life. The constant negotiating and posturing of values so stiff that they have no choice but to crack like brittle backbones. The denial of possibilty. The relentless favoring of that which is easy over that which is demanding.
Waving the flag of false honesty as a means to absolve oneself from any sort of care or gentleness. Mistaking being truthful with being cruel.
"You hurt my feelings."
Response: "I was just being honest! Gosh, you've got to be able to take what I say."
"You could have been nicer."
Response: "Hey, I'm not going to lie."
Someone who has the will to be honest should use that power with caution and should have the strength to know how to ultimatly create the most good in the end. If we criticize someone - can we do it in a way that really helps, or are we determined to be cold and "honest". Having real power is knowing when not to use it. When someone asks you something like, "do you like what I made?", they are giving you a lot of power. This is not power that you have earned all yourself or that you have created, it is power that has been given to you through the outreaching trust of someone else. Use it carefully and wisely. Help more than you hurt. And don't be lazy. Just being "honest" is a poor excuse for a sloppy and calous reaction.
|And I'll give you all the
love in the world - I won't throw our love away. What we worked so hard to
build together can be preserved as a memorial to our times, even if we
aren't building them anymore. We can look after and tend to what we had.
It is present and current. It does not need to be destroyed or forgotten.
It can live on, for all the world to see, and we can look at it and love
it. We should keep it all with us.|
We're so glad that we don't have to choose our favorite things. We're glad we don't have to hold one thing high above all others. We're very thankful that we don't have to make choices like that in life. For us, we think it's unecessary and limiting. Why would a person feel the need to put one thing above another? Isn't it enough that you love that thing very much? We have this desire to organize things into "best and worst" when it's really all the best. We don't need to simplify - the richness of life comes from a love of many things - many favorites! That's the great thing about life: you can like it ALL. The best feeling in the world is love. To love something. To love a song, or a person, or a place, or anything. We want to talk to others about how much we love it. We want to be around it and see it. We want to tell it how happy it makes us. WE WANT FUN.
|Being a friend is a fine
art. Two people who are compatible with each other share more than strong
feelings of love and affection. They also can share interests and ideas
and feelings about all kinds of different stuff. But, compatibility is not
only about what you share and agree on, it's also about accepting what you
don't agree on. You know? It's about supporting each other through all the
different directions that your individual lives will take you. It's about
being gentle and careful about each other's feelings when you do disagree.
This goes for romantic and intimate relationships as well as friendships.
It's about understanding each other. My Mom has a little metal button that
she keeps above the sink in the kitchen and it says "Being a friend is a
fine art." I have read this sentence for many years, everytime I was doing
dishes or washing my hands, but it wasn't until the other day when she
explained it to me that I truly understood. Love, in all it's different
forms, whether it's romantic, friendship, or family, is all based on
compassion and acceptance. While this is very simple and easy to imagine,
it is one of the hardest and most difficult things to actually do. It
takes work. It's a skill that needs to be practiced and refined. To accept
someone, for everything they are and are not, for everything they can and
can't do, for everything they like and don't like, and to have compassion
for what makes them the way they are, to understand them, without fear or
reservation - that is to truly love them... and that is not easy. Being a
friend is very hard. True love and acceptance for someone leaves no room
for true hatred. |
With love comes attachment, but one can become attached without love. In the habitual patterns that life creates you can become dependent on the day to day ups and downs that love brings - from the amazing highs, to the deepest lows - but isn't it all worthwhile in the end? What are we discarding in favor of the hope for something more? In our scramble to devour the best part of the fruit, we discard the seeds which could've grown into a beautiful towering tree. Is it right to push away what isn't perfect in the endless pursuit of something more? We keep sending away the the things that come to us so naturally - suspicous because we did not labor to unearth them from some dark and dangerous cave. Maybe we have things even better than we thought. Maybe our hopes and dreams are actually waiting for us inside, where we leave them everyday, as we set out, endlessly trying to replace them with something better, something from far away. We have been right all along. Don't second guess yourself. Don't doubt yourself. You are right. It's in there and it always has been. It's inside you. IT IS YOU.
There is so much to pick and choose from in the world. There is so much out there to like. Just think of all the things that you could listen to, and you still wouldn't even scratch the surface. The same goes for anything, not just music. Why limit yourself? Why close your mind and only let in certain things? Aren't you strong enough to take in more? Can't you tuff it out? The biggest strongest person in the world is the person who has room inside for EVERYTHING. And that might be impossible, but as we always say - there's no harm in trying. Accept what others do, whether you like it or not. Put your energy into the things that make you happy, don't put your energy into the the things that make you angry. And try to not get angry about them anyway. As we've said before, a lot of times if we find ourselves angry about something or disliking something, it comes from our own weakness, our own fears - and when we can elminate that weakness and fear, we get stronger, and we get to like more things. It's a double deal.
Why would we waste our time on what we don't like? We can like it ALL and have all the time in the world? I'm not saying that anyone should like what they don't like, but really try and look at what's out there. Challenge your preferances and standards. Break down your own walls. Break down your own closed doors. Push yourself into uncomfortable places and see what happens. You can be sure to come away with more than you arrived with. And let other people like what makes them happy and you will be that much stronger.
