Tag Archive | "Steelbands"

Growing with Pan


Growing with Pan

Growing with Pan

The Steel pan is a beautiful creation originated in Trinidad & Tobago in the late 19.30′s and is the only orchestral family of acoustic musical instruments to be invented in the 20th century. With instruments ranging from low bass to high sopranos, all made out of the same raw material (oil drums) makes this invention a magnificent achievement for people of Trinidad & Tobago.

Jamani Stewart was introduced to the Steel pans at a very young age, due to the fact that I,  “Jamma” played the Steel pans, and had first hand experience of the benefits of playing music from a young age, felt it essential to pass on the skills to his Children.

By time Jamani was 11 months old he was making his own beat box rhythms with his mouth, what was so amazing was the fact his rhythmic timing of his beats were so interesting, creative and steady to the beat.  All this happened before he could talk.

As time went on Jamani “the same as most babies” loved tapping beats on the tables and walls and was showing a great interest to music. His Mum and I would encourage Jamani and his sister Rochella using spoons as sticks have little jam sessions on pots and pans, basins, they loved hearing the different tones that could be produced using simple household materials as instruments.

At two years old Jamani was brought a little plastic drum set to channel his drumming skills, and save our walls, and furniture from being marked up. As he developed his skills he was encouraged to play in church. At three years old he did his first public performance at the Jamma Caribbean musical extravaganza, held at the Midlands Art Centre Cannon Hill Park Birmingham. It was amazing to see that in front of approximately two and half thousand people, he did not show a hint of nervousness.

Throughout this time Jamani was always hearing me practice and performing shows on the Steel pans. Both Jamani and Rochella were allowed to play the pans once they learned the instrument had to be played softly and gracefully.

Rochella Stewart learning how to play softly.

Rochella learns the art

Rochella learns the art

Once they had learnt how to play softly, they could do little exercises to develop pitch and melodies , as time went on we found Jamani would gravitate to the pan’s more, and started teaching himself simple melodies like, Happy birthday, when the saints, go marching in, The Pink Panther and many more tunes.

After seeing all these signs of musical ability at 6 years old I could see it was time to start developing his repertoire, starting with songs like “what a friend we have in Jesus”, and brushing up on songs like “When the saints”, as well as others, it was soon time for him to start gigging.

His Mum Angela, made him his first costume, and he was more than ready to hit the stage.

 

 

 

Young and Ready for the Stage

Young and Ready for the Stage

Jamani Young Performer.jpg

Jamani Young Performer

Jamani at 7 years old was proving to be very comfortable on stage . 

To view a live performance of 7 year old Jamani performing at the Merryhill Shopping Centre please click on link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uGscGPoK-7w

As time went on He would do regular solo performance at church and various functions, developing a widerverityof music at a young age proved to be more rewarding. He would also do regular performance with dad this help to develop things like improvising and ear training.
scan0026.jpg http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=COGkVVjPe58&feature=related
We soon found out he had the gift of perfect pitch and could mimic phrase’s instantly. To view live video of Jamani & Dad performing together please click on link above.

Hello Ladies and Gentle men.jpg

YOUNG JAMANI.jpg

Check out 9 year old Jamani playing now is the time “Jazz piece by Charlie Parker” 

to view click linkhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qwOTP7keFYk&feature=related

When I founded the Birmingham school of pan, to teach local children the art of playing the steel pans, Jamani and Rochella would love to perform along side there friends in various carnivals.Playing in the blazing sun the hours were long and tiring but the sound of the steel pan kept them going.
Jamani _ Rochella with Patrick.jpg

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Playing in the band gives members a chance to meet celebrities, pictured here is Rochella and Jamani after a performance at the Birmingham Symphony hall with TV star Rudolph Walker,
(Patrick ) from EastEnders.
Picture above was taken in Trinidad TV studios, after performance by 3 Steel pan solo artist. Jamani Stewart, “UK’S young Steel pan Soloist” with one of “Trinidad & Tobago’s top Steel pan soloist”Dane Gulston & myself Mighty Jamma, “UK’S No1 Steel pan Soloist Champion”, with Alison Hennessey Trinidad and Tobago TV presenter

Sometimes Jamani would be a bit shy to the real discipline it takes to learn a piece to performance standard so sometimes at rehearsals if I was looking the other way he would make a run for it, upstairs or out the back door, and would love when I had to chase and catch him and bring him back to the pan. But we took our time just learning a little more each day, we could defiantly see the repertoire growing to the extent were he was performing more solo gigs at schools and various functions.  He was also developing the skill of addressing his audience in a more professional way.

