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Between 1950 and 2015, HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS have been spent SUBSIDIZING STEELBANDS: was this money well spent?

Between Sponsors and Government HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS of dollars have been poured into the STEELBAND MOVEMENT over the last 65 years. (Not to mention the millions spent by foreign governments flying these steelbands all around the world.)  Yet, today, THE WORLD GOVERNING BODY OF THE STEELBAND is FIVE MILLION DOLLARS in DEBT and the President is standing CAP IN HAND at the Government's door BEGGING FOR MORE.

One of the most repeated arguments is that STEELBANDS are a deterrent to CRIME. Well, today, CRIME in Trinidad AND TOBAGO is at epidemic proportions -- but many will stick to their guns on that proposition.

The PAN TRINBAGO trick is to promise SELF-SUFFICIENCY over and over again. Because they could only become self-sufficient if you give them MORE MONEY and MORE MONEY.

I am saying MILLIONS but ah sure we done cross BILLIONS!!!

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I assume a factory would mean modern , automated manufacturing of pans , not some sort of assembly line of tuners.

Since the pan was invented in T&T, I've always thought that a "Made in Trinidad" label , if properly applied and used , should set the gold standard for steel pan manufacturing making Trinidad the true Mecca for pan.

Of course this would mean some type of certification to meet the standard.

Glenroy, regardless of the standard every one looking for the best.

That's my point , Cecil. The "Made in Trinidad " label should guarantee that it is the best.

Glenroy, here we have a pan tuner saying that no top tuner ain't doing no 9 to 5 in a pan factory because they making top dollar on their own. The pan factory will only have those who are learning, how can you guarantee the best when it's being made by people that's now learning the trade?

If yuh not careful, yuh will soon see 'Made in China'. They making everything nowadays,

from clothes to ships TVs. I saw some masks in Town last carnival which were made in China.

I used to mould clay to make masks to play devil, now you can buy an imported mask for

a fraction of tthe homemade price. The same thing could happen with pan. It's called


Anthony and Cecil: Think about all the music students who got trained here in America by Ellie Mannette alone over the years. Michael Cooper tested the American Market and found out how great the demand was - but so did TOYS R US in the process. The cat is out of the bag. A time bomb is ticking for MASS PAN PRODUCTION and if Trinidad does not move fast enough they will lose the race.

Claude, we have a "lax" attitude about everything, we fell asleep on the steelband and when we awoke carnival gone and left the steelband be the side of the road, lets see what will happen with this pan factory.

Glenroy: During the ICP Mr. Michael Cooper gave a presentation on PAN MANUFACTURING and if you ever listen or read the speech you will hear him say that we are not even vaguely ready to supply STEELPANS to the world. His main reason was a shortage of PAN TUNERS in Trinidad and the length of time it takes to train tuners.

So unless there is a focused effort in place TODAY to have the problem solved in the next 5 to 10 years then all this PAN PRODUCTION talk is just MORE OLE TALK.

There is so much hope and sympathy directed at the STEELPAN that shysters could promise to import and sell SNOW TIRES in Trinidad and direct the profits to PAN YARDS and people will FUND THE PROJECT only to soak up the RED INK a few years later.

Well , Claude  , as the saying goes , Rome wasn't built in a day.

You've got to start from some place.

Or , do nothing.

Ellie Mannette's relationship with his Business Manager the late Kaethe George should be a case study for strategic thinking. Today, there are some who say he’s a secret millionaire.  

The Stradivarius of the Steel Pan like the Steinberg Piano was the creation of his brand.  A state University investing in the technology and manufacturing musical instruments for worldwide distribution...http://www.mannetteinstruments.com/classical-series.html

Most of us don't seem to understand the steelband "industry" in the context of economics. The two primary aspects of economics are supply and demand. Unless there is enough global demand for the product, in this case steelband music and the pan instrument; there will not be the booming economic success that so many of us seem to expect.

Not because a person can play, or even master the instrument, means that he/she should somehow be making money.  Maybe so, but it is still up to that musician to find ways to sell his/her talent. The nation has no obligation to pay a person because he can play the national instrument. While I feel the  frustration of most of the posters here, that the pan "industry" is not generating any real national income, there is need to face this hard reality. Unless more pan people can find more ways to create global demand for an over-supply of sleelband music and instruments, then this conversation continues.

True talk , Masai Hall.

And this is the kind of critical thinking that gets very little response on this forum , I notice.

Not the kind of stuff that many of us wish to hear.


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