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Monday, Oct 21, 2019

Delhi has always had a healthy rock ‘n’ roll culture: Luke Kenny

Actor Luke Kenny speaks about the portraying varied characters, his connect with Delhi, and more.

art-and-culture Updated: Aug 29, 2019 18:50 IST
Naina Arora
Naina Arora
Hindustan Times, Delhi
‘Delhi always had it’s share of good bands, good musicians’
‘Delhi always had it’s share of good bands, good musicians’

From the beloved keyboardist Rob Nancy of Rock On(2008), to the terrifying hitman on a web show, actor, VJ, composer Luke Kenny has had quite a journey so far. “It’s absolutely interesting..that’s what actor’s really live for, [which is] to do work which is very varied and as exciting as possible. I have been fortunate enough to have worked with people who have given me these kinds of characters to play. Some have been close to life, and some have been far away from life,” says Luke.

Moved by the skyrocketing fandom, he says it’s “exciting and amazing”.”It just goes to show how people perceive stories, characters and the context in which they are told also. It also shows the magic of technology. Had it been a theatrical film, a few lakh people would have seen it. But since it’s on a digital platform, which is accessible to everybody, millions of people watch it. Almost everybody has unequivocally appreciated the character and the performance. Some of them remember Rob from Rock On, so they put up really crazy memes as well,” he shares.

Luke, says he keeps coming back, every few weeks to the Capital City, as there’s “always something” happening in the city. His connect with Delhi dates to decades ago, when his grandfather was a Jazz musician in the city. Speaking of Delhi bands, he feels bands like the Indian Ocean, Parikrama are “still going strong”.

“There are bands who have really captured the imagination of the youth such as Local Train. Delhi has always had its share of good bands, good musicians. There has always been a healthy exchange between all the musicians across the country, regardless of the city where they are coming from,” he says.

And, what does he think of the music scene in India? “Delhi has always had a healthy Rock n Roll culture. A lot of it is a trail of what the British left behind. Jazz was a huge culture back in the ’40s and ’50s in the world. And a lot of that filtered down to India also, and hence my grandfather was here playing in a Jazz band. These things continue to exist in the ecosystem of popular music that India has always embraced. The danger is the lack of infrastructure for musicians in the country. There is a lack of performing venues, touring infrastructure, lack of investment in their music, packaging, imaging, and marketing. All of these things need to be addressed if we are to build a country as a musical country as well,” he says.

His passion for music has been long known and but his secret to success is being open to “every opportunity” that came his way, and “multi-tasking”. He says, “I cannot rely on one thing to support myself as an artist, because the infrastructure doesn’t exist. I was a bit of an early learner in a sense that I realised that ‘If I wanna just do this, I can’t’ because I can’t go beyond this. I will not make enough to survive and I cannot run my house on this.”

“I don’t think you’ll have it easy at any point regardless of the era you come from. My focus has always been to be a part of the entertainment industry at large. And to be creatively contributive in whatever opportunities present itself. And so whether those opportunities lay in DJing, producing films, working as an actor, putting forth my passion for music,” he concludes.

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First Published: Aug 29, 2019 18:49 IST

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