Everything Related to the Steelpan Instrument and Music
He was born on Feb. 12 1931. He departed our shores @ age 83 on Wednesday Nov. 26,
Final rites to take place on Tuesday 2nd December @ Guides Funeral home, Coffee St. San Fernando followed by burial @ Roodal Cemetery, Broadway, San Fernando
My deepest sympathy to the relatives and friends of "Daddy" Sparks. He will be remembered as a most faithful member of Starlift Steel Orchestra. At this time I ask all his friends to hold his family in thoughts and prayers. May God grant them His grace, strength, peace and comfort at this time of sorrow.
R.I.P Daddy Sparks.
After reading about him, this was definitely a lifetime pan man. Thank you for all that you have done.
Condolences to the family of "Daddy" Sparks! We, the Starlift family, will certainly miss you. Thanks for your years of tenor panning, and may God grant you eternal rest in peace!
When ever you speak of a true soldier of Pan then Sparks would always be mentioned for his dedication and devotion to Pan is without doubt of the highest level. We of the Texaco West Stars steel Orchestra were indeed very fortunate when he joined the band and he gave decades of service only moving on when the band was not able to continue any more. Some time recently I read on WST an article about his younger days in Pan so having played with him I can also confirm those commendations which he received for every band he played with had a sincere player who LOVED Pan to the fullest and he played his part with Honor and Distinction. On behalf of the West Stars Steel Band of San Fernando our condolences are with his family and we know that that Spark would continue to illuminate the Pan World. Daddy you were always a man of Peace so may that Peace be with you and yours.
Condolences to the Family and Friends of Mr. FitzGerald Sparks; on behalf of Desperadoes Steel Orchestra.
Rest in Peace, Elder. I remember him from the days of Texaco West Stars where I started playing in 1972.
2nd December 2014 - San Fernando - Trinidad - TT
Panman ‘Daddy Sparks’ laid to rest in the grand tradition.
The funeral of ‘Daddy Sparks’
On a warm afternoon in San Fernando, Trinidad, with a thin speckle of rain in the air, ‘Daddy Sparks’ was laid to rest in the grand tradition, befitting the passing of that ‘soldier’ of pan that he undoubtedly was.
Attending ‘Daddy Sparks’
‘Daddy Sparks’ last rights of passage were overseen by a preacher of the ‘thunder and brimstone’ school of thought whom, fitting to the era of his charge, demanded abeyance of the scattered generations of the Sparks, various friends and supporters, that attended the laying at the Roodal Cemetery, Lady Hales Avenue. His words struck chords of agreement with those of old tradition who were reduced to waling remembrances; but flew with some speculative attention over the younger, more gentile, generations present; some of whom danced in polite restraint with the occasion in concern, to the music provided.
The ‘ Bronks’, Embacadare, Lady Hales Avenue, San Fernando, Trinidad
From half a mile distant, emanating from the ochre buildings of the ‘Bronks’ of Embacadare that abuts the cemetery, the last home of ‘Daddy Sparks’, strains of steelband music washed over the attendees during quiet moments of ceremony. Attended by more generations of Sparks, and their in-laws, the noisy speakers in the ‘Bronks’, as is customary, grandly announced the passage of an event of import to the community; remnant to a few days of ‘wake’. Strains of Harmonites St Thomas Girl (arr Earl Rodney) and Hatters Spree Simon (arr Steve Achaiba) whiffed into the cemetery.
Watching Hatters perform under their tent
Closer in and intimate to the ceremony, Hatters Steel Orchestra Stage Side, under a tent, were doing the business expected under the guidance of house arranger Kevin McLeod. Hatters, traditionally variously supported by siblings and family of Sparks over the years (about 20 at the last count), injected a well received memorial repertoire to the proceedings. In highlight, Sparrow’s Memories [George Bailey] (arr Earl Brooks Sr), that the steelband exquisitely placed, among other favourites, before ‘Daddy’ went down.
Arthur Sparks (6-Bass) - Hatters
With good tradition ‘Daddy’s’ son Arthur (6-Bass), and grandchildren Micquel (4-Hi-Bass) and Shakiela (D-Seconds), performed the culture with the band.
Micquel (4-Bass) left with Tigana behind holds tent and Shakiela foreground (D-Seconds) - all Sparks
Joseph Lett (Tenor) foreground and family members look on; Hollis Clifton records
Additionally, sweet in association of commemorance and performing with Hatters; was Joseph Lett (Tenor), former Chairman Pan Trinbago SC Region, of Point Fortin New Creations, a family steelband that had tutored some of the Sparks younger generation, and a close family associate.
Family sadly escort and bear ‘Daddy’ to rest
Fitz-Gerald ‘Daddy’ Sparks, thankfully honoured by Pan Trinbago a few short years ago for his sterling contributions to the steelband fraternity, went down in traditional style, best remembered in the South by his association with West Stars; but a Starlift man to the end. We will miss you ‘Daddy’.
With love - thanks for all that advice ‘Daddy’ RIP. tobagojo 20141202