Web Posted - Thursday June 17, 2021
When Steel Talks

In Memoriam of James “Jimmy” Leyden - founder of Calliope′s Children Steel Orchestra

A When Steel Talks Exclusive

by Daniel Harrison

Daniel Harrison:  1975, Memorial Day, Chappaqua New York. Calliope's Children Steel Drum Band on a flatbed truck hauled along the parade route. My six-drum bass rig. In memory of Jimmy Leyden.

Connecticut, USA - ....I attended a Calliope’s Children rehearsal one August evening, and Jimmy put me on a set of four basses to watch and learn from the two bass-pan players: his son, Keith, and Dorie Fuchs, both rising seniors. I was immediately hooked by the physicality—the sheer fun—of playing those big pans, which Keith and Dorie demonstrated with such enthusiasm! But I was also hooked by Jimmy’s inventive arrangements of all kinds of music, which would shortly be featured on the LP, Harvest, that the band put out in 1975. The band’s repertory included everything from a Bach two-part invention (a sweet duet between Larry Fox on lead and Betsy Winchell on cellos) to Ellington’s “Satin Doll” (my favorite as a bass player) to American and European folk tunes to a real road march that featured in the finals of Panorama 1971, “Queen of the Bands.”
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Web Posted - Wednesday June 16, 2021
When Steel Talks - Reboot

Meet Patrice Lewis-Lett - Trinidad & Tobago

Celebration of Women and the Steelpan Art Form

Trinidad & Tobago, W.I. - “There is a lack of real opportunity to showcase how dynamic and far-reaching the art form is. How many panists or bands fully function throughout the year? What about career opportunities beyond carnival? When we find ways to address this, we would be surprised as to the results.”

She is an active business owner, a wife, mom of twins, and a firefighter. Yet her love for the steelpan art form remains intact. In addition she is a proud member of both the 2018 & 2019 Panorama champions Renegade Steel Orchestra. In an exclusive interview with When Steel Talks - veteran panist Patrice Lewis-Lett shares her knowledge, feelings, experiences, expectations and unbridled passion for the steelpan instrument, its music, the art form and more.
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Web Posted - Tuesday June 15, 2021
When Steel Talks - Reboot

Meet Tamaki Hagihara - Tokyo, Japan

Celebration of Women and the Steelpan Art Form

Tamaki Hagihara

Tokyo, Japan - In an exclusive interview with When Steel Talks - Tamaki Hagihara shares her personal journey and perspective on the global reach and influence of the Steel Pan instrument, its music, and the art form in cultivating an environment for change.
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Web Posted - Tuesday June 15, 2021
When Steel Talks Reboot - Feel the Music - Live the Experience

Calliope’s Children Steel Orchestra - “Brazilian Suite” | Jimmy Leyden, arranger

Calliope’s Children

Global - Calliope′s Children Farewell Concert 6/12/77.  “Brazilian Suite”, performed on Ellie Mannette′s pans.  Batucada, Berimbau, Santana Manha de Carnival, Samba de Orfeo.  James “Jimmy” Leyden formed and wrote charts for “Calliope′s Children,” one of the first High School steelbands in the US.
Listen


Web Posted - Monday June 14, 2021
Jamaica Observer

A ʽpan-tastic′ affair

Jamaica, W.I. - Nevin Roach, CEO and conceptualiser of PanoGrama, is still basking in the success of the steel pan event′s second annual staging which saw an encouraging amount of entrants.

“We implemented auditions this year, in anticipation of increased interest. A total of 45 auditions were received from across 13 countries: Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, Canada, England, France, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St Kitts & Nevis, St Lucia, T&T (Trinidad and Tobago), US Virgin Islands, and the USA. This was cut down and only 30 panists featured in the prelims,” said Nevin, who hails from the twin island republic of Trinidad and Tobago.