By time Jamani was 9 years old he had developed an extraordinary gift to play jazz music and improvise he also new exactly when the song was going to finish.

Jamani being a solo performer means you have to rely on yourself to run the show, were as in a band you have other musicians to help you out, which is all good as in developing team work skills, so getting the corrected balance between solo performances and band work, are essential skills for a young growing musician.

Jamani has performed at many venues, like the Birmingham National Exhibition Centre (NEC) Birmingham Symphony Hall, the National indoor arena, to mention a a few, he has traveled to Africa, Trinidad, Guernsey, and many more places.. Also he has done many Radio and TV performances, recorded TV Advert for the Saint Kits and Nevis Jazz festival, performed on live TV in Trinidad & Tobago the home of the Steel pans

To View 12 year old Jamani Performing On Children’s BBC click on link below

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D6fpB-SESBM&feature=autoplay&...

The Steel pan as a solo instrument is capable of playing many different forms of music The lay out of notes on the Tenor pan (Soprano) Jamani is performing on is set to a circle of 4th & 5th. the one pan carries 29 different notes and was discovered by Trinidad Genius Tony Williams. Many Steel pan soloists thrive to perform and improvise over well known jazz standards.

To view video of 14 year old Jamani improvising & rehearsing a piece called “Meditation” please click on link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vKEw3AVNl8w&feature=related

Due to the fact the steel pan is a melodic percussive instrument it is very important to understand Melodies, Chords, & Harmonies as well as different kinds of beats & rhythms .Playing drums can be very helpful to develop the rhythmic understanding. Drumming also helps develop better wrist action for control of speed,dynamics & rolling notes.

Jamani started playing drums from 3 years old, and has always kept that passion with him. the next video clip was recorded at perry beaches school concert were Jamani played drums with his friends & Asian dhol drummers

to view15 year old Jamani,s performance on drums please click on link below

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z-mO9zVxq2o

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Jamani Stewart
as a young steelpan soloist has adapted the use of the instrument to perform songs that people in his age group would recognises, creating a refreshing mix of contemporary R & B, hip-hop, dancehall and reggae, performing songs by artistes like R. Kelly, Sean Paul, Akon,T.O.K,
As well as performing traditional calypso, jazz Ballard is helping to bring the steel pan to new audiences. As a young steelpan ambassador he has found the instrument is very popular with staff and pupil at his secondary school perry beaches.

Mighty Jamma & Son Jamani News Picture.j

Jamani with Proud Dad “Mighty Jamma”

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Jamani started recording his first album at 12 years old and completed it by 13th birthday. he was quite impressed to see how his brand of steelpan music was received by people world wide, he also enjoyed TV coverage 

To View Jamani in Action on Central News please click on link below

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uF4QesMbT_4

Coming from a musical family has help contribute in many different areas,. Jamani’s two uncles as well as Dad are very involved in the music also, UncleBarry (MACKADUB) Stewart help with all the technical Recording and production side of the album, Uncle Norman ( Pan Maestro ) Stewart Tune’s the Steel pans, and his Dad Jamma Stewart is UK’S No1 Steel pan Soloist Champion, so a lot of input from different directions has contributed to the production, not forgetting his sister Rochella Stewart who also plays the pans, and did all the art work for the CD. & Mom who makes his costumes for public performances. 

 

Team work is always a good thing, when Jamani performs with his dad he gets a chance to explore new musical ideas with improvisation and melodies and understanding the language of music in deeper depths.Check out this on rehearsed performance of improvisation on the stop with Jamani & his Dad.

To view video click on link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wPb7Dpi8X4c

Jamani also loves rapping and is a well known in artist in grime and goes under the name of J Marnz and is a group called Tinyan.Check out J marnz in 5 star media video shoot . click link below to view

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dKs9SPVDhPU&feature=related

Jamani has actively been a pioneer for the new electronic steelpan midi controllers, these instruments have notes laid out the same as an original steelpan but can be hooked up to a computer and used to play different sounds, like piano, trumpets, drums, etc.

