I was born right in the middle of the annual festival of Sree Poornathrayeesa temple, Tripunithura (once the family temple of my father’s family – the royal family of Cochin - which they later on handed over to the public) which comes during the month of ‘Vrischika’ of Malayalam calendar (Scorpio in the Zodiac). My mother, nine months pregnant, was in the temple throughout the eight days of the festival enjoying the percussion orchestra – while on the penultimate day, I popped out at dawn! So from my very first birthday I was in the midst of the Kerala drum music and its different exotic rhythms. It must be one of the many reasons why the Kerala percussion is so important to me. But it took me many years to actually learn the art form which is supposed to be a completely ‘masculine art’.