WST Newsfeed

Breaking Global Steelpan News


Web Posted - Monday November 30, 2020
When Steel Talks

Len “Boogsie” Sharpe of Trinidad and Tobago will receive an honorary degree for steelpan arrangement, composition, and performance – Doctor of Letters (DLitt)

Len “Boogsie” Sharpe

Trinidad & Tobago, W.I. - Len “Boogsie” Sharpe of Trinidad and Tobago will receive an honorary degree for steelpan arrangement, composition, and performance – Doctor of Letters (DLitt)

The 2020 virtual and blended UWI graduation ceremonies to be held in January 2021, will be broadcast live via UWItv on www.uwitv.org, www.facebook.com/UWITV and Cable TV channels on the FLOW EVO network. The dates across the five campuses are as follows:

  • Five Islands Campus (Antigua & Barbuda) – Sunday, January 10, 2021
  • St. Augustine Campus (Trinidad & Tobago) – Monday, January 11 and Tuesday, January 12, 2021
  • Open Campus – Wednesday, January 13, 2021
  • Mona Campus (Jamaica) – Thursday, January 14 and Friday, January 15, 2021
  • Cave Hill Campus (Barbados) – Saturday, January 16, 2021  

Web Posted - Monday November 30, 2020
When Steel Talks

Frankie McIntosh named 2020 UWI Honorary Graduate – Doctor of Letters (DLitt)

Frankie McIntosh

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, W.I. - Franklyn “Frankie” McIntosh of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines - for his work as a Musical Director/Composer - is one of fourteen to receive honorary doctorates (Doctor of Letters (DLitt), at The UWI’s 2020 Graduation ceremonies.  The graduands are being recognized for their outstanding contributions to regional & international development by The UWI.

....Serving as musical director and technical producer, McIntosh arranged for dozens of Straker’s calypsonians including Chalkdust (Dr. Hollis Liverpool), Shadow, Calypso Rose, Winston Soso, Poser, Scorcher, Singing Francine, Duke, King Wellington, young Machel Montano, Lord Shorty and others. His classic arrangements won the Trinidad and Tobago Calypso Monarch for Chalkdust in 1981 ‘Things that Worry Me’ and 1989 ‘Chauffer Wanted’. His work also won the Road March for Sparrow in 1984 ‘Doh Back Back’ and Duke in 1987 ‘Thunder’.


Web Posted - Sunday November 29, 2020
When Steel Talks

Clive Bradley - Just Remember the Music

by Angela Howard

Angela Howard
Angela Howard

Global - "In Julius Caesar, Shakespeare wrote of the Roman warrior “The evil that men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones.” So let it not be with Clive Bradley. I implore us all to remember the music that Bradley provided for us, the lion’s share of which was played on the pan.”  -- Angela Howard


Web Posted - Sunday November 29, 2020
When Steel Talks

Renowned musician Frankie McIntosh speaks on Clive Bradley

Frankie McIntosh

Global - "My first meeting with Clive Bradley was at Platinum Factory recording studio (Fulton Street, Brooklyn, NY) in the early 1980s. He was working there as arranger on a Lord Nelson project for producer Rawlston Charles. As Clive reviewed the arrangements at the piano, it didn't take a sleuth to detect that the man had 'chops'.*”.  -- Frankie McIntosh


Web Posted - Saturday November 28, 2020
When Steel Talks

No Moods of Pan in Antigua for 2020

Antigua & Barbuda, W.I. - The Covid-19 pandemic has forced the cancellation of the West Indies Oil Company (WIOC) Gemonites Moods of Pan steelband festival – a staple event which has been staged uninterrupted or 21 years.

The event would have had its 22nd hosting this November and would have likely featured regional and local acts, if not for the coronavirus. 

‘It was a hard decision to make,” captain Joseph Henry told Observer, as he explained the reason for the group’s decision.

“When the COVID situation happened at first, it was in March, so we didn’t really believe that it would go right down until November.

