Basement Features:  7.15.02

Steel Bands Bridge Age and Gender Gap



Hear CASYM's Arddin Herbert;  Share the Experience of RUDY KING, Father of Pan in America!  The Words of NY NUTONES' Lyndon Spencer & Collins Jackman;  Words of Wisdom from ARRANGER Garvin Blake;  The Consumate Confidence of PANTONIC's Brian Joseph;  The Views of PAN REBELS' Gary Rogers & Tony Tribuce ...

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.

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Last modified: July 28, 2002