One of the most iconic Californian Hardcore Punk scene musicians of the late 1970s and early 1980s, Pat Smear, who has a wife, has been a member of some of the most influential bands ever. Having started his career in the late 70s with a band called The Germs with Darby Crash, the former Foo Fighter guitarist has been called gay his whole life, but he simply does not care.
And to answer if Pat Smear is gay? To disappoint his male fans, he is not homosexual. In fact, Dave Grohl describes him as the “coolest guy ever” who lives with his wife, Jena Cardwell, and daughter in utter privacy.
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Pat Smear’s Wife, Jena Cardwell & Their Marriage
The hardcore Punk pioneer, and Grammy winner, is happily married to his long-time girlfriend, Jena Cardwell, which deducts any chances of being gay.
Pat met his future spouse, Jena, in the late 70s when he co-founded his first band, The Gems. Although he had a very unpleasant experience with the Gems, he is thankful to have met his wife at the band’s second show.
Jena, Pat Smear’s wife, created many of his album cover artworks and those of his affiliated bands.
The pair were together for more than two decades and welcomed a beautiful blue-eyed daughter during their marriage.
The 2011 documentary Foo Fighters: Back and Forth revealed that Smear was happily married with a child. The pair also appeared with their daughter at L.A’s 20th Annual MTV Video Music Awards.
Pat Smear Is Gay? The Controversy of an Unbothered Musician
The California punk icon is known for his flamboyant effeminate persona. And that was enough for him to be subjected to homosexuality. However, punk was all about dressing up and expressing oneself through fashion, and Smear’s unique “slob-style” was seen as entertaining and “campy,” sometimes associated with gay culture.
However, to burst your bubble, Pat Smear is not gay and remains unbothered by the assumption.
During an interview with Spin, he disclosed that he had been referred to as gay throughout his life but remains unaffected by it. He explained that he first learned the meaning of “fag” when he was called one at age 12.
Smear further confessed that he’s always been attracted to the “gayish” side of fashion—perhaps, the most camp presence on television since Paul Lynde.
Moreover, Smear’s interest in cross-dressing and his post-queer language have confused some quarters into reporting that he’s homosexual.
However, Pat has made it clear that he is straight and has even humored about being referred to as a “gay guitarist” by an L.A. Gay Weekly, quipping that they at least got the “guitarist” part right.
To sum up, Pat is not gay and indifferent toward any false accusations of being homosexual. And he enjoyed a fulfilling marriage with his better half, Jena, while it lasted. As of now, it is unclear when Smear and his partner separated.
Childhood & His Career
The punk icon was born on August 5, 1959, in L.A., California. Born as Georg Albert Ruthenberg, he is a blend of German and Afro-American descent. His parents were immigrants to the U.S., with his Father hailing from Germany and his mother from East Africa.
Pat’s Father was an inventor and photographer, while his mother was a foreign language teacher/opera singer. He further joked about being a mixture of the most oppressive people and the most oppressed groups and claimed that his grandmother baked cookies for Hitler.
Moreover, Smear’s parents reportedly enrolled him in piano lessons at a young age. And a few years later, he taught himself to play guitar. Before becoming a celebrated guitarist, he was a very religious child. At age 13, he ran away from home to join a Jesus Commune – it all makes sense now!
From Failed Band to Grammy Award
The Grammy award winner started his career with his band, The Germs. Although the band disbanded tragically, he continued to work solo and went on to join the Deathrock band 45 Grave.
Moreover, he had just celebrated his thirty-fourth birthday when he got a call from Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain. Smear initially thought he was pranked but joined and played his first show on Saturday Night Live on September 23, 1993.
Smear joined Foo Fighters in late October 1994 following Cobain’s death. However, his time with the band was brief. He announced his departure from Foo Fighters during the live performance at the 1997 MTV Video Music Awards, then introduced Franz Stahl, who completed the gig.
As of 2023, Pat Smear’s net worth is estimated at $25 million. He earned his fortune through his successful musical career, having played in many influential bands, including Nirvana and Foo Fighters. His unique style and sound have contributed to the success of these bands and earned him a reputation as a highly skilled musician.
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FAQs of Pat Smear
Why did Pat Smear Quit Foo Fighters?
Shortly after Foo Fighter’s first album was released, Pat Smear announced his departure. Although he appeared in a few obligatory scheduled touring, he officially left the band in 1997. Smear later revealed that he was exhausted from the band’s non-stop touring.
Was Pat Smear In Nirvana?
Pat Smear had just celebrated his 34th birthday when Nirvana’s frontman, Cobain, called him to join the band. He promptly joined the band. He went on to tour with the band for six months and appeared on some of their live albums, including MTV Unplugged in New York.
How tall is Pat Smear?
The Germs’ lead guitarist, Pat Smear, stands 6 feet and 1 inch tall.