Steel Pan Jazz Festival

Beez Neez now Chy Whella
Big Bear and Pepe Millard
Fri 2 Oct 2009 22:34
Trinidad and Tobago Steel Pan and Jazz Festival
We decided that a chance to go to a show at the Queen's Hall was too good an opportunity to miss. We went with Jesse knowing the theatre had great acoustics and air-conditioning. A good excuse to see if I could take pictures at a distance, in half light with no flash. Little did we know what a fabulous night lay ahead. The festival was over three nights and we went to the final night expecting something special.
Pan Jazz formerly known as "Pan Royale", the T&T Steelpan and Jazz Festival has now been established as the world's premiere music showcase that presents a musical conversation between two unique artistic expressions that were born and nurtured out of the particular experiences of African people in two distinct environments of the New World, that is, North America and the Caribbean Archipelago. The mix of New Orleans and Cuban Jazz Royalty with the legendary genus of the steelpan and the fusion is fresh, funky and wonderful.
Blue Culture
Blue Culture were our first treat. This young group was made up of: Karl Doyle - Drummer, Jabari Fraser - Bassist, Mikhail Salcedo - Tenor Pannist, Venezuelan Simon Mendoza - Pianist and Anthony Woodroffe Jr - Saxophonist and Flautist. On other occasions they are joined by Modupe Onilu - Percussionist and Timothy Newton - Vocalist. Tonight they had a guest guitarist.
Blue Culture are a local Calypso-Jazz band led by twenty five year old Karl Doyle, a drummer and former member of the QRC Jazz Band. Formerly known as Blue Notes, the band has been playing around the popular joints of Port-of-Spain such as Corner Bar and on the Greens in St Augustine. Doyle says "Our music evolves; we refer to what we play as a new Caribbean music". We didn't mind what type the music was called it was really very good.
Next was Alexis Baro a 2005, 2006 and 2007 nominee for Best Trumpet Player at the National Jazz Awards, co-winner of a Juno award and recipient of a Gemini Award for a live television performance with the band Kollage. He has performed with Paquito D’Riviera, David Foster, Andreas Bocelli, John Secada, The Temptations, Hilario Duran, NOJO, CaneFire, Alex Cuba, Son Ache, David Rudder, Kollage, Cassava, Ruben Vazquez, The Puentes Brothers and many more. He is the featured trumpeter on Canadian Idol for the past three seasons. Most recently he opened for Herbie Hancock at the Ottawa Jazz Festival and thrilled an audience of over 10,000 on the main stage at the 2008 Montreal Jazz Festival. “From The Other Side” is the title of his CD. It’s an aural exploration that takes the listener on a journey that starts in Africa with the hypnotic spiritual rhythms of the batá drum who’s origin dates back some 500 years ago from the land of Yorùbá in Nigeria. Their messages of inspiration come alive in Baro’s new modern Cuban-style Latin jazz compositions. The title “From The Other Side”, refers to his Cuban musical roots and his most recent influences since living in Canada. Performing and recording in a variety of styles he has gained an affection for the North American “groove”. The sounds of Blues, Soul, R&B, and Funk are all paid tribute on his latest offering with some new original funk-jazz creations.
Aexis Baro has an amazing talent. "From the other side" will be on my download list as soon as I get back to Beez.
The keyboard player had an amazing shock of red hair. The rest of the band all took solo numbers and were all first class musicians.
After the tea break came the world famous All Stars we have now seen a few times. The first piece was taken from the Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves accompanied by a full choir. Next a soloist sang Heal the World. Then they were joined on stage by a dance troupe.
The All Stars finished with one of their favourites called Carnival.
The band have toured Australia, Barbados, Bermuda, Canada, China, France, Ghana, Guyana, India, Jamaica, Nigeria, Puerto Rico, Scotland, St Maarten, the UK and the USA. They have one of the largest repertoires in the land. Also the most played piece of steelband music in the world today is their "Woman on the Bass" arranged by Leon "Smooth" Edwards. All Stars is still today not only the oldest but the most feared band in any competition.






