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A shaman, a divorce and a whole lot of TV: How Andrew G became Osher Günsberg

''From that moment on, within me - I was Osher.''

By Maddison Leach
When most people picture Osher Günsberg, they see a man with perfect hair sauntering across their TV screens in a suave suit.
On The Bachelor and The Bachelorette he whispers to heartbroken contestants who didn't receive a rose, while on The Masked Singer he shouts his excitement across the stage.
And when he's not lighting up our screens, the 47-year-old is at home playing dad to son Wolfgang and step-dad to his wife Audrey's daughter Georgia.
In fact, most of us have become so accustomed to Osher's "cool dad" vibe that it's hard to believe he used to look like this:
Remember this version of Osher Günsberg, back when he was known as Andrew G? (Image: Getty)
Back in 2003 when he first burst onto our screens as a host for Australian Idol, Osher was sporting a totally different appearance. In fact, he even had a different name back then; Andy G.
It's the name he was known by for years before making the personal and public switch to Osher, a moniker that carried a whole new meaning for the beloved TV presenter.
So how did he go from a long-haired music buff on Channel [V] to the dapper host we recognise today?
Speaking of the change in a 2013 blog post, the Bachelor host said: "Perhaps it was the fact that both of my parents changed also their first names, but something about being Osher just feels right."
But that's only half the story - keep reading to see how Andy G became Osher Günsberg.

The Andrew G days

Born in London in 1974, Osher's parents gave him the name Andrew Günsberg, but as he confessed in a 2013 blog post: "Even though I was born Andrew, I was never known as Andrew."
His family moved to Australia when he was still a baby and little 'Andrew' grew into a keen music fan, dabbling in the Brisbane band scene before landing a job at a local radio station.
While hosting late night and early morning radio shows, the 20-year-old adopted his first public nickname, Spidey.
"Spidey stuck with me for four long years of midnight to dawn radio. It always felt strange," he confessed on his blog.
WATCH: Andrew G hosting Australian Idol season two. Post continues after video...
"When I finally scored a shift while the sun was up at SAFM in Adelaide, here's how my new boss and mentor Craig Bruce responded to my request to be known by my real name: 'Andrew Günsberg? In Adelaide? Nahh, Andrew G!'."
Craig gave Osher the "Andrew G" nickname in 1998 and it stuck even when he moved into the TV world, starting with a job at Channel [V].
By the time he hit screens as an Australian Idol co-host alongside James Matheson, "Andrew G" or "Andy G" really became a household name.
The idea that he would ever be known as anything else seemed impossible – it would be like Madonna changing her name, or Beyoncé… just on a smaller scale.
But in 2009 he did the impossible.

Andrew G becomes Osher Günsberg

In 2009 Andrew G became Osher Günsberg professionally. (Image: Getty)
Recalling the moment he decided to change his name in a blog post, Osher wrote: "Somewhere in the middle of all of this, I was on one of my many journeys to Israel when I met with a revered Shaman in Tel Aviv.
"He told me about the power of a name, and how what we call ourselves affects our lives."
The 47-year-old claims that the shaman was able to tell him countless details about who he was as a person just from his name, his parents' names and the details of his birth.
The shaman then predicted that Osher was heading down a dark path and that changing the "energy" around his name could change his life.
WATCH: Osher Günsberg and wife Audrey on his mental health battles. Post continues after video...
Thinking that a change couldn't hurt, in 2009 Osher decided to adopt the name of the "coolest man" he'd ever met, whose name itself meant 'happiness'.
"He was a Calvin-Klein ad looking ex-commando cameraman I'd worked with in Israel," Osher recalled of the Osher who inspired his moniker.
He added: "From that moment on, within me - I was Osher.
"Things began changing so much - I started getting booked for gigs I'd never been booked for before, people we even treating me differently - the change was remarkable."
After changing his name to Osher Günsberg professionally, the TV and radio host said his life seemed to turn in a really positive direction – at least, it did at first.

“Call me Osher. It’s what my friends call me.”

This is the version of Osher that we know and love today! (Image: Instagram)
Initially, Osher only used his new name professionally but after three years and some incredible hardships, he decided to make the change official in his personal life too.
Following the breakdown of his first marriage to Israeli actress and producer Noa Tishby in 2011, the star did some soul searching.
It was on his 38th birthday during a ski trip that he made the choice, recalling: "I went up the mountain that day a named Andrew, and came down the mountain named Osher. That was it.
"From that moment on, I introduced myself as Osher to everyone I met. Again, the change in my life was remarkable."
Ever since, he has gone by Osher Günsberg and his new moniker has become even more of a household name than even "Andrew G".
As Osher, the 47-year-old has gone on to even more TV success, been open about battling his own mental health struggles and built a life with his wife, Audrey Griffen, their son and her daughter.
And as far as names go, he said it best when he signed off in 2013 with: "So when we meet - please call me Osher. It's what my friends call me."
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