When Steel Talks

Everything Related to the Steelpan Instrument and Music

Published: 
Monday, September 25, 2017

The point of telling a story is the ending. The moral.

Sometimes the end falls out of a story. At times the beginning. Or middle. They have out of so many Caribbean stories, across waters, across tellers. Often, too, stories have more than one ending; but only a single one gets told. The storyteller’s job is the vigilance, or the imagination, that a story end right.

I have to tell my story again. Because the end of my story was the young man at the end. And, for whatever reason, he fell out of it. It is Mark Garceran’s story. One the 26-year-old told Live on Facebook walking home from the Brooklyn Museum under the steady rain meteorologists had forecast would fall from before Panorama’s scheduled start through the next morning. A painfully familiar story, set in a particular place.

One about steelband leadership, unpaid prize money, the competence of New York’s Carnival association, WIADCA. A group I realised, when Gemma Jordan announced bands weren’t being judged (where my story trailed off abruptly last week), would not be paying out US$40,000 to competing steelbands. A group whose contingency plan for the weather an official had whispered to me: Prayer.

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