At 12 Years old Jamani was commissioned by Alternate mode the makers of the PANKAT to do a video.

To View Jamani on PANKAT click on Link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N1r_MGuUjq8

Recently Jamani had the pleasure of meeting the inventor of the newepan (electronicpan )Salmon Cupid, who also asked Jamani to make a video demonstration of the epan. These instruments are not replacements for the traditional Steelpans, but can be very useful for studio work when building tracks.

To View Jamani Demonstrate the epan click on links below

Demo1 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3OSOrymuA6A&feature=related

Demo 2 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vywryggbdec&feature=related

It was a pleasure to see Jamani getting awarded at school for outstanding musical achievements

To hear sample’s of Jamani please visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OU2MCElFXrU

For information general inquires, on workshops/ performances please http://www.jammasteelpan.net/

   

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The Steelpan


Trinidad 2009216.JPG

TheSteel pan is a beautiful creation originated in Trinidad & Tobago in the late 19.30′s and is the only orchestral family of acoustic musical instruments to be invented in the 20th century. With instruments ranging from low bass to high sopranos, all made out of the same raw material (oil drums) makes this invention a magnificent achievement for people of Trinidad & Tobago,

The People Of Trinidad and Tobago went through the struggles of being beaten up and locked up by the police

for their love to develop this new musical sound.

Trinidad 2009303.JPG

The colonial rulers were against the beating of drums, singing and dancing, so they successfully brain washed many of the upper-class people of society to look down on these special artistic talents the African descendents carried. Strangely enough many of the people of the Caribbean and British born west Indians, Afro Americans still have strong elements of this kind of colonial thinking still imbedded in there actions. Many times you have to explain to people that the Steel pan is a musical instrument that can be adapted to play any form ofmusic.like Jazz, Classical, Reggae, and of course lots more. So themisconception that the steelpan is a form of music isfinally broken and the awareness of the steelpan as a musical instrument is nowadays embraced all over the world with the instrument being taught in many schools &colleges, and being used in allgenres of Music.

Jamani Stewart steelpan soloist from the UK aged 13 has recently recorded his first album ” Party with Jamani” a fusion of Steelpans playing over R & B backing tracks.This albumdefiantlyshows a newgenerationof pan artist. for moreinformation & hear samples of Jamani’s musicplease visit

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OU2MCElFXrU

Jamani young steelpan soloist from UK

For more information on Steelpan Workshops & Performance’s please visit http://www.jammasteelpan.net/

   

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The Journey of A Pan Man


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The first time I saw Despers, I was with my brother Norman in 1981. They were performing at the Birmingham Odeon, (as part of their UK tour). The whole audience was transfixed, we were amazed with the standard and sound of the music. Robert Greenidge gave a great performance withTaj Mahal. This was the first time I had seen a steelpan soloist in action. This performance changed my life. I knew there and then that I would become a professional steelpan solo performer.

Robert Greenidge Pan Solo to view click link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5EcuGvLn7zs&feature=related

My brother and I bought the two albums by Desperadoes and Taj Mahal at the end of the show. Once home we began to learn the full musical arrangements including the solos. I recall spending hours upon hours at my parents’ house playing these records over and over trying to work out Robert Greenidge’s pan solos. We also adapted some of the Clive Bradley arrangements for our own Birmingham based Maestro Steel band led by my brother Norman Stewart.

Maestro Steel Orchestra Pan Here to Stay arranged by Norman Pan Maestro & Mighty Jamma

To view link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YmKYbM1Yt3s&feature=related

Our passion for the steel pan continued to grow and we started following the Trinidad Steel bands very closely. Even though it was difficult to get audio recordings of the bands we managed to get a few. One of the albums that is still very memorable for me is the great classic “Pan In Honey”. The famous tracks many people remember from this album “Pan In Harmony” by Clive Bradley; Despers panorama piece’s like “Ah Going and Party Tonight” arranged by the late Master Arranger Clive Bradley 1982 ( sang by Calypsonion Lord Nelson ) and; the monster winning arrangement of Clive Bradley’s “Rebecca” (Sang by Calypsonion “Super Blue” ) that gained Despers another Panorama victory in 1983, most defiantly a true master piece.