"Why should we? Why the need to justify? Only in others presence are you motivated to jeer and jibe! Everybody has the right to opinionize, but to us your pettiness is an excuse to occupy your tiny minds!" - Napalm Death
Nothing can take you down. Don't be a wimp. Don't give other people a hard time about what makes you sad, and what makes them happy. You need to get stronger. It's not their fault. It's a waste. You are NOT a wimp. Live and let live. It takes all kinds, and you and me are among them. We can live. WE WILL LIVE. WE WILL LIVE. WE WILL LIVE. WE WILL LIVE. WE WILL LIVE.
Your friend, Andrew W.K.
What if something that makes one person happy makes others unhappy? I would question that one person's own defenition of true happiness. At the same time, there will always be people who blame their own sadness on everyone and everything but themselves... and they too I would question. We all need to look at things as clearly as we can. Ask yourself what is really going to make you feel good, and the same probably goes for a lot of people. The best place to start is with the people right around you. The people that you see everyday. Go a little out of your way for those people. Talk to them with a little more kindness. Show a little more generosity and a little more patience. Have understanding for people, and put yourself in their shoes. Be loving. You might find a whole new kind of happiness: The happiness of others.
WE HAVE FINALLY WITNESSED WHAT WE SAW ALL ALONG.
"Happiness is not in things, it is in us." Charles Wagner
"We miss the really great joys of life scrambling for bargain-counter happiness." Roy L. Smith
No matter how much you try and sheild yourself from the chaotic hurricane that life can be, it will find you, and blow down your door, or creep through your window, or between your floorboards - no matter how thorough your efforts to seal yourself up. Hiding from life is so futile that the energy you spend trying to avoid it is better spent on actually trying to live with it. It is possible to live in self-imposed exile from a lot of what's out there - you can hide from all the world's pain, but in the process you miss out on all of it's greatest pleasures. You need to take a few hits for the team. The team is your heart, mind, and body, which will ultimatly benefit from learning the hard way. As much as I'm saying "don't take the easy road", I'm also not saying "I want to put myself into every single hard situation I can find." As always, it's a balancing act: instinct for survival and risks for adventure. It is not all or nothing unfortunatly - that would be too easy. One of the biggest things that I learn and re-learn is that it is a world of many colors, not just black and white. Looking at the world as an A or B scenario limits it to just that. All or nothing leaves you with only the satisfaction of fewer choices - not having to look more closely at the world and all of it's complexities. It is the easy way out, a cop out - a big, sweeping choice, rather than a carefully thought out, balanced, realistic, and honest approach. It's easier to say "everyone's against me and no one understands me" than "right now I feel like I need more help, and I need to be strong and support myself - a lot of people probably feel this exact same way, and at the end of the day I'm not much different than anyone else..." etc. etc... But that takes a lot of real strength and resiliance, something that we don't always have - but it sure is something to work for.
Change is almost always painful in some way or another. Leaving something you once were for something new - it is often bittersweet. But leaving something behind doesn't mean to loose it or forget it - it can be revisited as frequently as you choose. It can also be reclaimed in favor of the new, if that's what you really want. Change is inevitable. My friend always says: "The only constant thing is constant change." I never want to settle for something less if there is more out there. And although sometimes I long for simple routine and predictable living, I prefer to challenge myself with risk-taking and weird-choices. Even though it's frightening a lot of times, I feel rewarded - knowing that I'm not backing down from the unknown, and using myself as a center to count on, in the midst of so much uncertainty. You can be your own familiar place. You can be your own comforting consistancy. You are the one thing that's always around, so no matter where you are, or what curves life throws your way, you can support yourself with yourself. It's hard, but you are the only thing you can ever count on 100%.
Don't give up. When life get's hard don't let it beat you or break you. Don't let the bad days take away the good ones. LIVE LIKE YOU MEAN IT.
Born to be alive. You know? When you think of all the people that are not alive, that once were, it makes me feel very lucky to have a life at all. I want to use it out of respect for having it in the first place, and out of respect for the people who no longer live. Those that have died would not want me to waste the life I have left. They would want me to do something with it, to do what makes me happy and allow others that same freedom. Today is here right now, and for all I know tomorrow might not come around. So, what am I going to do with today while it's here? What has happened before and what will happen is not as important as what is happening right now. Today is the only thing I have. And just because yesterday was different and tommorrow might change, it doesn't mean that I shouldn't use today for all I can.
Here is a story I made up:
There was once a lonely old woman. She had no one to talk to, and no one to spend time with. She was a very lonely woman. One day a stray cat came to the door of the lonely old woman. It was meowing because it was hungry. She was delighted to see the cat and decided that the right thing to do was to feed him. She brought out some tuna and a dish of cream, and the cat gobbled it up. This made the cat happy and the old woman was not as lonely. The next day the same cat returned to the old woman, but another cat also followed it. The cat had told another stray that there was an old woman to feed them. The woman was pleased with more company and happily fed both of the cats big dishes of tuna and cream, and both the old woman talked to the cats and was not as lonely as the day before. The next day four cats came - the word was spreading amongst the cats about the friendly old woman. By the end of the week 8 cats were showing up regularly and the old woman was running out of food. She went to the fish market to get some more tuna. The man behind the counter asked her, "What do you need with all this fish?"
