Regrets—Art Alexakis has had more than a few. And he’s had his share of losing, too. But the Everclear frontman has always done it his way. While far too many of his ’90s Pacific Northwest brethren (Kurt Cobain, Layne Staley, Andrew Wood, et al) ended up six feet under, Alexakis has been a survivor, enduring arrests, attempted suicide, drug abuse, divorce, depression, bankruptcy and much more. Despite being dubbed Nirvana lite by music critics, Everclear soldiered on, becoming a platinum-selling, Grammy-nominated, hit-making band, and Alexakis used this success to champion causes close to his heart. The revolving-door group’s latest release, In A Different Light (429), is a collection of (mostly) older Everclear songs reinterpreted in a stripped-down manner. Alexakis is guest editing magnetmagazine.com all this week. Read our Q&A with him.
Alexakis: I’m not the sharpest knife in the drawer (four marriages, no prenuptial; enough said), nor am I the dullest. I am a little above average intelligence, and it was sad and pathetic to me when my president (W) had the IQ slightly above that of a high-backed chair. Call me crazy, but I want a president who is smarter than me. When I first heard Barack Obama speak at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, the little hairs on my neck stood up in the way of true chemistry. I knew right away he was born to have this thankless fucking job. And please don’t waste your time to tell me he’s not ready for the job; he’s learning on the job (like all first-term presidents) and doing really well. I agree with those who says he needs to follow his own voice and embrace the audacity that put him in the driver’s seat in the first place. I believe he will. The hairs on the back of your neck never lie. Video after the jump.