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New York SteelPan - Panorama and Beyond
- Grades A-F
An in depth analysis of one the greatest annual performances of tuned  percussionists in North America

The drums of steel and summer are again quiet.  And another fabulous panorama season has come to an end.  Of course, not without tremendous travail. But once again the men and women of steel have triumphed and conquered, however temporarily, their environment, to put on once again one of the greatest and biggest music extravaganzas in North America.  Moreover, tales and music that will be repeated for the ages came into being.  The panman, with his resilience continues to lift the human sprit through his stubbornness, tenacity and undeniable passion for his music.  There is nothing like the anticipation, excitement and visual grandiosity generated by the steelpan folk as they wheel musical war chariots into the staging area and then onto the performance stage by the hundreds, coming from all parts of Brooklyn, New York to partake in 'Panorama'.


Panorama 2005

New York's Steelband Music Panorama competition traditionally marks the end of the summer season for the large steel orchestras in the community, as the mighty 100-player strong steelbands immediately after are reduced to their normal stageside sizes.  This year's event was again held at the Brooklyn Museum grounds located in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn and is a testament to the Pan Man's and Woman's will to survive. 

The 2005 season was a particularly difficult one for all the steelband organizations.  It presented both new and old challenges that were formidable and debilitating to the creative process, and performance music theatre of events.  Practice space, meager or non-existent financial resources,  belligerent and uncompromising authorities continue to be the cause of an extremely hostile environment for the steel orchestra in New York.  Yet in spite of all this the New York steelpan music movement continues to grow and thrive, though it is always one step away from total extinction.   The New York steelpan community continues to demonstrate its flexibility,  resourcefulness, resiliency and intelligence. 

The New York steelband panorama is easily one of the greatest if not the biggest music performance spectacles in North America, and is challenged and/or equaled in pageantry and drama only by the Marching Bands Drum and Bugle Corp competitions.  However, unlike the latter, the New York steelbands have yet to receive comparable financial, media and corporate association, sponsorship and partnership.  Indeed, the New York steelbands are for the most part community-based organizations, while major marching bands are normally associated with large universities or parochial organizations -  which automatically solve many of the ills that plague the New York steelband community.

Sound: D- {we really wanted to give them an F and the customary 'directly to jail' ticket but they actually improved in 2005 year - they were only very awful this year}
We had hoped that the sound engineer and his crew would collect their pay and stay home this year.  No such luck.  They were there - all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.   Normally capital punishment is in order for the sound engineer and those who employed his services.  Was the sound engineer bad this year?  Hell yea!  Did he take the enjoyment the audience should have had out of a serious and professional music event?  Indeed!  Did he impact adversely on fortunes of the participants?  Of course, how could he not?  He was horrible. And yes, he toyed with the hard work of the players, tuners and arrangers...  And for the most part he was consistently horrible.  This year instead of making basses sound like tenors and tenors like cellos he used a trick.  VOLUME.  The system was so loud most people were not able to tell how bad it was because their ears were overloaded. Which eventually leads to ear fatigue, blank stares and delayed reactions by the audience.  Yes, once again the sweetness was filtered out of the "sweet pan" performances.  Some bands fared better or worse than others, depending on their musical arrangement, stage setup, orchestra instruments' configuration and performance ability.  Some of the orchestras suffered from low register dropouts caused by what appeared to be phase cancellations.  This was very disconcerting to the audience; hopefully the judges were immune to these audio maladies.

Some of the basic questions have still been left unanswered.  For instance:  if the bands have different instrument configurations and sizes, how does the engineer know beforehand what levels and balance are suited for a specific band without a sound check?  If the sound engineer is unfamiliar with the class and range of specific steelband instruments within a band, in addition to where specific instruments will be set up on stage beforehand, how does he know what class of mics and floor position placement are best suited for the bands?  Moreover, if the engineer is unaware of the style and overall tonal quality of a band - how does he know if he is projecting that band's true nature and sound?  How does the sound engineer not confer with the musical directors and arrangers of each orchestra?  Given the horrendous track record of the sound engineer - why is he not practicing days before the event?