"I am feeding some stray cats." she said.
"If you feed them, more and more cats will come. Eventually there will be too many and you won't be able to feed them any of them. It will be too hard." said the man.
"But right now there are only 8 cats and that is not too many for me to feed." replied the old woman.
"But you have to think about the future, soon the day will come and you will have 8,000 cats wanting food. What will you do with 8,000 cats?" asked the man.
The woman thought for a moment and then said, "Right now there are 8 cats and that I know I can do. If it gets to be 8,000 I will figure it out."
The man scowled, "You're being foolish. You should just stop feeding them all together, or your will regret it."
The old woman walked out the door with her fish and felt worried.
On her way back home the old woman thought long and hard about what the man had said. "Maybe he's right." she thought, "Even though I can feed them now I might not be able to do it forever, and it might become too much for me." More doubts entered her mind when she walked up to her door to be greeted by 3 or 4 new cats. There were now at least 12, and the old woman was surprised. "Oh no, maybe he's right!", she thought. She ran into her house and closed the door. After a few minutes she calmed herself down and decided that her panic was silly. After taking a deep breath she thought, "I'm an old woman, and I don't have all that many years left to feed cats, or do much else for that matter. I might as well do what I please." So the woman went back outside and fed the cats, and they purred and rubbed up against her and she hugged them and didn't feel very lonely at all.
The woman kept feeding the cats every day, and every day more and more cats did come. And as the months passed, she grew less and less lonely. And even though there were many cats, there weren't too many and she loved finding ways to feed them all. She was very happy. One day, just before she was going to get more fish, she passed away. But right before she died she saw a line of hundreds of cats, one by one, making their way to her door, and as her eyes closed she realized she had never felt more loved. And she was never lonely again. THE END.
The Moral of the story: SOMETHING IS BETTER THAN NOTHING. If you can do something good today, and it makes you and others happy, don't wonder if you can still do it tomorrow, because tomrrow may never come. Don't save up things for later, because later might be too late. There are always a million reasons not to do something. There's always "what if this happens?", or "in the past, that didn't work", or "you won't be able to do that forever". Nothing is forever. Life isn't forever. You only need one reason to do something.
The cats loved the woman because of what she did for them, and without her they would've had less. And even though they can't have food from her anymore, they were glad to have had food from her at all. And she might not have been able to feed 8,000 cats, but 8,000 cats never came. Is it right to NOT feed 8 cats because of 8,000 more you can't feed? Isn't it better to run one mile of a marathon race than no miles at all? SOME IS BETTER THAN NONE.
Don't worry about things that are not there, or have not yet come, because they are NOT THERE and have NOT YET COME. Give more than you think is possible RIGHT NOW and prove to yourself that you have more than you thought. Don't let possibilties destroy reality.
Some how or another I have wound up in this amazing life. I am very lucky. People have given me the power to make them happy. I did not give it to myself. It is an honor above all honors to have people look to me in that way. It is incredible, but also very humbling, because this power has been given to me by others, as a gift, I would never disgrace it by not trying to use it. So I am inspired to make the most of what I've been given. Everyone has been given this power, by the people that surround them. Everyone can use it. You know? We don't have to be the most successful person, or the strongest, or the coolest, or the best in anyway. You just need to try and be your best. You know? And that is all you need to be, and in that you can do no wrong. I will keep trying to do right by everyone who has given me the chance. And because they might not have the chance themselves.
Don't knock it before you've tried it. And once you've tried it, try it again. And again. And don't ever stop trying. Don't ever stop trying to be as alive as possible. Don't give up. Don't let things get the better of you. Don't let yourself get the better of you. Be stronger. It is not all or nothing. You have nothing unless you try and do it all. Dead serious.
Above everything else is an understanding of why I feel the way I feel, think how I think, and I do what I do. And why other people say what they say, think what they think, and do what they do. Because usually what someone else does, I do too, and I can probably understand it. But when I can't, I don't let it stop me or slow me down - I use it to make me move faster. You can make the bad into good. When I feel frustrated or sad or angry I use that to try and do something. You know? Those feelings are so powerful, and I want to at least do something with them, even if I can't understand them or stop them. I don't want to just let them sit in my head and bring me down. So if I feel really angry, or jealous, or frustrated, I will go excercise, or run, or ride on my bike. Sometimes just getting outside and walking around by myself can make me feel better. Sometimes I would put the feelings into work, saying to myself, "I'm going to work harder than anything and I'm going to blow everything away." And maybe I can't work harder than anything, and maybe I don't blow anything away, but I was working as hard as could for myself, in the end. To prove to myself that I won't stop and that I can't be brought down. Even if the things I feel don't make sense, or if the things I think are wrong or confused, I'm still just trying to get something out of it. SOMETHING IS BETTER THAN NOTHING.
