Roscoe Heck left his life back home in Melbourne to delve into South Indian music, particularly percussion.
“I feel like I'm on a peace mission, to show Indians that there are plenty of us in Melbourne who appreciate diversity and are very interested in India's culture and its people.” Heck is here to stay “as long as it takes to become a better musician.”
“I love both classical and folk music here, especially Carnatic music,” Heck says, adding that he “ is so happy to join the community of amazing musicians here.”
Back home, Heck plays in several bands from big brass bands to supporting solo artistes. He can't believe his luck of having arrived in time for the music season. “The possibility of seeing world class music everyday makes me feel privileged to be here. I am interested in the kanjira because it's like a tambourine that looks so simple but expresses so much. I love the temple drum, the thavil too.”
There's more than just percussion that brought Heck here; he also loves spicy food. He's getting used to 'sticking his hands into the food' and working out how to get it into his mouth without losing half of it. Other first impressions include: “People seem so peaceful here; I'm totally impressed with everyone's hair - its so thick and black, and there's a lot of it; the head-shake is pretty confusing, I haven't quite worked out yet if people are saying yes, no or maybe.”