Tim Nelson
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Tim Nelson
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When Tim Nelson formed Cub Sport in 2010, he saw the band as a conduit for his creativity. "I loved singing and writing music, so I was just pursuing the thing that brings me the most joy" says Nelson, who hails from Brisbane. However, as the indie-pop group gained momentum and Tim's songwriting grew more sophisticated, he realised that Cub Sport was holding up a mirror to his own life whilst also holding up a mirror to his bandmate, keyboard player Sam Netterfield.

"Because I was expressing myself more and more genuinely, I found I was writing about my love for Sam," Tim says. "And he could tell from the songs I was writing that I was in love with him." In a sense, music captured the feelings they were unable to put into words. "That gave Sam the confidence to say he was in love with me," Tim recalls, "and so we finally became a couple." In 2017, shortly before Cub Sport released their second album, Tim and Sam told fans they were a couple. "I feel like our musical journey has really been interwoven with a personal one of coming out and learning to be proud of my queerness, but also connecting with our fans going through similar journeys"


The following year, six months after Australia voted in a referendum to legalise same-sex marriage, Tim and Sam tied the knot. "We were already committed to one another, but it's the little things about being married that make a difference," he says. "Like, when we're travelling now, we can go through immigration together as a family, which makes me feel so proud." The authenticity of their journey has really resonated with the band’s community of fans.

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"We've had some amazing messages of gratitude, including from people who've said that our music has literally saved their lives," Tim says. "That definitely makes me feel like I'm on the right track." Tim readily admits he never expected to feel this way. "Being gay was the thing I was most ashamed of. I didn't think I'd come out ever," he says. Much of this shame stemmed from his strict religious upbringing and high school years rife with homophobia.

Released earlier this year, Cub Sport's fifth album is inspired in part by the cathartic atmosphere at the band’s first post-pandemic live shows. Tim says the album represents his journey to “move on from shame" and describes it as the band’s most "party-centric" offering yet. "I wanted to bring more joy into the whole experience for myself and fans who come to our shows" he says. "I wanted to give the same intensity of emotion, but with a greater element of celebration."


Cub Sport's music has always been filled with feeling. In 2019, they duetted with Savage Garden singer Darren Hayes on I Never Cried So Much In My Whole Life, a stunning ballad "about finding joy in queer love". It was released on Spirit Day, a day that aims to create awareness for the bullying and harassment that the LGBTQIA+ community often faces. "I feel like we have a greater purpose now which is to help people on their own journey"


It's this purpose that drew Tim to the iconic Keep Walking campaign from Johnnie Walker. "There is a genuine desire to uplift queer voices baked into this campaign, which is so important to us as a band" he says. "I want Cub Sport to be the kind of band who would have helped me find peace and a greater love for myself when I was younger. Going forward, that's the ultimate aim."

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As part of our ongoing partnership with the AFLW, and in tribute to the trailblazers of women’s football in Australia, we created five unique pairs of football boots, hand-crafted from the boots these legends walked in all those years ago. We’re gifting these to trailblazers of the modern game as a symbol of the many generations of progress, hoping they might one day hand them down to the next generation, whilst inspiring them to continue pushing the game forward.

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First Strides
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In the US, Johnnie Walker has launched ‘First Strides’; an initiative that celebrates, inspires and enables people and organisations taking bold strides to move culture forward for all, investing in cultural trailblazers through grants, visibility, mentorship and empowerment programming.

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Footsteps of Progress
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In Eastern Europe, Johnnie Walker is inviting women to leave their mark in society, by planting footprints featuring women’s names around metro stations, malls and bus stations. Each footprint features a QR code that takes people to the inspiration that these women want to share with the world.

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Walk Beyond
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In South East Asia, Johnnie Walker South launched ‘Walk Beyond’; a brand platform spotlighting the progressive blend of creative cultures born from the streets of Southeast Asia, in a region where an emerging generation of fluid, curious and bold multi-hyphenates are setting their own agendas of self-expression.

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Partnership with Diet Paratha
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In the United Kingdom, Johnnie Walker partnered with Bridgerton star Simone Ashley and Diet Paratha to uplift, celebrate and champion the creative representation of the British South Asian community.