The Demise of the Steelband Panorama - and the Possible Solution

An opinion

by Nestor Sullivan - Manager
Pamberi Steel Orchestra

Provided with the expressed permission of: the Author

Trinidad & Tobago 2010 Panorama

Global - This year, 2010, steelbands in England participating in the Panorama at the Notting Hill Carnival, played for free. That is, the bands received no monies for appearance fees or for prizes. It is reported that this was due to the economic melt-down now being experienced in that country.

In neighbouring Grenada and St. Lucia there were no steelband Panoramas this year. In both cases the lack of appropriate funding silenced the orchestras.

At the Panorama in Toronto’s Caribana celebrations, the bands have been playing for ‘bragging rights’ and little or no money for the past few years. It is anyone’s guess how long this will continue. Miami has now wiped out Panorama completely from the diary of carnival events in that city.

One can even predict that in a year’s time there may be another casualty. St. Vincent 2010 Panorama attracted more pan players than audience, we can only hope for the best and fear for the worst here.

The remaining ‘safe’ Panoramas are: Antigua and Barbuda; Barbados; Brooklyn Labour Day weekend (New York Panorama), and Trinidad and Tobago, where it all started almost fifty years ago.

The major problem in all of the above, including the ‘safe’ ones, is appropriate funding. The economic melt-down is taking a heavy toll on steelbands in all these affected territories. The purpose of this piece is to examine this trend of the global demise of The Steelband Panorama and to make some suggestions for its sustainability.

London Notting Hill Carnival

Ebony Steel Orchestra
UK Champion Steel Band

The Greater London Authority (GLA), the funding agency for the Carnival, informed the British Association of Steelbands (BAS) that the melt-down has forced them to cut their annual grant for the 2010 Panorama. This grant was cut from 150,000 to 30,000 pounds, a decrease of eighty percent (80%). It was at the very last minute the bands decided to proceed with the Panorama after much uncertainty. There were only seven bands in the competition this year.

The Voice newspaper (London) has stated that the Notting Hill Carnival generates 93 million pounds in revenue to the coffers of the city. This figure was also given by cultural researcher Dr. Keith Nurse in a document published online.

It stands to reason that there must be a problem in the accounting if there is a profit of that size - and the same city is cutting panmen’s money by 80 percent.

It is the same steelbands that started this Notting Hill Carnival that is now dubbed “The largest street festival in Europe;” it attracts close to 2,000,000 spectators over two days. The profits of their labour are now enjoyed by: airlines and shipping companies; rail and bus companies; hotels and guest houses; food and beverage companies; the pubs and restaurants and other services.

The ‘little’ that the BAS was getting was taken away, while these businesses are booming and they are smiling...“all the way to the bank.”

Toronto Caribana

When I visited that Carnival in 2008 there were some noises of discontent with the money paid to the bands for Panorama. The panmen complained that the grant for preparation was too small and the prize money was insignificant.

Thousands of people flock to this city for these celebrations, millions of dollars are made and steelbands play for almost ‘nothing.’ Dr. Nurse is quoted as saying that Caribana generates more than $200,000,000 to the city’s coffers. Again the business sector is smiling while the steelbands are suffering.

The Trinidadians and other West Indians made this carnival the profit-making machine it is today. They have struggled for years to keep this tradition alive in this city against real odds. Pan people and others “mind the goat”...and somebody else...“drinking the milk.”

The Caribbean

The Panoramas in Grenada and St. Lucia were cancelled this year because funding was not available from their respective governments. No one can say for sure, what will happen in the years to come. Those national economies are under real pressure and the future of this event looks grim.

In both St. Vincent and Antigua/Barbuda the Panorama is lacking audiences. Of all the pre-carnival shows the Panorama is the least attended in both territories. Other activities like Soca Monarch have overtaken the Panorama by leaps and bounds.

Brooklyn Labour Day (New York Panorama)

It was reported that dozens of police cars descended on the panyard of the defending champion band Sonatas the night before the Panorama. The report stated that the police went to inform the band that they must end practice by ten o’clock.

There was a great panic at the Crown Heights panyard when dozens of armed, uniformed officers of the NYPD charged into the area to deliver the message. The unsuspecting people, made up mainly of pan players, their relatives, friends and supporters, could not understand the reason for this massive ‘show of force.’

One eyewitness to these remarkable events noted that... “because it was a group of black people of mainly Caribbean descent, the police treated the matter so militarily. The truth is that no real threat was made to the community, no one at the Panyard that night had terrorist intentions, no one there had plans to rob and kill. They were there to see their children, grand children, nieces, nephews and friends practice an art form that is indigenous to their Caribbean roots.See more

ny siege
Countless NYPD officers take up assault position outside of Sonatas Steel Orchestra's Pan yard - (photo: Adrian Lovell)

In spite of this gross intimidation marshalled by a seemingly uncaring city and executed by an aggressive police force...Sonatas won the competition the following night... Congratulations to them!!

Sonatas' get ready for their winning 2010 New York Panorama performance
NY Champion Sonatas Steel Orchestra

The West Indian American Labour Day Carnival generates more than $300,000,000 to the businesses and the city of Brooklyn.

This is [in spite of] the treatment meted out to the champion steelband by the same city.


The questions that pose themselves now are... What will happen to Panorama in the future and what can be done to save this critical Carnival spectacle? In answer to the first question I will say that “the future of Panorama is in serious doubt in most of the territories and it could eventually die out completely.”

In all of the territories where there is Panorama they tend to follow the lead of Trinidad and Tobago (T&T). Our nationals dominate the technical side of most of these Panoramas, services like: arranging; tuning and blending; drilling the band; balancing the orchestra; setting up on stage. In the area of adjudicating the criteria for judging is the T&T model and the judges are mainly nationals of this country.

In fifty years we have transported this major steelband event to these territories where our nationals have settled. We have created a potential global industry in the process and we are now experiencing the rapid demise of the Panorama, the biggest event on the global steelband calendar.

In Trinidad and Tobago carnival generates profits of more than $600,000,000 to the state and the business sector. These two national institutions that benefit from the carnival should be approached to secure a percentage of the said profits to the steelband movement.

The contribution can alleviate some of the difficult financial situations the steelband movement is facing now. The movement will be able to: pay prizes and appearance fees; complete the headquarters [of Pan Trinbago]; sustain year-round activities for the member bands; re-invest in the steelband industry; maintain and train the administrative staff; undertake more capital projects.


