Saxophone wizard Kadri Gopalnath dies at 69

Saxophone wizard Kadri Gopalnath. (DH photo)

Saxophonist Kadri Gopalnath passed away on October 11 following brief illness at a private hospital in Mangaluru. He was 69.

The funeral rites of Gopalnath is expected to be initiated after the eldest son Guru working in Dubai returns to Mangaluru on Friday evening. He is survived by his wife and music director son Manikanth Kadri.

Born at Mithakere in Sajipamooda village of DK district in 1950, Gopalnath’s father Taniyappa was a Nagaswara expert. He learnt playing Carnatic music through saxophone from N Gopalakrishna Iyer. 

As a child, Gopalnath once saw the saxophone being played in the Mysore Palace band set. Upon hearing the tone of the saxophone, Gopalnath decided to master it. His first concert was held at Chembai Memorial Trust. The 1980 Bombay Jazz Festival was a turning point for Gopalnath. He was an A grade artiste in Akshavani. His concerts were held in different parts of the country as well as at Jazz Festival in Prague, the Berlin Jazz Festival, the International Cervantino Festival in Mexico, the Music Hall Festival in Paris, the BBC Promenade concert in 1994 at London.

He was conferred Padma Shri award, Kendra Sangeetha Nataka Academy Award, Karnataka Kalasri award among others.

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