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Top Trini Acts For Barbados Pan Jazz Fest

By Terry Joseph
April 05, 2002

Reigning World Steelband Music Festival (WSMF) champion TCL Group Skiffle Bunch will headline the T&T contingent to Pan Under the Trees – The Barbados Pan/Jazz Festival, scheduled for May 18 and 19.

Supported by the Barbados Tourism Authority and produced by Mike Murray’s Astrology Promotions, the weekend pan festival will feature four Trini acts. Apart from Skiffle Bunch, prize-winning soloist Dane Gulston, soul singer Mavis John and Raf Robertson’s Superband comprise the home team.

Considered an "Honorary Trinidadian" in local music circles, Murray, one of the people responsible for early local embrace of Barbadian soca band Square One (feat Allison Hinds) is into his fourth annual season on Pan Under the Trees. Last year he introduced the Pan Festival, broadening the event to include bands from outside of Barbados.

Setting up "virtual panyards" at the Barbados Museum and Sunbury House, Murray offered patrons a mixture of classical, R&B, Latin, mambo, salsa, folk, and most of all calypso, drawing large crowds to both scenic tree-lined venues.

Trini pan music came from 2001 Panorama champion Exodus and Neal & Massy Trinidad All Stars who last Carnival assumed sovereignty. Bajan acts included Pan Revolution led by David Walcott, the Andre Woodvine Quartet and American jazz pannist Andy Narell.

"What a lime it was!" trumpeted Ricky Jordan in the Barbados Nation of June 4. "They didn’t just play pan, it was a musical mix that simply took your breath away and did so with effervescence and flair," said Wade Gibbons four days later in The Advocate.

The 2002 edition of Pan Under the Trees takes place at Sunbury Great House. Titled 96 Degrees Bajan, the first night features Pan Revolution steelband along with soloist Gulston and Raf Robertson and his Superband featuring Myles Robertson; with a special appearance by vocalist Mavis John. Showtime is 8 pm.

On Sunday May 19, Steel 'n the Night headlines TCL Group Skiffle Bunch and includes St Lucia’s Diamond Steel Orchestra and homies Wayne "Poonka" Willock & The Percussion Group; their show beginning at 6 pm.

Season tickets priced at BDS $80 shaves $10 from the price of purchasing separately.

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