|California: We lived on the outskirts of Los Angeles until I was 4. At that point, my family moved to Michigan. Between 4 and 18, I lived in Michigan, and at 18 I moved to New York. From about 18 to about 22, I lived there and then moved away. I don't have a house anywhere, so I don't know where I live. I have a room that I rent in Florida. Michigan: In the neighborhood we lived in, there weren't a lot of kids. I started taking piano lessons real young, and I always had projects, so I was really entertained. I was a real serious kid, real intense, and there were a lot of things that I was doing by myself I took seriously, like organizing little pieces of paper, cutting out things from magazines, and filing them away. I'd set up these huge spread-out projects on my floor. I'd cut out those ads in comic books for, like, a million different T-shirts. I'd cut out each one of those designs and line them up. Stuff like that. Really intense, very serious, lots of drawing and planning things and working on things and looking forward to things. I lived in my own world, all the while taking piano lessons. The University Of Michigan had a good music school, and for part of the piano program, the advanced students would also teach. So you've got these enthusiastic piano teachers who were doing it because they enjoyed it. That was how I started music, and that's real important, because music to me wasn't... It wasn't like, "Hey, you should get into music. Check out this tape." It wasn't just seeing something on TV or hearing somebody on the radio. It was based on literally just melody just music without any other stuff attached to it. Just because that's what I got first thing. I ended up getting a very basic affection for music as it is. That's something that I guess is different, but there's no right or wrong way to get into music. As long as you get into music someway or another, that way is the right way. It's different depending on who you are. It doesn't matter - it only matters what you do once your in it. Music wasn't limited to what some dudes showed me or thought was good, or what was on TV; it was all that and more. I could like any song by any band as long as I liked the melody, because there's no right and wrong when it comes to what you like. And I was just so fortunate to have parents who encouraged me to try things and do what I wanted. If you don't like something, you can always change your mind, but at least try. They were very supportive and unconditionally involved, and you can't trade that for anything. I'm happy to be thought of as cool, but I never was really cool. Everyone thought I was this complete moron and complete dork for the majority of my school years. It's interesting, though: I was a loner kid who was very intense and serious and dorky and kind of nerdy and weird, but while I was given a hard time, I was never picked on the way other kids were. It's almost like there was sort of an unspoken kind of respect, of "You know what? We're just gonna let you be because you're doing your own thing." People didn't bother me. I mean, I did get picked on a lot in junior high, but I just dealt with it. I had my own little world where nothing could hurt me or bother me too much. I always had this place to return to. That's something I still have to this day, and it's just inside me. I guess people can find things like that in food, or in buying things and stuff like that, but if you can find it within yourself, you'll always be okay. So anyway, I was always drawing a lot, drawing comic books and other things, all the while always playing piano. I would play piano for hours each day, practicing my scales and other things we were working on. We'd have these recitals at the end of the year, but all the while, I was making up my own songs from very early on. That's real easy to do on piano, because you have so many different sounds you can get out of it. You have that sustain pedal, and you can make it sound like a big, echoey place. I thought that was the coolest thing when I first started playing piano: I remember banging away on it with that sustain pedal held down the whole time, because it sounded like it was in a huge cave. I ended up getting a digital keyboard, which was so amazing to me excitement to the point of delirium. I would sit for hours and hours playing stuff. That was when I started recording. It would be real basic songs, and I would sing as I went along and make up the words as I went along. In junior high school, with this keyboard, I recorded a whole tape called The Mechanical Eyes. I drew this cover, and my mom and I went and made color Xeroxes. And this one guy who played guitar used to come over, and we'd play together, and we considered it a band, but the idea of playing shows was completely unheard of. Eventually, we did form a real band with a drummer. That progressed, and when we started high school, we played a few real shows at this amazing place, this Unitarian church basement. It was a whole big thing where all these mind-blowing bands played and really changed my life. Seeing these weird, crazy punk bands that I couldn't even believe existed. I don't really know how they were able to play at these... The shows didn't last long, because there was always a lot of violence, and stuff would get broken, and the police would always come. I never imagined something could be so loud, that there could be screaming like that, and that they could be making this intense noise. I can't even describe how exciting and important it was, and from that moment on, I just became obsessed with these bands around my town. They all quit or got kicked out of school and were living in their own house at 15, 16, or 17 without their parents. Just living, stealing whatever they needed. All their equipment was stolen from other bands. The whole thing was so intense, so violent, so chaotic. I would just hang around on the outskirts hoping they wouldn't yell at me and tell me to leave and make fun of me. Which they did, but I couldn't stop hanging around. There are so many stories. When I was 17 or 18, I had a buddy who lived downstairs in this basement apartment. He had windows right on sidewalk level, and we piled a bunch of speakers into his windows at night. We had a real PA system this time, and we'd turn it up to 10. We'd plug the keyboard in and I'd just tape down as many keys as I could with books and tape. We completely underestimated how loud it was going to be. People from five blocks away were coming out of their houses thinking it was Armageddon. Within minutes, it was surrounded by police cars. It sounded like a gas line was exploding. We ran in the back, and the whole apartment building had crowded around his door, pounding on his door. We ran to his door and said, "Oh, sorry, I don't know what that was," and shut it off, and then split up for half an hour. There were a