Elton John Invited His Favourite Aussie Artists To Hang Out And It’s A Very Cute Story
Love. This. So. Much.
In last week’s episode of his Beats 1 radio show, Elton John shared an endorsement that made headlines. “I don’t know what it is with Australia at the moment, but they keep producing the most fantastic music,” he said. “The artists keep getting younger and younger.”
Captain Fantastic was in the country for his tour of regional hotspots like Wollongong and Cairns, and took the opportunity to turn the spotlight on artists like Alex the Astronaut, The Babe Rainbow and Winston Surfshirt.
But it turns out Sir Elton didn’t just shout-out Winston Surfshirt — he actually invited them to hang out.
Both Winston and teenage soul singer Ruel scored a personal invite from the man himself to come to his hotel room, take photos and talk music. Pretty crazy, right?
So to find out exactly how one of the world’s biggest artists discovered a five-piece from Sydney, we hit up Winston Surfshirt’s manager for the inside story.
Spoiler alert: it’s very cute.
How Elton Met Winston
According to Winston Surfshirt manager Tom Huggett, Elton asks the team at Apple Music to pass on music recommendations every month to help him stay up to date with the best new releases. (We already love this story.)
That’s how he discovered Winston Surfshirt and started playing their music on his Beats 1 show. Then last week, they received an email from Elton’s assistant saying that he was in Sydney and wanted to meet the band. Naturally, Team Winston said yes.
“We basically all hung out on couches with him and had a huge chat for about an hour and a half,” Huggett told Music Junkee. “He was an absolute legend and one of the truest and most hardcore music fans I’ve ever met. He wanted to talk about every genre of music and I found it amazing that a 70-year-old could could be this in touch with the music of today — especially when he mainly wanted to talk about modern music, predominately hip-hop and R&B.”
Elton even namechecked the guy he thinks if one of the most interesting artists right now: Kylie Jenner’s maybe-baby daddy and rapper Travis Scott.
It Gets Better
Huggett says Elton “truly wanted help Winston Surfshirt and Ruel in their careers with any advice he could give them.”
He told the band that when he was starting out, he had artists like George Harrison, Leon Russell and Neil Diamond all reach out and encourage him — something he wanted pay forward to the Sydney band.
But the most amazing part, Huggett says, is that an hour after they finished hanging out, Elton’s assistant called them and asked Winston Surfshirt to come back — because Elton had just finished listening to their brand new album, loved it, and wanted to get a photo with the band.
Oh yeah, Elton John has Instagram:
“I didn’t believe it but when we got back to Elton’s hotel we saw Winston’s vinyl just sitting in his record player and he had a bunch of questions about the album,” Huggett said. “He then showed us some other artists like Louis Taylor and Scritti Politti who he thought the band were in to and we all stood there listening to more tunes.”
“It was a completely surreal experience to hang out with one of the greatest artists of all time and to experience how down to earth he was.”
Winston Surfshirt’s debut album Sponge Cake is out now via Sweat It Out.