1986 was the first year that Norman and I visited Trinidad & Tobago – the land of Pan. This was a great year with the hit song by David Rudder “The Hammer ” (this song was dedicated to the late great Rudolph Charles, The General of Desperadoes, who sadly had passed away 1985). Both Desperadoes and Trinidad All Stars played the Hammer that year, butLeon Smooth’s Edward’s arrangement of The Hammer for Neal and Massy Trinidad All Stars swept the whole Savanna and the judges off their feet- gaining another Panorama Victory for Trinidad All Stars.

Arranger Leon Smooth Edwards and myself in Trinidad All Stars Pan Yard

In 1986 Trinidad All Stars visited England as part of the Caribbean Focus Tour. For their Birmingham show, Maestros Steel band was privileged to be the guest band at the show. That was how I made contact with World Renowned Soloist & Arranger Yohan Popwel.

On my return visits to Trinidad I would stay with Yohan; this was like paradise for me because Yohan’s house was central to both bands,All Stars and Despers. I also got back in touch with good friend Dane Gouston who also had visited England with All Stars..

Leon Smooth Edwards arrangment of Woman on the Bass by Trinidad All Stars Panorama 1980

To View link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djbrpaikBqM&feature=related

Good Friend Excellent entertainer panist Dane Gulston & myself @ Trinidad All Stars Panyard

Dane is so full of Charismaand showmanship a true inspiration to any Pan player.

Dane Gulston Solo Brooklyn NYLive http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tSJ7znmQxAw&feature=related

We recall late one night when Norman, Yohan and I were sitting outside talking and could hear three of the top bands in the world Desperadoes, Trinidad All Stars, and Renegades practicing – depending on which way the wind was blowing. This was really amazing: to hear the sound of live pan being blown by the wind. That’s why Trinidad is defiantly the home of the Steelband, cause to have three great bands with over 120 members per band rehearsing in the open so close to each other and; no complaints from any of the residents – this really is amazing. The great thing is that Steelband accommodates all the generations of the community; from great grandparents to grandchildren. How many opportunities are there in life for intergenerational activities? Where else can young and old can learn, create and enjoy the same activity and have mutual enjoyment? This provides a positive environment for youngsters and, at the same time, gives a common goal to work towards.

Almost 20 years later,2009 I am in Trinidad again, travelling with my brother Norman and friends from the UK. Norman played, Double Seconds with the Desperadoes Steel Orchestra – a long awaited dream come true. Most of my time, I spent with Desperadoes. It seemed that anywhere I went I ended back with Desperadoes. Robert Greenidge’s arrangement of ‘Pan Redemption’ was great, and the band was welcoming and full of love. It was a real pleasure to be with the band for the whole season. The amount of dedication that is put into perfecting the music can only be described as pure love and commitment . The rehearsal started at around 7pm and finished round about 3am the following morning. This was the regime every night for the two weeks we were there. What is even more amazing is that the players are so accustomed to the Carnival practice routine they still got up to go to work and school and made it in on time!

Trinidad 2009032.JPG

The Pan Yard vibes was great with food and drinks served all night, with of course sweet, sweet pan music. Every player and section of the band was tested on how well they knew the music and only the best were chosen for the final night’s performance. This was quite a hard job for the management and section leaders. In total there was about 180 members all working hard to make the final performance, but the band could only have a maximum of 100 players on final night.

Robert Greenidge Arrangement of Musical Magnum by Desperadoes Steel Orchestra Panorama 2010

To View Link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EKFED7iQUfs&feature=related

Trinidad 2009005.JPG

The winning band “Silver Stars” is one of the oldest bands in Trinidad, and gladly claimed their first Panorama Victory 2009 performing “First in Line “. Len Boogies Sharp’s Band “Phase II Pan Grove” placed 2nd with Magic Drum, and Neal and Massy Trinidad All Stars, placed 3rd, with Leon Smooth’s arrangement of “Pan Rivalry” Robert Greenidge’s arrangement of Pan Redemption place Desperadoes 4th . This was the top four Big Bands

Len Boogsie Sharp Arrangment & Composition Pan Army by Phase II Pan Grove Panorama 2010

To View link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E4XJXNjIYNs&feature=related

Master Arranger Composer Len Boogsie Sharp & Myself waiting

Len Boogsie Sharp Pan �Solo My Way To View click link below

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lal2l19GDUc&feature=related

2009 was also a great pleasure to witness Yohan Popwell gain another Panorama victory in the Medium category with his band Clico Sforzata

Yohan Popwell Arrangement of Smooths Sailing Solo HarmonitePanorama 2010

To View click link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v7xnubzyhME&feature=related

Ace Arranger Yohan Popwell & myself

Jamma & Norman  would like to thank the Management team  and entire family of Desperadoes for making Carnival 2009 such a great experiences and of course not forgetting our wonderful  host Yohan Popwell  and Family.