Dubbed the World Cup of Steel Pan, PanoGrama′s virtual finals was held on May 22. This year′s winner was Keishaun Julien from Trinidad and Tobago.
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Web Posted - Friday June 11, 2021
When Steel Talks

Claudette Baptiste, Founder of Women in Steel - Obituary

by Collette Baptiste

Global - Claudette Baptiste was born to Yvonne and Ruthven Callendar in the twin island of Trinidad and Tobago.

....My mother, also referred to as “MA,” had a deep passion for babies and young people. She often was surrounded by young people, just hanging out shooting breeze.

....This passion for young people led her to the birth of Women In Steel. Women In Steel is an all-female steel orchestra and young women’s development organization. It was founded in March (Women’s Month) in the year 1994, out of sincere aspiration to educate and model for young girls socially, emotionally, and culturally through the art form of the steel drum or the pan. Women in steel became her work in progress and eventually her legacy.
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Web Posted - Wednesday June 9, 2021
When Steel Talks

Remembering fantastic mother, musician, and friend Tressy Edwards - RIP

Tressy Edwards

Trinidad & Tobago, W.I. - “Being a member of Phase II, it is very humbling yet proud for me. I love it there because we are all like family - everyone with their own personalities but we get along for one purpose. I love the rigorous practice sessions and just to acknowledge that “Boogsie” is the Mozart of pan, is a thrilling feeling. Just to be part of it is overwhelming because he does things so differently from the others...” -- Tressy Edwards

Full of pride and joy over her Phase II membership, veteran panist Tressy Edwards shares her love for music, the artform and more. Share the real life of Tressy Edwards—in her own words—in a When Steel Talks exclusive.
See interview


Web Posted - Wednesday June 9, 2021
When Steel Talks

RIP - Panist Tressy  Edwards of Phase II Pan Groove has passed

Trinidad & Tobago, W.I. - When Steel Talks extends condolences to the family and friends of panist Tressy  Edwards of Phase II Pan Groove. The steelpan community has lost one of its most beloved musicians. She will be severely missed.
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Tressy Edwards
Tressy Edwards

Web Posted - Sunday June 6, 2021
When Steel Talks

 James “Jimmy” Leyden of The Calliope’s Children Steel Orchestra has passed

James Leyden
James Leyden - image via Linfield Archives screengrab

Oregon, USA - James “Jimmy” Leyden of The Calliope’s Children Steel Orchestra passed away recently at the age of ninety-nine.  Leyden formed and wrote charts for “Calliope′s Children,” one of the first High School steelbands in the US.  He introduced Ellie [Mannette] to the strobe tuner and worked extensively with him on harmonic and overtone concepts (in Chappaqua, New York in 1971). Leyden toured with  “Calliope′s Children” in Romania (1975) and Poland and Russia (1977).  Leyden first came into contact with steelpan while vacationing in Tobago, sister isle of Trinidad, in 1957.
See more, hear band performance


Web Posted - Saturday June 5, 2021
When Steel Talks - Reboot

Ron Berridge, Caribbean Music Extraordinaire speaks on the Steelpan and More

WST Upclose logo

Global - In an exclusive interview with When Steel Talks, musician great Ron Berridge shares his thoughts on Caribbean music and Pan. He is simply one of the most influential individuals of music out of the Caribbean for a generation and by extension Steelpan music. His influence and reach, coupled with a series of fortuitous sequences of events, are still being felt in the steelpan music world today. From Lord Kitchener to the Mighty Sparrow, the musical works of Ron Berridge live on.
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Web Posted - Friday June 4, 2021
NIU Arts Blog

Northern Illinois University to confer honorary doctorate in human letters upon legendary steelband innovator, Anthony Williams

Ron Berridge

Illinois, USA - Anthony Williams, a world-renowned innovator, performer, technician, band leader and arranger has been unanimously recommended and selected to receive an honorary doctorate in human letters from NIU.

