On the Couch with Lucky Oceans

Lucky Oceans photo by Laura DunjeyWho is Lucky Oceans?
The public face of the entity who was named Reuben Gosfield at his most recent birth in 1951. Musician, composer, musical director, family man, eternal child, and truth seeker.

What would you do differently from what you do now?
Stress about everything less and spread more joy. Start playing music seriously at an earlier age. Be more thoughtful about other people.

Who inspires you and why?
Martin Luther King – he never stopped believing in the good and the possibility of change and sang that feeling to one and all, so they were filled with it too.

What would you do to make a difference in the world?
Convince people that the capitalist system is a waste of time that is ruining the world and find with them another paradigm of caring for the earth and making art to celebrate our existence. Ok – that’s impossible in our time, but maybe just planting the seed of the notion that there’s an exit to the hamster wheel cage and it’s a pretty good life out there.

Favourite holiday destination and why?
Bali – spirituality, beauty, culture and open-ness.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take them to, and why?
Kings Park for the eternal beauty of the land, then the Roundhouse, Fremantle’s first prison, for man’s inhumanity to man.

What are you currently reading?
A Subversive History of Music by Ted Gioia – a long winded but fascinating tome about the surprising similarity of musical cultures around the world through time and music’s centrality to our existence.

My People’s Songs: How and Indigenous Family Survived Colonial Tasmania by Joel Stephen Birnie – A civilization prospers in harmony with the land for over 60,000 years, and we insist that they be like us instead of asking them how they do it. Not only that but, in the case of original Tasmanians, we tell them that they don’t exist anymore.

What are you currently listening to?
Songs of Freedom by the Freedom Collective, John Coltrane Was Here by Michael White, 3 O’Clock Blues by Hop Wilson and The Race is On by George Jones.

Happiness is?
Being with my family, being in nature, being in the moment in music and forgetting who I am.

What does the future hold for you?
September: The final tour dates of Songs for Freedom – Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and Roebourne, then in October the first Australian tour of Asleep at the Wheel – the band I co-founded in 1970. Then many generous musical adventures, a book, a theatre piece and lots of family time to follow before a beautiful death.

Lucky Oceans can be seen in Big hART’s Songs for Freedom – which plays Canberra (9 September), Melbourne (15 September) and Roebourne (23 September). For more information, visit: www.bighart.org for details.

Image: Lucky Oceans – photo by Laura Dunjey