Andrew W.K. won’t be U.S. ‘Cultural Ambassador of Partying’ after all

Grant Burningham
The Lookout

Andrew W.K., the pop star turned jazz pianist, has offered a unique suggestion for solving the world's ills: partying. ("Partying is our best hope for world peace," he wrote in a recent tweet.) But despite the best efforts of an unnamed Bahraini group, W.K. will not be bringing his message to the Persian Gulf anytime soon.

On Monday morning, the musician's website declared: "US Department of State Brings Andrew To The Middle East As A Cultural Ambassador of Partying." But by midday, the State Department was publicly backing away from the invitation.

While W.K.'s trip was (somewhat shockingly) initially approved by the U.S. Embassy's speaker program, senior State Department management rescinded the offer after examining W.K.'s full body of work, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said during a briefing Monday.

"He will not be going to Bahrain on the U.S. government's dime," Nuland said.

Had he been given the title of cultural ambassador, W.K. would have joined music legends like Louis Armstrong, Dizzy Gillespie and Dave Brubeck in promoting American values overseas. It seems a perusal of his song catalog, featuring tunes like "Party Hard" and "Party Til You Puke," made the State Department think twice.

It's unclear if W.K. is aware of the latest on the trip. His management has not yet returned a call from Yahoo News. A tweet this afternoon carried an inspiring message of hope: "PARTY TIP: Failure isn't falling down. Failure is staying down when you still have the ability to get back up."