We can only conclude that there has been and continues to be a blatant and total disregard for the steelpan artist, his art form, music and most of all - the paying attendees of the performance.  This is a musical event whose every aspect is totally dependant on the quality of the sound.  Perhaps the time has come when each steel orchestra can use the morning of the event to get a proper sound check with their musical director present.  By the way - this is not a unique or new phenomenon - all artists have a sound check before their shows.

Adjudication  -Pass- {It would have been helpful if the judges had left more comments on their score sheets as a means of explaining their thought process to bands and arrangers...  A few bands have complained about the lack of comments on their sheets}


The judges appeared very alert and attentive at all times.  No sleeping judges this year.  As we said last year - the judges' decisions are final and thus are not subjected to question.  USSA-appointed monitors viewed the process.

Arranging  C+ {overall all the arrangers had great moments - some much longer moments than others, no one created their best work at this panorama - at least we hope not}

Anytime you mix greats like Clive Bradley, Pelham Goddard and Jit Samaroo with a field of talented arrangers led by the likes of Arddin Herbert and Yohan Popwell among others, you're going to get something special.  Let's face it:  arranging a ten-minute panorama piece in the calypso/soca music genre for a New York steelband is one of the most difficult musical challenges a musician can face.  The ability to arrange a cohesive musical piece that covers all the requirements of the judging criteria - without frightening, or boring to tears, one of the toughest reality audiences one will ever come across, is no joke.  Many have tried, few have survived and/or made the grade.  Many can successfully arrange for five minutes, but it's that extra five minutes that separates the "wanna bees" from the masters.  And again this year was no different.  One can get their reputation and feelings hurt real quick as there is little room at the top.  The Big Apple's panorama has very high expectations and is different than it's overseas counterparts.  A great performance without great musical content will not get you over in New York.  New York's panorama is not as musically conservative as other areas.  For example, four out of twelve bands chose the popular Dead or Alive as their panorama selection - which is far from a traditional panorama tune.

New York Steelband Governing Bodies - No Grade {You're Fired!!! -Donald Trump -}
In all fairness a grade cannot be given to such organizations as it remains unclear what the benefits are to steelbands/pan musicians.  Whether real or figments of pan folks' imagination - they appear to be part of the nightmarish/dream-like experiences.  It is therefore up to the pan players/community to expunge or fix them.

The Bands - B (overall) {as awesome as NY steelband music is, bands must find a productive and cohesive means of representing themselves in a quick changing environment on a global scale or they will be left behind}

Each band had to overcome debilitating internal and external obstacles to make it literally to the panorama stage.  The love and commitment to pan by the players and management are unquestionable.  2005 was just as difficult as the previous year, if not harder for all the bands.  Yet in spite of all the turbulence, the bands' musical output continues to rise.  From a musical perspective, the bands continue to improve.  The groups looked fabulous.  Steelbands definitely incorporate high fashion into their presentations.


ADLIB Long Island's Finest. 
When Steel Talks has watched ADLIB grow up in front of our eyes.  The youth-oriented orchestra from Freeport, Long Island has improved in every facet.  It is no longer "if" or "can" ADLIB move into the upper area codes of New York pan.   The youths of ADLIB are no longer satisfied with making a good appearance at the panorama.  There is great musical talent in the group and their sights are trained on loftier goals.  ADLIB has great management that brings competency, consistency and stability to its operations.  The organization has had to overcome a series of obstacles and disappointments that made this year difficult and challenging.  Nevertheless, ADLIB survived and put on a great show at the 2005 panorama.  This year the group returned with Rubin Nelson as their arranger.  Their placing is not indicative of the band's ability.  ADLIB's stageside is solid as the group continues to perform throughout the year.  Management remains committed to the development of young musicians.  Group recordings to date -- ADLIB Live! aka We've Only Just Begun  (2002)

  • recruiting - an apparently good year of recruiting

  • performances - ADLIB performs throughout the year at many high-profile events

Caribbean Youth Panoramics

A group of young people who have maintained their presence at the panorama for the past five years.  This was not a breakthrough year for CYP at the panorama but the band gave a strong presentation during their J'ouvert performance.. 

