Basement Features: 7.15.02
Steel Bands Bridge Age and
By ADIKA BUTLER
Today, steel bands consist of pan
players that are both male and female, young and old. However pan veteran
Magnus Scanterbury, who is now manager of the Pan Ambassadors, remembers
when business was different.
"Initially [bands] didn't take women and children," said Scanterbury in an
exclusive telephone interview with Basement Recordings.
He explained that much like the Reggae business in it's infancy, the steel
band was a refugee for young men in trying to survive the mean city
streets. He said that back in his homeland of Trinidad during the 50's
the steel band was no place for a delicate young lady. "There were a lot
of fights so that kind of scared away the gentler sex," said Scanterbury.
He's said that he's proud to know that steel band has captured the hearts
of music listeners throughout both the Caribbean and the world at large. This, he said, has given the bands greater diversity, which
is present in his
very own band. "I have Panamanians, Jamaicans and Grenadians. It's
interesting how encompassing [the steel bands have] become now," said Scanterbury.
PAN AMBASSADORS PRACTICE SITE
256 Dorset Street between Ditmas Avenue and Coventry Road