Ulvin Belfast - Musician, Steelband and Calypso Arranger Passes Away

Global - Noted calypso songwriter, producer, teacher, musician and steel orchestra music arranger, Ulvin Belfast, passed away in Trinidad, W.I. on October 26, 2007.  Mr. Belfast worked with many of the top Calypsonians and was instrumental in many of the Mighty Sparrow’s hits as an arranger and performer.

Renowned arranger and musician Pelham Goddard remembers working with Belfast around 1972, when Goddard was in rehearsal with Art de Coteau for a forthcoming trip to St. Thomas, and Belfast was on hand for some of the artists who were part of the line up, and for whom he had written music. He is credited as one of the arrangers on productions of veteran Jamaican musician Bryon Lee, including Jamaica’s Golden Hits, Vols. 1 and 2.

Ulvin Belfast

Additionally, Belfast worked with Carl ‘Beaver’ Henderson, Baron, Virgin Island’s King Styler and Antigua & Barbuda’s King Short Shirt, among others. The illustrious musician was also known as the arranger for New York’s Silhouettes Steel Orchestra in the early 1990s, and instructed youths in the art of playing the steelpan instrument within the New York City public school system, where he served as a music instructor.  

When Steel Talks was told that Belfast was laid to rest four days later on October 30, after his October 26 passing.

Click to hear New York’s Silhouettes Steel Orchestra’s performance of Ulvin Belfast’s 1994 Panorama arrangement.


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