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Yesterday I had thread going on Pan Trivia about Andy Narell and his music and realize that some of his recordings are from the 80s, which means the guy has been doing his ting for quite some time on the international stage. I don't know of any other person that comes close to what he has accomplished. I've since asked some influential pan people if he was ever acknowledge for his contribution and not one can tell me if he has. One person assured me that history will look kindly on him because he did DO SOMETHING FOR PAN.

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No they did not.. Not only did he contribute to pan but he tried to introduce a style which would be welcomed world wide but was met with hostile comments about messing with "we thing" We thing is suited for us but it will remain up laventille hill or some parts in south from christmas to ash wednesday and put on the back burner till next year..Is that all that pan is worth? A gem of an invention created by us, something we should be boasting about proudly but instead we adopt dub and some of us even try to immitate the jamaica lingo which they call patois as if we dont struggle enough with our own version of the english language. What the hell is 'I and I sa ya'...Andy Narrell is right up there with the likes of Robert Greenidge, Boogsy Sharpe, Clive Bradley Pellham Godard et al, but just like Sparrow's brilliance his was also was marred by not being born here..Talent is talent and we should be proud to see other nationals embracing our culture which was when introduced treated with scorn and any participators were considered scum...Is pan worthy of sharing stages with the greatest of symphonies? Winnifred Artwell and Liberace proved they do when they chose Panam North stars and Tripoli respectively to accompany them on their world tours with huge success.  We still stand a chance to show the world that pan is not meant to be just  drunken beach party entertainment and tourist curiousity but side by side with the greatest entertainers of the world as we await our hollywood star of fame and finallly give credit to all the great talented innovators of the pan industry the merit they so richly deserve..But to do that we have to lose that "we thing' attitude and start by including Andy Narrell and give him a chance to do what he was born to do and that is to join in with the other greats and put pan, the industry and all the associates where they belong..

"We Kinda Music" Birdsong Panorama 2014

We Kinda Music" written and arranged by Andy Narell for Birdsong. Playing here in the semi finals, Panorama 2014 T&T

Marlon Abner
Musical eloquence.... But as we say in TT "Corbeaux doh eat sponge cake"
Wilton Harper
Pan music Panorama music should always be played as d late r mcdonald said should b played a clip slower so a listener will hear all sweet middle arrangements and melodies

Wilton excellent input, but a lot of the sweet middle arrangements and melodies were heard long ago during jouvert mornings, today even if a human was blessed with the best hearing, they still would not hear a thing as the steelbands added big noisy trucks to the music.

Patrick: Where have you been, brother? And yuh still eh get this PUSHING PAN ON THE ROAD LONG TIME TING out of your head?

2020 COMING, my friend.

SYNTHESIZED PAN TONES like you never heard in your LIFE BEFORE. And ELECTRIC TRUCKS transporting all the STEELBANDS so you don't have to worry about the NOISE FROM THE ENGINE anymore.

Come back and  LIME, nah man. You are a GREAT VOICE in these discussions!!!

What we Trini need?  More humility; less gallery.  But dat is "We kinda music"

Bugs I have to intervene here if only to clear up a few things you said. First lets talk about Elton John and the piano. Of course the piano community doesnt owe him anything but if he were to take his style of music to lets say the sitar which was invented in India and use its unique reasonance and interject some Elton style harmonics and introduce it to the world riding on his popularity, if it becomes successful I would say the Indians would owe him something for that.  Big difference..In other references you made I have encountered many instances where your mentality interfered with our progress . That would only be correct if we were where we ought to be in the pan venture. With all the big names you mentioned, yes they deserve their status but are they profiting from it.Allow me to defer for a minute. I personally know of an entertainer who earned $8400,00 for extemporaneously rhyming a few lines (not verses) of subjects about members in the audience. All in less than twenty minutes. Bugs this same thing could be heard on the roadside to Maracas Bay with much greater candor and with accurate verses thrilling audiences with amazement, the bounty? a few dollars, Why? the calypsonians are unknown and not popular like my friend on TV. Now change that to the aspects of pan, Rogert Greenidge, Boogsy and the rest of the top ten are equally as good if not more so but the bounty remains relatively low and that my friend is because of that mentality thing we suffer from so profusely.  Finally let me say this, If pan was invented by Americans instead of criticizing Andy Narrel they would award him with a doctorate and an ambassadorship and you and I wouldnt be able to afford a ticket to a pan concert..

Ay my good friend Bob Diaz

HOWEVER - pan was not invented by Americans and instead of praising  Andy Narrel they should award others who have done much more for pan with a doctorate and an ambassadorship and because of them - you and I can  afford a ticket to a pan concert.  

Indeed, you would agree the pioneers of Pan surely wanted folks like you and me to have access to music for us by us while contributing to world music pool.

Look, I don't have an Andy problem or issue. He is musician who is a far greater piano player than he is a pan player and has created some very good music.

And I can understand why Cecil Hinkson would want to give Kawhi Leonard a doctorate and an ambassadorship - but let's not get it twisted. Andy Narell is no Kawhi Leonard.

As a member of Jimmy Buffett's band.Robert Greenidge introduces more people to the steelpan instrument every week than Andy Narell can dream of.  Bob do you agree that Robert Greenidge  is one of the top five players to ever grace the instrument?

Speaking of giving out ambassadorship and doctorates - has anyone ever checked out the amount of quality panist that have come from Dr. Dawn Batson and Merle Albino-de Coteau.


Bugs you must agree that we should give thanks to WST for this forum giving fruit to the saying 'you learn something everyday'..Thanks to you I now know about the involvement of Merle Abino De Coteau. Also it gives us the opportunity to exchange opinions about our choices in music of all genres proving that its all about taste and not fact.I personally see no difference between Andy's ability on piano and pan, he is skilled on both instruments and as you said America did not invent pan but they had a big say on piano.Because of that we have to give Andy an advantage point as an American born.Not having the natural atmosphere of pan yards in every community on a daily basis has its advantage. Yet he took it, embr

aced it and mastered it to a point where the difference between he and his fellow pan maestros is minimal.I look forward to our banter as we have something in common which is our mutual interest in the existence and survival of pan..

Bob the survival and forward progress of Pan is indeed something we have in common.

I just don't see Andy Narell the way you do.  He is no Winifred Atwell or Hazel Scott on piano. And he is no Robert Greenidge or Boogsie Sharpe on Pan. He has written some very good music. He has dedicated himself to Pan as has countless others.

Sidebar -- Winifred Atwell is hailed by Elton John as one of his early musical heroes in his new autobiography.


Winnifred Atwell and Pan Am North Stars Steel Orchestra

"The Devil's daughter."

From the historic 1969 collaboration between two Trinidad music legends.

The album is "Ivory and Steel".

Andre Tanker - Back Home

Raf Robertson - Forward Home


You see this is what I'm talking about.  Now add some vocals and tell me this isnt a masterpiece worth representing pan in any genre. Another thing we should pay attention to is tonal quality.If we listen to a panorama production you cannot compare the two as true pan. Apart from desperadoes I havent heard a panorama arrangement that sustain tonal quality with an increase of players. To me it often sounds like they are hitting the sides of the pan instead of the notes, that was confirmed many times when I proudly try to show the prowess of pan only to be asked why arent they tuned to sound like my own which is embarrassing because I only get tuned once a year when Mapo visits. But just think if we put aside our differences and combine our interest then follow the leader in arrangements and overall production (to me despers) we could show the world what we got and somehow make that also 'we thing'..


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