The New Radicals is Gregg Alexander, a singer-songwriter famously averse to celebrity, which he makes clear near the end of the song when he calls out Marilyn Monroe, Beck, Courtney Love, and Hanson, accusing them of being fakes and threatening to "kick their ass in."
Alexander was raised in Michigan but came to Los Angeles as a teenager and quickly secured a record deal with A&M, which issued his debut album in 1989 and then dropped him. He moved on to Epic, which issued his second album in 1992 and then dropped him. Along the way, he learned how artists were expected to follow trends and kowtow to the industry machine, which he found degrading. He cobbled together a third album - Maybe You've Been Brainwashed, Too
- which included "You Get What You Give," and somehow got a third record deal, this time with MCA.
Released in October 1998, the song caught on in early 1999, so a touring band was assembled and they hit the road, doing the kind of radio station promotions Alexander loathed. In April, they toured as opening act for Goo Goo Dolls, then on July 12, Alexander pulled the plug on The New Radicals, issuing a press release stating, "I'd lost interest in fronting a one-hit wonder to the point that I was wearing a hat while performing so that people wouldn't see my lack of enthusiasm."
He turned to producing and songwriting, but kept a low profile. His biggest hit in this capacity was the Santana (featuring Michelle Branch) song "The Game Of Love
," which he co-wrote under the name Alex Ander. He also wrote songs for Sophie Ellis Bextor, Ronan Keating, Mel C and Enrique Iglesias.