Photo by Brian Cox.

Rocking Like a California King

Everclear’s founder Art Alexakis is living his dream (and playing the Cuthbert June 8)

“I’m 62, and I get to play rock ‘n’ roll for a living,” says Art Alexakis, alternative rock band Everclear founder, singer songwriter and guitarist. “I am living the dream.”

On June 8, at the Cuthbert Amphitheater, Alexakis and Everclear will be taking us back to a simpler time — the ’90s — when dial-up internet had begun to reign supreme and Everclear’s song “Santa Monica” off of the Sparkle and Fade album that took the world by storm.

As a member of the young, newly converted alt-rock listeners in their early 20s, Everclear’s discography hasn’t left my regular rotation. Alexakis says that this isn’t just a testament to Everclear, but to rock and roll.

“There’s not really a lot of contemporary rock ’n’ roll compared to the ’90s,” Alexakis says. “I was stoked to be a part of all the music that was going on.”

Now that Everclear is over three decades old, Alexakis says he loves the responses he’s received over the years for their music. He specifically notes the connection people have with the song “Father of Mine,” off of its junior album So Much For The Afterglow.

“It’s very personal to a lot of people. I mean, dude, I see grown-ass men crying. Like big tattooed biker-looking guys, when I play this live,” Alexakis says. 

“They’re fucking bawling at the front of stage,” he says. “It’s touching; some real music can do that.”

This connection people have with music is one Alexakis remembers discovering at a young age. Sneaking quietly out his bedroom as a three or four-year-old, Alexakis could hear his parents downstairs on their divan, “fiercely” smoking cigarettes and watching The Ed Sullivan Show.

Then he hears The Beatles start to play. 

“I’d never heard or seen anything like it. It literally took control. I remember the feeling in my body, it took control of my body,” Alexakis says. “I ran to the TV and just started jumping up and down.”

“I saw The Beatles on TV when I was four and I never wanted to do anything else,” he says.

Starting to play in bands when he was 16, Alexakis says he couldn’t get signed until Everclear was founded 16 years later. 

“Even with all the ups and downs and the roller coaster of life,” he says, “I wouldn’t do anything else in the world.”

Everclear plays the Cuthbert Amphitheater, 2300 Leo Harris Pkwy, Saturday, June 8. Advance tickets are $45 online at Gates open at 4:30 pm and show at 6 pm.