....Henry said they chose not to hold a virtual event because it would take away from the heart of the show.
read more


Web Posted - Tuesday November 24, 2020
When Steel Talks Reboot - Feel the Music - Live the Experience

Desperadoes Steel Orchestra - “Whap Cocoyea” | Clive Bradley - Arranger | (‘Tempo’ version - Video)

Laventille, Port of Spain, Trinidad - The Hill is filled with anticipation as Desperadoes fans turn out in droves to their panyard before Panorama 2004 to listen to Clive Bradley's arrangement of “Whap Cocoyea.”


Web Posted - Monday November 23, 2020
When Steel Talks

Remembering the legendary Clive Bradley

Clive Bradley
Clive Bradley

Global - Clive Bradley is one of the greatest musicians of his day. His music defines an era and a people. Moreover his genius continues to inspire, enchant and educate future musicians to achieve uncommon excellence.


Web Posted - Sunday November 22, 2020
When Steel Talks

WATCH -- NIU Steelband Fall 2020 Concert

DeKalb, Illinois, USA - This Sunday, November 22, NIU (Northern Illinois University) School of Music Steelpan Ensembles perform live online for their 2020 Fall concert.




Web Posted - Saturday November 21, 2020
When Steel Talks

ANDY NARELL remembers the late great Clive Bradley

Global - “I’ve always felt uncomfortable with the word ‘arranger’ as it applied to guys like Bradley. A guy who can take a verse and chorus and spin out a 10--minute piece of theme and variation that hangs together and tells a story is more a composer than arranger. And Bradley epitomized that. His music was informed by a knowledge of melody, harmony, counterpoint, rhythm, and structure which were all there but never for their own sake.” - Andy Narell - composer, performing and recording artist


Web Posted - Friday November 20, 2020
When Steel Talks

DAVID “PECK” EDWARDS remembers the late great Clive Bradley

Global - “It's a tremendous loss to the whole steelband movement throughout the entire world. Clive Bradley has touched the lives of all of us as young arrangers in so many prolific ways - listening to his music and listening to him speak. It is a tragic loss. And while we mourn his passing, I in particular, and the steelband movement am real happy that we were able to enjoy... his concepts and ideas in music and harmonization and so on - he inspired us to work for higher heights.” –– David “Peck” Edwards - champion arranger - Grenada


Web Posted - Thursday November 19, 2020
When Steel Talks

Labor Day minus Labor Day

An Opinion - by Garvin Blake

Brooklyn, New York, USA - For most New Yorkers Labor Day signals the passing of Summer: back-to-school, early sunsets, dropping temperatures. However, for West Indians, the heat is on.

Frustrated masqueraders impatiently waiting to collect costumes. Steelbands scrambling to learn endings. Out-of-towners arriving in droves. Soca, kompa and reggae pumping everywhere. It’s fete after fete. The Brooklyn Museum grounds are transformed into an open-air theatre. Eastern Parkway becomes the scene of the largest street party in North America.
read more


Web Posted - Thursday November 19, 2020
When Steel Talks

Clive Bradley: The man who helped shape the musical direction of Panorama

by Knolly Moses

Global - “His preferred drink is rum and coke, though he sips a beer in the pan tent this particular night. Standing a slight five feet three inches in sandals, he peers through round, brown glasses. Cigarette smoke punctuates every word of his flat, nearly monotone voice. And while he engages in lively repartee with band members, he does not tolerate skylarking. "You are losing concentration," he warns an embarrassed double second pan player.

At various times, Bradley has been a shoemaker helper, a projects worker (before it found the fashionable DEWD acronym), an accounting clerk, an advertising copywriter and a radio show host. Teaching however, is what he did longest and the job that shaped his personality most. "My grandmother always believed teaching was the most respectable profession," he says.” –– Knolly Moses - Panist, journalist and administrator


Web Posted - Wednesday November 18, 2020
When Steel Talks

Robert Greenidge remembers the late great Clive Bradley

Global - “Clive was - as we say - one of the greatest arrangers in pan. He was a mathematician - he was able to subtract and divide and add to the music, and do with the music whatever he think needed to be done; and he knew sometimes that silence was golden. We need to continue, and do the best we can to make him smile. We need to continue to create - and the bands, Desperadoes, then Pantonic, D’Radoes and Metro in New York - and all the other bands he arranged for. We must continue to celebrate his life and be joyful, and not be sad, because he would not have wanted us to do that...” - Robert Greenidge