Desperadoes Manger Finbar & Myself Panorama 2009

The Arrival of Electronic Steelpan Midi Controllers

Now we see new projects on the horizon like the electric midi controllers made in the pattern of Steelpans. This is a great breakthrough for Panist because it allows us the freedom of using their skills with modern day technology. The beauty with these instruments is that you can hook them up to a computer and use them with music programs which opens a wind range of sounds and instruments, hence the panist  does not have to learn to play keyboards to get access to the thousands of sound modules that is out there.

What makes these instruments suitable for Pan players is the fact the notes are laid out in the circle of 4th & 5th the great discovery of the Trinidad genius Tony Williams. My first in counter with one of these sound modules was the PANKAT with notes hexagon shaped  it seams very similar to the original Spider web pan. This demonstration of the PANKAT I have used a sound other than the steelpan, but obviously the technique of a panist.

Mighty Jamma demonstrates the PANKAT http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MYearIXk2gQ&feature=related

Jamma Salmon & Jamani

Recently I had the great pleasure of meeting another magnificent genius “from the Land of Pan Trinidad & Tobago ” Salmon Cupid the inventor of the Electronic Pan ( Epan ) from the moment I saw the pan come out of the case, I knew I wanted one. I had been following cupid on the net, but meeting him in person and seeing and playing the epan  as a panist I just knew that this is an  invention that is bringing pan forward in an unimaginable way. Just  the size of how neatly it fits in your home, and you can practice with head phones, it is like magic, I would defiantly recommend the epan for any serious panist to have as well as an the original pan.

Mighty Jamma demonstration on the e.pan http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_HdLChwzxE0

The epan has all the modern functions to hook up with your pc, but  the lay out and shapes of the notes are  closer to an original pan, and it has excellent casing for transportation.

Sometimes I feel some panist don’t understand the fact that these new creations are not here to replace the original steelpan but to bridge the gap with authentic  & modern  day technology .

I feel we  have to be thankful as panist  that we have lived to see this  kind of technology developed in our life time.

Mighty Jamma Demonstation  epan Show time Panorama 2011 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=glgq9GgCt_g

Jamani Stewart Young Steelpan ambassador

The journey of the Pan Man continues with father & son using traditional and electronic steelpan midi controllers

15 yr Jamani Stewart 1st demonstration on epan http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3OSOrymuA6A&feature=related

15yr Jamani 2nd Demonstration on epan http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vywryggbdec&feature=related

It must remembered that the electronic midi controllers are not here to take away from the amazing beauty and craftsmanship of the pan maker , but it is an extra tool for panist to use along side there PC & music programs.,

I would like to finish off with thanking the lord Jesus Christ for the wonderful gift of Steelpan, life, knowledge & Understanding.

I hope you enjoyed sharing this: The Journey of A Pan Man, as much as I am enjoying  living the wonderful experiences in the journey and putting this together to share with you.

Please feel free to share this with your friends & Family.

God Bless

Mighty Jamma Pan Solo Amazing Grace To view click link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dEe_bXs9g3g

To see more pictures and hear live audio samples please visit

http://www.jammasteelpan.net/trinidad09.htm

   

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Mighty Jamma UK’S NO1 Recording Steelpan Artist


The mighty Jamma

The mighty Jamma

Jamma

Mighty Jamma UK’S NO1 Recording Steelpan Artist

Jamma started playing music at a very early age, jamming on pots and pans etc. When I was 9 years oldI moved on to playing the bass guitar and at the age of 11I moved on to playing the steelpan and since thenI have never looked back.The pan is such a wonderful sounding instrument, which gave me a burning desire to play it to levels of excellence.

This certainly payed off with the winnings of three (1987 1998, 1999)National Steel Band Soloist

Championship of Great Britain.

