tim berkel – Professional Triathlete
One of Australia’s best lronman Triathletes talks jamming Green Day covers in his parents shed with his high school band, an incredulous and secret love of Nickelback and the desire to drop bangers on the ‘one’s and two’s’.
How old are you and where are you from?
TIM: I'm 33 and from Cumbalum, NSW, Australia.
What is your Current City?
TIM: Boulder, Colorado.
Do you take on any musical tastes from where you’re based or your travels during the season?
TIM: Not really, I spend a lot of time on Soundcloud, Mixcloud finding new songs and DJ sets to listen too.
What was the last race you did? What music did were listening to to get you through the transfers and travel?
TIM: My last race was the Asia Pacific Ironman Championship. I was playing a lot Claptone during my travel there.
When you’re travelling to races, are you alone or do you travel with some support staff?
TIM: This trip I was traveling on my own. Some of the bigger races I take my wife, Manager or travel with some mates.
What music do you remember growing up around? Who was the first person to get you into music?
TIM: Both my parents loved music, I remember Dad playing a lot of INXS, Pink Floyd and Mum Salt-N-Pepa.
What is the first song you remember liking?
TIM: Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here.
Disc Breaks: That’s a pretty respectable start, do you remember how old you were? Sounds like your parents gave you a good initiation into music, can you remember any specific INXS, Salt-n-Pepa tracks they’d play?.
TIM: I was still in Primary school. My favorite tracks were Suicide blonde - Just keep walking, What you need and Need you tonight - INXS, None of your Business - Break of Dawn and Push it - Salt-N-Pepa
Disc Breaks: Did you play a music instrument as a kid?
TIM: I played the Bass Guitar and was in this shitty band called Generic.
Disc Breaks: How old were you and who was in Generic? What sort of music did you guys play? Did you ever play any shows? Is there any video or audio recordings of Generic?
TIM: It was just a few school mates and it was early high school days. We pretty much just jammed in my parents shed on the weekends. As I said we were pretty shit so we didn't play any shows or anything cool like that. We played punk covers such as Green Day and Blink 182.
Disc Breaks: If you could go back and learn a musical instrument, which would it be and why?
TIM: I would love to learn to drop bangers on the ones and twos.
Disc Breaks: You should just get Virtual DJ, does all the hard stuff for you. Would you give yourself a DJ pseudonym or just go with your regular name?
TIM: Definitely a cool DJ name for sure.
Disc Breaks: What musical phases have you been a part of throughout your life? What songs defined each of those phases? E.g Punk, Mod, Raver, Emo etc.
TIM: I have been through phases of punk, rock, rap and all types of dance music. The stand out songs for me are Blink 182 M&M's, Nirvana On a Plain, The Notorious B.I.G Hypnotize, 2Pac Ambitionz Az a Ridah, Deadmau5 I remember and Justice DVNO.
Disc Breaks: What was the first album you bought with your own money?
TIM: Nirvana Nevermind.
Disc Breaks: What was the first gig / concert you remember going to?
TIM: Grinspoon they just released Guide to a better living and the gig was epic AF.
Disc Breaks: Grinspoon are, or were, epic. The lead singer, Phil Jameison dated my high school girlfriends sister. I tell everybody that. What's the best gig / concert you've been to?
TIM: So many good ones to list but I'm going to have to say Golden Features, live at Falls Festival.
Disc Breaks: Who's the competitor or training partner with the worst musical taste you’ve had to endure?
TIM: Not sure I always have my headphones on listening to my own shit.
Disc Breaks: Do you prefer to train by yourself?
TIM: I like a mix of both, for my key sessions I like to do on my own for the long endurance training I like to do with mates.
Disc Breaks: How about the competitor or training partner with the best music taste?
TIM: Well one of my training buddies is best mates with Hayden James and he got us backstage to one of his gigs, which was epic.
Disc Breaks: What song would you listen to to get pumped for a big race? What's that psych up phase like when you’re events are sometimes over 8hrs long?
TIM: New level (feat Future) A$AP Freg
Disc Breaks: Competing in an event that is so individual and so long do you get to the start line really hyped up or are you trying to be a relaxed as possible beforehand?
TIM: When I was younger and frothed harder, I like to hype myself up but now I like to go in relax and be grounded.
Disc Breaks: Have you ever had a ‘victory’ song or a track you associate with any performance, good or bad?
TIM: Right said Fred - I'm too sexy. They played when I was crossing the line for my first professional Ironman win.
Disc Breaks: Thats pretty funny, which Ironman was that?
TIM: Ironman Western Australia 2008
Disc Breaks: Have you ever worn your iPod during a race?
TIM: Yes. I did this race in Copenhagen and they allowed iPods for the run only. I had a Tommie Sunshine DJ mix on repeat.
Disc breaks: I would love if they did that in cycling, maybe just in TTs or if they had a car with speakers that drove behind the bunch blasting tunes to give you something to do when it’s boring in the middle of a race. Did it make a difference in your performance?
TIM: Yeah I would rather some tunes then someone shouting in your ear to go faster and so on. Ha! Yeah well I won the race and ran a 2:46 marathon off a 3.8k swim and 180k bike.
Disc Breaks: That’s insane. What song would you put on to get the party started?
TIM: Fisher YA Kidding.
Disc Breaks: Does musical taste influence how well you’re going to get along with someone? If so what’s a song that if someone played would let you know you’d probably get along?
TIM: If you love dance music and going to music festivals we are going to get on just fine. Ha.
Disc Breaks: What’s the best music festival?
TIM: Well I live down the road from Byron Bay, so I have to say my home Festivals - Falls Festival and Splendor in the grass but I have missed Splendor the last few years as I'm away overseas.
Disc Breaks: A song that if someone played would instantly put you off them?
TIM: Haha any Country music song.
Disc Breaks: Have you ever played a song to impress a person/group? If so, what was it?
TIM: My mate Ryan Crowe who goes by the name Discrow. I'm always playing his DJ mixes when I have parties at my place, which has everyone bobbing.
Disc Breaks: Do you always take control of the music at your parties? Are you particular about what's being played as well?
TIM: Yes of course. I have two jobs when we have guests. Good tunes are playing and everyone has a drink in hand.
Disc Breaks: A song you’re embarrassed to admit you like, but listen to often?
TIM: Has to be a Nickelback song right? Ha Nickelback - Savin' me.
Disc Breaks: No it doesn’t have to be a Nickleback song. You should have definitely kept that to yourself.
TIM: Haha I'm already regretting telling you.
Disc Breaks: Which song would you choose to soundtrack the highlights reel of your career?
TIM: Claptone - The Music Got Me
Disc Breaks: What’s the best way to listen to music?
Disc Breaks: If you were colonising Mars and could only take one album, what would it be?
TIM: My first album I bought, Nirvana Nevermind.
Disc Breaks: Thank you mate, take it easy and hopefully see you soon.