*** 20th Anniversary: 2004 to 2024 ***

I Love Pan

Tough music

Tough music

The huge steel orchestras of the Caribbean are a force to be reckoned with. Playing popular and current hits, modern and old time calypso, soca and reggae the artists energetically beat out the rhythm and the melody with amazing synchronization.

Like a traditional orchestra, the conductor assists with movements of his stick and the gleeful musicians move with an expert fluidity, sometimes delicately tapping their drums and sometimes battering with full force. The Steel Pan is truly a cultural phenomenon of the West Indies - showing the determination of the people to make music.

From the lone pan player at a funeral to the hundreds strong full orchestra at a festival or road march, the steel pan exhibits many different moods. My all time favourite piece to hear from a steel orchestra is "The Flight of the Bumblebee". Classical pan is fantastic.

It's exciting to see the pan moving into the international arena - I'd advise anyone who gets the chance to try it.

Barry's Response - Flight of the bumblebee. That's a good one! I'd like to give that a whirl.

We have recently added Sir Duke by Stevie Wonder and that instrumental passage is proving to be quite a challenge.

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