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Need a restaurant recommendation in Tel Aviv? Forget Jeeves; try asking Gogol Bordello instead.


THE WORLD is starting to get to know gypsy-punk outfit Gogol Bordello, thanks to the band’s many electrifying festival appearances in recent years and to a cameo in the 2005 film Everything Is Illuminated. But Gogol Bordello already knows the world well, as the group’s nine members come from eight different countries and from even more varied cultural backgrounds. The band’s international melding is the key to its genre-crossing acclaim, with songs typically featuring equal parts accordion, violin, guitar, and flamenco horn, resulting in rowdy sing-alongs that win over fans of all ages.

We asked the worldly musicians to share with us their favorite tour destinations, the best things about their hometowns, and what regional music they’re most inspired by. (Percussionist Pedro Erazo, who hails from Ecuador, was unable to participate.)

ELIOT FERGUSON
Drums
Birthplace: Florida
What is your favorite city to visit while touring?
“In the summertime, Spain’s San Sebastián and Bilbao and the entire Basque region are beautiful. In the wintertime, I like a walk through the snow-covered cobblestoned streets of Prague.”

YURI LEMESHEV
Accordion
Birthplace: Russia
What is your favorite place to visit in your hometown?
“Brighton Beach Avenue in Brooklyn, New York, with all the Russian book, record, and food stores around there.”

THOMAS GOBENA
Bass
Birthplace: Ethiopia
What part of the world has the most interesting music right now?
“Ethiopia has been underrepresented in the world-music scene for a long time. The Ethiopiques series of compilations, especially volume four, is a great way to learn about it.”

ELIZABETH SUN
Percussion and dance
Birthplace: Scotland
What is your favorite city to visit when you’re not on tour?
“Hong Kong. I lived there many years ago, on Lamma Island, and my parents are from Kowloon . The contrast between the traditional and modern life is a beautiful and rich combination.”

EUGENE HÜTZ
Lead singer
Birthplace: Ukraine
What is your favorite place to visit in your hometown?
“Depends on which hometown you’re talking about! Kiev? New York? Rio de Janeiro? I’m a night owl, so my favorite places are festive places that are open late, like São Cristóvão in Rio.”

PAMELA JINTANA RACINE
Percussion and dance
Birthplace: Vermont
What is your favorite thing to do in your hometown?
“Night snowboarding with my brother, Gregory, at Bolton Valley or the Jay Peak mountains is an extremely peaceful Vermont experience.”

OREN CAPLAN
Guitar
Birthplace: Israel
What is your favorite place to visit in your hometown?
“When I’m in Tel Aviv, I head straight to the Suri (the Syrian), a two-table restaurant in the Kerem neighborhood that has the best hummus in the world. In fact, that’s all they serve.”

SERGEY RYABSTEV
Violin
Birthplace: Russia
What region’s music would you like to tap into as an artist?
“I like the jungle. The sound of a wild nation always inspires me.”