CASYM  speaker.gif (351 bytes)
CASYM runs a disciplined and professional organization.  The group gave a very credible performance. An extra week of practice, and who knows what might have happened.  This year marks the first time in their past six panorama entries that the group has placed lower than second.  The organization's success and consistency are a tribute to their management, leadership and core players. 

CASYM's game plan to invest in the development of young players has and will continue to serve them well.  Their stageside is one of the best and most entertaining on the New York circuit.  They added a host of new songs to their already-substantial repertoire that cover a varied genre of music. Their panorama arranger Arddin Herbert has indeed found his voice, and is one of the top young panorama arrangers who can deliver the goods. 

CASYM was also the sole US representative in this year's World Steelband Music Festival.  CASYM has shown a commitment to documenting their performances and becoming a complete music organization.  This year they released their CD 'D Blueprint, in addition to being featured on the Pan In New York 2004 CD/DVD.  CASYM again recorded their 2005 performance for the 2005 New York Panyard CD/DVD...  Group recordings to date -- 'D Blueprint  (2005)

  • marketing - great year exposing & promoting the group's achievements and availability - CASYM is known globally

  • recruiting - great year of recruiting

  • performances - CASYM performs throughout the year at many high-profile events

CrossFire speaker.gif (351 bytes)
CrossFire has steadied it's ship and positioned itself into a place to make a move into the upper New York steelband domain.  The organization returned with Brian 'Bean' Griffith at the musical helm.  Brian, who is a tested and competent arranger was charged with the job of taking the organization to the top.  The organization clearly has a serious game plan as there was a significant upgrade in the caliber of its instruments.  In fact CrossFire can lay claim to now owning some of the best instruments in New York.  Competent and committed management has brought the band within striking distance of high placing in the panorama.  They have secured great practice facilities and have equipped the members with the tools to win.  CrossFire recorded its panorama selection this year, and is featured on the 2005 New York Panyard CD.

Dem Stars
Dem Stars went through a major makeover as it sported a new look, new players, and new arranger.  Dem Stars stageside added a host of new tunes to their repertoire that went over well with its audience and fans.  Ace arranger Jit Samaroo of the famed Renegades Steel Orchestra was on board for 2005.  Clearly, management has mapped out a new game plan and strategy as a means of moving to the top.  Dem Stars has sported four different arrangers in their last four panorama entries.  Hopefully, Mr. Samaroo will be retained and allowed to build on what he has started.   

Despers USA
2005 saw renewed life and excitement in the Despers USA camp and was a year of major changes.  Despers USA replaced their arrangers of the past twelve years with Eddie Quarless.  It has been a few years since Despers ruled New York.  For a good part of the 90's Despers USA owned New York, winning six championships in a row.  Despers still has some of the best players in New York and moreover a system for consistently producing excellent players.  This was a very good recruitment year for Despers USA as the group was larger for panorama than it has been in years.  Their blend of  veterans and youth has produced continuity and stability within the Despers USA organization.  Their stageside is steady and committed to 'back-in-times' and 'ole-school' pan classics.  Look for Despers USA to move back to the high-rent district.

  • marketing - Despers USA has a large fan base, and uses the direct marketing approach

  • recruiting - great year of recruiting, with 100 players taking the stage for panorama

  • performances - launches and year-round commitments

D'Radoes speaker.gif (351 bytes)
Last year D'Radoes aka Radoes seemed destined for greatness, when they shot themselves in the foot by messing up their ending and subsequently came in fourth.  All eyes were on Radoes at the panorama this year.  The crowd surged forward during their panorama performance to make sure they got a first-hand look.  They did not disappoint their fans this year. As is customary with Radoes they pulled all the pieces together right before taking the stage.  And saved their best performance for - the stage.  Their rendition of Johnny King's "Darling" as arranged by Clive Bradley was truly one of the 'sweet' tunes of the year.  Radoes brought the crowd to life, and to their feet.  As their performance registered a special chord with the audience, the latter sang and danced with the band.  It's been a long time since a band has connected on that level with the audience. 

