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Song You Need to Know: Special Friends, ‘Big Sur’

Gang of Youths drummer Donnie Borzestowski has teamed up with his Special Friends to launch a new project, sharing their debut single today.


Ask anyone, and they’ll agree that the best music is usually made by musicians who themselves are the best of mates. Therefore, it only stands to reason fans are in for a treat with the debut of the new project Special Friends.

Formed by a bunch of lifelong friends who have come together to craft a masterful slice of dreamy indie rock, Special Friends features Gang of Youths drummer Donnie Borzestowski, alongside close companions Keith, Randal, David, Alan, and Jerry.

“Many years ago, I began hanging out with a girl. Her name was Anna,” Donnie explains. “We used to go to the park together, the museum, sit in the car for hours chatting and maybe even get some choc chip ice-cream from time to time.

“We would laugh together, cry together, do fun things together. One day, I asked her if she wanted to be my girlfriend and we kissed. It was my first kiss. I told my mother that Anna was my girlfriend. My mother didn’t want to admit to herself that we were seeing one another, so she would just call us special friends.

“I also have a few mates who are dear to my heart,” he continues. “We all grew up in a small town together on the East Coast of Australia. We’ve also laughed together, cried together and gone on adventures together. We even wrote this song together. And we wrote a few more. Keith, Randal, David, Alan and Jerry, you’re also my Special Friends.”

Premiering their debut single, “Big Sur”, on triple j overnight, the first song from Special Friends is a sweet piece of music that evokes nostalgic memories, and takes you back to an all-too special time in your life.

Recorded with close friend and long-time collaborator Luke O’Dea on production and mixing duties, Special Friends are already working on new recordings, with plans for an EP in the pipeline.

“‘Big Sur’ is heavily influenced by that strange mix of nostalgia and regret that you have when you are finishing up something significant in your life; school, a job, a band,” Donnie says of the new track.

“There is a pull to want to go back to when everything was new and to right the mistakes that you made – rewrite your history. But time only moves in one direction and there is a realisation that what is done is done and you have to be thankful for what it was, regardless of the shape that it took.”

Accompanied by a hazy lyric video which showcases the inimitable dancing skills of Donnie, “Big Sur” is out now, with more news about future recordings expected to follow in the coming months.

Special Friends’ “Big Sur” is available via Mirror Music.