After this I took up more of a commercial look at the music.I was producing and performing at many corporate events such as weddings, parties, oncruise ships etc, but stilllooking for a bigger musical outlet for my talents.

The 1990′s saw the birth of theJamma Caribbean Jazz Band. Using the steelpan as a lead instrument, mixed with the sounds of double bass, piano and saxaphones giving a new flavour to UK’s Jazz festivals.I would regularly perform at clubs like Ronnie Scotts, The Jazz Cafe, The Cork jazz festival, performing with some of the greats such asCourtney Pine, Richard Bailey, Wayne Batchelor,to name a few, that brought my performances to another level.

Jamma

Jamma

To View Jamma Caribbean jazz bandin Concert click on link below

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zg056gHc_xk&feature=&p=49FD60AE119610CD&index=0&playnext=1

Pan In Flight, Jamma and Friends Albums are great demonstrations of some of my compositions played by great international musicians. Performing in many different countries like Trinidad,Japan, many places in Europe and the UK really helped to bring the great wonderful sounds of the pan to a wider audience.

Mighty Jamma in Japan Video to view click link below

http://www.youtube.com/watchv=QIt0FeexMNE&playnext=1&list=PLBEC6A201CC48F729&index=6

Bumcy Party Carnival Action DVD

Bumcy Party

Bumcy Party

Other songs like Bumcy Party, Dancing, have proved to be real party hits. Bumcy party DVD is currently shown on Sky TV, Actv channel.

Mighty Jamma Bumcy Party Music Video to view click on linkhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VcIqjpdVAQ0

Other albums like Cool Evenings part 1 & 2, Relaxing Nights 1 & 2 also Have proved to be very calm and relaxing. These albums have defiantly proved to be very popular in promoting the Steelpans out of the Carnival arena

To hear a few samples of some of Mighty Jamma’s Recordings click on links below

Romantic Steelpan Music Cool Evenings II http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r6R5LwSr51E

Mighty JammaTraditional mellow Caribbean CD’S http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OMxZry26r3c

Mighty Jamma Relaxing Steelpan Music CD’S http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23EIVZy4GEo

The Birmingham School of pan (BSP) came about due to the demand by youngsters inthe community wanting to play the instrument. Jamani, my son, who was 7 at the time, had been learning to play and has been performing on the pan for some time. Jamani is an excellent player, he is loved by everyone who sees him perform, watch this space for more on Jamani the young Pan wizard.When he would be out playing or practicing in the garden at home all his friends would come round and want to play.

Birmingham School of Pan Live link

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M8iB6D7lQ38&feature=related

Steel band

Steel band

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JmsnsGXoxXo&feature=related
Next step was to hire a studio, get instruments and start teaching. This proved to be very successful with the youngsters performing on TV, Radio Stations including the BBC Web site, News papers, theBSP has also performed for Sir Viv Richards,Brian Lara, performed at the Notting Hill Carnival,The Birmingham Carnival, The NEC, Symphony Hall and many more venues.

I am at the moment working on some great new albums. BSP are actively performing and taking on new members turning them in to performers.

Good news on just completing my latest Album Reggae pan Classics II this album is very up beat, and marries the culturesof Trinidad and Jamaica to produce a real fresh summer sound. for more info please visit

Reggae Pan Classic Volume II for sample click on linkhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CsFH8FtVBPg

If you like any of the music you have heard on this site and would like to place an order please click on the following link http://www.jammasteelpan.net/products.htm

image

Mighty Jamma Carnival Interview to view click link Below

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JmsnsGXoxXo&feature=related

For all other general inquires, bookings/workshops please visit http://www.jammasteelpan.net/index.htm

Or you may wish to call Jamma on+ 44 (0) 077 9944 2277 or +44 (0)121 358 4525

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Exodus Steel Orchestra


Exodus is one of the few bands who do not use a canopy in Panorama, the Canopy was invented by Berti Marshall to protect the pans from the Sun and Rain, it also creates a sound channel, in recent years bands have experimented with and with out the use of the canopy to see whatdifferenceit makes to the projection of the sound.

It should also be noted that the Exodus sets out there pans on stages of different heights,with wheels, they are the only band that has there pans arranged so you can see all 120 performers from any one pointin frontof the band.

