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Caribbean Music Standout Pelham Goddard Celebrated with Sesame Flyers Steel Orchestra at Steelband Extravaganza

A Thesis in Growth, Development and Success


Bildersee Beacon Dancer

New York - To expect success, one must experience success.  And in this regard Sesame Flyers International (SFI) has created the foundation and vehicle where their young people can experience the phenomena of accomplishment and progress.  And every two years Sesame Flyers hosts its Steelband Extravaganza production to showcase their young people’ progress.

  There is nothing that validates a vision, a plan and campaign like success.  And in this regard the community of central Brooklyn was treated to a very special moment when the aspirations, investment in people, resources and time come full circle and manifest in a celebration of that triumph.

Sesame Flyers held their 2008 steelpan Extravaganza this past Memorial weekend.  A musical extravaganza it was, as it featured some of Brooklyn, New York’s finest music talent.  On the card were New York champions Sonatas Steel Orchestra, Steel Sensation, Sesame Flyers Steel Orchestra and special performances by panist Andy Akio and Caribbean music giant Pelham Goddard.

Sonatas Steel Orchestra

The show by default showcased Sesame Flyers’ commitment to the sustaining and development of culture, youth and community.  This event was particularly special as it brought the spotlight to not only the Sesame Flyers youth but also to the musicianship of Pelham Goddard.  Mr. Goddard performed on keyboards together with Sesame Flyers Steel Orchestra on a few selections.  Sesame Flyers’ focus in this event was facilitating the presence and acknowledging the greatness, of Mr. Goddard and his iconic stature.

Luckily for the steelpan, calypso and educational communities, SFI has remained constant and committed to documenting these historical performances.  Sesame Flyers International has a keen understanding of the historical and educational benefits of holding and capturing these events.  Basement Recordings was brought in to capture the event by producing a DVD.   The event is definitely an historical  footnote in New York steelpan history.   One can expect the final product of this production to be a quality product.

Pelham Goddard on keyboards

Pelham Goddard is now the resident arranger for Sesame Flyers Steel Orchestra.  Sesame Flyers acquired a goldmine in signing Mr. Goddard, as in addition to his many fine qualities, he is a natural educator and a live piece of calypso and steelband history.  Pelham Goddard is currently charged with raising the musicianship and performance level of the young orchestra.  In only one year with the organization the musical outlook, expectations and performance level of Sesame Flyers Steel Orchestra have improved greatly.  The New York steelband musical landscape has changed with the inclusion of Mr. Goddard in the Sesame Flyers International organization.

His quiet demeanor usually conceals Pelham Goddard’s awesome musical accomplishments.  As quietly as it is kept, Mr. Goddard is the author of some of the most memorable and powerful songs out of the Caribbean.  In addition, Pelham Goddard is the resident arranger of the World Steelband Music Festival champion Exodus Steel Orchestra who rank as one of the best music organizations in the world.  Pelham has contributed greatly to the shaping of Calypso, Soca and Steelpan music as we know it, penning some of the greatest hits for the likes of David Rudder, Superblue and Calypso Rose to name a few.  Who has not heard of the “Hammer,” “Dust In Yuh Face” or “Savannah Party?”

Sesame Flyers Steel Orchestra

And of course his arranging talents brought us Caribbean music classics and Carnival Road March winners like: “Tempo” (Calypso Rose);  “Soca Jam” (Calypso Rose);  “Soca Baptist” (Superblue);  “Ethel” (Superblue);  “Rebecca” (Superblue);  “Bahia Girl” (David Rudder);  “This Party Is It” (Tambu);  “Free Up, Free Up” (Tambu);  “No No, We Ent Going Home” (Tambu);  “Get Something and Wave” (Superblue);  “Wine on Something” (Superblue);  “Bacchanal Time” (Superblue) among many others.

A critical component of Sesame Flyers International is the continued development and  building of bridges between other successful organizations within their communities.  Their steelband extravaganza event not only showcased Sesame Flyers’ accomplishments and success of it’s youth development and educational programs, but also the success of the other performing organizations.

On the steelband panorama front – under Pelham Goddard – Exodus has placed in the first three positions, a remarkable fifteen times in the last seventeen years in the panorama, the most prestigious steelpan music competition in the world.  Indeed, performing on the greatest stage with this type of consistency is tribute to his talent and commitment to excellence.  Now, Pelham has brought this same expectation to Sesame Flyers.

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