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Champion Steelband Arranger Earl Rodney in the Spotlight - Revisited

New York, USA - He is one of the esteemed champion arrangers of the Golden Era of pan. His name, like the other great ones, carries much respect and recognition. And like his fellow famed steelband music panorama arrangers - one name will suffice as an identification marker for life. Earl Rodney will always be known as the champion arranger for and associated with, the great Solo Harmonites Steel Orchestra of Trinidad and Tobago in their glory years. The three-time panorama winner sits down with When Steel Talks for an exclusive interview.

Earl Rodney, who is originally from central Point Fortin, Trinidad joined Solo Harmonites in 1967 where he met Harmonites Steel Orchestra co-founder Hue Loy.

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Greetings to you my brother; After so many years I felt really sad hearing your statement with regard to the development
of our national instrument,that other than the tonal quality not much has been done to really develop and market the instrument,sad but true.I have often wonder how is it that all the intellectuals,advisors and administrators of past and present administration never saw the potential of our invention as a big revenue earner nationally and internationally or may be they felt the wrong people would have benefited,I wonder.
With regard to appreciation there are nationals who leave our shores with total neglect and disrespect for our culture until they arrive in what they consider to be their newly found paradise, announce that they are from Trinidad and Tobago and the question is posed,can you play the steel pan or sing a calypso, No.so to avoid this embarrassment there are those who now find it appropriate to learn a song or two before leaving our shores even taking a Tenor Pan with them and should they happen to be around when a band is on tour you can always see them at the front of the crowd most vociferous exclaiming,they are from my country you know.What hypocrisy.It seems as though we always need foreign approval before we can appreciate or value our own thing.
Barney started Jerico, Rupert finish the song, I remember members of the stage side explaing to Rupert how the music should be pharse to match what we had already learnt from Earl......

Earl is from Newlands, Point Fortin. He grew up with Maestro ( Allan Gervais); they were  like two peas in a pod. His brother is Mootilal who played "firstpan" for Rhapsody. Earl was the arranger and tuner for Rhapsody but he was closer to Tropical Harmony down there in Egypt. His other brother Ali played guitar for Al Mills Orchestra from Mahaica, Point Fortin. We hardly called him Earl. If you were from Point in those days he was called Bostick. He is still walking around Point. I see him every time I am home.  He is mentioned in my book Limmin Under De La Junette Tree and will be in Who Dey, Who Dey  Manicou Dey  a sequel to the former book. Give thanks Dr. Lance Seunarine

Earl Rodney - Friends & Countrymen // Full Album

David Collymore
11 months ago
Earl Rodney is one of the foundations of Kaiso Jazz, a signature art-form of Trinidad and Tobago. Another part of the foundation is Clive Alexander. These Root Movements of the 70s are the foundations on which the pillars of contemporary Kaiso Jazz is built. I hear the music of Etienne Charles saying, ' Thanks'

 

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