• Kate Neilson

Getting to know The Winter Gypsy

Twenty Something Humans had a lil catch up with Tushar Singh, 1/6 of the indie folk group The Winter Gypsy, who told us about their new single Bojke, how they fuel their creative engines - it's all mulled wine and Cheese TV - and a little about his song writing process. We also asked him the hard questions, such as: a world without hummus or a world without beer? And what's the best song to listen to after you've spent an entire evening on the Baileys.

Who makes up the band and if each person was a type of food, what would they be and why?

Tushar Singh - Guitar/vocals: Kinder Surprise, because I'm an Indian that can't handle spicy food.

Max Lambert - Drummer: Steak, because he's shredded (his words).

Dave Thompson - Keys/vocals: Slow roasted chicken because he's patient.

Isaac Kerr - Bass/vocals: A brown Avocado, because he's a dumpster diving vegetarian.

Sean Helps - Trumpet/Synth: Banana, because he's the perfect goob.

Jonny Kotts- Guitar: Dragon meat, because he's non existent.

Where does the name The Winter Gypsy come from?

I came up with the name. I usually played backyard shows with Dave, (Pianist) when we both started to collaborate. Friends used to call us gypsies because of our style and the way we would just set up anywhere, shoeless, and play a set filled with random sounds involving, guitar, piano, melodica and xylophone, topped off with some vocal harmonies. Winter happens to be my favourite season of the year. during Winter, 2014, I had come up with the name, and it stuck with me.

Can you tell us a little about your new single BOJKE?

The title is an ode to our bassist and his brother's dog, who passed away this year; her name was Bojke. Strangely enough I wrote this song in a narrative sense, not necessarily about anyone in particular, only to find out a few weeks later that Bojke had passed away. I instantly thought of the lyrics in this song and it was strange but so fitting as to how much this song related to the incident.

How did you discover your ‘sound’?

Definitely through the artists/bands that I am influenced by. The Middle East, Bon Iver, Sigur Ros, Bombay Bicycle Club, Death Cab For Cutie, just to name a few.

Other than through your music, how do you fuel yourself creatively?

We tend to do a lot of creative things that don't involve music. We cook together, Dave builds a bunch of stuff out of recycled wood (smashed pianos), we love playing around with mulled wine recipes, Isaac is an awesome cartoon artist, Sean likes to sit in a corner and laugh to himself, and Jonny has a real gift when it comes to computer games. Max likes to get up at 5am in the morning to watch that workout show before Cheese TV comes on (he's that guy).

What is your song writing process?

I tend to write my lyrics after I come up with a guitar riff. After I've formed a song, I bring it to the boys and they make it sound one hundred times better.

The best way to treat yo’ self?

Putting down $300 on Sushi Train and good Italian food.

If you were a contestant on Australian Idol (circa 2003), what would your back story be?

I'd probably have one of those strategic sad storylines like: "I lost my big toe one night after attending a cooking show, and I missed it so much that I went into serious depression. Since the incident, I have been to rehab three times, all with the phobia of losing my other toe. It wasn't until the start of this year that I realised, I didn't actually need my toes to sing. So now I'm here, and I've got toe give it all I've got." Something like that.

What’s the dumbest thing that you’ve ever done?

Start a band with five other dudes.

If you weren’t a muso, what would you be doing?

I would be so lost without music. No idea.

What’s the best song to listen to when...

You’re getting sexy:

Redbone - Childish Gambino

You’re feeling sorry for yourself:

Death Cab For Cutie - Transatlaticism (The entire album)

You just found out that your ex-partner has bought a dog with someone else:

Teardrops on my Guitar - Taylor Swift (just kidding) Who let the dogs out - Baha Men

You’re hungover in bed after a night on the Baileys:

Lonely - The Middle East. Bailey's killed me once before. Never again. I was so hungover the next day haha.

Quick Fire Round

Fold or Scrunch?

Fold. People who scrunch are gross.

Day old cold kebab or day old col meat pie?

Kebab.Cold meat pies... gross.

Lights on of off? (when doing ‘the deed’)

Usually I'll get someone to continuously turn the lights on and off, to create a suspenseful strobe effect.

A world without hummus or a world without beer?

Since I'm a wine drinker, and a hummus lover. Unfortunately, I will have to go with a world without beer.

Summer or Winter?

Winter all the way.

Socks and thongs or jeans tucked into your socks? Socks and thongs.


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Kate Neilson is a list maker and a booty shaker. She likes a gin and tonic in the afternoon sun and eating toast in bed. She is the founding editor at Twenty Something Humans and can be lurked @katiepotatierose.

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