Pat Bishop top Musicologist in Trinidad drills Exodus Steel Orchestra Panorama Night

Trinidad 2009451.JPG

The Steel pan is a beautiful creation originated in Trinidad & Tobago in the late 19.30′s and is the only orchestral family of acoustic musical instruments to be invented in the 20th century. With instruments ranging from low bass to high sopranos, all made out of the same raw material (oil drums) makes this invention a magnificent achievement for people of Trinidad & Tobago,

The People Of Trinidad and Tobago went through the struggles of being beaten up and locked up by the police for their love to develop this new musical sound.

The colonial rulers were against the beating of drums, singing and dancing, so they successfully brain washed many of the upper-class people of society to look down on these special artistic talents the African descendents carried. Strangely enough many of the people of the Caribbean and British born west Indians, Afro Americans still have strong elements of this kind of colonial thinking still embedded in there actions. Many times you have to explain to people that the Steel pan is a musical instrument that can be adapted to play any form of music.

View Exodus Panorama 2009 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gEvud_SU8zA

Trinidad 2009461.JPG

Description: Many woman take up the art of playing pan very serious

To View more of these great pictures visithttp://www.jammasteelpan.net/trinidad09.htm

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Roots of the Steelband Rhythm Section


The Steelband was developed from the Tamboo Bamboo bands of Trinidad, players would hollow out Bamboo sticks and cut them to variouslengths to create a variety of different pitches, and these were beaten on the ground to pulsating percussive rhythms.

Rhythm section of Tamboo bamboo band

Many of the bands would parade the streets at Carnival time. These bands had names like dead end kids who eventually changed to Gay Desperadoes steelband, Red Army -became Renigades, Hell Yard band became Trinidad all Stars, to mention few,

.Veteran Doulble second player from Trinidad All Stars displays Hell Yard T Shirt

The bands would also use garbage cans,biscuit drums, car break hubs, and various metal objects to produce sounds, hence the birth of the Steelpan as we know it today. Steelbands still take a lot of pride in insuring they have a good Rhythm section made up of seasoned players

part of Witco Despradoes Rhythm secction

Therhythmsection or ( engine room ) of the band is made up of various instruments that all work together to keep the pulse and timingof the band.

Iron Man

The Drummer certainly has a tremendous Job keeping the timing for the band filling in with drum roles to embellish melodies and arrangements.

Ace performace Little Bit Despradoes Drummer

A cowbell is normally played like a metronome to help enforce the consistence of the beat. Other instruments like Conga’s and Tambourine Scratchers are also used. Each player puts there full heart and soul to playing there instrument, Every instrument is considered as essential to making a band sound good.

Sctratcher man plays from the soul

The Steel bands & percussion bands play a leading musical outlet for people within the community. Men Woman and Children all take part within the bands.

Desperadoes Shack Shack player

Listen to Desperadoes Rhythm section Rehearsal 2009 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vAPG39SPLLs

Many Rhythm bands still do regular performance at Carnival. To hear these bands live you can’t help but dancing to the pulsating beats, the bands are very large and powerful.

Chatham Rhythm section band

The early Steelbands carried the pans on straps around thier necks.With a great lot of attention focused on the rhythmic arrangements of the pans combined with catchy melodies creates auniquesound to the single pan bands. Up to date competitions are still held at Carnival time for the single pan bands

Traditional Pan round neck band

For more information on theSteelbands, performance & educational workshops please visit

http://www.jammasteelpan.net/trinidad09.htm

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Trinidad Carnival 2009 Feat: Desperadoes Steelband


Trinidad Carnival 2009 Featuring Desperadoes the Finest steel Orchestra in the World
Review by Mighty Jamma

