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Khan Cordice in the Spotlight

An exclusive interview with this youthful musician, arranger
and performing steel pan artist from Antigua & Barbuda

Khan Cordice in an exclusive interview with When Steel Talks

St. John’s, Antigua & Barbuda -  Meet Khan Cordice, the eighteen year-old youthful arranger for the National Youth Pan Orchestra of Antigua & Barbuda.  As fate would have it, WST conducted an interview one day before Cordice would make history by winning the 25-A-Side competition at the Moods of Pan Festival 2008, beating out other seasoned and previous winning arrangers to do so.

He is talented as his presence is unassuming.  Khan Cordice is a young man that the steelpan, and wider music world will be hearing from for years to come.  As arranger for the Antigua & Barbuda National Youth Pan Orchestra, he led the gifted ensemble to a significant victory against seasoned competition in the 25-A-Side competition with his arrangement and the orchestra’s rendition of Stevie Wonder’s “Sir Duke.”

Khan indeed does have - as he is quick to tell you - a passion for the steelpan instrument.  The extremely earnest musician, who practices as many as eight to ten hours a day on the pan, is looking forward to having a career in music involving the steelpan instrument.  He credits not only noted Antiguan arrangers Veron Henry and Aubrey “Lacu” Samuel as providing guidance and inspiration in his rapid development on the steelpan instrument, but also former National Youth Pan Orchestra band captain Gavin Francis, now away studying. 

Cordice himself has been involved in the steelband arranging aspect for mere months, when it was a necessary component within the CXC (Caribbean Examination Council) examination.  But as a result he was smitten with that facet of steelpan music, which overall has been part of his musical landscape since 2002.  In 2006, Gavin Francis invited Cordice to become part of “Just Six,” a band of six steelpan musicians.  Cordice's intrigue with the innards of the steelpan instrument grew, and Francis was only too gracious, willing and patient to share his knowledge with the young pan acolyte.  With a love for singing and versatile on the saxophone, Khan also mastered the recorder while at school; but it is the pan which has superseded all other instruments to develop into his primary passion. 

Khan Cordice calls himself a “double seconds” fanatic.  He loves to see double seconds specialists Len “Boogsie” Sharpe and Robert Greenidge at ‘play’ and at work.  Even though he has been arranging for less than a year, but his rapid rise is consistent with the talented youth movement sweeping through the steelpan music fraternity globally.

click to hear Cordice’s arrangement for the 2008 25-A-Side


click for past Moods of Pan festivals reviews

 Related Articles on Antigua & Barbuda: Click here

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