Archie Roach: Hanging out with my brothers
Rhoda Roberts interviews Archie Roach about the story behind his song 'F Troop' in this excerpt from Episode 151 of the radio show Deadly Sounds.
Deadly Sounds was a popular Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander radio program made from 1993 to 2014 and broadcast on more than 200 Australian radio stations.
The essence of Archie Roach is his storytelling, every song he's recorded tells a story, and it's always delightful to hear where his songs have come from both from a songwriting perspective but also simply because they're autobiographical. Any Australian kid who was born in the 1950s or 60s grew up with American television and will remember the TV show F Troop (1965–67) that he refers to. But it takes a special kind of person to see the musical potential of this memory from his youth. This recording captures the story's warm sentiment and good humour.
Archie was part of the Stolen Generations and was taken from his family when he was 3 years old, making the themes of family and brotherhood talked about in this clip all the more poignant. He was reunited with his siblings Laurence (the brother whose passing inspired this song), Alma, Myrtle, Johnnie and Diana as an adult. Sadly his youngest sister Gladdie died in a car accident when she was a child.
Archie talks about meeting his sister Alma in this clip from Kutcha's Carpool Koorioke (2019) and being contacted by his sister Myrtle in this emotional clip from Singing His Story: Archie Roach in Concert (2007).
The cover image is a portrait of Archie taken by Sally Tsoutas at the University of Western Sydney in December 2007.