I wish to get a proper feel of the reaction to this question and would appreciate your response.
As popular as it is, thousands of people searching on Google for this type of band would enter the phrase "steel drum band" in the search query instead of the phrase steel pan or steel pan band; some even type the phrase Jamaican steel band, which I find annoying for obvious reasons. The term "Pan" is not as ubiquitous as the phrase steel drum band which is quite accurate when defining and describing the band. Outside of the Pan world, customers looking to hire the service have conducted more searches for "steel drum band" than any other variant when looking for a band. To reverse this trend would require a mammoth marketing exercise starting with the film Pan! Our music odyssey becoming a blockbuster. It would also require the government of T&T to do something that they have failed to do for decades, which is to take the initiative in promoting Pan to a global audience. The reality in 2014 is that the American bands have huffed the instrument and taken the initiative going forward. The phrase "steel drum band" is used on all of their major entertainment websites that offer the service. Clearly, there has been a shift towards the use of the phrase steel drum band for commercial reasons, but is that a bad thing if more and more customers are employing musicians who are skilled in the art of playing Pan?
What's your take on this? Do you think that there is an undo button for this misnomer? Does it matter?
I have a different perspective on the use of words and I prefer them to be like harmony in music. The entire English dictionary needs a clean up and many definitions ought to be either changed or simplified so that they connect easier. Idiophone just sounds dumb in the context that it was used. It is only a matter of time before someone puts a team of scholars together to revise the dictionary and publish an improvement.
The name Steel Drum became popular by Panyard Inc in the early '90 when they launch their business...
Prior to that, the term was widely used by Ellie Mannette when he introduced the steel pan to school systems across the USA. The owners of Panyard Inc are all past students of Ellie's steel band workshops and are influenced by his teachings.
Check out the link...www.mannetteinstruments.com
Mannette Musical Instruments The World's Premiere Steel Drums.
An interesting point. So it would appear that one of the founding fathers was the catalyst who made the term steel drum as popular as it is. Hmmmm. I wonder how many people have seen this critical piece of jigsaw?
Hopefully, this helps explains his National Heritage Award from the National Endowment For The Arts.
Mannette came to the United States in 1963 in response to an invitation to develop a U.S. Navy steel band, build the instruments, and train the players. He returned for good in 1967 to work with inner-city youth in New York City. He started more than 10 new bands. His company, The Mannette Touch, has become the main source of steel-band instruments in the United States. He has worked with more than 350 school programs and in recent years has served as an artist-in-residence at West Virginia University. His innovations, musicianship, teaching, and advocacy for his tradition have earned him the title "Father of the Modern Steel Drum."
Thanks for that link. Freddy has an interesting view.
There are two reasons why I do not get as annoyed as many on this forum. About the term.
A bit disappointed , but not really annoyed.
The first reason is historical
There is an undeniable connection of the steelpan to the African tradition of drumming , via the tamboo bamboo.
The second reason is that unfortunately there is a lot of ignorance about the steelband in this world of ours (outside the pan bubble ) , and one cannot deny that the term is a convenient shorthand for explaining to the uninitiated (or should I say ignorant? ) what a steelband is.
Sorry about that ,guys , but I myself may have transgressed in this manner.