THE EDITOR’S LETTER
Afew weeks ago, a couple of friends invited me to a dance party. Now, let me be clear: I am not the dance party type. They knew this. But they were convinced I needed to expand my musical horizons. For some reason, having the one and only Mr John Farnham on high rotation no longer cuts it in the hot new Aussie music stakes. But as much as I love Whispering Jack, I could see where they were coming from, so I agreed to head along. Almost as soon as I stepped foot inside the party, it was clear I was out of my element. Besides the fact it looked as though most of the crowd was barely out of high school, the music was not exactly my thing. There was no Farnsy, for starters. But rather than recoil in horror, I was actually impressed. Once my eyes adjusted to the strobe lights, it was obvious just what a stylish bunch of young women and particularly men this country has produced. Sure, there was a bit of a uniform of skinny jeans, high-top sneakers and denim shirts, but for the most part, what struck me was the sheer sense of individuality in the crowd. When it came to fashion, everyone had their own point of view. You see, when I first started at GQ a bit more than a decade ago (hence the Farnsy), it was difficult to get Aussie guys to care about fashion. Convincing them to invest in anything beyond a graphic T-shirt and jeans was a struggle. Even explaining the benefits of a quality tailor was a losing game. How things have changed. While we would like to think we’ve played no small part in our country’s great style evolution, it’s clear that these days, men are drawing their fashion cues from practically everywhere. From social media to music and movie stars – there’s such a diverse range of people and places from which we can all find inspiration. And that’s a very good thing. It’s something we hope to convey with our list of modern icons (p102). Rather than focus on the usual suspects – and don’t worry, Ryan Gosling and Becks are still in there – we wanted to show the many different ways there are to be a man in 2017, and what we can all learn from them. It could be the dedication of cover star Kit Harington, or the self-expression of Jared Leto; the independence of visionaries such as filmmaker David Lynch, or the reinvention of a newly solo Harry Styles. The point is, there’s no single route towards being your best self. In fact, it’s what our magazine is all about. Our tagline, ‘Sharper. Smarter. Better’, goes beyond fashion – it’s about expanding your mind, learning new things, new skills, a new appreciation for everything life has to offer. And, yes, knowing your way around a good suit and a nice pair of brogues, too. In addition to our modern icons, we also sit down with deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce for a candid discussion of Australian politics (p48); we explore the latest medical solutions offering hope for those with debilitating spinal injuries (p136); and we hit the high seas on the largest cruise ship ever to visit Australian waters (p130). There’s a lot to get through. “We have the chance,” a great man once sang, “to turn the pages over.” Best get started, then. Enjoy the issue.