Trinidad and Tobago’s representatives to regional and international organizations like CARICOM [Caribbean Community], OAS [Organization of American States] and the Commonwealth, may want to present the T&T model of support for the steelband movement. We can present this position to the British government in support of the steelbands at Notting Hill Carnival who play for free and are openly exploited. We hosted the Commonwealth Summit last November. Let us use that goodwill that still exists, for the benefit of T&T culture in Britain.

CARICOM should be the first target group we should convince of our T&T model of Steelband Development through funding from the profits of carnival. In all the territories the role of the steelband was central to the beginnings, development and sustainability of the carnival.

Through the OAS and our embassies and consulates in those cities, we should approach the Mayors and the political leadership of Miami, New York and Toronto. All with one view, that is, to seek their support for the T&T model of steelband development in those cities.

Trinidad and Tobago will also have to convince the Mayor and political leadership of the City of New York that steel orchestras preparing for Panorama pose no threat to the safety and security of the city. On the contrary these music groups provide important community services especially in the areas of Youth Development, Music Education and Community Building.


It is now for Pan Trinbago, the world’s governing body for steelbands, to convene an urgent meeting firstly with the government and business sectors here in Trinidad and Tobago to come to an agreement on the Carnival Profit Sharing Plan. The next step is for us, as a country, to take this model of steelband development to the other territories.

Pan Trinbago should call another meeting with representatives of: the British Association of Steelbands (BAS); Ontario Steelband Association (OSA); United States Steelband Association (USSA); and the steelband associations of St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Grenada, Antigua/Barbuda and Barbados.

The agenda for this meeting should include other ideas for the development and sustainability of the Panorama in the respective territories. There is a critical need for the global Panoramas to get some sort of stimulus package. The steelbands are major contributors to the huge profits generated from Carnival.

As a country, Trinidad and Tobago can take the lead role in saving the steelband Panorama in the various territories where it is now under threat. The Profit Sharing Model is a possible solution, we can present it to all the countries concerned. This is the solution I am suggesting...

Nestor Sullivan,
Manager, Pamberi Steel Orchestra
Trinidad and Tobago

Replies to This Discussion

Interesting approach Nestor! The only way the politicians will listen is if the movement demonstrates political strength and this does not necessarily mean being part of a ruling party or parties. It means that the movement must demonstrate that it can mobilise political resources in such a way that it cannot be ignored.

In a capitalist environment do not believe that because you were initially responsible for a multi-million dollar industry those who make the profits are going to be grateful to you and accept moral responsibility for you eating a food. You must not only demand your share using morally strong arguments, you must be able to secure your share by the political argument of your strength. All else is illusion - spinnin' top in mud!
Greetings All,
The analogy to the beginning of the solution of these problems lay in two directions: One is realizing that Panorama is providing a product/scenario for revenue generation and must be compensated as an agent/provider of such; which means 15 to 25% off the top. Secondly the negotiator must have the interest of Steelband and Pan-people at heart. We all understand recession and things, but we must also have Dollars and "Sense"
Love, Respect and Unity, Breddren andSistren......Rico I
While we can feel sorry for ourselves, no one owes us anything. Over the years we have not challenged the systems in different parts of the world. We still elect leaders in our organisations based on friendly principles and not on the ability to get the job done. We in the movement still consider ourselves better than others Have we evolved whether we are in Trinidad and Tobago, England, USA, Canada or wherever there is PAN? If, in Trinidad and Tobago the birthplace of the PAN, where we are always begging, there is distrust and lack of accountability in most of the organisations. The pan fraternity still does not have offices of their own. It is quite clear that those in charge are settling for mediocrity We do not have RESPECT for ourselves and as a result, no one will have respect for us. We have to encourage steelbands to have strong roots going deep into the system, wherever we are, our trunk must be so wide and stout that whenever branches are formed, they will bear much fruit. To date we are unable to write the history of the steelband, all bands want to take credit, all tuners want to be first for developing a certain instrument Yet there people still around who in their limited knowledge can remember certain facts of their time. Nothing is been done in so many areas of our continued development. Sorry, this site is one of the most greatest improvements of the pan and panman, linking technology and the instrument. However, this has been developed out of Trinidad and Tobago, but CONGRATULATIONS on making a most positive move for the instrument. It would be nice if lots more information as the presentation by Oscar Pile be posted.I am deeply saddened by what took place in london, but everything went ahead as normal, so we know what to expect in the future.
Mr Nestor Sullivan I agree with most of the things you say, but having lived in England since the autumn of 1966, I know that local authorities and governing bodies understand only one thing. That is the importance of money.
The answer is simple, in my very parochial view. In the case of Notting Hill, which I have always said was hijacked by migrants with little or no experience of a Trinidad carnival, the only recourse would be to boycott the proceedings. Probably much harder to do than say but we have to understand, if an event contributes £100m (a very conservative estimate) annually, and you reduce the”Grant “ from £150000 to £30000 then one can only presume there is some major profiteering going on.
If I’m not mistaken on the 1 August 1838 the British Empire finally freed the slaves all be it 5 years after the Act of Parliament. Then why not refuse to participate until the Carnival and all its constituent parts are given a substantial share in the proceeds.
Withdraw the Mas, Steelbands and Calypso and Soca events and see how the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea get by. It can’t be for just one year either, after the first boycott. It should be left in a state of uncertainty so that no one knows whether to attend or not. Then they will sit up and take notice.
Nothing is ever achieved without some sacrifice and Trinis missing out on Notting Hill Carnival or a year or two is a small price to pay to ram home the point.
Believe you me when I say 2 million will not attend a Reggae Sound System festival on any day, let alone an August bank holiday in England, the last bank holiday before Christmas.

Randi S Curvan
Here in the UK, Panorama used to be the end of the steelband calendar. A time pan people could let their hair down and fete.
The big problem we have is that their is not much else to work towards.
No Festival, Very few blocko's. Gigs are really for solo and duo players.
I believe this is what happen's when you don't plan for the future. by now panorama should at least be 50% self funded,not kneeling down with a begging bowl asking big boss if we can have some money. Of course they are going to say no. As for all these pan organisations coming together to get us out of this crisis is a joke because they kind of put us here in the first place.

