“I started playing pan with Casablanca in 1964. The captain at the time was Augustus “One Man” Mark. I started playing Tenor. In 1965 I played cello with Anthony “Baby” Thorne in the Prime Minister’s Trophy competition. In 1966 and 1967 I played 6 bass, went and played Double Tenor with Herman Collins and eventually transferred to playing the Double Seconds from 1968, a pan I had grown to love as my pan of choice.
“In 1982 prior to the music festival (which the band won), Mickey Chandler threw out a few of us from Casablanca for speaking out against wrongdoings. I joined the then-Trintoc Invaders steel orchestra, and eventually was elected Captain in 1992. Under my captaincy and the baton of Superintendent Anthony Prospect (deceased) - musical director, along with Nervyn (Teach) Saunders, the band had acquired successes at the Festivals of 1992 and 1994 and been one of the Panorama finalists in 1994 and 1995.
“In 1993, prior to our competing in the semi-final round of the competition, there was a shooting by people who were fighting around the band. This was at the entrance of the Queen’s Park Savannah and one of our players, Stephon De Four, got shot and had to be taken to hospital. Again, I was forced out of the band through the violent influences of the then-“Elders.”
“However faith had it that my children Shayne and Shiron Cooper wanted to play pan, ages eleven and nine respectively, and I was confident that the active members of the band would have taken care of them. Shiron played until her death in 2007, Shayne received a scholarship and left to go abroad in 2001. Presently, I hold the post of Assistant Manager of the band. Between the years 1993 to 1996 I held the positions of Vice Chairman and Chairman of the Northern Region of Pan Trinbago.”
(Edited by WST)
Information/Bio © Trevor Cooper
Source: Trevor Cooper’s profile on WST Ning