lot of other things happening at this point. There was a lot of mail fraud, forgery, vandalism, lots of stealing money from jobs, lots of stealing from places, like going into a bookstore, stacking up 20 books, and just walking out. I was basically just doing bad things. I had worked really hard to graduate high school a year early, and I spent that last year making fake gift certificates and putting them in envelopes. I'd forge a cancellation over the stamp to make it look like it came from Los Angeles, and then I would send it to somebody I knew, hoping they would take the gift certificates and try to use them and get arrested. It was really intense and bizarre, very solitary, and not spending a lot of time with friends. I was very angry, and I didn't care what people thought of me. I didn't care if what I was doing was bad or hurting people's feelings. I would feel bad about it just enough to not do something so crazy that I would go to jail, although I got close so many times, and some of my friends did go to jail. My parents were very, very concerned. They only know probably about a quarter of the stuff I did. I ended up stopping all this stuff gradually, because all the while I really, really loved my parents, especially my mom. I didn't love her more, but she really expected things of me. I knew that I had disappointed her already. They had me seeing all these child psychologists, and were very concerned that I was crazy. I ended up stopping because I knew how disappointed she would be if she knew all the money I was stealing, and how the reason I would get fired from a job wasn't because they had too many employees. I didn't care what someone thought of me, only what she thought. That was enough to stop, and now, looking back, it was for myself, too. So I had the good fortune of learning my lesson in the 11th hour rather than in the 13th, so I could still make the right decision when it counted. There is still so much we're leaving out, but we could sum it up as being... The best description would be calculated, intensified chaos and a solitary existence, yet with many amazing people around that I consider my friends. Then I moved to New York, not knowing a single person there. Not knowing what I was going to do, but it felt like the culmination of everything, from the piano lessons to all the hours spent working on mindless things, to all the dangerous stuff, to all the bands, to all the music, to all the wide world of options that were always present. It was culminating into this growing sense that I was going to bear down and start doing something. I didn't know what it was going to be, but there was a sense that I had to start making the most of each day. Like, I don't want to be sitting down for a minute. I used to just walk around the city for hours, just because it was better than sitting at home. But I had very little money. There was a lot of walking 80 blocks to work so I could save a dollar. Cooking everything at home if I could, and stealing money at that point, too. But there was definitely this excitement in the air. There was this sense of, "Wow, what can I do today to make the absolute most of this day?" That continued on, and I was always recording and becoming more focused on making songs and playing piano. I had this broken 3-track that I brought with me from Michigan, and I was getting better and better recording on that. That's when I decided that I was going to put all my energy and time into one thing, just to see what would happen. I didn't have any one plan. I just wanted to have something I could do every day, so I decided to make the most exciting songs I can possibly make, and to do everything I can to serve them and further their existence, which included playing shows, recording songs, making flyers, anything. I saved up all my money and borrowed a bunch of money from my mom to buy a computer that I could record on, and just kept working. I was playing shows, and all I could do really was play keyboard. I could kind of play guitar at that point, but it clearly was not my ideal situation. My ideal situation would have been to be in a band, but I knew I could play a show. I would be frustrated out of my mind, but I'd say, "Don't be a wimp." I used to carry this card in my pocket that had a list of things that I would think of and try to hold in my mind. The first one was "Don't be a fucking wimp." That took care of almost every situation that I was in. If I was feeling depressed or whiny or discouraged, I'd pull that card out and say, "Don't be a fucking wimp!" That doesn't mean I'm not allowed to feel sad or have human emotions. But take a look around. Look at how good my life is. Don't be a fucking wimp! Snap out of it! Another one was "Never let down." Again, that's just to never stop trying. Life is too short. "Life is short," that was on there. This might be my one chance to do this, so aren't you going to make the most of it? It's better to regret what you've done than what you haven't. I say "No regrets" period now. No regrets, no guilt, no embarrassment, no shame. Another one was "You'll only live once," which is tied in with that. And "No fear" was huge. However, I've updated that, because it's impossible to have no fear. You'll always fear, but it's facing the fear. Someone who has no fear is not nearly as brave as someone who has fears and faces them. I believe everybody has fears, and to deny them is just putting up more walls. So all these things were just getting... The songs are what saw everything through. The shows I played were always like, if you had 50 people at the show, that was fantastic. That was a huge success. It was frustrating, though, because these songs were supposed to be played by a band. That's how I always envisioned it. I put ads in the paper to try and meet people, but that didn't work. Whenever I'd play a show, I'd talk to people, and I'd ask people on the street. If they looked cool, I'd say, "Do you play in a band, and would you want to?" That never really worked out. I ended up gradually meeting people who did help, and I'd make tapes and CDs of my songs and pass them out and put my phone number on them and just do everything I could. It eventually paid off with meeting people who helped me put together a band. I'm just so fortunate now to have this amazing band. I couldn't imagine a nicer bunch of people. They're kind, outgoing, hardworking, dedicated, responsible, smart... In every way, they are the perfect band. They're all at a point in their lives where they just want to do something the best they can, and know that the more they put into it, the more they'll get out of it. So I started recording in New York and continued in L.A., Michigan, Minnesota, and Florida. It was a lot of different people and a lot of different places, but all very necessary. There were a lot of engineers, and that's what we needed. The