Randisc the one problem about pulling out of the carnival is this, it is quite apparent that carnival has been taken over musically by radio stations like kiss fm, choice fm and the BBC. Sadley it looks like they don't need us and don't want us
there is no easy solution especially with steelbands, the world is still in the dark about steelbands, the pan is making its way into the society at large but the steelband is still undiscovered teritory, it is a potentially viable industry but very hard to manage and promote, big bands on the whole are getting harder to market, however in my town they recently opened new venues for big bands and orchestras to hold concerts and festivals and the results is magnamious, there is money there but the problem is getting it on the agenda, we still keeping it in the box and like some church activities which remain in house with little or no responses we focus only on private events, panoramas is still something for pan players and pan lovers, and we need to broaden our scope, we do have a lot of cultural setbacks, our attitudes have not changed over the years, permit me to cross reference,where would boogsie sharp be if peter alleong, tardarth, mikey philips and others did not form Phase II,if birch did not recomend Jit Samaroo to renegades, if Bertie Marshall was discouraged when they told him he was "spoiling the pans" there is a lot of talent amongst us a lot unknown talent, we need to swallow our pride and consult with the people who are promoting pan and similar products outside of the trinbago circuit and not template them but consolidate with our ambitions,for example a lot of people want to get a hang drum that costs $5,000 with a 2 year waiting list, as opposed to a $500-1500 pan, the hang people are reaching people easier than most of us, as much as some people detest panyard they are also reaching a broader base than we do, I once saw an American guy shake his head in a steel band panorama as he said "such a waste" it is sad.The demi god attitude needs to go, the pan world needs to find a location on the globe and enjoy the ride instead of trying to have the globe revolve around it, if so it will become the dog or cat chasing its tail --
sincerest apollogies comming back so soon , here is a brainstorm we are all on the internet, we have friends and fans, and we like pan or else we would navigate away from this page, so why don't each of us share at least 1 or 2 clips of steel bands once or twice a week, from you tube with some friends who not into pan on our various social network pages , Face book etc, I mean we have a lot of fantastic clips out there,
Mr. Sullivan.....

I thank you for this passionate and well researched overview of what is indeed a very serious situation. if we don't take control of our steelband heritage we will certainly loose it ...... and it is up to us, not them to address this situation.

In the UK, we sold out to the GLA when Clare Holder and others were ousted from the NH Trust leadership our Carnival is an embarassment to us and we are have made ourselves the laughing stock of ACE and GLA by demeaning our own values and standards......all they do these days is periodically scatter some public crumbs in our direction for us to fight over

Nobody among us is prepared to take responsibility ..... we have definitely got what we deserve. I await some meaningful movement in the direction of our reclaiming some self-respect in the eyes of these authorities. We have allowed them to walk all over us ..... so therefore I believe, if we are to recover some modicum of self preservation we will have to wake up and fight for it!

I am so sorry to rant ....and I am still to vexed about the whole situation to even start thinking about creating solutions that might address this malaise position we now find ourselves in

You speak well and your recommendations are good....but do our Caribbean governments really care about our culture.....steelband or otherwise ....most just pay lip service ...... can't we see that if we don't do something about this situation, no one else will.....and before we know it , we will have lost the best cultural pursuit that we ever had ..... and guess what..... no one will give a shit!
here here
Kudos for your informative and thought provoking article , Mr. Sullivan. You have obviously given a lot of thought to the subject matter, and have come up with some viable solutions.

I would like to add a few thoughts of my own.

One of the errors we make is trying to look at individual steelbands and steelband associations as potential stand alone business ventures capable of supporting themselves and generating revenue.

The steelband is capable of generating revenue, but it is not business.

It is art.

Art does generate revenue, but much of it is indirect, and not as easy to quantify. Consider for example how many people visit art museums, concert and opera houses and other places where art is appreciated.

Airlines, hotels, restaurants and municipalities all profit from these entities, profits which do not necessarily go to the artists.

The art forms are entitled to share in the revenue generated.

Apart from the art, the steelband is a community resource and should be supported as such by community and taxpayers.

These facts may not be as obvious to politicians and community leaders as one would think.

Comprehensive proposals including statistical evidence where possible need to be prepared and presented to office holders, elected and other community leaders.

They need to be advised of the role the steelband plays in the community , both in generating revenue and as a community asset; and of the need for community and taxpayers support.

Steelband members and their supporters number in the thousands, there is no reason why steelbands cannot effectively wield political pressure to sit at the table with the powers and be heard.

Incidents like the one at Sonata's pan yard need to be addressed at higher levels, not just discussed endlessly in this forum.

All art forms need sponsorship and community support to thrive.

In the international steelband community , there is a leadership vacuum.

Over the years, pan people have always wondered about the direction and future of pan. Well, "wey pan reach" in the future depends on what we do today.

Pan People worldwide are waiting and hoping that the parent steelband body, Pantrinbago will accept the challenge and assume the mantle of leadership.

If PanTrinbago cannot rise to the occasion , then leadership will have to come from elsewhere, say Europe, North America or even from places that are newer to the art form, like for example, Japan.

Fortunately, insightful leaders like Mr. Nestor Sullivan give us hope.
Very interesting article. However, I think Panorama may have to die for Pan to live. I think during Carnival Pan is not seen any where, but in the Panyard drilling. Just imagine for two or three months they are working on one tune that last only 10 minutes. Pan could be out there playing at different venues and making money. The big trucks make all the money. When Pan come on the road they can only play the Panorama tune. They are not prepared with any other tune. Its carnival, people want to hear pan. Pan is no where to be seen. Pan should greet people at the airport in Trinidad when you arrived. Pan should be at the parks, pan should be in the savanah, pan should be playing in schools, pan should be on the road. Maybe instead of panorama have the bands play two three tunes for less time. Many people come to tnt to hear and see that instrument called Pan, so lets not keep it in the panyard. They need to be out making money. Not just competing for one big price and still they are broke. Keep up the good work Mr. Sullivan
mr. joseph, i agree with you that pan is an art and that (unfortunately) art does not tend to be terribly lucrative. you've raised very important points in your response that i hope the powers that be will heed.

to mr. sullivan, as the editor of, i was very interested to read your article including the state of pan in antigua and barbuda. could you please contact me directly at our website would love to raise the profile of pan in the country and you're definitely the person to help us do so. cheers!
Goslet Piper, Panorama is such a bright light, it blinds us to its negative side effects.

Panorama has taken the pan out of Carnival. The only way for pan to have an impact at Carnival time is to move the panorama away from carnival, to a different time of year (in T&T).

Panorama has grown to the point where it can sustain itself without Carnival.

A Panorama festival at a different time of year should be a guaranteed success, and would allow the steelbands to devote their energies to participating fully in the carnival.

Bands should be able to cover a musical repertoire of enough tunes to compete with the DJ's. They may even re-focus on bringing out mas bands etc., without devoting all their time and energy to Panorama.

Masqueraders would support the steelbands if they were confident that they would provide a variety of music to keep them jumping.

Panmen are ingenious. They will figure new and better ways to present their music on the road to compete with the DJ's.

Bands could even compete with the DJ's by giving them a taste of their own medicine. Have their own powerful DJ systems.

