Everything Related to the Steelpan Instrument and Music
I have never seen such acclaim for a PANORAMA TUNE. Spiritually, I have come to believe that THE VOICE OF THE PEOPLE IS THE VOICE OF GOD -- MAJORITY RULES. But as everybody calls the performance the GREATEST IN THE HISTORY OF PANORAMA, I have to REPRESENT my GREATEST PANORAMA SONG EVER and the circumstances surrounding it.
In the EIGHTIES my father used to send me a CALYPSO VHS and a PARADE OF THE BANDS VHS and some CALYPSO TAPES after every CARNIVAL. In 1986 he sent me the USUAL PACKAGE and I ended up looking at the PARADE OF THE BANDS at some point (taped from TTT).
There was a commercial break on the TV and as the commentator came back he said some thing to the extent that you can now hear the sounds of TOKYO playing PAN IN DANGER as they moved away from the stage. The band was "pretty far" from the stage at that time and the microphones were not loudly picking up the sound of the band and the camera appearance was pretty brief. But I became transfixed by what I heard. I had never ever before heard any STEELBAND capture the SOUL OF THE ISLAND; the essence of CALYPSO; and the vibration of a land with such pathos. And I said to myself: Who ever arranged this song HAD TO BE ON DRUGS to capture that STEELBAND spirituality.
That day PAN IN DANGER by Clive Bradley became the most memorable (and still is) STEELBAND PANORAMA PERFORMANCE in my life. (At that time I did not know who was Clive Bradley was, so I was betting in the blind. Ironically, I went to New York that summer and hooked up with George Victory and had access to all his studio recordings and all that comes with filling in the blanks.)
Only one other PIECE OF TRINIDAD CALYPSOUL has ever taken me to that place again -- but I will leave that alone.
Lilian Sten was one of the first posters on this forum to recognize and praise the genius of DUVONE STEWART and her writings seemed PROPHETIC at the time. So as the world celebrates DUVONE STEWART, I know how it feels to be KNOCKED OUT by a STEELBAND ARRANGER and ARRANGEMENT -- if only ONCE IN MY LIFE.
Each one of us on this group probably has such a memory. Mine was the year (1969?) Solo Harmonites won Panorama with "The Wrecker". I had an out of body experience jumping up in that band, one of maybe thousands, just as the band was turning north into Frederick St., that time of day when the sun was not far from setting in the West. I had always enjoyed pan before, but to experience an actual bliss state under its influence was new to me, a mathematician by nature, if anything.
But that's not the yardstick. Transpose 2018 Renegades to that 1969 Harmonites magical moment for me, and I still might be in that bliss state! (Ha, ha!)
Nice Story!!! !!! You gave a MAPQUEST report on your exact location with a time of day stamp!!! It would be fun to read a book with about 50 such anecdotes!!!
Not panorama, but my first j'ouvert. Had to "disobey" my father's "No, you can't go!" I was 12 yrs old then and took the first bus out of Maraval, about 6 o'clock. When the bus turned unto Araipita Ave from French St, Starlift was jamming Penny Lane. Pan so sweet, and still one of my favorites. To this day I eh sorry I didn't listen to my pops. God bless his soul. And Claude, you really know pan boy. Tokyo, another of my treasured pan moments.
Just responding to a TYPO. 1968 not 1969
Thanks for the correction. I wasn't sure about 1969 and too lazy to check...
Duvone Stewart was always good as any and better than many. Winning the large bands panorama 2018 does not validate his genius. He is the best, but I still believe that Skiffle wudda won if they were in da north. Ah mean if they were a North band.
... what a difference 40 miles make!!!
Not this year....
Here’s my story. It was jourvert morning 1967. Guinness cavaliers had just won National Panorama championship the night before and they were on Harris Promenade near the police station playing Tzina Tzina. The crowd was screaming and shoving. All I could hear were the wonderful stream of music coming from those gleaming black pans with the golden harps.
Rumbling basses and high bases, mixed with the perfect cellos, guitar pans, double seconds, double tenors , and tenors. It was pure drama, excitement, distinct melody, and that intangible thing called sweetness. It was the perfect blend of genius arranger/panman and our greatest tuner—Alan Gervais. I was in a zone that gave me goose pimples. All I wanted was to go and touch one of those black pans. So I, a 12-yr-old, pushed through the throng until I could touch one of the high bases. Emotion got over me and I began to sob. Guinness Cavaliers and Bobby Mohamed did that to me In 1967 and again in 1969. What do Bobby and Duvone Stuart have in common? The recognition that Panorama is not a music festival. It is about drama, sweetness, and melody. By the way, cavaliers ought to have won in 1969. Only two other greats had that magic touch— Junior Pouchet and Hugh Borde.
It is no coincidence that Renegades this year sound almost exactly like Pan Elders, that forgotten band in San Fernando that is able to compete with any of the north bands toe to toe.
Interesting commentary. History does not validate that the "Voice of the people is the Voice of God" The multitude cried out for the Crucifixion of Christ, Hitler's rise to power was a populist movement along with the Fascist Movement of Mussolini in Italy which was also a popular movement. The crowd also forgets very quickly, if you were ask some of these folks what song did Despers win with 2 years ago they would not remember and that was regarded as a magnificent arrangement, one of the best. In the conversation must be listed some of Bradly's, Boogsie and Smooth Edwards arrangements. I celebrate Duvon but would stop short of crowning him King!!