Web Posted - Monday November 16, 2020
When Steel Talks - 2020 Reboot

Meet Yasmin Brito - Ontario, Canada

Yasmin Brito
 
WST Upclose logo

Ontario, Canada - “Time waits on no one. If you enjoy the musical instrument, find a band and become a member. Don’t keep saying “I always wanted to... Just Do It! .....” –– Yasmin Brito

At 12 years old she was playing pan in a steelband. And while the neighbors had less than kind things to say about this - she had fun. Much fun - made history by becoming one of the first of the firsts in the annals of pan - an unwitting trailblazer with memories and experiences that have lasted a lifetime. In an exclusive interview with When Steel Talks - panist, mom and former corporate Yasmin Brito shares her joys of her remarkable life long story with Pan, and the steelpan art form.
see interview


Web Posted - Monday November 16, 2020
When Steel Talks

Dr. Robert Stephens remembers the late great Clive Bradley


Dr. Robert Stephens

Global - “He was the consummate musician, not only in his sense of craftsmanship - his ability to put sounds together in interesting ways.. - but conceptually in terms of what he thought about what he was doing - and how he intended to match it to the people that he was working with. Truly, truly, an extraordinary man in that regard. For me, I saw this as just an extraordinary opportunity to try to connect with someone who clearly is a giant at what he does... We use this word ‘genius’ all too frequently, and often it is mis-applied. But here is a person, who I think that the term is absolutely à propos... His music was just simply stunning...” - Dr. Robert Stephens


Web Posted - Wednesday November 18, 2020
When Steel Talks

The Jammer For Bradley

Renegades have lit their candles
in the night for Nosey in Brooklyn,
and on the hill by Desperadoes
for Bradley, who made his music
canticles against the guns of Laventille.
Overlooking Calvary, he caressed his muse
and ventured where only the brave dare
and whisperers bubble a black spoon... - Dawad Philip




Web Posted - Saturday November 14, 2020
When Steel Talks

RAY HOLMAN remembers the late great Clive Bradley

Ray Holman

Global - "Clive was one of the greatest musicians ever produced by this country [Trinidad & Tobago]. He was a master of orchestration. He had a fine mind and was very witty. He was a fantastic musician. It is a terrific loss - there can only be one Bradley." - Ray Holman


Web Posted - Saturday November 14, 2020
When Steel Talks Reboot - Feel the Music - Live the Experience

New York Pan Stars - “Finesse” | Bruno Mars | BSO’s 2018 ‘Pan Is Sweet’

Brooklyn, New York, USA - New York Pan Stars - performed a Marc Brooks-arrangement of Bruno Mars’ “Finesse” that skillfully traversed the decades of music styles and genres one would have danced and partied to right here in New York at any of the famous dance halls like the Savoy, Bell Rose Ball Room, Studio 54 and Sonia Ball Room to name few. From Lindy-Hopping to Hip Hop and swing to soulful blues to soca - Marc and Pan Stars never let you forget that you should be dancing.


Web Posted - Friday November 13, 2020
When Steel Talks

Dr. JIT SAMAROO remembers the late great Clive Bradley

Dr. Jit Samaroo
Dr. Jit Samaroo

Global - “A great musician. A great loss to the pan world for sure. There is only one Clive Bradley. There is no one who does a Panorama tune like Clive Bradley. He has his style which was very effective. He looked at a song and lyrics and used that. The guy is genius. He's a top-of-the-line musician.” –– JIT SAMAROO - legendary Panorama-winning arranger for Renegades


Web Posted - Friday November 13, 2020
When Steel Talks

PAT BISHOP remembers the late great Clive Bradley

Global - “In the midst of all the merrymaking that carnival is supposed to be; that handling of the minor key makes you remember those two masks... One mask is smiling and one mask is weeping. His minor always had this terrible, gut-wrenching quality about it. The tragic underside of the human condition. Nobody can do it like that - I don't know that anyone ever will... And it seemed to embody everything that I think Mr. Bradley was, that he knew life as - brilliant and he knew it as tragic. And his music said that, and in that way it became almost a mirror of Trinidad life...” –– Pat Bishop - noted World Steelband Music Festival winning arranger


Web Posted - Friday November 13, 2020
When Steel Talks

Meet Wilfred “Junior” Kieal - Panist, Percussionist & Administrator - Up-Close!

