|Birth Day:||July 5, 1968|
|Birth Place:||Vancouver, Canada|
|Height||Weight||Hair Colour||Eye Colour||Blood Type||Tattoo(s)|
His career in media began in radio as a host of a University of British Columbia weekly afternoon show.
Nardwuar was born John Ruskin in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, in 1968. His father Vernon was an engineer and his mother, Olga Ruskin, was a local journalist, high school history teacher and historian. She published a history of Vancouver historical figure "Gassy Jack" John Deighton. His mother exposed her son to local history by bringing him to historical society meetups. Nardwuar won a public speaking competition while in elementary school, where he was also a long-distance runner.
Nardwuar attended Hillside Secondary School in West Vancouver, where he was a member of the student council. It was through the student council that he began booking bands for school events, and conducted his first interview, with Art Bergmann of Poisoned. He was accepted into the University of British Columbia (UBC) in 1986, the same year he changed his name to Nardwuar. He began volunteering at the campus radio station, CITR. While studying history at UBC, Nardwuar wrote papers on Vancouver's Lions Gate Bridge and the assassination of John F. Kennedy. He graduated in 1990 with a bachelor's degree in history.
Nardwuar's unorthodox approach often ends up in bizarre scenarios. Some of his subjects recognize Nardwuar's eccentric style and successfully manage to reverse the scenario on him, especially Iggy Pop, David Cross, Steel Panther, Mudhoney, "Weird Al" Yankovic, Lil B and Eric Andre. Some interpret his hijinks as intentionally disrespectful, including Nas and pornographer Al Goldstein. Henry Rollins found Nardwuar to be disingenuous, saying "I like the character that you're playing. I like that you can turn it on and off. That's cute." Nardwuar made several attempts at contacting Courtney Love, first in 1991 over the telephone, talking about Danelectro guitars and asking her about her P.O. box before she ended the conversation. He later was able to get full interviews out of her after sneaking backstage into a dressing room at a 1993 Hole show in Vancouver, B.C., and again in November 1994 backstage at the Commodore Ballroom. Love was also present during Nardwuar's interview with Nirvana in January 1994 at the backstage of the Vancouver Forum.
In November 1997, he cut off all his hair and was able to sneak into an APEC conference to ask Jean Chrétien if he supported the pepper spraying of protesters outside. Chrétien, apparently unaware of the incident and not knowing what the English terms "mace" and "pepper spray" referred to, responded with a line that has become well known in Canada: "For me, pepper, I put it on my plate."
On July 10, 1999, Nardwuar suffered seizures and temporary paralysis resulting from a cerebral hemorrhage (aborting his planned ambush interview of Courtney Love), but quickly recovered. On December 6, 2015, he suffered a stroke and was released from hospital six days later. On January 25, 2016, Nardwuar underwent surgical repair of a patent foramen ovale, a hole between two chambers of the heart, which was the likely cause of his stroke.
Due to his absurd and eccentric style, he has been attacked verbally, physically threatened, and intimidated by people such as Sebastian Bach of Skid Row (who stole Nardwuar's favorite toque), the band Quiet Riot (who chased Nardwuar and crew down the street), Sonic Youth and Dave Rowntree of Blur. Alice Cooper, Henry Rollins, Travis Barker, Lydia Lunch, Harlan Ellison, Beck, Nas, and others have hung up on him or been verbally combative in interviews. Chris Fehn of Slipknot, Kid Cudi and Lil Uzi Vert have left midway through an interview. More often the experience confuses the celebrities. Members of GWAR tried not to laugh while in character. Jello Biafra was impressed with his guerrilla interview style, but became noticeably angered in a 2000 interview when Nardwuar began to discuss former Dead Kennedys bandmates' lawsuit against Biafra. Dave Rowntree of Blur apologized to Nardwuar in 2011 for his behavior during a 2003 interview, calling it "one of the things I'm ashamed of" and classified his actions as "bullying". Nardwuar accepted the apology via Twitter.
In June 2004, Nardwuar convinced an amused Paul Martin, former Prime Minister of Canada, to play a quick game of the Hasbro game "Hip Flip" while he was on the campaign trail. After Martin won the election, Nardwuar commented on the great predictive power of the "Hip Flip," because neither of the other two candidates had performed the act. On a campaign trip to Vancouver in December 2005, Nardwuar concluded an interview with the late New Democratic Party leader Jack Layton—who, in their first encounter, had taken the instructions to the game and said he would practice for their next encounter—with a successful, coordinated, swinging of their hips. The 22nd Prime Minister Stephen Harper is the only major candidate from the 2004 election who has never performed a successful "Hip Flip" with Nardwuar. Nardwuar was escorted out by Harper's security while trying to initiate the game. In the 2015 Canadian federal election, the first federal leader to complete the Hip Flip game was Justin Trudeau, who did so on September 10 after a press conference in Vancouver.
On October 12, 2012 a video was posted on YouTube in which rapper Sean Price parodied Nardwuar's distinctive style in an interview with Duck Down labelmate Pharaohe Monch. In the video the rapper dressed and conducted the interview similarly to Nardwuar, entitled "Seanwuar."
In January 2013, Brother Ali released a song called "Nardwuar", to commemorate his interview with Nardwuar; the song features a beat taken from one of the records that Nardwuar gave Ali as a gift.
At the 2013 South by Southwest Festival film director Brent Hodge and producer Chris Kelly did a retrospective of Nardwuar's career for Time.
In his 2013 mixtape Innanetape, Vic Mensa referenced Nardwuar in the song "Tweakin' (feat. Chance the Rapper)" with the lyric "Thumbs up to the camera like Nardwuar."
On his 2016 album Top of the Line, in the song of the same name, Rittz references Nardwuar with the lyric "shit I can't recall the last 15 years wishing I could do an interview with Nardwuar".
During the 2019 Canadian Federal Election, New Democratic Party leader Jagmeet Singh was the only head of a political party to attempt the Hip Flip.
September 29th 2019 was declared "Nardwuar Day" in Vancouver by Kennedy Stewart, the Mayor of Vancouver.
In 2019, Nardwuar was inducted into the BC Entertainment Hall of Fame and included in their starwalk on Granville Street in Downtown Vancouver.
Currently, Nardwuar is 53 years, 11 months and 24 days old. Nardwuar will celebrate 54th birthday on a Tuesday 5th of July 2022.
Find out about Nardwuar birthday activities in timeline view here.