PanOnTheNet Radio Sweeping
Gets An "A" Grade..
New York - November 1, 2004
The all-steelpan music show Cool Steel is a monster hit with the Caribbean college/university community worldwide. Program director Tom Whiteman admits that the college students were a logical target of the PanOnTheNet PanRadio programs because of the wide availability of the internet among university students. "We knew we had a hit on our hands" says Whiteman. "Moreover the experimental nature and wide varying taste of the college students makes PanOnTheNet a logical choice and definite draw for the high school and college community."
Indeed, Cool Steel usually heard on Fridays on www.PanOnTheNet.com is riding the crest of the soaring, partially self-created new interest and popularity in steelpan music on the internet. Panonthenet.com states, that while there has been enormous growth across the board in visitors to Pan Radio, the most substantial growth has occurred with ".edu (educational) organizations." Almost immediately the show had established itself among regular pan music patrons. But this new surge among the .edu organizations suggests that Cool Steel is tapping into a young new market that is technology-savvy and constantly searching for diversity and something fresh.
Cool Steelhosted by DJ Decy is a great source of music to study with. Fans have become fanatical with support. "A natural by-product of the show is that a lot of people are becoming hip to the wide variety of steelpan music that's available out there." The bands and musicians are getting lots of gigs on the campuses and not only with Caribbean activities. Whiteman also say's that he expects to see a dramatic increase in the sales of recorded steelband music as result of this huge movement at the university level. A lot of the kids play in bands in the summer and when they return to their campuses they tune in to PanRadio on PanOnTheNet. Another result of the interest is that listeners are turning their friends on to PanRadio, and they start listening in and in turn are getting hooked on the music and sound of the instrument. "It's a very different sound you know, instrumental pieces."
In addition to US colleges, PanOnTheNet's PanRadio is very big in Europe and Japan. "Our biggest challenge right now is to provide enough shows to keep up with the demand. For many of the listeners, PanRadio is the very first time they have ever heard the instrument in this forum. Cool Steel showcases the lighter side of steelband music, venturing into light jazz through soulful ballads. The musicians cover and touch every part of the world; we have a truly global audience that is multicultural."
"Cool Steel and the regular PanRadio format are a hit because we are different and don't subscribe to a play list or rigid format. We provide the listeners with a pleasant surprise and learning expertise on every program."
The show covers many genres of music from soul to jazz to reggae to rock. It is the nature of young people to discover something new, and appreciate a means to define themselves with something that is unique to them. PanOnTheNet's PanRadio seems to have struck a vital chord in this area - worldly and international flavor.
The advertising and promotional power of the Cool Steel show was demonstrated when a near-capacity audience attended a Pan Jazz show this past June in Alice Tully Hall, at Lincoln Center, New York. It was the first show of its kind ever at Lincoln Center, headlining only steelpan artists -Garvin Blake, Liam Teague, Andy Narell and ADLIB. Furthermore, the highly successful steelpan music event was promoted primarily on PanOnTheNet. The music performed by the show's artistes is just part of the Cool Steel format that has been in constant rotation on since the program's November 2003 inception.
At least two shows - current and/or archived - are available "at the click of a mouse," 24.7 - from any part of the world. "Our listeners tell us that 'this [PanRadio] is what they've been waiting for, a show with only steelband music!' They've also said that they wish they could have a new show everyday! Between Cool Steel and the regular PanRadio shows, they're in steelpan heaven".
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