Playing only pan music, of course.

But, hey I'm just dreaming.
glenroy you are not dreaming the first ever point fortin borough day did not have many bands but it was all about the pan and it was good next year every body wanted to be there it was out of carnival competition was just for show
Greetings Nestor some good ideas also some contradictions acknowledging that pan officials need training does the capacity to fulfill most of you initiatives reside within the organization or should a committee of forward thinking panmen like yourself be formed to treat with the issues you raised. Before I am accused of casting aspersions of the capacity of the officials please note it is a question and not a statement about the available resources, again nestor some very pertinent information and suggestions

PS > Somewhere in there the Birdsong Model for the development on the local steelband industry should be looked at with a view to its expanding the program.

Pan Man For Progress
Lennie ( STRETCH ) Tyson
Well done Nestor, a well thought out article and well articulated, also the contributions by the other distinguished and concerned writers. The solutions are also appropriate, of course there could be more. I would like to add my two bits.The new approach generally has to be based on Education. Beginning with our individual selves, bands, organizations and countries.We need to bring into our bands and organizations people who are professional in marketing and promotions. I am well aware of the situation in Trinidad & Tobago and Canada so my response will be based on these two places. Though Trinidad by far is doing more than any other country with the proposed 2 million package for 2011 panorama 1st prize. one can just put that into perspective......The new governmnet on the political platform announced that Panorama, Calypso, Soca, and Chutney winners will all receive a 2 miilion first prize.( I was in T&T when that announcement was made).....but please look deeper into that statement......Pan has been around for more than 60 years, Calypso a bit more than that ...Soca and Chutney less than two decades...yet they all get the same.......Pan is about 120 players ,...... Calypso, Soca, Chutney one individual. ....yet they all get the same. Yes we have to be grateful for receiving a 2 million dollar purse where as Nottinghill got "Zero" in 2010 and Toronto got just "Bragging Rights". and other caribbean islands a "No Show" but rightly pointed out unless the Pan organization in T&T does not rise to the occassion to spell out the facts...but they also need support from not only all Trinbagonians but from all of us nationals in the diaspora. I have said it before though I am not the first to say it but I will say it loudly again.... "WE NEED A MINISTRY EXCLUSIVELY FOR PAN" ......This is the only way that we can have our own agenda and our own budget to not only influence Pan in T&T but also the Caribbean and the rest of the world so join me and let us promote and market our T&T government for a ..."MINISTRY OF PAN" .....Let our thinking heads in the diaspora and back home come up with the pros and cons as to why ...we must today have our exclusive "Ministry for Pan"...some definite food for thought. If need be with all of you other Steelpan Activist like myself, I wish to propose that we form an organization dedicated for the realization of influencing the T&T Government of the day of the dire need of establishing a "MINISTRY FOR THE STEELPAN"...Economics drives everything, let us show the potential for revenue with the Pan internationally. Let us spread the steelpan education in all the public schools curicullum of the world. this would generate revenue, interest, and secure the pan culture for the future...ONLY AN EXCLUSIVE STEELPAN MINISTRY will be able to influence such a global change...but this is what is needed brothers & sisters of this Global Pan Movement ...I rest my case for the moment.
Salah you raised some very significant points. I hope people are not taken up with the 2 million dollar sound tag. It is an insult to the pan community to raise all the prize monies across the board to 2 million. It is simply a very clever way to disguise another agenda. This is something something I saw instantly when they first put it out. The crazy percentages of increase per genre and 'field' I worked out then are somewhere around on this board

Steel Pan playing has always been a grass roots activity. I am saddened by the economics around the world, however this is ONLY an expected setback. Its the kids we need to focus on now. Jim Rowland, 75 year young student of Hameed Shaqq.
what is needed to keep the bands playing after Panorama is more ways for the bands to make money Labour day carnival Monday or Tuesday if a band no that it can come on the road and make$ 50.000 to $ 100.000 dollars i bet you a lot of bands will be on the road no money few bands more money more bands
Mr. Sullivan

Your points are valid, but unless you, as the manager of Pamberi Steel Orchestra, is prepared to say that you and your organization will boycott Trinidad and Tobago's panorama in support of these other countries until they get proper recompense- this is just a whole lot of noise. Sorry, I'm not trying to be negative but we have to keep it real.
Have anybody on this page ever wondered if those young people who play in some of those bands ever get paid in the first place? I could tell you some stories about that.
Steelbands in England possibly know exactly why they played for free as when the money was good it was good. No one will advocate the boycutting on any Panorama until we have the right facts.
PANORAMA was the the mainstay of carnival for most of the years, but big mas as big buisness has wiped PAN out of CARNIVAL not Panorama. Not one of those bands who charge upwards of $3000n for a costume will hire a pan side they say that the "Masqueraders do not like it" they prefer the jam and wine of the big trucks
. Panorama will be MURDERED outside carnival as far as the tourists are concerned and people who make the pilgrimage to play pan. never mind about it being killed by carnival.
What do we say to the Pan fraternity in England do something all year round and then go to the arts council with something to speak about. If the arts council gets minimal funding then the money must be shared among the stake holders of carnival. No one is doing Pan down in England times are hard. I WILL NEVER BOYCOT PANORAMA for any of the reasons stated here. Let me inform all I attend Panoramas. Some bands still will not win whatever time of the year Panorama is held. There are also much better reasons for holding Panorama outside Carnival.
Greetings All,
I think its unfair to Nestor to be presented with such a question when the scenario for such action is not set. It then becomes a trap to determine that he is irrational. However, if all the steelband associations were under one head or had interlocking boards or committees, then we can see where and how such support could be rationalized and legitamized. And then the question will be reasonable and proper. So let's establish those linkages, and we would not need to talk down a brother or sister in seeking a solution for this problem. We must first come together then stay together. Unity, Reasoning and Understanding. Ras Rico I Ras Tafari
The question to Nestor Sullivan is very fair. Mr.Sullivan opened himself to such a question when he said that Pan Trinbago could play a leading role in the other panorama regions. Mr. Sullivan is a member of Pan Trinbago. Mr. Sullivan should answer the question.
Panorama has grown with Carnival. to have Panorama outside of Carnival is a very foolish thought that should never be entertained.The evolution of the steelband and Panorama became what it is now because of Carnival, its the most heralded event of the Carnival season, a lot of foreigners come toT&T mainly because of Panorama. Our Country needs tourists at Carnival, and Panorama draws them to land of the Panorama, the Land of the Steelband. This is our thing, if other Countries cant handle their Panorama, thats not our affair. We showed them the way, so if they are lost now that their affair. We cant sacrifice our Culture so that they can have a smooth running Panorama. 'No Way'!
It is not foolish, Mr Young, it is what is called "Thinking outside the box".

