Alfonso F. "Alfie" Agnew, Ph.D (born January 24, 1969) is an American mathematician, singer, musician and songwriter. In a career spanning more than 30 years, Agnew is best known for being a member of the punk bands the Adolescents and D.I.. Alfie's brothers Rikk Agnew and Frank Agnew are also former Adolescents guitarists.
Alfonso F. Agnew was born on January 24, 1969, into a musical family, half Irish-American and half Mexican-American. In 1972, his parents moved from La Puente to Fullerton, California. In an interview with By the Barricade he recalled, "I was the youngest brother in a sequence of brother musicians so when I arrived on the scene, drumsticks were put in my hand and I was "required" to be a musician. That is how I got into it."
Agnew settled on physics and mathematics as a career and put his musical activities on hold to attend college immediately after high school. He graduated from Cal State Fullerton, completed a PhD in Mathematical Physics at Oregon State University and did post doctoral work at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. Afterward, he became a full professor in mathematics at Cal State Fullerton, and also a faculty member in the Gravitational Wave Physics and Astronomy Center (GWPAC). As part of his research activities, Agnew has published a number of technical papers in the fields of Analysis, Differential Geometry, Cosmology, and the History of Mathematics.
Agnew began playing in bands at about the age of 11. His first band was called the Attack, where he played drums and wrote all their lyrics and music. He started Almost 21 in his first year of high school with Jay McCarty on vocals, himself on guitar and vocals, Hal Hughes on guitar, Tom Hughes on bass guitar, and John Knight on drums. Almost 21 released a demo as a 7" vinyl on Gummopunx.
When Agnew was about 15, his band Almost 21 was breaking up, while D.I. was going through line-up changes. Agnew, John Knight and John "Bosco" Calabro from Almost 21 joined D.I. in 1983, "Ancient Artifacts", "Horse Bites Dog Cries", Team Goon, and "Live at a Dive" were released while Agnew was in the band.
Around 1986, the Adolescents began working on a return with the original line-up, but Frank Agnew left the project and Alfie Agnew replaced him. He played with the band for several months before leaving to attend to university work.
In 2012, John Knight, Bosco Calabro, Alfie Agnew, Jeff Milucky and Mark Tolbert recorded a number of Crash Kills Four and Almost 21 songs for a project called "A Raincoat, Shoes, and Pornographic Blues". The recording was originally released as a download, but Gummopunx later released a special 12" vinyl version that included three new songs. This line-up also played several shows in Southern California. Agnew and Sean Elliott also played with Rikk Agnew in the Detours, a band formed originally in the late 70's.
In 2015, Crash Kills Four had a project in-work called "Professor and the Madman". The group released a Halloween single that included music that they had expected to release within the next couple of months.
Agnew has three older siblings, Rikk, Toni (sister) and Frank. He also has a half-brother Jim and a half-sister Beverly that are older than Rikk.