The mesmerising sound of the Indian tabla drew me in to the realm of Indian Classical Music at the end of the nineties and I have been studying the instrument ever since. The tabla drums are the popular iconic instrument of North Indian Classical music and engage the use of their own spoken language to create rhythmic syllables and phrases. As with much Indian culture, this heritage is rich and well preserved with its roots tracing back through many centuries.
Learning the tabla is hugely rewarding in many ways. Aside from the benefits to be found in learning any musical instrument (i.e. therapeutic, expressive, educational reasons for instance) the tabla can develop some deeper understanding of useful concepts in the realms of time and its subdivision and can also really enhance motor coordination skills too. These benefits are of great use to any musician of any discipline. Master tabla players represent a highly evolved art form which makes the subject too daunting for many, but if you can see beyond this, it is with only a small amount of training that these skills can be quickly developed and put into practice.
I have studied tabla in India and the UK with several masters including Shri Kailash Nishad and Shri Shiv Shankar Ray. I taught in South Goa for two years between 2005 and 2007 and now I teach in Brighton within various capacities. I have developed an interactive application which provides beginners with assisting material and demonstrations. This is available for Mac and PC.
Under the name of TablaLab I created two apps for iPad which are available on the App Store. You can read all about them at tablalab.com
Having been a bass player for many years and a music producer for a few of those I also found an interest in the fusion of styles and enjoy working with other artists. My familiarity with music technology led to the creation of the workshop project ‘TablaTech’ (with Steve Morley) which incorporates traditional approaches with modern techniques. These techniques mean that participants can make an idea into an interactive experience quickly and easily and then hear the results.
This project can include recording or sequencing with audio or video and has many exciting possibilites.