Just a year out of school, this Brisbane teen has toured alongside the likes of London Grammar and swiftly risen to stardom.
Tim Bettinson was on the side of a mountain when he found out his song Collapse was being played on national radio, one week after he uploaded it on SoundCloud.
“My friends called me up and said he’d just got in the car and heard it (Collapse) on Triple J and I kind of freaked out. I still remember we were climbing this ridiculously big mountain and seven hours into the walk I got this call,” says Bettinson.
The 18-year-old Brisbane musician, better known as Vancouver Sleep Clinic, was cut off from civilisation on a two-week camping trip, not realising the buzz his first track was receiving. But when he returned he found he had already received about 10,000 hits on the music sharing site.
“I put the song on Sound Cloud and YouTube, went camping for two weeks came back and it had blown up,” he said.
“It had about 10,000 plays over the two weeks and I was thinking `Woah, how did that happen?’”
Bettinson said he wrote his first track in his bedroom just nine months ago using cheap microphones and beaten up keyboards. He posted it on SoundCloud and from there interest in his ambient-electronica/folk sound came from all around the world.
He sifted through the emails (“A lot of stuff started coming into the inbox”) and decided upon a manager based in LA.
The teen has now recorded his first EP, Winter, played at the prestigious South By Southwest festival in Austin, Texas and supported London Grammar on their Australian tour.
Bettinson landed upon the unusual Vancouver Sleep Clinic moniker as a way of reflecting the style of music he creates, hoping his sound would encourage people to “relax” and “feel at ease”.
“That’s the Sleep Clinic part and I think Vancouver is a beautiful city and it really helps to create that imagery.
“And also, it sounds a lot better than Brisbane Sleep Clinic,” he said.
Just one year out of school, Bettinson is writing his album and about to embark on his first solo tour.
The bedroom musician said his songs now have about two million hits and admits it’s been a “crazy” time.
“I’m glad it paid off because otherwise I’d probably be working full-time in Maccas (McDonalds), unable to get into uni right now,” he said.
VANCOUVER SLEEP CLINIC WINTER TOUR DATES:
May 28 – Black Bear Lodge, Brisbane
May 30 – GoodGod Small Club, Sydney
May 31 – Shebeen Bandroom, Melbourne
April 30 – 170 Russell, Melbourne*
May 5 – The Hi-Fi, Brisbane
May 11 – The Astor Theatre, Perth
May 13 – Metro Theatre, Sydney
*Vancouver Sleep Clinic is also supporting The Naked & Famous on their Australian Tour.