At the moment D'Radoes is primarily a homerun hitter that is very dangerous at crunch time.  When they connect it's "good night, lights out."   And when they miss - well - we saw what happened last year.  D'Radoes, with its veteran crew brings an unpredictability to panorama that is very refreshing to the pan lovers and fans.  Their mere presence has to keep the other bands wondering and guessing.  In their four-year existence D'Radoes has placed no lower than forth in their last three panorama entries.

Radoes has recorded their panorama selection every year since their existence.  They are also featured on the 2005 New York Panyard CD/DVD...

  • marketing - D'Radoes has a huge fan base, and uses direct marketing approach -- their yard was always packed with visitors

  • recruiting - great year of recruiting, with 100 players taking the stage for panorama

  • performances - launches

Related Articles
D'Radoes ready to woo them with "Darling"
BACK-TO-BACK BRADLEY (It's Bradley's Town After All)
Clive Bradley, Pelham Goddard and Yohan Popwell


Harmony has invested in its future by focusing on the development of its youth. The organization made great strides forward musically and administratively.  Harmony has improved every year of its existence and invested heavily in their infrastructure.  This year they went with Brian Nicholas, one of their resident arrangers, as arranger for panorama, and they also brought new tuner Oliver Hospedales into the mix to take care of and upgrade their instruments.  These moves may ultimately pay off big for the organization in the future.  2005 was a very good year for Harmony's stageside as the organization demonstrated its musical versatility and growth.  Harmony put on a good performance at this year's panorama, and incorporated an attractive dance sequence into its presentation.  Watch out for next year.

  • marketing - Harmony uses direct marketing approach

  • recruiting - group has grown every year

  • performances - launches

Related Articles
Harmony Steel Launch Pan Lights Up Central Brooklyn (D'Radoes, Sonatas, Harmony, Dem Stars, CASYM, Ambassadors)


Marsicans speaker.gif (351 bytes)
Surely this year's 8th place panorama placing was not the ending Marsicans management and players had envisioned to an otherwise successful season.  Nevertheless Marsicans has established itself as one of the big band contenders for the panorama championship title.  Their rise to the top of the New York heap was indeed a quick one. This year marks the first time in Marsicans' short history that it has not placed in the top four positions. This is indeed a serious accomplishment considering the fact that the group has only entered four panoramas and is technically only five years old.  It was a good year for Marsicans in spite of their disappointing panorama placing.  Marsicans has established itself as a New York powerhouse.  The organization has a talented group of core players. Their stageside was even better this year than last year.  The organization needs to maintain steady management to go even further. 

Their arranger is master musician Pelham Goddard.  In an interview with When Steel Talks the arranger Pelham Goddard expressed the need for the pan community to stay current and young in terms of their selections of panorama tunes.  Marsicans has clearly used this approach in its youth appeal.  Their choices in the past two years - Celebrate and Dead or Live - are consistent with this belief.

Marsicans is one of  the few orchestras that has recorded its panorama selection every year of its existence.  They are also featured on the 2005 New York Panyard CD.

  • marketing - internet and direct marketing -- Marsicans' panyard is one of the more popular yards in NY

  • recruiting - great year of recruiting, with 100 players taking the stage for panorama

  • performances - launches

Related Articles
Marsicans Band Launch 2005 (Despers USA, Sesame Flyers, Sonatas and Marsicans)
Marsicans Steel Orchestra Ready To Rock and Roll - Set to Bring Them In Dead or Alive...