Your comments are exactly what I mean by being blinded by the light of Panorama.

Of course T&T Panorama is the premier steelband event, and that's why it could stand by itself and allow the steelbands to fully participate in Canival.

I assure you that the steelband participation in Carnival will be even greater, as it was in the old days. when you had pan on the road in numbers.

Remember when the road march was the tune that the steelbands played on the road?

You will still have your Bomb competition, best band on the road etc., and the bands will be stronger, having time to prepare for the road. instead of spending weeks practicing one tune for Panorama.

And what could be wrong with having two weeks of Trinidad Panorama in October after Labor day? You could include Pan in the 21st century, and have two great weeks of pan with little distractions.

It would the last and biggest pan festival of the year, or possibly the firsr of the new year.

I can assure you that pan fans worldwide would support it.. Carnival has its people, but so has pan.

And most importantly, it would keep the panmen busy for most of the year. During the boring months after carnival, Panorama will give them something to focus on, not to mention keeping the public attention on pan.

When Panorama is over there will be enough time for the bands to properly prepare to compete with the DJ's on the road.

It is always difficult to make changes from the established way of doing things, but sometimes change is necessary and beneficial.

Com on, guys, don't dismiss new ideas without at least giving them some thought.
Some of your points are well taken, but one critical element in this discussion has to be where does children fit into all of this. Please note that a very high percentage of pannist now performing in panorama are of school age. So with that it mind, is it in their best interest to have so many different pan-related competitions during the year. Will this not compete for time which really should be spent on their lessons.
On the question of a boycott of panorama at home in support of another country's panorama, that is an un-fair expectation. It is like asking doctors in China to go on strike to support American doctors who are on strike. It is absurd. The advocates of this idea do not have a clue as to what struggles the other countries are having with their individual Panoramas. Case in point, ANTIGUA. After years of panorama support and excellence, second to none but Trinidad, panorama was all but wiped out. We have been really struggling for years. Panorama has dwindled to a mere five bands total. These bands are all about 100 strong and they compete for a mere $20,000 EC. This sum is at best 25% of the cost of putting a band on stage. The past two years have seen a resurgence in support of panorama. The different communities are begining to come out and once again support their band in panorama. Basically, we are in a re-building mode. Now tell me, is it really to our best interest to be boycotting our local panorama in support of anyone? Would this not be totally counter-productive?
Foy if you can only think and see from a local perspective, then that is all you will ever be - a struggling local operation. What you should be thinking is how does Antigua pan become part of a viable strong global venture. The NBA is playing a few of their preseason games in Europe. Why is that?

Black America boycotted and demonstrated against companies that supported apartheid in South Africa for years. Were they wrong to do so?

In a time when everything has gone global you are afraid of boycotting something by your own reporting that does not make economic sense.

Given China's financial, economic and military might maybe you should rethink calling anything China supports as using your words "absurd".

Mr. Bugs, you really need to re-read my commentary and grasp what I said. It seems that in your haste to shoot me down you totally missed my point. Please let me simplify for you. If one does not know what other bands are facing in their respective countries, then it is totally unreasonable for anyone to expect them to boycott their own panorama. Boycotting your local panorama would have absolutely NO BENEFIT TO ANYONE in a different country. Reason being, panorama are all individually controlled. If there was one GLOBAL GOVERNING BODY that controlls ALL panoramas, then and only then would a boycott be effective. A boycott in multiple countries could potentially bring them to their knees.
As far as pan becoming what you refer to as a viable strong global venture, that is nothing but a pipe dream. Pan is still in its infancy, a mere sixty-odd years old. There are other music genres that have been around for hundreds of years and have not achieved this. Reason being the logistics of accomplishing this is prohibitive. We are talking of something on the scale of the UNITED NATIONS, THE WORLD BANK OR THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATIONS.
The reference to China was not a real case. It is called an analogy. It is where one compares things that are similar in principle.
Mr. Barns

A pipe dream is simply something that is beyond the ability of someone to comprehend or to make a reality. That would be your personal issue. Instrumental music, which is what most steel orchestras play has been around for a few hundred years. The pan is older than the modern synthesizer, the cell phone, rap music, reggae, the ipod, ipad and iphone to name a few. The connection is simply marketing - the ability to make people connect with a product.

Mr. Sullivan was very clear in pointing to Pan Trinbago as a lead organization under which all steelpan activity would fall under. There are generations of pan players now. Pan is quite mature. Furthermore, the music business has been around for centuries.

There is nothing similar in the China/doctors to pan analogy. Not having doctors around is potentially life threatening. Not having pan around is unpleasing but not life threatening.

All of this is besides the point and silly. The question is what sort of sacrifices are pan people willing to make to achieve a sustainable business model globally.

Whilst all these ideas are good I think the youth have to be seriously taken into consideration. I myself because playing the instrument at age 17 and over the years there has been an influx of youth flocking into Pan Yards. The instrument interest them and they produce exception talent, however noticeable the same way the youth involvement has been tremendous stage sides have been dwindling. So much so that many major steelbands have been affected as a result of their membership no longer being able to sacrifice long nights of practice as before. Part of the reason is that in a developing world with technology and lots educational opportunities and entertaining nightlife interests and priorities have shifted for the youth. Many complain of having evening class and studies withing recent times some young people have changed careers, many young women have young babies and families etc. Twelve years ago when I started their were not as many night clubs and night activity as exists current that to is a major fact.