One of the most unique and iconic aspects of the School of Music at Northern Illinois University, and the university as a whole, is the success and prominence of its Steelpan program. It is fitting that Williams, a man who has had both a direct and indirect influence will have his lifetime of accomplishment and impact on others recognized with an honorary doctorate from NIU.
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Web Posted - Web Posted - Thursday June 3, 2021
When Steel Talks - Reboot

Meet Yoshihiro Harada - Explorer, Pioneer, Panist, Composer, Arranger, Educator, Recording Artist and Band leader - UpClose!

A When Steel Talks Exclusive

Rudy Commissiong, captain of Esso Dixie Stars is on left. Steve Dupres - at centre - was the arranger and player of the “Echophones” made by [Herman] “Rock” Johnston, who's at right in picture
WST Upclose logo

Japan - On why has the pan risen with such great popularity in Japan, Yoshihiro Harada says:

"The first reason is the charming sound of the instrument. It is a very fresh sound in Japan. The second reason is that we can practice and play with many people. Professionals and beginners can play together. I think these are common reasons. Also - and this is interesting - sometimes with elderly Japanese people the soft sound of a pan can evoke memories and draw them to tears. I can understand that feeling....” That was very degrading and something that lived with me for a long time. ------- Yoshihiro Harada
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Web Posted - Thursday June 3, 2021
When Steel Talks

Big band arranger Ron Berridge of Trinidad & Tobago remembered in Pictures

Ron Berridge

Trinidad & Tobago, W.I. - Condolences to the family and friends of the late great Ron Berridge who passed on June 2, 2021 in the USA, where he lived for many years. He was one of Trinidad and Tobago′s greatest musicians.  It is an honor to celebrate and remember him, along with his band The Ron Berridge Orchestra, in imagery.
See pictures


Web Posted - Thursday June 3, 2021
When Steel Talks - Reboot

“Fruits Basket” - Panorama Steel Orchestra

Panorama Steel Orchestra - Japan

Tokyo, Japan - Panorama Steel Orchestra performing “Fruits Basket” as arranged by Yoshihiro Harada - LIVE at CAY Aoyama, Tokyo, Japan. 
See performance


Web Posted - Wednesday June 2, 2021
When Steel Talks

Legendary big band arranger Ron Berridge of Trinidad & Tobago has passed

The end of an era

Ron Berridge
Ron Berridge

Trinidad & Tobago, W.I. - Late legendary musician Ron Berridge influenced and defined an era of great music and musicians emanating from the Caribbean. He was one of Trinidad and Tobago′s greatest musicians. Ron Berridge passed away on June 2, 2021 in the USA where he had made his home. Founder and leader of The Ron Berridge Orchestra which included his brother Clem among its members, Ron is simply one of the most influential individuals in music out of the Caribbean for a generation. Indeed - the end of an era.
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When Steel Talks

2020 Trinidad and Tobago National Steelband Panorama Info - Complete

Global - PanOnTheNet/ WhenSteelTalks is Panorama Central! Complete information on the 2020 season of the Trinidad and Tobago National Panorama, and competitions:  Schedules, Orders of Appearance for preliminary, semi-final and final phases for large, medium and small conventional steel orchestras, and single pan bands; arrangers’ bios, bios of steel orchestras; full results, panyard addresses, history of previous Panoramas, and much more!
see complete information index


Web Posted - February 2020
When Steel Talks

Complete Summary of Results of all Conventional Steel Orchestras - 2020 Trinidad & Tobago National Panorama

Complete Summary of Results of all Conventional Steel Orchestras - Trinidad & Tobago National Panorama 2020

Trinidad & Tobago, W.I. - At a glance and on a single page, access the comprehensive summary of results for the Small, Medium and Large conventional steel orchestras that participated in their respective categories in the 2020 Panorama.

Follow the musical journey of respective bands through all three phases - compare side-by-side preliminaries, semi-finals and finals through data on band info, scores, tunes of choice and arrangers - on one page.
access full summary