The first time I saw Despers, I was with my brother Norman in 1981. They were performing at the Birmingham Odeon, (as part of their UK tour). The whole audience was transfixed, we were amazed with the standard and sound of the music. Robert Greenidge gave a great performance with Taj Mahal. This was the first time I had seen a steelpan soloist in action. This performance changed my life. I knew there and then that I would become a professional steelpan solo performer.
My brother and I bought the two albums by Desperadoes and Taj Mahal at the end of the show. Once home we began to learn the full musical arrangements including the solos. I recall spending hours upon hours at my parents’ house playing these records over and over trying to work out Robert Greenidge’s pan solos. We also adapted some of the Clive Bradley arrangements for our own Birmingham based Maestro Steel band led by my brother Norman Stewart.
Our passion for the steel pan continued to grow and we started following the Trinidad Steel bands very closely. Even though it was difficult to get audio recordings of the bands we managed to get a few. One of the albums that is still very memorable for me is the great classic “Pan In Honey”. The famous tracks many people remember from this album “Pan In Harmony” by Clive Bradley; Despers panorama piece’s like “Ah Going and Party Tonight” arranged by the late Master Arranger Clive Bradley 1982 ( sang by Calypsonion Lord Nelson ) and; the monster winning arrangement of Clive Bradley’s “Rebecca” (Sang by Calypsonion “Super Blue” ) that gained Despers another Panorama victory in 1983, most defiantly a true master piece.
1986 was the first year that Norman and I visited Trinidad & Tobago – the land of Pan. This was a great year with the hit song by David Rudder “The Hammer “ (this song was dedicated to the late great Rudolph Charles, The General of Desperadoes, who sadly had passed away 1985). Both Desperadoes and Trinidad All Stars played the Hammer that year, but Leon Smooth’s Edward’s arrangement of The Hammer for Neal and Massy Trinidad All Stars swept the whole Savanna and the judges off their feet- gaining another Panorama Victory for Trinidad All Stars.
In 1986 Trinidad All Stars visited England as part of the Caribbean Focus Tour. For their Birmingham show, Maestros Steel band was privileged to be the guest band at the show. That was how I made contact with World Renowned Soloist & Arranger Yohan Popwel. On my return visits to Trinidad I would stay with Yohan; this was like paradise for me because Yohan’s house was central to both bands, All Stars and Despers. We recall late one night when Norman, Yohan and I were sitting outside talking and could hear three of the top bands in the world Desperadoes, Trinidad All Stars, and Renegades practicing – depending on which way the wind was blowing. This was really amazing: to hear the sound of live pan being blown by the wind. That’s why Trinidad is defiantly the home of the Steelband, cause to have three great bands with over 120 members per band rehearsing in the open so close to each other and; no complaints from any of the residents – this really is amazing. The great thing is that Steelband accommodates all the generations of the community; from great grandparents to grandchildren. How many opportunities are there in life for intergenerational activities? Where else can young and old can learn, create and enjoy the same activity and have mutual enjoyment? This provides a positive environment for youngsters and, at the same time, gives a common goal to work towards.
Almost 20 years later, 2009 I am in Trinidad again, travelling with my brother Norman and friends from the UK. Norman played, Double Seconds with the Desperadoes Steel Orchestra – a long awaited dream come true. Most of my time, I spent with Desperadoes. It seemed that anywhere I went I ended back with Desperadoes. Robert Greenidge’s arrangement of ‘Pan Redemption’ was great, and the band was welcoming and full of love. It was a real pleasure to be with the band for the whole season. The amount of dedication that is put into perfecting the music can only be described as pure love and commitment . The rehearsal started at around 7pm and finished round about 3am the following morning. This was the regime every night for the two weeks we were there. What is even more amazing is that the players are so accustomed to the Carnival practice routine they still got up to go to work and school and made it in on time!
The Pan Yard vibes was great with food and drinks served all night, with of course sweet, sweet pan music. Every player and section of the band was tested on how well they knew the music and only the best were chosen for the final night’s performance. This was quite a hard job for the management and section leaders. In total there was about 180 members all working hard to make the final performance, but the band could only have a maximum of 100 players on final night.
The winning band “Silver Stars” is one of the oldest bands in Trinidad, and gladly claimed their first Panorama Victory 2009 performing “First in Line “. Len Boogies Sharp’s Band “Phase II Pan Grove” placed 2nd with Magic Drum, and Neal and Massy Trinidad All Stars, placed 3rd, with Leon Smooth’s arrangement of “Pan Rivalry” Robert Greenidge’s arrangement of Pan Redemption place Desperadoes 4th . This was the top four Big Bands
2009 was also a great pleasure to witness Yohan Popwell gain another Panorama victory in the Medium category with his band Clico Sforzata FF
Jamma & Norman would like to thank the Management team and entire family of Desperadoes for making Carnival 2009 such a great experiences And of course not forgetting our wonderful host Yohan Popwell and Family.

To see more pictures and hear live audio samples please visit
http://www.jammasteelpan.net/trinidad09.htm

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