Somnath Kakade started making tabla at the early age of 14, when he used to skip school to study at his uncle’s tabla making workshop. Recognizing his nephew’s keen interest in tabla making, his uncle, Jeevan Vasant Kakade took Somnath under his wing and encouraged him in his efforts to learn the art of tabla making. When Jeevan was unable to attend to his tabla business due to illness, he put complete responsibility for the workshop on Somnath without any reservation. He knew that this boy had a rare sense for choosing the right kind of skin for making the instrument, an acute sense of sound and a willingness to work hard.
Within a few years, Somnath started his own tabla making workshop in Pune. Talking about his early days as a tabla maker, Somnath says that he is thankful to God that he crossed paths with the great tabla Maestro Pandit Sureshji Talwalkar, who saw Somnath’s work and asked him to make custom tablas. Somnath recollects, “Pandit ji used to demand for tablas with various peculiarities and sounds and I used to make it for him. This brought out the best in me. Panditji was very happy with my work.”
Somnath has made tabla for great artists like Pandit Sureshji Talwalkar, Ustad Zakir Hussain, Pandit Anindo Chatterjee, Pandit Yogesh Samshi and received their blessings.
Says Somnath “I just want to make the best tabla for the customer. They may be a great artist or a beginner. I make tabla for everyone with equal dedication.”
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