Play By Ear
I hail from Coorg, a hilly coffee-growing region in South India. My family took their own time with my christening, and for a long time I had no name. My grandfather thought I should be named Duke. A work colleague of my father called me Deep, an Indian word for lamp or enlightenment. My last name begins with C, and so I am DeepC. During my very early childhood, I was mostly exposed to popular Indian film music, and Western music from the 1950s and 60s. I discovered my father's collection of vinyl that he inherited from his boss at work. My early experience with musical instruments was confined to drums, bongos, and congas. While beginning my years at High School, I was chosen for the school choir. Outside the choir I sang mostly Hindi songs and played percussion for my school band. In my mid-teens, I discovered Rock bands from the 1970s, and this was a huge eye opener. This kind of music was a new experience that held me in complete awe. The melodies, sounds, passion and energy had an electrifying effect on me. My musical tastes began to shift radically, and in essence my music career began to formulate in High School where I played drums and sang cover songs. At High School, it was soon apparent I had a real talent to sing and I could effect a vast vocal range. I soon began mimicking and singing along to the music bands from the 1980s virtually approximating several well-know rock vocalists. After I joined college, I slowly began to earn a living singing covers at various venues. At the same time, I participated and won several intercollegiate music competitions as best vocalist. Soon I found myself singing to larger audiences -- the largest being 10, 000 people. I would feed off the energy, intensity, and passion of those moments. A producer introduced me to the world of jingles. Until my arrival in the United States, I earned a living with jingles. My first band in India was called The Unknowns. I was their vocalist writing several original compositions. We also played many covers from bands from the 1970s and 80's. When I arrived on American shores, I enrolled at the Berklee School of Music in Boston. I spent a year there to get exposure and experience. After leaving school, I auditioned and became the vocalist for semi-gothic style rock band Sift. During my three-year stint with Sift, we produced one EP and an album named Yellow. The experience was invaluable. We played at many clubs in the Boston and New York, such as the Middle East, Mamma Kin, The Rat, and CBGB in New York. We eventually parted company. My musical inclinations were far more eclectic with my interest in Jazz, South American, African and Classical Indian music. When I branched off as a solo artist, I became more proficient on the guitar and became even more prolific as a songwriter. My first five-song CD was called Swim. I also began playing at many Open Mikes in the Greater Boston area encountering several extremely talented musicians. Some of them appear on my latest full CD Play By Ear. I am quite proud of my efforts on this recently released album. The styles of music on the disk are remarkably varied on the rockers and ballads on the album. I continue my musical exploration with several new compositions ready for yet another album. Currently, I perform in a trio with a five string bass player, John Stump, and a drummer, Kyle Mealy. We have played at Green Street Grill, Kendall Café and Plough and Stars and other venues outside the Metro-Boston area.