Talking With Tuka

-By Carla Avendano

So this morning I had the pleasure to have a quick chat with none other than Tuka. Let me start off by saying that this guy is so down to earth and is so easy to talk to that it felt like we could have kept chatting for hours. Besides talking about the “Don’t Wait Up Tour” heres a few questions he was happy enough to answer for me.

Besides being an amazing artist, can you tell us a little bit about who you are?

That’s a bit of a funny one, I guess I’m pretty 100 on the music there’s not a lot going on in my life at the moment. I’m doing the solo thing and a band thing it does take up a lot of time and I don’t have much of a family so that doesn’t take up anytime and my best friends and family are in my band Thundamentals so I’m pretty lucky, but at the moment my world is art and music. I feel like I do wanna do some travelling but at this present moment in time it’s 100 on the music.

The second question I have for you is, what do you believe your purpose is on this planet?

I believe in something called the “is” and it’s obviously just a word i, s, the is but I’m not one for expectations I don’t like expecting things in life so I really just try and remind myself of the moment and living in it you know I don’t think I’m agnostic so I’m open to things that aren’t of a scientific manner like generally speaking I think your on the world just for this moment right now.

What do you love doing the most? Besides music is there anything else you love doing ?

I really enjoy skateboarding obviously, I hurt my knee jumping off a speaker stack at Days in the Grass so I haven’t been able to skate much in the last year but I also haven’t been able to skate much cause of touring cause I can’t skate leading up to a tour cause if I hurt my ankle it’s a bit awkward on stage.

Now I know you’ve said your here for the music and you’re in the moment, but what else makes you happy ?

I guess I was about to say other than skate boarding, I like connections real connections with humans. You know in your early twenties it’s really important to a lot of people to be social, to be out there and to be popular I guess maybe people don’t want to admit that to themselves but I think in you early 20s you try to find your pocket full of people and you kind of over extend yourself a lot of the time into relationships that aren’t really real. So I guess mid and late 20s I’m all about finding connections with people. Essentially I cut a lot of fat and I really value the people in my life that ground me and my connections with them and that being said my connections with people that follow my music. I get a lot of heavy messages either anonymously and privately and I can almost tell these people have listened to my music more than I have you know and they’ve connected with it and almost know me better than some of my friends do. And so cause I’m in the songs that’s who I am and a lot of my friends don’t listen to my music-I don’t expect them to but there are some people going through a lot of crazy stuff and they’re really connected to it and for me that’s a real connection even if it’s over the internet they’re really putting their hearts in for me and I really respect that, I value that. I also like strange conversations with taxi drivers and people I’ve never met that just drop a perspective on you, I like to leave myself really open to experiences when I said that I live in the now I actually mean that. If something like a plane was about to fall out of the sky right now it would be a really amazing, incredible, and  sad experience. But it would be a crazy experience to have and I like keeping myself open to that so when I have convos with random people I try to give it my all. I really value being in that moment.

Now that’s about all the intrusive questions I have. Moving onto your latest album LDTE, the EP ADTE and So We Can Remember by Thundamentals. What’s more intriguing for me is the artwork can you shed some light on that for me is there anything that it represent to you ?

It’s kind of complicated and like most art, with songs I don’t mind having a bit more control over how the songs are received on the other end but with the art I’m all about skulls if you can’t tell and the skulls remind me of morality that you can be as rich or as healthy as you want but at the end of the day your gonna end up in a pine box in the ground and also the skull represents just people that have already been, you see a a skull of an animal or whatever theres been a whole life thats gone through that mind and so it’s like I find them to be really beautiful and fascinating a thing and everyone has the same fucking skull so it’s universal in that sense. So We Can Remember, the reason why it has the hands covering the eyes is because when you close your eyes all you have left is your memories so we can remember, other than the basic principle of the symbol of the skull which I’ll probably put on every album I do, you pretty much are your memories. For ADTE is pretty much essentially the ether and it’s this skull drifting through the universe and leaving all its ideas and life behind and as for LDTE that’s me and an ex-girlfriend. I got April 77 to illustrate it. The whole record is about duality and I wanted male and female representation on the cover. There’s so many elements too that you’ll take a lot from staring at the art and listening to the record. In my weird mind it’s saying were all the same. The album is about duality but I wasn’t gonna call it ying and yang, I did it through heaps of symbols and songs that contradict themselves the two polar opposites that make a perfect one.

What’s been your favourite song to perform on the Don’t Wait Up tour?

I really like playing down for whatever. Depending one what the crowds like I go crowd surfing and I end up in the middle and get everyone to do a group hug, your central nervous system changes when you touch, we’re constantly in fight or flight which is like the nervous system that goes down your spine, essentially when were hunting and gathering you use your central nervous system which causes you to survive if put in survival situations, these days we don’t have any of those interactions whatsoever but we still have the evolutionary lag that’s left which means when your in a club surrounded by so many dudes or your ideology is questioned at work your constantly left in this stressful state which is the nervous system but the interesting thing is when you breath deeply or when you salivate before eating a meal or when you get hot when your touched by someone else the internal switch in your mind clicks to your flanking nervous system so thats why I’m all about the hugs as it calms people down. So the big hug thing even though it seems trivial it’s actually calming people down and connects everyone so when I get back on stage the entire vibe of the show is completely different and everyone is more in tune and I’v never seen a fight at one of my gigs, well I won’t say it’ll never happen like I said I don’t like having expectations.

Are you excited about hitting up Perth again on Friday?

Yeah I love Perth I was actually there two weeks ago I was meant to play at the Shipwrecked festival which got cancelled, Perth is always the one I miss my flight back it’s always so much fun.

So after an awesome 20 or so minute conversation I did ask one question that personally I couldn’t get off my mind and I needed, well wanted to ask. Now I won’t tell you everything he said but I’ll give you the question and the short answer won’t be giving you anymore than that you’ll have to do the research yourself.

You seem like your really spiritual person and really on to it, do you know what the pineal gland is?

His response was great, he said that he had done some research on it and used to be way more into it but has since toned it down a little since he’s living more in the now.

Well there you have it, if you haven’t already got your tickets to the Don’t Wait Up Tour, I highly recommend in getting in before they sell out, Tuka always puts on a great performance and leaves you with an awesome experience.


Photo Credit: Tuka

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