Andrew W.K.'s Message to Disaffected Youth: "Your Best Friend Has Got to Be You"

Atiba Jefferson
Josh Kerns and I recorded an interview with party rocker Andrew W.K. for our KIRO 97.3 show Seattle Sounds just a couple days after the tragic school shooting in Chardon, Ohio. In addition to being an incendiary rock and roll frontman, Andrew W.K. is a motivational speaker. So we asked him what his message would be to disaffected teenagers around the country. Here's what he said:

What would your message be to kids around the country who are feeling lost and not like they have a place in the world?

The place is within yourself. Looking outward for it is only going to lead to more pain and conflict. Really, your best friend has got to be you. And you got to find that satisfaction, that strength, and that joy within yourself. 'Cause if you're looking in other people or in circumstance or ways that you can live your life, that's never going to give you that feeling. You've gotta be at home within yourself. And then you can go on these adventures and always been secure.

Is that something you struggled with as a teenager?

For sure, yeah. And that was actually a big motivation for signing up for doing Andrew W.K. and do this adventure is I wanted to find something that cheered me up, and wanted to focus all my work and time and energy on doing something that at least would make me in a good mood and, again hopefully other people.

I suffered a lot -- and still have struggled -- with all kinds of bad feelings and angers and depressions and things like that, like anybody. But I also always believed that there was some way to address them and that you don't have to take them to heart. You can heal them.

You can hear more of our conversation with Andrew W.K. in the podcast version of yesterday's episode of Seattle Sounds, which airs at 3 p.m. every Sunday on KIRO 97.3.

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