Wilfred “Junior” Kieal
WST Upclose logo

New York, USA - He is one of the most well-known and well-liked people in that ‘next generation’ of performing artists involved in the New York pan scene. Thoughtful, multi-talented and a natural-born percussionist with world-class abilities, he’s one of the few percussionists who have totally mastered the art of silence - such that when he stops, the listener is left wanting more. And within the steel orchestra, from tenor to four-pan and more - it’s a non-issue because he’s accomplished in several voices in the family of steelpan instruments.

But with it all, Wilfred Kieal, Jr. is centered by his passion for the steelband art form and remains humble as its music courses through his blood, and life. In this exclusive When Steel Talks interview, performing artist, former band captain and administrator Wilfred “Junior” Kieal lays out his love for his Dad, himself an elder in the art form - and talks about his own path through pan to date.
see interview


Web Posted - Thursday November 12, 2020
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian

Honorary doctorates for Len “Boogsie” Sharpe, Keens-Douglas

Global - Acclaimed steelband arranger Len “Boogsie” Sharpe and dialect poet Paul Keens Douglas are among 14 people across the region who will receive honorary degrees from the University of the West Indies (The UWI) at its 2020 graduation ceremonies.

The ceremonies are scheduled to take place from January 11–16.

Sharpe is being awarded a Doctor of Letters (DLitt) for steelpan arrangement, composition, and performance and Keens-Douglas for his work in culture and the arts.

The UWI graduations will be in a mix of blended, virtual formats in celebration of graduating class of approximately 8500 students across the region.
read more 


Web Posted - Wednesday November 11, 2020
When Steel Talks

Clive Bradley - The Man and His Work

by Mrs. Merle Albino-de Coteau - WST Special

Global - “As I mentioned before many people are speaking only about his association with Despers, but according to my brother Aldwin Albino they are forgetting the higher level.

“Bradley was academically sound. So great was he that after being a student at the Gov't Training College and passing with distinction in his subjects he was recalled- this time as a lecturer in Mathematics. He also taught Math at the Catholic Women's Teachers College where I lectured in Music.”  

More about his academic prowess


Web Posted - Wednesday November 11, 2020
When Steel Talks

Meet Jelani Cielto - Panist Extraordinaire

Meet Jelani Cielto -  Panist Extraordinaire

Global - “I’m a cool, down-to-earth guy but when it comes to my pan I make sure I enjoy it. That’s my approach to life.” -- Jelani Cielto

Is Jelani Cielto a special talent? Absolutely. He also has that type of gift that makes a very select few see partial differential equations as child’s play. Blessed with the innate ability of a photographic memory, he has used his gift to play in multiple steel orchestras during the annual national Panorama season. This has become a point of focus. In a When Steel Talks exclusive - performing artist and panist extraordinaire Jelani Cielto - an individual of few words - gets his points of view across very succinctly, while leaving no doubt about the depth of his passion for the instrument, in this interview.
see interview 


Web Posted - Tuesday November 10, 2020
When Steel Talks

Vietnam Follies

by Dalton Narine

Global - “Saigon almost kicked me out, just before a CIA officer in civvies arrived at the hotel in the nick of time. He shouted to three Vietnamese soldiers to drop their weapons. As hotel guards, they, along with the hotel, had pulled the old black market trick on me and, had the CIA officer not bellowed at them, my plan was way ahead of his.” -- Dalton Narine

In another When Steel Talks exclusive, the legendary award-winning journalist, film maker and panist Dalton Narine - presents a  riveting, gut wrenching and enthralling account of some of his personal experiences and memories as a Vietnam combat veteran.
See complete story 


Web Posted - Monday November 9, 2020
When Steel Talks

Meet Earl Brooks Jr. - Performing Artist, Instructor, Arranger

Meet Earl Brooks Jr. - Performing Artist, Instructor, Arranger

Global - “The instrument is amazing as is; however, it’s the organizations and people of power that give it the wrong attention.” -- Earl Brooks Jr.

