BEST KNOWN AS: guitarist for alt-metal bands Rage Against the Machine and Audioslave
THE INTEL: The son of a Kenyan father who was his country’s first ambassador to the United Nations and an American-born mother who fought against the censorship efforts of Tipper Gore, Morello once described himself as being “the only anarchist in a conservative high school.” A bright student, he was accepted into Harvard and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in social studies. (A brief stint working in the office of U.S. Senator Alan Cranston soured him on a career in politics.) Still very involved in a variety of social causes, Morello recently wrote an editorial for Rolling Stone in which he expressed his dismay after Republican vice-presidential nominee Paul Ryan cited Rage Against the Machine as one of his favorite bands.
BRAINIAC RATING, ON A SCALE OF 1 TO 11: 8
EXTRA CREDIT: In a 2008 interview with the Wall Street Journal, he declared, “I am the half Kenyan Harvard grad from Illinois who’s not running for President this year.”
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