When it comes to partying, there is one man whose name is almost a synonym for it. Someone who epitomises partying, not only as a lifestyle, but as a reason for being. That man is Andrew W.K. He is a one-man party and he’s back in fine form with a new record brimming with the unbridled energy he is known for. He recently took a moment to talk about the new album ‘You’re Not Alone’ and his upcoming visit to Australian shores.

“It feels fantastic. There’s all kinds of feelings that all cross over each other, but the main takeaway feeling is extraordinary gratitude and excitement and a great deal of motivation,” he started, talking about how it felt to be back in the saddle, with an energetic new record for the first time in nine years. “From my perspective, this has been going non-stop since 1999, but I’m also aware that – to even the most devoted fan – this could have seemed like a very disjointed path that I’ve taken. And, even though I’ve been partying non-stop in my mind, to someone else it may have felt like I’ve come and gone and even vanished completely, only to reappear in a seemingly different form. So I’m very thankful to those who’ve been patient, to those who’ve stuck with me, and also to those who’ve just joined me now. I’m really amazed that I’ve gotten to keep doing this and it’s the people that have given me the ability to keep doing this that I owe so much of my gratitude.”

On the first single, Ever Again, he explained: “That is a song that I co-wrote with a gentleman named Aleister X. We’d worked on his music for years together and I just loved it. Every now and then in life – from my experience, it’s quite rare – you encounter some creative offering – in this case, this guy’s music – where I felt like I was born to hear it. It scratched me, not only exactly where I itched, but it scratched an itch that I didn’t realise was there. It was so powerful and it was really thrilling to not only discover his work and discover the man behind the work (Doug Anson), but then I got to work with him. He was very kind, extremely open-minded, and very patient in humouring me. Not only did we get to make all kinds of music for Aleister X, but then he also made some music with me.”

“Even the title sums up the song. It’s meant to be as straightforward as possible,” he stated, regarding the second single, Music is Worth Living For. “It is a restatement of my main theme, which is that music has presented an indisputable and overwhelming power that I have not been able to deny and has made my life so much better, that it’s made it worthwhile, even in its lowest moments. I could never completely shut out the light that music was shining towards me. It’s a prayer to the being of music as an entity. It’s worshipping music, and celebrating music. Celebration is the best way that I know how to show respect to this phenomenon. I think music is just a way to get to this ultimate feeling, however you want to define it. Music makes that feeling audible. It’s so reliable in its ability to improve the way I feel physically, emotionally, and mentally that I can’t think of anything else that I would be more worthy of devoting my energy to.”

When asked why he opted to include three spoken word tracks on the album, he replied, “I never would have thought to put tracks like that on an album. That was an idea presented to me at the last minute by Karen Glauber, one of my management team. I don’t think she’d ever made any sort of creative suggestion to me in our entire time knowing one another. In a very off-the-cuff, casual way, she said ‘I think you should put motivational speeches on this album. They don’t even have to be more than a minute long.’ She was looking for a way to formally connect the work I’ve been doing as a lecturer, motivational speaker, and writer with the album release. It’d never occurred to me to do that, but it was one of those ideas where I realised I would do it whether I liked it or not, because I knew that my own insecurity was not a good enough reason to not go through with it.”

On what he’s most looking forward to about returning to Australia, he said, “Being with the band. We haven’t played in this version of the band in Australia ever. The last time we were there was 2011 for the Big Day Out festival. There are new members in the band now, and this is the best that this band has ever been. We have more focus, spirit, care, and quality to offer than we’ve ever had before.”

Prior to the two shows he’s playing in Melbourne and Sydney, Andrew W.K. is the opening speaker at the Melbourne Writer’s Festival. “They invited me, much to my own amazement,” he shared before explaining that the tour was put together after the invitation. “All I knew initially was that they asked me to give a speech about joy. I was very excited about that, because I’ve never done a speech in Australia to this degree. I should point out that some of the very first motivational speeches I ever did anywhere were in Australia, back in 2006, right when I was first beginning to do lectures and speaking events, so I should give credit to Australia for giving me my first opportunity. So, once we had this opportunity to give the keynote address to kick off this Writer’s Festival, we said, ‘If we’re gonna go all that way, we’d better make it count.’ With the new album out, we felt like we had to make this happen. We were very lucky and very thankful that the promoter gave us the chance to do these two shows.”