With over 28 million streams on his breakout single “Rewind,” it’s hardly a surprise that 2017 has been the year of festivals for Columbia University graduate Nick Perloff-Giles, known more globally as Wingtip. His sound is unique and uplifting with an undeniable groove.
After a wildly successful set at Lollapalooza and two performances at Electric Zoo, he shows no sign of slowing down, especially with his move from Brooklyn to Los Angeles.
He’s recently released “Cross Your Mind,” featuring singer morgxn, which embraces a more emotional side without abandoning his aimed-to-make-you-dance roots.
After his set at Electric Zoo, I had the chance to sit down (or, as he prefers for interviews, à la therapy sessions, lay down) with Nick and get an insight on what’s in store for the future:
Wingtip: I’m really excited for this interview. Where do we start? With my mom? [laughs]
Actually… we are. Based on your recent tweet, what IS your ideal threesome? And would you tell your mom?
— wingtip (@itswingtip) August 27, 2017
Oh my god. [laughs] That’s the weirdest starting question. What’s my ideal threesome? A good book, a glass of wine, and a roaring fire.
So that is something you’d tell your mom then?
Absolutely. I’d totally have that threesome with my mom.
More seriously… Where’d the name “Wingtip” come from? What’s the story behind it?
When I started the project, I used to make disco, up-scale, elegant dance music. That’s how I was picturing it. I was doing word association and I was thinking, “Hm, dancing shoes… wingtips?” I used to have a stage gimmick where I’d wear silver wingtips on stage. It was fun. I have retired that. I haven’t actually worn them since.
Maybe it’s time to bring them back?
Maybe. Cole Haan has those ones with rubber soles? They’re kind of horrendously ugly, but they look comfy. They’re like a brown wingtip shoe, with a nice rubber sole for walking. You see business professionals wearing them often.
So they’re perfect for you?
Ideal. Great for jumping.
You’ve been called “The logical successor to The Knock’s NYC disco throne,” and I know you’ve been toying with the idea of making disco remixes of your originals. How’s that going? Do you think there’s a future in disco for your sound?
Yeah, I have one single coming out, that’s super disco-y actually. I really wanna make it! I do want to bridge it more with the stuff I’m making right now. I don’t know, there’s something really sincere, and sweet / fun about disco that I really love. Especially old disco era. I love the energy. I’m playing with the idea of remixing my old songs, maybe making new stuff that’s in that vein. I’m figuring it out.
You used to live in Brooklyn, and now you live in LA? What’s the biggest difference (other than space and the lack of G train)?
Everyone goes to bed by like 1:30 AM!
No, it’s great. It’s amazing. Seriously. The bars close at 2, which really means the bars close at 1:30, so you’re in bed by 2. Even on the weekend. It’s amazing. You don’t even have to make up an excuse like, “Oh I have a thing in the morning.” You just go home. You have no other options.
I have bad news for you though.
I know they’re extending it. I’m protesting that. I’ve been outside City Hall everyday protesting 4 AM. It’s for the children, you guys. I do it for the children.
On that note.. You boiled your last day in New York down to the essentials: “A 40, a chopped cheese, and a park to pee in.”
God, you really went in on my Twitter.
What would you say the LA equivalent to those things are?
Well I’ve been there for a few weeks. Do you know what nut milk is? Tigernut, cashew, almond… the standard nut milk. That’s a 40. Sweet potato bowls are pretty big. That’s the chopped cheese. As for the park… I don’t know, maybe hiking? So, nut milk, quinoa bowls, and hiking. That’s the LA version of “a 40, a chopped cheese, and a park to pee in.”
So yeah, I’ve definitely turned a corner. I’m so much more mature now.
If you weren’t a musician, what would your career of choice be?
Well, I always actually wanted to be a comedian, but that never worked out because I’m not funny. Either that, or… I worked in advertising before this. I think I could do that.
Have you ever thought about combining the comedy and the music?
Yes. You think I’m peeing in parks recreationally? I use my Twitter for my comedy.
You’re going on tour with Girrafage and Sweaterbeats. How did that come about? What are you most excited about?
Girrafage and I have done a few shows together last year. He’s the best. He sent me his album as he was working on it, and we stayed really close. When he decided to go back on tour with much bigger production and bigger rooms, he thought of me. It just made sense. I love traveling with him. We both really love sleeping and eating, two crucial things on the road. [laughs] No, it really is. Finding someone who’s sleep cycle matches yours on the road is one of the most important things. We make vaguely similar music, we have similar tastes. And Sweaterbeats is a good compliment to our sound and energy, I’ve known him for a little bit. It will be a good tour.
What’s your secret annoying habit you’re going to try and keep from them while on tour?
The one thing about LA I do really hate is you are unable to eat at weird hours. You can’t go and get food at 2 in the morning in places. That’s a very New York-y expectation: to think you can get whatever food you want at whatever time. So I will carry that expectation on the road.
All of your artist artwork is very similar, tell us a little bit about it. Who does it? What’s the inspiration?
I love really simple hand-drawn art that you can tell someone made. I work with an illustrator who I really love and have worked with for a while. The reason they’re all similar is they’re trying to evoke a message, evoke the same feeling as the song. They’re personal; they tell small stories about moments in peoples’ lives. I hope the art reflects that. It’s about intimacy and nostalgia and personal experiences.
Do you have a dream collaboration?
Honestly, rogue answer here. Do you remember the band Five for Fighting? They had the one song that was huge, “100 Years.” Amazing song. Could you imagine? Wingtip x Five for Fighting? If you’re listening guys, hit me up.
Someone you can’t currently stop listening to?
My manager Chris and I can’t stop listening to this artist Soccer Mommy. Shoutout Soccer Mommy.
How do you discover new artists you’re excited about?
Jukely, of course! [laughs]
I use a combination of blogs and Spotify. Hype Machine. Some SoundCloud digging. I ask my friends, I go to shows. It’s easier in New York than LA.
Congrats on signing to Casablanca / Republic records. What’s in store for the future ?
New music. I have a song coming out with this band Savoir Adore who I love. They’re really cool, a band out of Brooklyn, that they wrote and I did production for. That’s coming out soon. I’m working on a larger body of work, maybe an EP or an album. That will come in early 2018. Big things!
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