Phase II won its first North Panorama title in 1977 playing "I Like To Beat Pan" before winning the National Panorama Competition in 1987 playing "Feeling Nice". They have also produced other legendary favorites like "I Music", "Musical Wine", "Fire Down Below", and "Birthday Party". They have come close to winning Panorama so many times that some players within the band comically suggest that they be given a plaque commemorating the most second place finishes in the history of Panorama.
This article covers BOOGSIE and PHASE II through 2005.
After seeing what little acclaim BOOGSIE SHARPE was given in a recent WST discussion on "ARRANGERS IMPACTING PANORAMA" I decided to bring "THE BOOGSIE SHARPE STORY" to the forum.
merrytonestothebone: you have a gift for understanding nuance and timbre and trend of thought and sarcasm and ole talk on this forum (and yuh is ah LOCAL) -- so leh me explain something to you.
For years everybody on this forum praising and celebrating BOOGSIE on this forum as the ULTIMATE MUSICAL GENIUS. Suddenly Valentine put up a post that give them the opportunity to stand up for the MAN and everybody back back and calling all kinda name as the GREATEST except BOOGSIE. That eh sit right with me at all.
So ah had to go into confusionist mode and show the GREATNESS of the man even though yuh done know that I am NOT the NUMBER ONE FAN. However, those two compositions I put up made me respect the POTENTIAL OF THE MAN.
And by the way, how much songs all dem other arrangers who IMPACTED panorama ever compose? Is time for bugs to go to the studio and make a movie called BOOGSIE IMPACT!!!
I must protest. Confusionists?
The only man causing confusion this season was Boogsie. But I can't blame him. He had nothing to lose. He was too far behind coming out of the semifinals.
Last year Carlton Zander Alexander and Desperadoes, gave us one of the best arranged and played tunes ever on pan. I am an All Stars for life but I could openly say, “that was my type of music” and what I will pay for to go either North Stand or Grand Stand to witness. I have lots of respect for Boogsie and what he has offered over the years, but he has lost his way in trying to push the pan where it should not go. Panorama is about having fun and feeling the vibe. Up until last year I can say categorically I have not had the vibe or the feeling of happy pan players.
Maitland, yuh ent type nothing last year when yuh beloved All Stars couldn't place in the first 6. But yuh take the cobwebs off yuh computer or tablet this year and causing rucksion for Phase II supporters. It has only been one year. Remember how yuh felt last year.
I was in agreement my beloved All Stars had a bad year. If you could go back to my 2016 postings you would see I was the one who said Desperadoes had it in the bag and I wasn’t in favor of All Stars selection. Give jack its jacket I will say it come what may. If you not in the running I would say it. All Stars played the tune as expected with professionalism, but like Phase II this year and Red White and Black….It was just the wrong tune.
Everybody else's name is only associated with Panorama music, Boogsie has composed jazz, funk, soul,reggae(Boogsie Phase 2 Album), music that would have made the charts in a less 'jokey' country. He has composed many classical pieces (In A RainForest , Saga Of San fernando Hill, etc,) , music that won over compositions by Bach, Beethoven and others at the 'Pan Is Beautiful' competition, adjudicated by top international adjudicators. By the way it was one of those adjudicators, American classical composer and Pulitzer prize winner for music, David Del Tredeci who called Boogsie "the Mozart of Pan".
Boogsie holds the record for winning every zone(4) in one Panorama also the Pan Around the Neck and the National in one year (1988) with every band for which he arranged, matter of fact, he arranged for 2 bands in the east and they tied for first. In 2005 Phase 2 won Panorama by the widest margin ever (20 points) playing 'Trini Gone Wild' . Search the net and you will find that he has composed taped over a hundred (100) tunes, but we don't hear them. Reasons why he is a genius.
Boogsie year after year keeps trying to take the music forward with new ideas, innovations, while very many of the others continue to give us the same old runs and nuances with new tunes. What we've been hearing for decades haven't changed much. Now, there is no law against that, they have all been playing sweet music, but in the 21st century they seem to be afraid of jumping out of the box.
As for the guy he talks crap about Boogsie's age, would he kindly tell me the ages of Pelham, Zanda and Smooth?
Keep an eye on Teague, he gave us a very interesting and unique piece.
Oswald, I think it's about time that Sharpe do some miles on the road, let him bring out the band Monday afternoon and challenge all others to beat him with a bomb tune.