Clive Bradley, Pelham Goddard and Yohan Popwell

Pantonic speaker.gif (351 bytes)
They've been to the mountain top and they have been to the pits.  2005 was indeed an interesting year for Pantonic.  The organization was scrutinized in every facet and on every level in ways it had not been previously tested.  After enjoying an essentially unchallenged view from the top of the New York pan scene for the past five years, the organization was stunned by a series of unexpected and uncharacteristic circumstances.  First the group lost its panorama crown in 2004 and was awarded, for them, a shocking twelfth place out of a field of thirteen competitors.  And then the group found itself essentially homeless in New York up until two weeks before panorama.  Being homeless in New York is never a good thing, but for a steel orchestra the size of Pantonic, coming off a less-than-banner-year, this could have been the kiss of death for a lesser organization.

Pantonic players show that they are singularly committed to Pantonic and were prepared to sit out the season had a practice space not been secured.  Then, with the panyard acquired just two weeks before panorama - the band was still able to take the stage with its full one hundred players, a remarkable feat and tribute to the commitment of the players to the organization.  The ability of Pantonic management to not throw in the towel,  to not panic, and to continue to successfully problem-solve under what had to be tremendous pressure - is also a testament to the organization's ability to meet new and unpredictable challenges.

Pantonic has one of the best stagesides in New York. Their repertoire covers a wide variety of music and genres.  Their core players are young, talented and committed.  Additionally they have a great arranger in Clive Bradley and steady management, including their captain and vice-captain. Pantonic put itself in a position to win this year's panorama by simply out-working the other groups.  Their ability to practice into the wee hours of the morning with the presence of the majority of all their players was very impressive.

At the panorama Pantonic seemed to have the audience mesmerized by their size, weight, sound and performance.  Three-quarters of the way through the tune, it appeared to many in the audience that the band had it pretty much locked down.  Pantonic again recorded their 2005 selection for the 2005 New York Panyard CD/DVD... Group recordings to date -- 'Pantonic Live - The Limited Edition CD (2002); Tonic For The Soul (2003)

  • marketing - the organization is one of the best at promoting its works and successes through the internet/ PanYard packed with visitors in spite of late start

  • recruiting - great year galvanizing 100 players to take the stage for the 2005 panorama when taking into account last year's twelfth placing.

  • performances - solid performances during pre-panorama season

Related Articles
Pantonic InVue2005 2005 Steel Pan Champions
Pantonic Wins New York Steel Band 2005 Panorama
Pantonic Jumps to "Action" Set to Recover Winning Ways
Clive Bradley, Pelham Goddard and Yohan Popwell

Sesame Flyers speaker.gif (351 bytes)
This was a year of struggle and personal tragedies for the organization. Sesame is another New York-based organization that is youth-oriented.  Their musicianship has improved although their panorama placing has not.  Arrangers Freddie Harris, III and Andy Akiho have taken a non-traditionalist approach to panorama arranging.  In the long run it will resonate favorably with the global steelpan community.  The lumps they are catching now will pay off in the future.  And Sesame's stageside improved immensely,  mixing current pop and Caribbean selections... To move up the ladder the organization will have to commit to out-working the other groups.  Watch out for them in 2006.

Sesame produced a DVD featuring its stageside in 2004, and for this year contributes its panorama selection to the 2005 New York Panyard CD collection.

  • marketing - Sesame has a large fan base, and uses the direct marketing approach, strong internet presence

  • recruiting - great year of recruiting, with 100 players taking the stage for panorama

  • performances - launches and year-round engagements

Related Articles
Sesame Flyers Kick Into "Action"

Sonatas speaker.gif (351 bytes)
Sonatas has been and will continue to be a formidable force in New York pan. They have steady and committed management that gives its players the tools and support to succeed.  Sonatas, the 2004 Panorama champions, came out of the gate smoking.  They have established themselves as one of the top music groups in America.  There stageside is second to none.  And they easily have the best instruments in New York.  Their arranger Yohan Popwell is young, capable and driven, and has the ear and support of the players. 

2005 turned out not to be their year in terms of the panorama but they did not beat themselves.  They brought it all to the stage.  Their presentation was clean and balanced.  Unfortunately the panorama audience was not allowed to experience the full effect of Sonatas because of the sound system. Sonatas recorded it's 2005 stageside repertoire.  They are also featured on the 2005 New York Panyard recordings.  In their last six panorama entries, Sonatas has failed to place within the top three only once - a phenomenal testimony to the organization's consistency and commitment to excellence.  Look for Sonatas to come back with a vengeance next year.

