Everything Related to the Steelpan Instrument and Music
The New Visionaries Pan Foundation has in its possession a list of Two Hundred Plus Trinidad and Tobago Steelbands which have become defunct for various reasons. These steelbands existed as far back as the early 1940’s. This list was compiled by one of our Directors Keith Simpson, and it was commissioned by The Arch Bishop of Pan, Dr. Pat Bishop before she passed. May her soul rest in peace.
Some of our defunct steelbands named here are: Atomic of Arima, Black Swan of San Juan, Boom Town of Tacarigua, Concrete Yard of Curepe, Empresarios Scarborough of Tobago, Lucky Jordan of Tobago, just to name a few.
Given the worldwide spread of our Trinidad and Tobago nationals who are true Pan Aficionados, and who were affiliated with these steelbands and the Pan movement of that era, the Foundation thought it prudent to present and post for discussion on WST forum, "Steelbands which have passed" from as far back as the 1940’s. It might be necessary to name the location of the panyards, as duplication of steelband names are very possible. What do you say Pan people?
Isn't Wonderland from Chaguanas still in Existence, I think so,
Claude...ah bet when u started this '' Snow Ball"" u didnt think it would have turned in to an''Avalanche'' i love it pan history...lets keep it going.
Does the Maraj Kids qualify as a steelband?
Please add Serenaders (Red Hill Morvant) ,Teenage Serenaders (Morvant Avenue Morvant) and Stardust (Taporite Street Morvant)
The Raymond family was a small group aka The Klim Kids.
No historical documentation of the development of the steel pan in Trinidad & Tobago can be considered complete, if we do not look at the development that occurred in every nook and cranny of these two blessed islands.
How the rise and demise of many steel bands contributed to the development we see today is also critical to the story in this journey.
Pat Bishop [Witco Desperadoes/Republic Bank Exodus] conceived this project during her tenure as head of the Carnival Institute which was then based at the Hotel Normandie. When it came to our local culture, Pat was always thinking out of the box. The Institute is now headed by Kim Johnson – writer, historian, researcher and cultural archivist.
It was Pat’s expressed desire to compile a PAN ENCYCLOPEDIA, which would document every steel band in Trinidad & Tobago, both current and defunct. This encyclopedia would provide the historical data on each band – including the name[s] of their captain[s]/manager[s]/leader[s], arranger[s], tuner[s], as well as locations of their pan yards.
Pat Bishop expressed this desire to Keith J A Simpson [Director – New Visionaries Pan Foundation] in his interactions with her at the Institute. This prompted him to begin research on the project. He consulted books, documents, spoke to elders of many steel bands, since a lot of the information to be gathered is not recorded anywhere.
WHEN PAT BISHOP LEFT THE CARNIVAL INSTITUTE, THE PROJECT DIED.
It is truly fantastic to see the interest generated on this project with its posting on the New Visionaries Facebook Page well as the WST Forum [When Steel Talks]. There is an urgent need for this project to come to fruition in honour and memory of Pat Bishop.
We must source all available historical data on these steel bands documenting their impacts, not only on the history and development of our national instrument but also on the communities in which they are/were located. This encyclopedia will help to provide answers to the ongoing debates about the invention of the steel pan.
Presently, most historians cite 1939 as the year of its invention and Alexander’s Ragtime Band as the first steel orchestra.
Fedo Blake and American Stephen Steumpfle must be cited for their efforts at recording the history of the steel pan. We must also cite and thank Jeremy de Barry [www.seetobago.org] for his current compilation of the steel bands of Trinidad & Tobago, both current and defunct.
We invite all members of the pan fraternity, locally, regionally, internationally, to share their knowledge/information on any steel band [especially those that are listed as defunct] on the NVPF Facebook page or the WST Forum so that we can achieve Pat Bishop’s dream of the Pan Encyclopedia.
The NVPF publicly thanks Mr. Claude Gonzales for pursuing with such vigour, the compilation of the bands, in alphabetical order, from the information given my interested foreign nationals as well as true pan lovers on the WST Forum.
The suggestion to appoint a committee to pursue this project and you offer to assist as a member is welcomed. Hopefully we will be able to have a planned conference/meeting on the documentation of the data acquired on this project.
Someone, I think it was Val, suggested that the Panorama was responsible for keeping the steelbands alive. Well, my question is, how many of these bands were formed and existed because of Panorama?
I would bet that the vast majority of these bands were formed for the main purpose of the road on Carnival day.
And btw, someone say People's Music of Marabella.
Glenroy, a lot of these bands were BEFORE panorama.
I know for a fact that Morvant Ebonites from inception was formed to play in fetes and on the road for carnival and only participated in the Panorama on one occasion playing Sparrow's tune Carnival Bacchanal, arranged by the late Knolly Bobb
A lot of steelbands were formed and did not take part in Panorama,
Marabunters was not a steel band, but instead a gang playing "Marabunters" a "Mas" mimicking "AFRICAN ANT'S", JOHANNESBURG FACINATORS and the band FACINATORS is one and the same, they place second in the 1962 quarter finals, beating "North Stars" to third place, Desperadoes won that quarter finals...
I was also thinking, I never hear bout ah steelband name Marabunters, I know them from the labass rioting against despers and tokyo, and Facinators is the band from St Joseph Road playing fancy sailor mas,