songs were good to go. We just needed all the best equipment and the systems to make them sound like they should sound. It was very work-intensive, to the point where some people didn't really enjoy working that way. It's very tedious and it involves fine-tuning and stacking, where you're looking at each song under a microscope and every split second is important. There are no coincidences. There's no accident, like, "Oh, wow, that was cool. Let's keep that." Every melody line is composed of like forty sounds combined. I did not want it to be the sound of a guitar and drums and bass playing. I wanted it to be the sound of the song playing, so you just hear one big, massive instrument just grinding out this song. You can imagine it sort of all coming from one enormous source, where you just hear an infinite expanse of a million things all happening in perfect unison, all laid out in front of you. We spent so much time so that you don't hear thousands of hours of work. That takes thousands of hours of work, I believe, to achieve that. It's like a movie: When you're watching a movie, you're not thinking of the millions of dollars and thousands of people and lights and every other thing happening to light that conversation scene in a bedroom. I wanted to make satisfying songs that did exactly what you wanted them to do and did it again and again, and just kept paying off. That didn't punch you in the face, but instead just gave you a big, firm handshake and a hug. Instant gratification. Also, living a solitary kind of existence and having been hassled by people that I didn't feel similar to... It's very interesting, because I know a lot of people who feel left out, so the first chance they get, they want to leave someone else out and perpetuate that feeling. The people who didn't like me or didn't want me around, I always wanted to bring those people in. I wanted to make something that they would make them like me. That's one of the most important things here: that nobody is turned away and nobody is left out and nobody is judged based on how they look or what they like or what they don't like or even why they like it. There's no wrong reason to like my music. There's no wrong reason to like anything. This music is freedom. It allows anyone else the freedom to do whatever they want, and it accepts that unconditionally. And it continues to just want to make you happy. All you need to know is, "Do I feel this in my stomach? Is this running through my veins? Does this go up my spine? Does this blow my mind to pieces? Does this affect me?" That is real. That is physical evidence, and you don't need to even question it, or even understand. That's why I would never question why someone liked this or why someone's smiling or why someone is happy. It could be for one of a million reasons, some that people think I would think are bad or against me. Life's just way too short for me to qualify and quantify how this can make someone feel. Music, above all, is huge and magnificent and so much bigger than me or any one person. Someone says, "What if someone thinks you're just some kind of stupid joke?" And I say, "I don't care. I want to make them happy. If that makes them happy, if that's what puts a smile on their face, so be it." It's for everybody, for every reason. It's easy to get closed in. Somehow, for some reason, it's gotten cool to not have a passion about something. It's gotten cool to be distant and detached from things, to have a seen-it-all, done-it-all, been-there-done-that attitude about things. Which I only can attribute to the amount of information that's available and the things that are expected of people, and the way people are judged based on what they decide. No wonder people are tentative about believing in something: First, they're wondering if it's going to let them down, and second, they wonder what people are going to think of them. It's just human nature, but being passionate takes courage, and the more you believe in something, the less possibility it has of letting you down. The more you believe in it, the more it becomes your own. I just hope people have the strength to still give things a chance, and to say, "You know what? This isn't too good to be true. Maybe I haven't seen everything." It's easy to be overloaded sometimes, but I hope that we can look up to things in awe and not have to have everything at our feet. I hope that we can be amazed and excited and inspired by something without having to have everything figured out and put in our pocket. There's no one setting any limits on what you can enjoy, how you can enjoy it, why you should enjoy it, or what you should do except yourself. I look at what I have here as a miracle that we're alive in the first place and thank God for every breath I take, whoever He is or whatever it is. I'm doing this on behalf of everybody, on behalf of the thousands and thousands of people who've directly affected my life, on behalf of the millions that don't get a chance to do this, that don't have these things that I enjoy, that have to work just to get food. Even the saddest day is a miracle for me. When you have food, when you have a place to sleep, when you have friends and family and general health and safety, you have no right to complain. You're living life, and at that point it's up to you what you're going to do with it. Never concede this life, you know what I mean? I'm going to make all that I can of it for everyone else. This is not a return to the good old days. This is not a reaction to things that are bad now. It's not, "Things suck and we need to make them good again." This is forging ahead into uncharted territory. This is about working hard and inviting everybody into an unending, inexhaustible source of strength and energy. There's no rules, no limits, no, "Oh, you're giving too much of yourself away. You've got to take it easy." No! I'm doing fine! If we could make one person happy that day and I knew I could, why would I not do that? One guy in Europe asked me this question, and it was a really good question: "If you could change one thing in the whole world, what would it be?" And immediately, the first thing I thought of was to preserve all the forests and all the animals and all that. But then, that would cause a whole slew of problems. Imagine how that could backfire. Well, okay, at least I could wipe out poverty and hunger and disease. Well, again, you'd have huge population problems and more money problems created because of that. These huge ideas were just creating other huge challenges. All of a sudden, I just thought, "Well, you know what? If I could make a difference, or mean something, or change for the better the life of one person, especially a young person, even if it was just to make their day better... That is completely within my reach." It's within the reach of everybody to do something on a daily basis that