  • marketing - has a large fan base, and uses the direct marketing approach -- internet presence getting better

  • recruiting - great year of recruiting,

  • performances - launches and year-round engagements

Related Articles
Sonatas Launch Tops for Season
Champions Sonatas Capture Their Music for the Ages
Champions Sonatas ready to defend "From Beyond"
Sonatas Serves Notice  "We Come Out To Play!!!" CrossFire Steelband Launch/Invitational
Clive Bradley, Pelham Goddard and Yohan Popwell

The Show:  C {it was a mediocre production; pan folks' efforts and talents are not being realized to the max...}

The showtime was promoted as 7:00 PM with doors opening at 6:00 PM.  This year we noticed that the bands were not wearing their customary wristbands for entry into the panorama.  They were given tickets instead.  There was a separate entrance for the performers and media.  We observed none of the customary confusion at gates this year.  The door security/authorities performed a thorough search of our bags before allowing entry.  They were not as confrontational as they have been in the past, although different security check points had arbitrary rules, as they were not all in sync as to their guidelines.

Once again this year there was no program to give any guidance or information about the panorama performers.  Luckily the panorama fans are very knowledgeable about their pan music.  The MC seems to know less about New York Pan every year.  Why is that?  Let's face it - if you eliminate the large video displays and the cell phones, there would be no difference between 2005, 1995 or 1985...  No growth! No imagination! Nothing to make you go "wow!"  Now that's a shame.  Who's taking credit for this "great" production this year?  The producers of this show need to take a vacation and go to a few concerts and see just how shows are put on in 2005 (as they have been for some time!). 

Luckily there is a huge need for programming material for all the entertainment and educational gadgets.  Young, new and exciting productions on a grand scale are just around the corner for the New York Steelband fraternity.  It's been the I-Pod generation for a few years now...  soon the younger generation of the steelband movement will have other options...

Panorama Running Time Clock:  A {got to give homeboys their props...  the bands moved on and off the stage like clockwork - The bands completed their performances in four and half hours}
  • 8:25   Sound Check for Marsicans
  • 8:27   Marsicans beings their performance
  • 8:37   Marsicans ends
  • 8:58   Sonatas begins their performance
  • 9:07   Sonatas ends
  • 9:28   ADLIB begins their performance
  • 9:37   ADLIB ends
  • 9:51   Caribbean Youth Panoramic begins their performance
  • 10:04 Caribbean Youth Panoramic ends
  • 10:27 CASYM begins their performance
  • 10:35 CASYM ends
  • 11:00 Despers USA begins
  • 11:10 Despers end
  • 11:30 CrossFire begins
  • 11:39 Crossfire ends
  • 11:57 Sesame Flyers begins
  • 12:07 Sesame Flyers ends
  • 12:28 Dem Stars begins
  • 12:35 Dem Stars ends
  • 1:02   Radoes begins
  • 1:11   Radoes ends
  • 1:30   Pantonic begins
  • 1:40   Pantonic ends
  • 1:59   Harmony begins
  • 2:09   Harmony ends
  • 2:30   Results Announced
    5 hours total

Media Facilities

To the best of our knowledge, no Media Kits with band information were presented to visiting media.  In terms of ease of accessing the bands from basic vantage points while they performed on stage,  When Steel Talks ran into significantly more turbulence than usual.  There was no post-performance area set aside for press to interview/photograph the performing artists. [New York Panorama 2005 In Pictures.]

Stage Smediaize

Still too small for the larger bands to set up quickly enough.  While the orchestras with smaller complements of players managed the task in an acceptable amount of time, the powerhouse steel orchestras fielding upwards of eighty musicians have to accomplish an on-the-spot feat of engineering to place all their instruments in the limited space.  They take up significantly more time before being ready to play.