With a touch as smooth as felt, like Muhammad Ali - he can float like a butterfly or sting like a bee, as he executes the most challenging of musical passages. Indeed, the thoughtful and forward-thinking Earl Brooks, Jr. through his experiences, musical excellence and competence, brings a lot to the table. And this bodes well for the next generation of steelpan musicians. Earl Brooks Jr. talks succinctly about his love for pan, his dad Earl Brooks, Sr., and more, in this exclusive When Steel Talks interview.
see interview 


Web Posted - Monday November 9, 2020
When Steel Talks

Meet Aviel Scanterbury - Performing Artist, Educator, Arranger and Panist

Aviel Scanterbury

Global - “My vision is simply for the steelpan to be played in every country in the world and to be viewed as a popular instrument. Way too many persons still don’t know about the instrument and its history even in Trinidad and Tobago.” –– Aviel Scanterbury

It is undeniably clear that for a while now Aviel Scanterbury is part of that next generation of steelpan music practitioners who will guide the art form to new frontiers and heights. In a When Steel Talks exclusive - this former child prodigy, now educator, arranger and panist shares his vision and passion for Pan.
see interview 


Web Posted - Sunday November 8, 2020
When Steel Talks

Obituary of Jan Bach who composed a concerto for steelpan and orchestra

Global - The first concerto ever written for steelpan and orchestra was written by Dr. Jan Bach.

Jan (Morris) Bach, 82, composer, educator, French Hornist, pianist, cartoonist, father, and grandfather. Born December 11, 1937, in Fairbury, Illinois, he died at his home in DeKalb, Illinois, on October 30, 2020.

....Jan studied at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, receiving the Doctor of Musical Arts in Composition in 1971. His composition teachers included Aaron Copland and Thea Musgrave. He was a fixture in Northern Illinois University’s School of Music. Originally hired to teach French Horn, he taught music theory and composition there from 1966 to 2004. Over this period, he received the Excellence in Teaching Award (1978) and a Presidential Research Professorship grant (1982), and was nominated six times for the national CASE Professor of the Year award. He also played French Horn with the DeKalb Municipal Band for three decades.
read more 


Web Posted - Sunday November 8, 2020
When Steel Talks

ELLA ANDALL remembers the late great Clive Bradley

Global - “...There is only one Clive Bradley who gave us exceptional music.  Clive is my friend... He was a very sharing man and a very private man.  It is a great, great loss.  I have lost my friend... for me he used to create magic...” –– Ella Andall - noted international performing artist

Listen to exclusive interview 




Web Posted - Saturday November 7, 2020
When Steel Talks

Meet Wayne Bernard - Manager, Administrator, Panist

Meet Wayne Bernard - Manager, Administrator, Panist

Global - “I do not believe there is a challenge that would be difficult for this generation because it is some of the same people who have grown up in steelpan during the same tough and challenging times. With that being said, this generation has a creative and open-minded way to make anything possible, and I believe we are in good hands moving forward.” –– Wayne Bernard

In a When Steel Talks exclusive - manager, performing artist, administrator, and panist Wayne Bernard - shares his steelband experiences and vision for Pan.
see interview 


Web Posted - Thursday November 5, 2020
When Steel Talks

Tribute To Clive Bradley - The Man and His Work - Revisited

Tribute To Clive Bradley - The Man and His Work

Global - ....Von Martin has produced a very special tribute to Clive Bradley that, in addition to highlighting the master's musical brilliance, showcases his social awareness and consciousness, his genius, and his humanity. On behalf of the global steelband community When Steel Talks salutes Von Martin for this production and his availing of it for future generations of musicians to learn of the life and times of master musician and arranger Clive Bradley.
Listen to interview


Web Posted - Thursday November 5, 2020
When Steel Talks

 Panist extraordinaire Mia Gormandy-Benjamin performs Jan Bach Steel Pan Concerto with the NIU Philharmonic

