April 3, 2003

Everclear Lauches Tour With Baseball in Mind

By Randy J. Klodz

Everclear frontman and guitarist Art Alexakis could have done many things with his life: Become a baseball player or go into music. And with the baseball season opening this week, as well as Everclear’s tour opening on April 2, in Kansas City, Mo., things can’t be better for Americana. There’s also good news for Chicago—Everclear’s only Chicago appearance hits town on April 3 at the Riviera Theatre.

The California-native Alexakis was on-hand to see the Chicago White Sox’ opener while in town for Everclear’s tour opener in Missouri and even got to meet some of the Sox players while in the hotel.

“I knew that I was never going to be that good, I’d kick around in probably A or AA for a couple of years, but that would have been it,” said Alexakis. “I wasn’t that good, I was good, but I wasn’t great. Even with the great ones, the competition is so severe.” So with baseball out of the question, Alexakis was left with music, from which the hit-making powerhouse Everclear formed.

Everclear—which also includes Craig Montoya on bass and Greg Eklund on drums—is no stranger to success, first making waves in the mid-90s with the hit “Santa Monica” and garnered even more publicity with the 1997 release “So Much for the Afterglow,” which featured hits “I Will Buy You a New Life,” “Everything to Everyone,” “Father of Mine” and many others. With each release—Everclear’s latest is titled “Slow Motion Daydream,” released on Mar. 11—Everclear has created a new brand of rock, trying to avoid putting something out that sounds like a previous record, a plan that many bands have used to gain success.

“Instead of making the same album again, like I think people wish we would have, we made a different sounding record that was very successful, but we’ve continued to make different sounding records,” Alexakis said. “This new record is a record that I think owes a little bit to every record we’ve made but still sounds different. And lyrically it’s by far the most mature record I’ve ever written.”

The Riviera Theatre is at 4746 N. Racine, in Chicago. Tickets for this all-ages show are listed for $24. The Exies and Authority Zero are scheduled as openers, with the start time listed as 6:30 p.m. For more information on Everclear, please view www.everclearonline.com.

Everclear Photo: Larry Dupont