Gerard Arthur Way, born April 9, 1977 and hailing from Newark, New Jersey, is the lead singer of the band My Chemical Romance, brother to band mate Mikey Way (bass). Gerard's maternal grandmother Elena taught him how to draw, sing and perform. In the fourth grade, he starred in his school’s production of Peter Pan. He started to play in bands when he was only eleven. As a child, Gerard came to the revelation that everyone he cares about will eventually die, and that he will die alone. This has led to his obsession with the idea of death. Gerard married Lindsey Ann Ballatto (Lyn-Z from the band Mindless Self Indulgence) on 3 September 2007, and they became parents to a baby girl who they named Bandit Lee Way on the 27 May 2009.
He has recovered from an addiction to drugs and alcohol, being sober as of August 2004. Gerard’s band mates have pulled him out of a deep depression twice (before the band really got started, and as he was sobering up). However, he still enjoys smoking Marlboro red cigarettes.
He attended the School of Visual Arts in New York City and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1999. As a child, Gerard grew up in a dangerous and crime-ridden neighborhood. Way has said that he was never really allowed outside to play when he was younger. Instead, he remained indoors and created his own imaginary worlds in his head. This led to his later in life love for artwork. Gerard aspired to be a comic book artist (he loved comic books, and his favorite superhero was always Wolverine) before forming My Chemical Romance in 2001. He pitched a cartoon for Cartoon Network called "The Breakfast Monkey", but it sadly didn't work out. He has still designed the artwork for the My Chemical Romance albums and used to design merchandise for the band "Thursday".
My Chemical Romance
On September 11th, 2001, Gerard was working in the comic industry of New York City. Witnessing the horrors of that day incited him to "do something with his life". The song, is based upon the terrorism attacks of 9/11, and is the first song to ever be written by My Chemical Romance. The band’s name is based upon an Irvine Welsh novel, and was first suggested by Gerard’s brother, Mikey. Together with Matt Pelissier, Ray Toro, Frank Iero, and Mikey Way, My Chemical Romance recorded their debut album. At their first show, Gerard and the rest of the band got very drunk because they were so nervous. Pelissier was later replaced by Bob Bryar. They earned popularity with their hit single I'm Not Okay (I Promise) and later with a tribute to his late grandmother Elena Lee Rush, titled Helena. Gerard came up with the wardrobe ideas for the Helena video. Both songs are from their CD "Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge". The band has made several efforts for various causes such as the South Asian tsunami victims, and the fight against breast cancer.
Gerard is deathly afraid of needles, so he doesn't have any piercings or tattoos.
Gerard has always been a huge fan of comic books, he regularly attends the San Diego Comic-Con event and has himself written (with art by Gabriel Bá) a series called The Umbrella Academy: Apocalypse Suite for Dark Horse Comics which was released in 2007, it went on to win the 2008 Eisner Award for Best Finite Series/Limited Series. He then released The Umbrella Academy: Dallas in 2008. The series has been optioned for a film adaptation planned for release in 2012.
Musical Influences & Tastes
His musical influences include Iron Maiden, the Misfits, and David Bowie. His favorite band is Iron Maiden, but is still a David Bowie fan.
"If you don't go to high school you will definitely go to jail."
"I'd rather be a creature of the night than an old dude."
"So many people treat you like you're a kid so you might as well act like one and throw your television out of the hotel window."
"Be Yourself, Don't take anyone's shit and never let them take you alive..."
"So how was Christmas for you guys? Did you all get lots of nice black t-shirts?"
"If you're gonna buy me a present, don't spend more than twenty five bucks, you'll get a blowjob anyway."
"Surrounding myself with fans makes me feel like I'm not going through it alone."
"The Devil got landed with a shitty job, he has to deal with assholes everyday, he's probably bored as hell."
"When I was writing it, I was remembering how hard it was to be a 16-year-old in high school. I always wanted to be an artist, so I was this loner kid who just got drunk all the time. I only had one real friend. There was a girl I really liked, and she ended up taking really sleazy photographs with her boyfriend, and that really crushed me, I was just swimming in this pit of despair, jealousy and alcoholism."
"It erases everything I hate about myself. Nothing can hurt me. I feel completely invincible. I feel like everyone else on that stage is invincible and we're capable of anything. There's no stopping us."
"I'd enjoy it if a guy grabbed my ass. I guess it all depends on how he grabbed it, too."
"When you are kissing a guy with a beard, it's different."
"There's such a lack of sex in music"
"It takes me a while to tell stories. I think it's because I was drunk for three years"
"I was this weird loner kid who got drunk by himself all the time." (talking about high school)
"I have a nihilistic attitude so it's like, the new gay... it's popular." (Gerard on why we should give a damn about MCR)
"Look at me, with my pretty bracelet and tiara... I'm a fuckin' princess!"
"Were not a festival band, playing during the day was something we had to get over, I was like uhh this sun stuff kind of sucks"
"When we first started out I had a really big issue and a lot of my loved ones had a really big issue with the fact that I was totally in pain up there and there was a time when I tried to hurt myself off stage, but I got over that. Like, you should never want to hurt yourself. You should love yourself. Sometimes you have to kind of die inside in order to rise from your own ashes and believe in yourself and love yourself and become a new person and I think that that is going to be a lot of what the next record is about, not to plug it or anything. Like, it's going to talk about dying and coming back to become what you totally want to become. We are all becoming what we want to become."
"What I Like about The Sims is that I don't have a normal life at all, so I play this game where these people have these really boring, mundane lives. It's fun. My Sims family is called the Cholly family. I don't know why I picked that name; it's kind of random. The teenage daughter is my favourite, because I just had her go through this Goth phase. She's really kind of nerdy and she just became a concert violinist, which is pretty huge for the family. And she got into private school. But she started wearing black lipstick and she dyed her hair purple. It's pretty huge."
"I went to school in drag, in art school and my day was completely different because everybody thought I was a chick. You should see me as a chick. So I went as a girl, as like an experiment and it worked really well and everyone was really nice to me but I couldn't talk obviously...you know train conductors were really cool to me on my commute...HA! I looked hot as a chick!"
"Craziest thing that ever happened to me was being attacked by a black bird. It pecked the shit out of my head. We were at this hotel called The Phoenix in San Francisco. We were leaving to go to a show the next morning and the bird just fuckin' attacked my head. And the next day Slipknot were there, they were coming in as we were leaving, and they got attacked by birds too."
"Yeah, obviously we use vampires as a metaphor for something else, something deeper than just the supernatural. But there's just something about the bloodsucking walking dead, that can say so much to people. There are really so many people trying to get control over you on a daily basis and steal your soul in some way, take a part of you..."
"Um, lots of people grab my ass. I'm actually starting to get this thing now where people grab my package. That actually happened once in Boston, it usually doesn't happen. We went over to England and it happened at almost every show. I don't really enjoy any kind of invasion of privacy like that I guess. Grabbing my package is obviously a total invasion of privacy I'm not into that at all."
"That's what happens when you're all borderline psychotic and therein lies the beauty of this band - our duality. There's a duality to each band member too. There's a desire to have this constant conflict. If we write a write a song and it turns out really poppy, we have to make the lyrics really fucked up. There's psychosis to everything we do for sure. One day we're probably gonna write this number one pop tune that will be about a massacre!"
"If for one minute you think you're better than a sixteen year old girl in a Green Day t-shirt, you are sorely mistaken. Remember the first time you went to a show and saw your favorite band. You wore their shirt, and sang every word. You didn't know anything about scene politics, haircuts, or what was cool. All you knew was that this music made you feel different from anyone you shared a locker with. Someone finally understood you. This is what music is about."