Steelband Music Festival – 1st Place


BOMB – 1st Place
Tour – Madison Square Garden in New York


Steelband Festival – 1st Place
BOMB – 1st Place
Carifesta tour to Guyana
People’s Choice – Panorama – 1st Place


Panorama – 1st Place
Tour – French Riviera - France


Classical Jewels I
Tour – Sarasota, Florida


Tour - Black Arts Festival – Nigeria, Africa


Classical Jewels II


Panorama – 1st Place
Steelband Festival – 1st Place
World Tour – United States, Canada, United Kingdom, China, India, France


Panorama – 1st Place
BOMB – 1st Place
Classical Jewels III


Panorama – 2nd Place
Steelband Festival – 2nd Place
Humming Bird Medal (Gold)


Panorama – 3rd Place
BOMB – 1st Place
Classical Jewels IV


Panorama – 2nd Place
Steelband Festival – 1st Place
BOMB – 1st Place


Panorama – 3rd Place
Classical Jewels V


Panorama – 1st Place
Steelband Festival – 2nd Place
Port of Spain City Council Award
Tour to the United Kingdom (Commonwealth Games)


Panorama – 4th Place
Classical Jewels VI


World Steelband Festival – 3rd Place


Tour to Jamaica in aid of University of the West Indies
Endowment & Development Fund
Classical Jewels VII


Tour to the United Kingdom


Visit to Puerto Rico for the celebration of the Official Birthday
of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II
Classical Jewels VIII


Tour to Barbados to raise funds for the needy


Panorama – 3rd Place
Completion of Pan Theatre


Panorama – 2nd Place
World Steelband Festival – 1st Place
Voices & Steel – Trinidad All Stars & The Marionettes Chorale


Voices & Steel – Trinidad All Sfars & The Marionettes Chorale


World Steelband Festival – 1st Place
Pan on ‘D’ Move Competition – 1st Place
Tour to Barbados


Tour to Ghana


Panorama – 3rd Place
Peoples Choice Winner – Panorama
Pan on De Road Competition – 1st place


Tour to Jamaica
Sunshine Award (Best Steelband recording 1998)


Tour to Barbados


Panorama North Zone – 1st place
Panorama – 2nd Place
Pan in the 21st Century – 1st place
Tribute to Sparrow – 1st place
Pan on De Road Competition – 1st place
Tour to Barbados
Tour to Australia


Panorama– 1st place
Panorama North Zone – 1st place
Pan in the 21st Century – 2nd place
Pan on De Road Competition – 1st place BOMB & Panorama Tune
Lord Kitchener Sunshine Award 2002


Panorama– 2nd place
Panorama North Zone – 1st place
Pan in the 21st Century – 2nd place
National, Northern Region and City Hall BOMB competitions – 1st Place


Panorama– 2nd place
Pan in the 21st Century – 1st place
Northern Region and NCC J’Ouvert BOMB competitions – 1st Place
Pan on The Road Competition – 1st place Downtown & Q.P.S.
Clash of Steel People’s Choice Winner


Celebration of 70th Anniversary
Tour to Canada


Trinidad & Tobago Panorama People's Choice Winner
J’ouvert Bomb Competition Winners
Medium Mas Band of the Day - Carnival Monday
Steelband of the Day – Downtown & Uptown Tuesday
Tour to Barbados
Tours (2) to New York, USA
Tour to Antigua


National Panorama Champions
J'ouvert Bomb Competition Winner
Pan on the Move Winner (Tuesday)
Band of the Day (Monday - Medium) - Downtown & QPS


National Panorama 1st Runner Up
J'ouvert Bomb Competition Winner (NLCB)
J'ouvert Bomb Competition Winner Pan Trinbago North Zone)
J'ouvert Bomb Competition Winner (Frederick St)
Best Playing Steelband (Tuesday, Piccadilly Greens)