The thing is, every Boogsie fan thinks he is the Greatest; Genius; The Man of Pan.
I am entitled to my opinion and I will say it is hogwash. If he was as good as people say he is then he would have won more than every single arranger in the history of panorama with Phase II.
Panorama is a feel good event for the people and not a music festival. The detractors have to stop trying to use panorama as a means to advance pan. Music festival and personal performances should be the avenue for pan advancement.
I was in the stands for Panorama 2017 and the appreciation for performance by the crowd was obvious.
I can say categorically, I would rather go panorama and listen to Desperadoes play Good Morning or All Stars play Full Extreme than to listen to Phase II play Red White and Black. I want music to make me feel good to make me dance, to put a smile on my face, and not the stuff some arrangers try to sell.
Last year Carlton Zander Alexander and Desperadoes, gave us one of the best arranged and played tunes ever on pan. I am an All Stars for life but I could openly say, “that was my type of music” and what I will pay for to go either North Stand or Grand Stand to witness. I also had a list of tunes Boogsie and Phase II played that I liked. Lately it seemed competition was taking over the feel good factor of panorama and as a result the numbers of patrons have dropped significantly. As I said at the top. I am entitled to my opinion and I do not indulge in name calling when someone does not share my opinion. I may be wrong but I think the adjudicators saw and heard the same thing I did with Phase II this year, that why they placed them 8th.
Morning Glory: That is a false attack on MARTIN MAITLAND!!! Because he is one of the most SENSIBLE (and INFORMED) posters on this forum.
Morning Glory…..I think the problem here is you are attached to Boogsie and as such will defend him.
I on the other hand have no relations to anyone. I know a lot of arrangers and I have spoken to them at length, however I will be the first to tell them they are full of it or that tune sounds like crap.
Boogsie is a legend I don’t doubt that, but that doesn’t mean he has nothing more to learn.
For someone who cannot read music and plays by ear I think it’s extraordinary.
I will be the first to criticize someone who I think dropped the ball. For example in 2016 Zander arranged what I would call a masterpiece for Desperadoes, however this year he lost his way and veered off the melody into no-man’s land, still a good rendition but not what the adjudicators expected from an accomplished arranger. If I was a hater Boogsie would be nowhere on my list of best panorama tunes.
An arranger can do his part and create the best arrangement ever, but it comes down to the drill master and the band to execute the arrangers vision. That is sometimes very hard to achieve. In 2016 with Desperadoes playing the slow version of A Different Me… You could hear every single instrument and you knew the vision of Zander.
Here is my list again….As you can see Boogsie features prominently on the list.
1. Trinidad All Stars - Woman On The Bass Leon Smooth Edwards
2. Renegades - 'Mystery Band' Jitt Samaroo
3. Trinidad All stars "The Hammer" Leon Smooth Edwards
4. Trinidad All Stars - Unknown Band (1981) Leon Smooth Edwards
5. Trinidad All Stars - Curry Tabanca Leon Smooth Edwards
6. Fonclaire 1990 Pan By Storm Ken Professor Philmore
7. Desperadoes Steel Orchestra "Fire Coming Down" Robbie Greenidge
8. Trinidad All Stars "Doh Back Back" Leon Smooth Edwards
9. Phase II - Woman Is Boss Len Boogsie Sharp
10. Renegades - Guitar Pan Jitt Samaroo
11. Trinidad All Stars - "Dus In Deh Face" Eddie Quarless
12. Phase II Pan Groove - Pan Rising Len Boogsie Sharp
13. Renegades - 'The Bees Melody' Jitt Samaroo
14. Phase II Pan Groove "This Feeling Nice" Len Boogsie Sharp
15. Despers – Rebecca Clive Bradley
16. Phase II Pan Groove "I Music" Len Boogsie Sharp
17. Desperadoes Steel Orchestra - 'Different Me" Carlton Zander Alexander
18. Desperadoes – Party Clive Bradley
19. Trinidad All Stars - Full Extreme Leon Smooth Edwards
20. Fonclaire - Len"Boogsie" Sharpe's "Fire Down Below" Ken Professor Philmore
21. Hatters - Tribute to Spree Simon Steve Achaiba (Only South band to ever win panorama as a big band)
22. Skiffle Bunch - Coffee Street (Honorable mention) Andy Narell
23. Trinidad All Stars – Showtime Leon Smooth Edwards (Playing from position #1 in the finals)