Northern Illinois University Panist Shines - Revisited

Mia Gormandy in Concert

DeKalb, Illinois, USA - Listen to and watch panist Mia Gormandy from Trinidad & Tobago as she performs the late Jan Bach's Steel Pan Concerto with the NIU Philharmonic, at the Concerto Competition Winners Concert.
Listen to and view performance  


Web Posted - Thursday November 5, 2020
When Steel Talks

Clive Bradley - The Spirit of Panorama and More

Bradley - Jack - Garvin

Global - “...Bradley was a master musical painter. He didn't need a "pan tune", with the clichéd chord progressions and well-worn melodies, as a canvas. He created some of his most stirring works from material overlooked or discarded by others. He found beauty everywhere. His orchestral sensibilities were unparalleled, enabling him to produce symphonic colors that were beyond belief. Bradley left us an incredible body of work that will be enjoyed, studied, debated, criticized and cherished forever.” –– Garvin Blake

see complete article 


Web Posted - Wednesday November 4, 2020
When Steel Talks

Meet Alyssa Reynolds - Tuner and Panist

Global - “...I wish I would have understood fuller it would be people’s unwillingness to accept that change is coming. As a woman I’ve had to fight a lot of misogyny and sexism throughout my entire musical career and that’s just to have a spot at the table. I know that I'll have to fight a lot harder if I want to have any voice of consequence in the pan world” –– Alyssa Reynolds

Tuner, arranger and panist Alyssa Reynolds shares her steelpan history and deep passion for playing and tuning instruments of Pan in an exclusive interview with Ms. Aisha Joseph.
see interview 


Web Posted - Monday November 2, 2020
When Steel Talks

Steelpan virtuoso panist Liam Teague plays Jan Bach’s Concerto with the Taiwan National Symphony

Jan Bach’s Concerto for Steelpan and Orchestra

Global - Listen to Steelpan virtuoso panist Liam Teague perform Jan Bach’s Concerto with the Taiwan National Symphony in November 2011.
Listen and view performance  projector


Web Posted - Sunday November 1, 2020
When Steel Talks

Condolences to the family and friends of composer and educator Dr. Jan Bach of Northern Illinois University (NIU)

12/11/1937 - 10/30/2020

Global - When Steel Talks extends condolences to the family and friends of composer and educator Dr. Jan Bach of Northern Illinois University (NIU). The first concerto ever written for steelpan and orchestra was written by Dr. Jan Bach.  Rest in Peace. 

“...When I finished the Steelpan Concerto - considering that the steelpan has 30 notes, isolated little circles spread out on a concave surface, without even the help of certain notes being raised the way they are on a piano keyboard - I thought, “What have I done? Liam hasn’t seen the piece. Is he going to be able to play it, or has this been a wasted exercise?” I was fortunate. He spent his Christmas vacation learning it, and when he came back he had only one request: “Can I play the second movement faster?” I said “Yes, by all means!”  --- Jan Bach
see more 


Web Posted - Sunday November 1, 2020
When Steel Talks

Remembering composer Jan Bach and the Steelpan - Up-Close!  The first concerto ever written for steelpan and orchestra

WST Upclose logo

Global - In an exclusive interview, the late Jan Bach - illustrious and innovative musician/educator, shares with When Steel Talks the impetus behind his initial involvement with the steelpan, classical music written for the instrument, and his overall thoughts on the movement to date.

Dr. Bach has taught at NIU for almost forty years, and has under his belt a comprehensive body of work written for nearly every acoustic instrument and/or ensemble, including eight or nine solo concertos with orchestra and five brass quintets. He has since additionally penned the thirty-minute “Songs of the Streetwise,” for choir, soloists, and a small steelband with percussion, based on poems by Chicago’s homeless people.  In an interview, this illustrious and innovative musician/educator shares with When Steel Talks the impetus behind his initial involvement with the steelpan, classical music written for the instrument, and his overall thoughts on the movement to date.
see interview 




Web Posted - November 2020
When Steel Talks

Steelpan Music Headlines

When Steel Talks breaking stories

Global - Important stories from all over the world.
Read, Watch and Listen  projector