helps anybody. Which makes somebody smile instead of frown. Which makes somebody feel better rather than worse. You know when you really like something, and you know that that thing you really love loves itself and loves you? It's a total bummer when you love something and go up to the person who's working on it, and you say, "God! This is so great! I love this so much!" And they're like, "Eh. Thanks, but it's no big deal." When someone comes up and tells me that they love the music, I yell, "Me, too!" And we just hug. It's that feeling that the people playing those songs are loving them just as much as you are while you're dancing, and that you could be up on that stage and playing those songs just as well. That is the point. The uncharted territory is that there is no line to be crossed. You don't have to hold back. This is our time. We have not lived and died yet. It has not all been done. It has not all been seen. I'm not religious. I never have been. My parents aren't, but we're not anti-religious, either. We were always just brought up with a very open understanding of who we were in a bigger picture. There was never any need to create a sense of guilt or shame. There's the other thing: No guilt! The idea of a guilty pleasure? That's as mixed-up to me as calling somebody a poseur. "You don't like this for the right reasons like I do." How awful. And the idea of, "I'm so ashamed for what I like." If you feel bad about liking something, then you don't really like it. Anyway, for me, religion just puts up a bunch of walls that I don't need, but I have so much respect and admiration for those who have true passion and belief and dedication to having faith in something bigger than them, like religion and look at it for inspiration. I have nothing against it. I would never change, regardless. If I believed in it when I made it, then circumstances do not affect what I believe. We don't need any second guessing. In this world, there are people who honestly believe they know best, and they really do feel they're doing the right thing. And I'm sure that it does upset some people to see a picture like that. But in "I Love NYC," there's a line that says, "You can't stop what you can't end." And that's how I look at any of these things. You can cover up a field with a parking lot, but the field is still underneath there. You can build buildings all over the earth, but weeds will still grow up through the cement. I have enough energy and strength to find what I need to find, no matter how hard they try to cover it up. People give them too much credit—these corporations, or whoever is ruining people. Well, you may allow them to ruin you, but they don't touch me. I'm not even gonna get into the whole multinational-corporation thing, but... It's just a matter of time, let's put it that way. I like tons of stuff, really. Lots and lots of songs, because above all I like melody and rhythm. If there's some sincerity and honest hard work and genuine passion put into it, I'm there. I love it. I just look at it as freedom: I have the freedom to like so many things and be excited about so many different things on all sides. A great song is that friend that will be there in the morning. You put it on first thing and it sets the day straight, it organizes things in your head, it makes you happy, it's comforting. And then you get home at night and it's there to put you to sleep. It's right there smiling and waiting for you. The minute you turn your back on it and don't want to listen to it, it's still there waiting for you. The minute you come back to it, it's there with open arms, never in judgment. And that's what this is, and that's what I am, and that's what we're doing. We will always be there. I will never let people down. I promise I will always do what I can. Have the faith to believe in this, and I will too.|
Born: 1959-1979, California, USA.
Raised: 1939-1949, Michigan, USA.
Lives: 1993-1999, Florida, USA.
In 1939 a man named James Edward was born to father, Steven Michael Andrews and mother, Kristine Williams - a daughter was also born. It was in midst of World War 2, and the country had rebounded from the hard economic struggle of the Great Depression. Two long years later the War was over, the country was stronger than it ever had been. After such hardship people were left without anything but their hearts and their courage. They had been through the worst. The world was ready for something strong and new. Advance to 1949- a woman was born, Wendy Louise. The country was flourishing in the wealth of the new economy. A virtual horn of plenty had opened into the arms of the working family.
Andrew was born in between the moments of 12:01 and 34:89. The time would not stop until baby breathed. Time would stand still until baby lived. The letter "W" was, is, and always will be the world of strength and unity - the shape of 2 arms locked in unyeilding power. Like a steel cabled bridge that remains sturdy even in the strongest winds, but has the ability to snap, break, blind, and crumble into the black boiling ice cold sea waters - at will. All of the machines rebuild the steel stronger than before - and it will never go away.
The letter "K" was, is, and always will be the consumption of the universe. The contious symbol of greater than, less than, always level. To burn out the passion which fills up each returning day until they don't return. It is too rare to concede. No shame or guilt. The bravest people do have fear, it is the courage to slam that fear which makes them brave. We posses a brain - huge amounts of power - untapped. Let it black out. Let go into the void. Reach into it. A true superstructure. A condominium. Our brains are far more complex and versatile than any billion-dollar computer system inveted by man. The achievments in work today have been commited to programming their own lives. Have you ever noticed that before you lie down to close your eyes you actually battle wars against resting. Visualization, inspriation, concentration. DO WHAT EVER YOU WANT! NEVER LET DOWN! LIFE IS TOO SHORT! NO REGRETS! LIVE HARD!
|First off: Things have been
good. Second off: Things are good. Third off: Things are going to keep on
growing good, and getting better. We have only just started off. And as
always, when I say "we" and mean you and me and us and even them - all of
We are we. To all of those who could not make it, I will see you next time, and the next! And to all of those who didn’t want to go - I will try even harder to improve and give you more for your future. And to all of those who DO want to go - I will try harder than ever to give you the world and more - and that is no messing around. It was time for us to play in places where we had not yet played. And I am well aware that more of those unplayed places still remain. We will play them, and play them all again. That is what we do. We play!