Prizes / Appearance Fees  D-

Oh, and by the way, what are/were they?  It would be good for the audience to know what prize purses are up for grabs.  It's a normal feature of competitions to periodically inform/announce to, all those present, what is at stake in the event.  This is one competition where sometimes even the bands themselves don't know exactly what they are competing for - even after the competition... 

Management of at least three of the competitors for the September 3, 2005 competition said either that they were unclear, or had no idea as to the prize purses at stake, and had received no official communication before the event, nor to date.  When Steel Talks  contacted the offices of the promoter/organizers of the Panorama on September 26, and was told that "they [promoter/organizers] had no information on the prizes as yet."

For the record - figures of a first prize of between $17,500.00 and $20,000.00 were bandied about, with some management reportedly hearing unofficially that second and third prizes were around $15,000.00 and $12,000.00 respectively.

Appearance Fees

Curiously, and at least to the best of our knowledge - the New York Panorama held at the Brooklyn museum grounds is the only competition in US history that in effect, punishes top-placing bands/winners by taking away their appearance fees (is this even legal?), reportedly in between the amount of $3,500.00 and $4,000.00.  Again, does anyone have documentation that will provide the exact amount?  An appearance fee is just that - an  appearance fee.  Isn't this for just showing up and taking part in  a competition?  The appearance fee should have nothing to do with a band's other financial rewards at a competition.

Post-Production and Follow Up

The panorama results are actually up on the promoter's web site.  We haven't seen any pictures but they are sure to follow.  Right?  No 2003 embarrassment here?  We are sure the promoters did get pictures of the winning band performing.  Right?

There has been no word on a DVD or CD yet.  We've been told that the governing bodies lack the ability to market and move CD/DVDs.  If true that's truly unfortunate.

In terms of the media we've seen no stories, articles, releases from either the promoter or pan governing bodies about the panorama or its participants.

Access (bands, players, management, arrangers, fans) A+ [NY steelpan community is very media savvy and has a keen understanding of the importance of documenting, promoting and telling their own story...  Indeed it is often said "if it wasn't documented - did it really happen?"]

As we indicated earlier our Steelpan Photographers were truly frustrated and annoyed at the difficulty and obstacles they encountered in trying to access the stage for shots of the bands at the 2005 panorama - even though they had legitimate media credentials - issued by the promoters' office.  Interestingly enough, we were told some folks have more access rights than others.  Nevertheless When Steel Talks was able to document the panorama in pictures, largely because of the continued cooperation we received by the entire New York steelpan community, a process which was ongoing throughout the season.  In this regard, the players, managers, arrangers and fans get an unconditional A+ for their courtesy,  professionalism and cooperation in facilitating the documentation of their season's work.

New York Panorama - 2005 In Pictures click >> New York Panorama 2005 In Pictures.

J'ouvert: B
The event continues to receive great support from the New England steelpan community.  It's popularity among the people has steadily increased as it is truly one of the few remaining events in the world where you can hear and enjoy pan on the road. Almost every single New York steelpan organization was present. 

J'Ouvert - 2005 In Pictures click >> J'Ouvert 2005 Pictures In Review


PR Departments  C
For the most part the public relations wings and PRO's were extremely cooperative with providing information on and data relating to group performances and panorama details.  However, these officers have to become proactive as a means of taking advantage of media and related promotional actives before deadlines kick in.

Side Bar


Utopia Pan Soul: The Next Generation, CASYM, Pantonic, Sonatas, Steel Sensation

These five represent the best stagesides in New York.  All five of the groups are very unique and bring a very different look to the under-30 player arena.  All have stepped it up big time.  They added an interesting array of new and old songs to their respective repertoires.  And all have already either released recordings, and/or have recorded new music that will be available in the near future.


Related Links

2005 Pan In New York CD

An educational, historical, cultural and artistic masterpiece that showcases one of the most vibrant live music performance movements in the United States today...

The yard recordings are available from participating orchestras (CrossFire, Sonatas, CASYM, Sesame, Marsicans, Pantonic and D'Radoes)
click to hear samples