Everclear bandmate Art Alexakis admitted something has been off about him lately, but it’s not because of a drug or alcohol relapse. Art penned a letter to fans on March 26 and revealed that he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis three years ago and has been keeping it a secret since.
Art, 56, explained that he was involved in a car accident, which prompted him to get checked for a pinched nerve. He revealed, “The report showed that I did indeed have a pinched nerve, but the pathologist also saw lacerations and suspicious marks on my spinal cord as well.”
He continued, “I was sent to see a neurologist, who did a ridiculous number of tests - more MRI’s, a spinal tap, over fifty blood tests, and numerous cognitive and balance tests. After receiving the results, he told me that I have a form of Multiple Sclerosis (RRMS), and that I have had it for anywhere between 10 to 20 years.”
The Everclear bandmate admitted his diagnosis was a shock at first because, “The words Multiple Sclerosis conjure up all sorts of images: helplessness, wheelchairs, pain, misery, and worst of all, hopelessness - and pity in the eyes of my family and friends (you get the picture).”
However, of the MS diagnosis, Art said, “Explains why I have had balance and gait problems for the last ten years, it 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. I thought it was just me getting older.”
The Everclear artist, who is prepared to go on tour, revealed, “One of the reasons I wanted to be more public about my disease is that I have been hearing a lot of people say that I am drinking again or back on drugs because they have seen me look unsteady on stage or around town (people say all sorts of nasty things when they don’t think you can hear them).”
He slammed the rumors and concluded, “So, if you see me stumbling...sweaty, looking both tired and anxious at the same time, maybe a little more confused than usual, or forgetting lyrics yet looking happy (which is weird for me), please know that I have not fallen off the wagon. I am just learning how to be the new me.”