Everclear Frontman Art Alexakis Shares Multiple Sclerosis Diagnosis
Everclear's Art Alexakis has been diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. The lead vocalist and guitarist revealed his diagnosis in a note to fans posted on the band's website Wednesday. The musician, who formed the hit-making alt-rock group in 1991, has had the disease "for anywhere between 10 to 20 years" after first learning of the diagnosis three years ago.
It was then that an automobile accident caused Alexakis to notice "a tingle and numbness" in his arm, which he first believed to be a pinched nerve. However, the battery of neurological tests that followed uncovered the singer's MS diagnosis, which he says in his message "helps explain why I have had a higher sensitivity to heat and cold, and why I don’t have the energy, vigor and razor sharp memory that I had ten years ago."
But the frontman isn't going it alone. Writing of his supportive spouse, Vanessa, Alexakis spoke of the difficult thoughts that clouded his mind after the diagnosis, and their eventual dissolution into hope prompted by his wife.
"The words Multiple Sclerosis conjure up all sorts of images," Alexakis explained. "Helplessness, wheel chairs, pain, misery, and worst of all, hopelessness — and pity in the eyes of my family and friends. ... I remember later that night my wife Vanessa holding my face in her hands, and telling me 'we got this,' with not a shred of pity or fear in her eyes. I knew then that I wasn’t going to go through this alone. My wife is a lot of things — all good, but one thing she isn't is fake, something we have in common. We don't do fake in our family. My wife is a bad ass, and she reminded me in that moment, that so am I."
Which goes to show that MS hasn't slowed the musician down. After all, Alexakis is still performing and touring with Everclear, nearly 25 years after the Northwestern power trio first hit the airwaves with SoCal ode "Santa Monica."
"It’s been almost three years since that diagnosis, and MS has become another part of my life," the singer continued. "I have done amazing things in that time — touring four full tours with Everclear, in addition to another 250 plus shows all around the world, and I’m still going strong. I have spent precious time with my family and friends; we bought a house that we love last year, and I have learned what the word gratitude really means."
Read Alexakis' full letter here, and see Everclear's upcoming tour dates below.
Everclear 2019 Tour Dates
April 13 — Charlotte, N.C. @ Moo & Brew Fest
April 26 — Washington, Pa. @ The Meadows Racetrack & Casino
May 1 — Walla Walla, Wash. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 2 — Portland, Ore. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 3 — Everett, Wash. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 4 — Redondo Beach, Calif. @ Beachlife Festival
May 5 — Memphis, Tenn. @ 2019 Beale Street Music Festival
May 7 — San Francisco, Calif. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 8 — Sacramento, Calif. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 9 — Pasadena, Calif. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 10 — Agoura Hills, Calif. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 11 — San Juan Capistrano, Calif. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 12 — Tempe, Ariz. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 14 — Santa Ana Pueblo, N.M. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 16 — San Antonio, Texas @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 17 — Dallas, Texas @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 18 — Houston, Texas @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 19 — Austin, Texas @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 21 — Atlanta, Ga. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 22 — Charlotte, N.C. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 23 — Nashville, Tenn. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 25 — Leesburg, Va. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 26 — Glenside, Pa. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 28 — Boston, Mass. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 29 — Huntington, N.Y. @ Songs & Stories Tour
May 30 — New York, N.Y. @ Songs & Stories Tour
June 4 — Milwaukee, Wis. @ Songs & Stories Tour
June 6 — Cleveland, Ohio @ Songs & Stories Tour
June 7 — Mt. Clemens, Mich. @ Songs & Stories Tour
June 9 — Minneapolis, Minn. @ Songs & Stories Tour
June 11 — Fargo, N.D. @ Songs & Stories Tour
June 12 — Sioux Falls, S.D. @ Songs & Stories Tour
June 13 — Wichita, Kan. @ Songs & Stories Tour
June 15 — Castle Rock, Colo. @ Castle Rock Summer Concert Series
June 21 — Lancaster, Pa. @American Music Theatre
June 22 — Schenectady, N.Y. @ Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady
July 6 — Hays, Kan. @ Wild West Festival
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