I have no idea what to expect, but man we were sure excited going into it. Everything really makes sense right now. This is the year and these are the years. It’s open and ready and for anyone who wishes to go. And I’m there to let them know. I have been completely floored and blown away by how awesome the whole thing has been. Real deal people with life minds. Again, I’m blown away! I will see you all again soon. When I say friends, I mean friends. Not fans, or followers... FRIENDS. And I mean that and take it very seriously. As I’ve said before, I did not write this music for me, I wrote it for us. And when I can see US enjoying it and living it, it is the best feeling in the world. I also say: consider yourself a member of this band. When you see me somewhere, on T.V. or in a magazine, please say, "Hey! That’s my friend Andrew!" When something good happens for me, it happens for you. And when you are doing good, know that it is also good for me. We are only as far along as the farthest behind, and I want us to all be way ahead. What is important to you is important to me. There is no reason that I am here and not there - really it’s just crazy. But I consider myself a representative of all of those who can’t be here all the time. I am doing this for you. I am doing this for us. I am doing this for people who believe in having fun, and who do not feel guilty about being happy. I am doing this for people who are strong enough to be weak and who do what they want and encourage others to do the same. I want to do what is right. It is what I would want someone to do for me. You know? This whole thing is based on the Golden Rule, you know? There is nothing better than that. That’s why it doesn’t matter what you do, just how you do it. And it doesn’t matter where you go, just how you get there. You know? In the end, what do we really leave people with? We leave them with moments. We leave them with feelings and times. This is music for us to use to create those times. You know? It’s as big and exciting and pleasurable as we make it.
AT THE END OF THE END, IT'S ALL JUST GOING TO BURN UP, SO ALL THE STUFF THAT YOU HOLD IN YOUR HAND ISN'T AS IMPORTANT AS WHAT YOU HOLD IN YOUR HEAD AND IN YOUR HEART. And that is not corny or silly or stupid. I think it’s just true. LET'S STEP IT UP A LEVEL. Let’s try to do more and better, just for the sake of doing it! Let’s see what happens if we try doing something that isn’t easy, but that is still the right thing to do. Let’s try to make the right decisions. It’s usually pretty clear!
|The future is so bright - at
times I feel the need to cover my eyes with my hands for fear of being
blinded. But, as quickly as I can cover them, something will tear them
away, and I'm forced to momentarily gaze into the explosion. What I see is
almost too much to bare - I see the absolute truth. That there is nothing
to be afraid of. There is nothing that can hurt me or anyone else. That my
place in this room is the same as my place in the universe. That these
things are not to be looked down upon, but to be looked up to. And
suddenly, all that ever once was is not any more. And all the stuff that I
was worried about is no longer upsetting, and all the things that I was
afraid of seem safe and warm. The truth has everything inside of it -
EVERYTHING. And it is O.K. and it is good.|
I will work everyday to feel O.K. To truly feel O.K. is to accept everything as such and that you have a place inside of it all. And that place is a miracle, not something small. We can do so much, so easily, so fast. We have so much power, and so much ability. Human beings are one of the greatest achievements in the history of the world. We are our own achievement. So many people have dedicated their lives to working for our benefit. So many things that we have now came from people before us. We owe to them to make the most of our times now. We can create things of such beauty and magnificent dimensions, and we have the potential to destroy and tear down and deplete as well. This is so simple and so clear. The future holds everything. In my life I want to feel as good as possible and help as many people as I can to feel the same. I want to do everything and I want to help as many people do everything too. Everyone is invited. No one is turned away here. This music is about freedom and this music is much bigger than just me. I don't own it - I couldn't try to keep it all to myself even if I wanted to. It belongs to human beings. It belongs to you. The music is perfect. All it wants is for people to be happy. It doesn't even exist except as a moment of time. The more you believe in it, the stronger it gets and the stronger you get. The music is your best friend, and it will never turn its back on you or let you down. It loves you unconditionally and thinks that you're great. It wants to do whatever it can to make you smile and feel good. You can do no wrong. There is nothing you could ever do or say or feel or think that would make it leave you. It will always be there for you - from the first time that you hear it to the last time before you die. In the morning when you wake up, and right before you go to sleep. And it will visit you in the dark, in your dreams and it will make you're happiest wishes come true, and in your nightmares it will protect you and fight for you and keep you safe. The only thing happening here is acceptance and excitement. This is real and true. It is the truth. I will work everyday, and be patient, and have endurance, so that I can give to others what has been given to me. It is not instant. It will take time, and when I'm dead it will continue on without me. This is not mine alone, and I did not begin it. It was begun when the first baby smiled and it will NEVER END. NO ONE CAN STOP THIS - this is still just the beginning. The start of the beginning. This has never happened before. We have never happened before. You have never happened before. There are new horizons and new frontiers that belong to us. These are our trails to blaze. THIS IS OUR TIME. I LOVE YOU.