I raise this to say people plan but the reality is at least sixty percent of the membership of most steelbands throughout Trinidad and Tobago are young people between the ages of 10 to 30, even the members of school bands are the same major reconised bands. Most play for recreation and the monies being offered at the carnival season something more attractive needs to be done to encourage these players to continue playing the instrument out of the carnival season with the exception of the Students studying music and the instrument as a career. You may not agree but its just an observation. Give the youth more meaningful involvement not just use to play ah pan kinda thing.
Time for either Pantrinbago or another INTERNATIONAL Pan association to step forward with some serious long-term plans. There are pannists, and supporters of pan worldwide that need to get on board and make Steelpan as organized as any other instrument out there. Its time for Steelpan to become more of a household word than household "huh". We need a year of planning a Global Pan Expo's - Get the assistance of some major international artists - and major International sponsors - take into consideration ALL forms of media available and Bands available Internationally, I've read on this very site of major artists involved in or playing with steelbands or pannists but its always in a certain city - with a certain band and then you hear no more. I'm speaking from a marketing standpoint. I hear of Pantrinbago's education initiative in Trinidad - but what about a global pan initiative - its left to the bands outside TNT to figure out how to encourage the educational institutions within their respective countries, cities and towns, (this is a very slow process) but from what I read TNT has historical data regarding pan in education and as community youth initiatives, what about these initiatives globally. We are fortunate to have some extremely important key Pan people that are still alive to tell their story, (tuners, builders, arrangers) the people to made pan what it is now. I write this because I was fortunate to speak at length to a very successful Marketing executive, and I picked his brain for about 2 hours regarding Pan. The first thing he told me was "your main organization need to stop thinking small" and he gave me the example "Cancer Research", he said when this organization began to think "global" they became successful, and that goes for any organization that is successful. Boycotting TNT panorama is a short-term action. We need global long term plans in order to get funds that will keep Panorama alive and well in any country that has one. Having the best bands in the world in TNT is a great thing - but we need the world to know that - not just the pan players. Think Big - Think Global.
The major issue with the International pan community is that is much like the Pan-African Council of the early 20th century, it is completely unaware of itself. Pantrinbago, if it wishes to truly consider itself the unifying core of the instrument around the world, needs to actively consider moving well beyond the scope of "panoramas and festivals". It needs to actually congregate, organize, meeting and consult with one another to discuss new ideas and eradicate the old ones. THIS IS THE ONLY SUCH FORUM and it was privately conceived and operated. Furthermore, (and I pose this to the WST faculty) organizations like Pantrinbago, USSA, NAS, etc., have yet to properly associate themselves with this forum despite it's obvious power and influence as a medium of communication and consolidation.

Admit it or not, the blaring fact of the matter is that the steelband movement has outgrown TNT. It is its birthplace, and a constant point of inspiration to builders, arrangers, composers and performers. But in order for it not to exist as a leader of pack, it must properly herald EFFECTIVE ambassadors and representatives abroad. I pray that Panorama does not have to be the aspect of the culture that must be crucified for the rest of the culture to be saved. Economics and politics will always be at play in the lives of human beings. It is our responsibility (if we genuinely give a shit) to navigate these streams and torrents so that at the end of the journey we will stand with our ship and crew intact. Currently, it seems that the players and musicians are in a crowded canoe, the band leaders are in a sinking yacht and the pan organizing are dead in the water and telling themselves "All we need is a strong breeze". WE ALL NEED TO GROW SOME BALLS AND SWIM!. If it didn't work the first 30 times it won't work now. We absolutely need to band together and consolidate our resources.

I believe the instrument and it's subsequent culture are beautiful. Especially as a non-trinidadian and non-west Indian part of the community, in the last 16 years of involvement, I've seen little change in (quite frankly) black, afro-Caribbean, afro-American communities where the instrument is most glorified. And that is a considerable amount of time in consideration of the 43 years of the most flamboyant, visible attraction of the steel band movement (Panorama). We need to tackle the politicians, purge the criminals, educate the young and learn from the elders. It is only in this way that we will be able evolve... not just "make more money, or be respected"... all of that is vain... The steelband movement must EVOLVE. Panorama should be a multi-million dollar event EVERYWHERE; no different from the NFL, FIFA, etc. Players, should be able to play in a backyard and conservatory without friction. Tuners should be inserted in schools all over the world. Arrangers/Composers should be invited constantly to give lectures all over the world...

These are my dreams. But consider that the Steelpan was the dream of a slave's son; charted to be under the boot of "Massa". I know where I come from and I refuse to return...

bravo sir. bravo!
I have to wonder at the perspective we all are currently using about the Steel Drum music. I have an idea that perhaps with the advent of the electronic drum that developement of pan music could take a place beside the piano. I was as a classical music lover impressed by the, note this, some of the classics like Mozarts Opus 21 (the elvira music) and moonlight sonata on the alto pans. My suggestion here is to encourage a broadening of the application of pans to music other than the Carribean root music which is often dismissed as merely amusing to people who are not familiar with the versatility of the musical instruement,( the soprano and alto pans especially) which is often at the same time dismissed as only of Caribbean culture derivatives. I have no wish to be either insulting or prejudiced by implication here. I was quite enchanted by the classical music I heard where pans were used to play intrepretations of the classical writings, without destroying the beauty of the pieces. I only wish I could play pans myself with that degree of adroitness. Jim Rowland.
you could not have said it any better
Khuent speaks a lot of truths. I hope the Trinidadian community will consider what he has written.
Pat S
Beautiful, well said. What you outlined is a great approach and one that i am ready to support and promote. This instrument is for he world and all of us must do what we can to help it onto the world stage.
Most of the contributors to this discussion has made some salient points, but it must be noted that Panorama is the only pan show that has such a very large following and audience locally and Internationally , no one can tell me of any other pan show that has such a following. If we think backwards thats where we would go backwards. The incentive that Panorama offers the bands has become very lucrative in T&T and its still growing. We must also remember because of Panorama we have discovered many young talented tuners, players and arrangers. We cant demonize the Panorama Competition, the amout of pans that are tuned also is inportant, there are many more instruments available because of Panorama. Many of our young people have travelled to various Countries with their steelbands because of Panorama. Its easy to find fault with something that works rather than try to improve on it. Panorama annually employs thousands of people, it also keeps many young people focused on something positive during the Carnival season. I can go on and on about the benifits of Panorama. Be wise and dont throw out the baby with the bathwater.We still have a long way to go with our pan. Let good sense prevail and let Panorama continue to grow!!!
I agree with your perspective of panorama as a magnet for the myriad traveling pannists. However, I think that it is important to note, that pan is addictive in an emotional and physiological way (specifically the effect of the harmonic and sonic interactions with the brain). As such, is it will be the habit of the addict to sate his/her addiction. So those with veracious appetites will travel (often to our financial detriment) abroad to play in whatever venue we are most welcome. Not only do we enjoy the aspect of germinating cross cultural musical intercourse, we get to connect to a primal state of community by sharing the experience with strangers (if at least strangers at first).

I agree that we shouldn't throw the baby out with the bath water... However, I believe that the baby (pannist) has been rinsed brackish, fecal-infested water (politics, robbery, in-fighting) so long that it refuses to look for the soap anymore. I say this to mean, that the reason Panorama is faltering is because it wasn't properly formulated to begin with.

