Most folks probably know Jorge Garcia as Hugo “Hurley” Reyes, the loveably scruffy character he portrayed for six seasons on “Lost.” But earlier this week, Garcia’s name was thrust back into the spotlight again when it was revealed that he was the cover star of — and apparent inspiration for — Weezer’s upcoming Hurley album.
But according to Garcia, none of this should really come as a surprise. After all, he’s been a music-industry vet for years now.
“I used to work at this store called Music Plus in San Clemente, California, when I was growing up, and then they became Blockbuster Music, and, like, you had to get a haircut to work there, and at the time I had some pretty long hair. So after that policy was imposed, I knew that was going to be my last summer working there,” Garcia told MTV News on Wednesday (August 11). “And then a little later, I worked in the music department of Borders, selling CDs there. So I remember the boxes of CDs coming … and I remember in the morning, setting up the ‘new release’ endcaps and having to put a bunch of copies on there and making sure they were properly stickered and all that.”
And although you’d think that kind of retail experience would’ve made him a natural to grace an album cover one day, Weezer were actually the first band to come calling. And, yes, Garcia finds the entire thing just as weird as you do.
“I went to do the George Lopez show ['Lopez Tonight'], and I think they were doing two or three shows that night, and [Weezer frontman] Rivers [Cuomo] was a guest in the previous show. So they came and knocked on my door and said, ‘Hi,’ and wanted to get a picture with me, and I thought that was awesome. We chatted briefly, and that was it,” he said. “And I didn’t hear until a couple months later that they wanted to put me on the cover … I didn’t realize it was just going to be that same picture we took together, cropped down to my face. When I look at the picture, I notice that there’s something going on with my hair, like it’s starting to come loose or something. But I’m happy with it.”
Garcia, who cites Bon Iver, M. Ward and the New Pornographers as some of his favorite acts, said he’s always been a casual fan of Weezer (“I don’t recognize Maladroit so much,” he laughed) and added that being featured on the cover of Hurley is one of the biggest honors he’s received in his career.
“This is really close to the top, for sure,” he said. “I think the ['Lost'] action figure still kind of trumps it, but just coming from where I come from, it’s extremely special and dear to my heart that this is actually happening.”
While Garcia will make an appearance in stores on August 24 when the sixth season of “Lost” is released on DVD, he’s really looking forward to September 14, when Hurley is due. Though, given his previous retail experience, he’s already dreading what might happen.
“Sometimes when we were pricing CDs, we’d just put the stickers all over the place, until we got the instructions we had to put them in a certain place,” he said. “So I’m sure there will be some people that take advantage of having such an easy target to do whatever sticker graffiti they want to.”
What do you think of Weezer paying tribute to Jorge’s “Lost” character? Tell us in the comments!