Sam Gopal occupies what can safely be considered a rarefied -- if not unique -- position in the history of British rock & roll: as its premiere tabla player. Needless to say, he achieved this status in the second half of the 1960s, when the instrument, borne on a wave of interest spawned by certain records by the Beatles, the Moody Blues, et al., joined its geographical cousin the sitar in a special niche carved out of psychedelic enthusiasm. Sam Gopal was born in Malaysia, and began playing the tabla when he was seven years old. He arrived in London as a student of music in 1962, amidst a musical cauldron that was just starting to simmer with the sounds of blues and folk as well as rock & roll. He saw room for his instrument and musical sensibilities by the mid-decade, amidst the budding sounds of psychedelia and the rainbow-like mix of sounds starting to attach itself to rock & roll in London, and organized the Sam Gopal Dream with guitarist Mick Hutchinson and bassist Pete Sears, who later became a quartet with the addition of keyboardist Andy Clark. It took time for the recording world to acknowledge their worth, but in 1967 the band recorded some tracks engineered by future star producer Gus Dudgeon.