Sidd... I somewhat disagree that pan competition began with Panorama. From my modest knowledge of pan history, Panorama became a "civilized" outlet for the "less-tempered" personalities to express the rivalries the previously held with cutlasses, bottles, whips and chains on the road. Pan has always been an entity of struggle and revolution. It has been an outlet, vent and most importantly MIRROR to those that have cherished it.
If you want to know the economic, political and/or Intellectual state of your community, LOOK TO THE STEELBAND THAT IT SUPPORTS!... I dare anyone you to disagree..

We can now shake hands in
One alternative is to develop a Players Panorama. This could be a talent competition showcased as a face-off between different sections of the steel orchestra. Just imagine, the 9 - Bass finals, that ought to be fun to watch!.
just a few hours ago I was asked by sevral persond about the pan , "what is it called?" I proudly said STEEL PAN, and the mother who was with her kids said is that P-A-N I said yes and she is an American, and did not ask me if ia said "P-O-N" I am headed somewhere with this the ignorant America will say he meant pan an in p-o-n, we fail to direct it so now the outside world is trying to direct it, she and others asked me how will I discribe this instrument and I told them it was more an inovation more than an invention, it was created by necessity, it is a steel pan not a plastic and other materiels pan, it still is the only new acoustic musical instrument to be invented in the 20th century, they made a similar tool for saxaphone players like the E pan and the Phi, and others, but they have not replaced the sax because it is not brass, it is a tool so sid and others that is not a pan, if somebody would build an electronic attachement to a real pan as they do with the electric acoustic and the electric bass and electric bass which uses real strings fret boards bridges etc and still is a stringed instrument, the current electronic devices are not pans and is a very good gear for pan players, will not further the movement into the fiscal and musical world, nothing wrong with panorama, it needs an overhauling, there are so many areas needs to be addressed in the movement, Kruent it has not moved out of T n t as a matter of fact it hasn't moved at all since the mid 1990's, musically we have lost our presentation we now have granulated pan just like the sugar too refined, no flavour, still sweet, after listening to you tube, it seems that the players are just hitting notes and only when some pieces play fast you get any real execution of songs,currently there is an identity crisis musically, it is just a jam session no expression, all the pannist that horse around with the Epan and the Phi are just trying to play fast meaningless phrases and there is little or no variety, except Duvone stuart, as fra as the ecconomic and promotional aspect, that is the real serious mess, on the outside you got a pan hustle instead of a business enterprise, and in TnT is still "rum and roti"too much arrogance, ignorance, back biting, bob ball, comess etc,since I have started sharing panorama videos most of my non trini friends, pan players etc have gotten the hots for panorama "when and where is the next one?" big question little answer,the small mindedness is just of the big setbacks. our movers and shakers are penny wise and pound foolish,whilst they line their pockets with loose change little entrepernauers are making inroads into non pan teritory the wrong ways,
big sands you are funny, a 9 bass finals lmao, but seriuosly one year they gave out prizes in certain areas like best dressed, best flag waver, best rythym section and the standards in those areas were lifted, I already suggested that the panorama be changed to a festival and have it like an awards night, and that night you have best tenor section best whatever section, best arrangement best, perfromance, best interpretation, the arguments will never be settled people argue on the basis of music mainly, but the contest is on several elements, plus the judges hear the band itself whilst the audience hears the sound system, which can make a difference, the players are fierce but not loving the music, I wish i had a tape of a new york panorama where you could hear a lady mouting the repeat of a part just after she shouted oh goooush! them days gone when panorama was an assult on the senses as Dalton Narine once described it, the hype still there, it is still in a small community, inspite of the large following of Jimmy Buffet, where a lot of people get to hear Robert greenidge it is still in a relatively small circle, we need to polish up on our presentation, if i were playing a timbales people would not bug me to try it, respect will make them resist, those who get lucky to see how pan is made usually have respect for it, but most people look at as a novelty a play thing, because pan hardly shows up in too many grand events,some rappers use electronically created noises that sound like pan and the childish presentation makes people think it is a toy, we hold grand events and do not try to involve the external community, not invite dignatries,if pan was a Jamaican thing it would be out there because Jamaica pushes it self, they push so hard that most of us caribbean people are allways asked if we from jamaica, because Jamaica made them selves visible,there are some non caribbean people trying to make it visible but pan by sound has a strong caribbean accent, and will not change,we need to be handing out instead of waiting for handouts, what we need to hand out invitations, history, promotions etc basically we have to push harder, bands in the states are no longer trying to make an outreach into their communities instead they import players from TnT
Talk, talk and more taaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaalk where are the CD's and DVD's for the 2010 New York Panorama this is the internet age Panorama has a PRODUCT all you bright people develop a Business plan and make some money.
Andre the New York 2010 Panorama DVD was available less than 24 hours after the panorama. You can purchase a copy from WIADCA.
And it's not even advertised or promoted on this forum.

So how can we be sure the panist will get the majority of the money from the sale of these DVDs?
Why isn't Basement Recordings doing an audio CD?
From what I heard on the night I would not consider the audio quality from WIADCA the best on the night.
Maybe the internet stream was not the best medium to replicate the sound of barrel.

I had originally posted this on my WST page as a commentary during the recent Toronto civic elections. It's very relevant to this blog, so I've added it below with the 'vote for me' parts removed.

Hi, Folks!

One of my personal concerns as a steel pan player in a city that honours Carnival with three major parades and more than a week of celebration and competitions --with people from all over the world attending-- is what's going on between city administrations all over North America and West Indian community Carnival organizers in terms of acknowledgement and funding. You've read the reports in the "Pan Times" and "When Steel Talks". (Since writing this, I've noticed that the problem is more world-wide than I had previously been aware of.)

Clearly many US cities do not understand the value Carnival celebrations bring them. Recently, we've had problems organizing Carifiesta in Montreal. Whether they're called Panorama, Caribfest, Caribana, Carifiesta, or Carnival, the celebrations are an enormous source of wealth to any city so fortunate as to have a community active enough to organize this event. And fun? Where else can an entire city get involved in jumping up and celebration?

Toronto's difficulties with our own Caribana every August revolve mainly around funding. While every tourist venue (hotels, restaurants and night clubs, shops) benefits from the attending crowds in the downtown core where the festival is held, literally none of the extra millions of dollars in earnings gained by those businesses (except the individual vendors licenced by the city to sell knick-knacks, crafts, and West Indian foods) makes its way back to the festival treasury.

In Toronto, we have a King and Queen, Caribana, Junior Caribana, and Samba parades, and Pan Alive [our Panorama steel band play-off] along with a week of stage shows all over the city and Limin' together at a huge picnic on the Toronto Islands. We call it Toronto Caribana. [To paraphrase When Steel Talks, "When Toronto hosts Caribana, EVERYBODY comes out to celebrate!"]

