Is Steel Pan taking off where you live?

stevel

Member
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14,624
I've enjoyed Steel Pan (Steel Drums) music in small doses - Margaritaville, when I was in St. Croix, when I see them occasionally.

But, apparently the hipster drum circle is now being ousted by steel pans!

Teaching at a University, these trends/fads come and go. A year or so ago everyone was sitting outside beating on wooden boxes they paid hundreds of dollars for. A month or so ago our students gave our first pan recital!

And students who came in from the local high schools to audition - almost all of them had played in pan ensemble in addition to the other instruments they play.

Schools seem reluctant to invest in Recorders, or more recently (though this fad is thankfully passed) Ukuleles, so I'm wondering how they're providing steel pans to students.

But it's a big thing apparently in the local schools.
 

slybird

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6,478
It seemed to be an internet fad a few years ago, but haven't notice any videos go viral on Reddit or Facebook in at least a couple years. I've never seen any steelpan or Hang drum IRL.
 

stratocat63

Gold Supporting Member
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3,477
I took gigs playing all kinds of stuff for the experience and one was a duo with a steel drum guy. The guy could play and I learned a lot of the standards but also formed the opinion that I don't care for steel drums, they don't sound in tune. I guess it depends on the weather and temperature. Ouch though.
 

TB72

Member
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1,452
I would say Steel Panther is enjoying more success in my area than Steel Pan.

I would describe neither as "taking off."
 

ChrisVereb

Member
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2,025
They've got one at the local drum shop where my son takes lessons. I gotta say they are more affordable than I would have expected and fun to dink on while waiting for his teacher. I've thought about grabbing one.

A guy I used to play with had a piano/steel drum duo doing indie-ish music for a while. But this was probably 15 years ago. Haven't really seen much of it around since then outside of Caribbean music contexts.
 

guitararmy

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2,686
Our local public high school has a strong music program, and has had a steel drum band for at least the past 10 years. The public high school in the adjoining county also has one...
 

Crowder

Dang Twangler
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19,082
My son is in percussion ensemble at his high school and they had their spring concert last night. No steel drums.

They do, however, play trash cans. Metal ones as "snares" and rubber ones as "toms." Talk about getting old fast. I asked my son about it and he said that is something they do with the middle schoolers to get them used to the rhythms of marching band drum line so that makes some sense.

Some of the material was impressive. The instructor and four students played a Bach piece on marimbas that sounded great. But most of the other stuff is pretty boring to me. There's only so much you can do with percussion.
 

RupertB

Silver Supporting Member
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4,316
Not sure about "taking off" recently but they've been fairly popular in eastern NC for a long time.
ECU has a long-running steel pan ensemble, which my brother was the bassist for 25 years ago.

An old friend from school & the "back in the day" music scene wound up learning to play steel pans. Loved them so much, he got trained in making/tuning them.

I also like them... in small doses.
 
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17,941
Still waiting to hear Steely Dan played on only steely pans. Especially Carlton’s legendary “Kid Charlemagne” guitar solo.

Or Dias’ first “Bodhisattva” solo...
 

Shiro

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,142
I saw Robin Trower Last night. There was a guy next to us playing air drums through the whole show.
I'm thinking he found air guitar too complicated.


:hide
 

Trebor Renkluaf

I was hit by a parked car, what's your excuse?
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
13,570
I prefer well seasoned cast iron myself. The original non-stick pan.

PS - I've never heard them referred to as steel pans - always steel drums or kettle drums.
 




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