I think that the city should apply a special tax on tourist venues in the downtown core, with a clause that prevents them from raising their rates (any more than they have historically for large events) to cover the new tax, so that visitors don't get hit with it; and that the city set that money aside to support the mas bands and Caribana events from a city-managed fund as advised by the organizers.

...and for the purposes of this page, I'll add...

Moreover, as Caribana and other cultural, religious, various secular, and fine arts celebrations are an important part of Toronto life, I propose the establishment of an incorporated city Celebration Commission with a board of governors gleaned from the celebration communities in the cultural and fine arts, with an appointed member of council and the Mayor as principal members, responsible to the city to ensure the successful promotion, staging and funding of all celebrations, parades, and festivals.

Toronto loves and cherishes its multiculturalism. It has recently been heralded as the most multi-cultural city in the world. Our multi-cultural and other similar celebrations are extremely well-attended.

The city boasts three arts nights celebrations, several large annual parades ranging from religious origins (Sikh and Christian-origin celebrations being the largest), to civic holiday parades, an annual cleanup-the-city day, and the Caribana festival and parade grouping. We used to have an annual "Toronto Caravan" festival celebrating the city's vast wealth of varied cultures with private groups of people from each country of origin sponsoring a 'pavilion' featuring their cuisine, arts & crafts, dance, and a 'king and queen', Visitors would purchase a 'passport' that entitled them to ride free on the city buses that ran continually between the pavilions, and get it stamped at each pavilion they visited to keep as a souvenir of the visit; and that might be brought back by a commission as well. We even have a separate annual Trinidad & Tobago celebration in the park adjoining the Ontario legislature buildings, which are located in Toronto.

The point is not just that generally unrelated businesses gain exclusively from the festivals, and that's not an equitable situation; but also that the city benefits from maintaining them in a dozen different ways. Our various festivals require a fair special-tax-subsidized funding in whatever manner is necessary to ensure celebrations represent a good time with happy celebrants all-round. A commission can set up the bureaucracy necessary to smooth the way to successful events, open them for continued growth, and make that required funding a certainty.

I would recommend that other cities consider this path of encouragement for their similar celebrations as a means of capitalizing them without increasing the existing tax burden. The rewards for host cities are self-evident.
Good morning Everyone:

A big problem with Caribbean and especially Black Folks is that we tend to depend on the crumbs which fall from the table of the extremely delicious finger-licking dinner which we've just prepared.

Everything is political.

As long as we continue to beggggg for handouts, instead of combine our resources (Pan Yards, Mas Camps, vendors, masqueraders, organizers, promoters, and spectators) and engage in constructive DEMANDS at the negotiating table of those who control the purse strings, then we'll continually be disrespected and financially disenfranchised by especially those politicians, who control the $$$$$$. Elected and appointed officials know exactly how much $$$ is generated by these Carnivals. Organizers and participants must demand to see the Books to determine how much income these events generate for each city/county/state? They have the figures. We need to have them in our possessions so we can use these figures to make our demands on how some of those funds can be best utilized to benefit our communities.

3 million people have been gathering on Eastern Parkway for over thirty years, if each person on The Parkway spent (let's say $100) to attend the many parties, fetes, Museum events, Kiddies Carnival, and the Parade of the Bands, then you're talking about $300 million dollars.

Now this is an extremely conservative estimate as you can well imagine. Why? Because I've not included plane, train, and bus fares of those coming from other states and nations. What about hotel and other travel expenses such as car rentals, gas, and subway fares?

With 3 million on The Parkway, why is the subway system running on a Sunday schedule?

What about the amount of food and drink consumed by these visitors during their stay?

We are in a very powerful financial position to make demands on these politicians, but we do not maximize on our potential. Why the politicians? Practically every office holder in NY State appear on The Parkway, especially during the election season. And what do they do? Smile and wave. Why should they lead off the parade? Why aren't these politicians jumping and waving in the bands?

Unless we hold these office holders financially accountable for the success of these Carnivals, then we have no one else to blame but ourselves for the demise or failures of these festivities.

NYC has double-decker buses which tour throughout the City. Why aren't we reaching out to these bus companies to include the Pan Yards, Mas Camps and even the Backyard of the Museum in their routes?

In my opinion, over $1 billion is raised during the Labor Day season, with the City appreciating at least 5% in tax revenues. Then why don't the Pan Yards and Mas Camps own their own buildings? Considering the current economic climate, why aren't buildings being made available to the Pan Yards and Mas Camps with City, State and Federal funding to minimize their purchasing and upkeep expenditures?

As long as we continue to play softball with these politicians, then there is no way on God's green earth that we can ever make it to the World Series. So you're a Soccer fan? If we continue to play small goal post games, how can we ever expect to play in the World Cup? Only after we've raised our goals, ambitions, and expectations, can these Carnivals prosper.

Thanks for your interest, and please remember to tune into my program on Monday, November 15th, 3-5 am on 99.5 FM in the NY Tri-State area or log onto

Stephen The Road Warrior
Hi there Stephen, all of your points are well stated and well taken. Please note that this is not a direct response to your comments. This is just a general observation. We keep on missing the point and I keep on harping on the same old refrain. WE NEED TO GET ORGANIZED. We need to understand how the system works and then adapt strategies that will make the system works for us. You have to understand that if a politician can do dirt in the dark, especially when money is being made, he will do more dirt that you would imagine. The moment that you shine a light on his actions, he is forced to come clean. Most of the comments that we get on discourses such as this one, is noting more than emotioms without the benefit of intellect. Something goes down and we get this knee-jerk reaction of individuals calling for a boycott and the rest of the bush-league tatics. We will be having this same discussion, fighting these same old battles for the next hundred years, until we get organized. Here is some food for thought. What do you think would happen if someone would take the time to put a petition together stating our case, and we hit the pavement in our spare time and gather a few thousand signatures, make an appointment to go meet with the mayor and send a delegation to go meet with him? In the mean time send an annonymous tip to the media stating what is going on. What would happen if we do the same with the Governor. We are all tax-payers, they would be forced to pay attention to our plight. What would happen if we get a police permit to have a major rally and all steelband gather in a park with placards, banners etc and present ourselves as a united front to be reckoned with. The media coverage alone would force them to pay attention. This is the type of engagement we need for us to be taken seriously. Just coming into this forum, airing our views and get frustrated is NOT going to get it done. PS please dump the emotions and approach situations with a rational thought pattern.
What would happen if there was a mass boycott of Carnival and Panorama in the US - the UK and Canada.......for 1 year - Can you imagine what would happen to the money that traditionally goes to the cities - I bet a few city officials would stop and think??????


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