the City of Boston are proud to present:
Stage Saturday, September 10 2005
|Branches Pan Groove Steel Orchestra
||12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
|A Barbarian Fantasy Carnival Costume
||12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
|Fanueil Hall Stage
Saturday, September 10 2005
|Reid, Wright & Be Happy
||2:00 PM - 2:55 PM
For full schedule of performances
A First for Boston -
Celebrity Series Caribbean PanFest at Boston Symphony Hall
with Panazz Players with Guest Arturo Tappin, saxophone & Ken
Panazz is the leading small band ensemble in Trinidad and
Tobago, the island which gave birth to the steelband. Led by
their arranger, Barry Bartholomew, this exciting 14-member band
has captivated audiences with their musicianship and flair for
spontaneity and showmanship.
There is a tremendous rapport among the players,
whose technique and dynamics are absolutely superb. Indeed, solo
performances by all the players betray a musicianship which
reflects the talent of some of the best players in the land.
Four-time winners of the prestigious Pan Ramajay
competition for small bands in Trinidad and Tobago (the first
time playing as Potential Symphony), Panazz is a title derived
for Pan and Jazz, and expresses the musical interest of these
young musicians who have a flair, not only for the indigenous
calypso of the island, but especially for the jazz idiom.
Internationally, Panazz has most recently
participated in the BankBoston Celebrity Series at Symphony Hall
in March 1997. Prior to this, Panazz performed for the United
Nations in Japan in November 1996. Other performances include
World Travel Market Exposition at Earl’s Court, London in
November 1995; the Africa in April celebrations, Memphis, TN in
April 1996; and Pigeon Island, St. Lucia for the 1996 Jazz
Festival. The band performs continually for several corporate
organizations and other gala events.
Their first album, entitled Steel Pan Music, is
pan at its very best, from the jazzy rendition of Bizet’s
semi-classical Carmen to a Latin version of Aldwyn Roberts’
calypso Iron Man, as interpreted by Ramsey Lewis and Raf
Robertson respectively, two of the band’s favourite musical
The second CD, newly released, is entitled
Panazz Live, and was recorded at the band’s annual concert in
Trinidad at Central Bank Auditorium. It captures the spontaneity
of a live performance and audience interaction.
Panazz performed for TIDCO at MIDEM in Miami in
September 1997, where for the first time MIDEM showcased
Caribbean and Latin American music. From this performance,
Panazz secured a contract and performed at Epcot Center in
Disney World. The band has been described by the Barbados
Advocate as “ a veritable potpourri of musical gems”.
Panazz… something special in pan.
Once described as a cross between Teddy Pendergrass and Kenny G,
Arturo Tappin is definitely the smoothest, saxiest horn man the
Caribbean has to offer. He has been busy kicking his solo career
into high gear with his roots reggae-jazz fusion. His dynamic
live performances and charismatic idiosyncrasies on stage have
been the reason why he is known throughout the region as the
His first album, Strictly Roots Jazz, was
recorded in 1994 during a three day jam session with friend and
music wizard Dennis Bovell (along with Bovell’s “Duh Band”)
while on tour to London. Shortly after this he recorded his
second album Java, both of which are licensed to Pioneer Records
in Japan thanks to Dermott Hussey.
The release of these two albums in combination
with his reputation for putting on explosive shows led him to
perform at the Edinburgh Jazz Festival, Soho Jazz Festival,
Miami AT&T Caribbean Jazz Festival, St. Lucia, Antigua, Curacao,
St. Vincent, Grenada and Barbados Jazz Festivals. He also
appeared at the Stockholm Water Festival in Sweden, Pan Ramajay
in Trinidad and Tobago, the Bahamas Musik Festival, St. Kitts
Music Festival, Bob Marley Birthday Bash (negril & Kingston),
Reggae Sunsplash in Jamaica, Montego Bay Jazz & Heritage
Festival and Miami Reggae Festival.
Arturo has played and/or recorded with many major
artists / groups including Red Rodney, Milt Hinton, Monty
Alexander, Ernest Ranglin, Jacky Terrason, Roberta Flack,
Courtney Pine, Al Harewood, Roy Haynes, Ellis Marsalis, Oliver
Jones, Doc Cheatam, Pete King, Mutaburuka, the Wailers Band,
Third World, Mikey Bennett, Dennis Bovell, Jazz Jamaica, Sandra
Cross, Gary Crosby, Eddy Grant, Panazz, Robbie Greenidge, Luther
Francois, Bongo Herman, U Roy and Dean Fraser.
Arturo attributes much of his success to one of
his former tutors at Berklee College of Music, Bill Pierce (Art
Blakey and the Jazz Messenger), Uncle Flombe Mosley, parents and
manager. This support was the kindling which ignited his
Ken “Professor” Philmore
Ken Philmore is from the island of
Trinidad and Tobago, birth place of the steeldrum. “Professor”
is one of the top steeldrum soloists in the world. His
fascination with the steelpan began when he as only four years
old. At the age of fifteen, he joined the Hatters Steel
Orchestra to develop his skills as an arranger and player. On
one of his early visits, a member jokingly remarked “who is this
young kid with these old fashioned glasses?”, referring to his
bone-rimmed spectacles, “he looks more like a ‘professor’ than a
pan player”. This is an alias which Ken proudly carries today
and aptly suits this gifted young musician. In his first year
with Hatters, he was selected for a tour to Minneapolis.
One year later Ken began writing arrangements
for the group. As time progressed, his talents as player and
arranger were so impressive that by 1982 he became musical
director at one of the nation’s most prestigious steel
orchestras. In ten years, le led them to six championships. In
1985, “Professor” did his first album, Our Heritage, which
features a mixture of his version of jazz classics like Mr.
Magic and Stardust, together with pan instrumentals of some
popular calypsos. He was requested to play for Queen Elizabeth
II on her visit to Trinidad and Tobago that year.
Since 1987, Ken has produced eight albums, Pan
Calypso, Love in Steel, Pan Jamboree, Pan By Storm, Pan Ecstasy,
Pan in the Party, All Night, and Graduation. His performing
schedule constantly takes him back and forth between the USA and
Trinidad. “Professor” has performed and recorded with a number
of international artists such as Ella Fitzgerald, Nancy Wilson,
Tina Turner and jazz great Lionel Hampton.
Ken “Professor” Philmore has been honored by the
ruling steelpan association, Pan Trinbago, as the most
outstanding musical arranger. In New York he received a special
award for his contribution to music by Mayor Koch. Following
successes in Los Angeles and New York, “Professor” was invited
by Mercer Ellington to join the prestigious Duke Ellington
Orchestra for their tours to Europe and North America. On their
1990 album, Music is My Mistress, Ken was a featured soloist.
Outstanding live performances continue unabated – 1991, 1993
Washington D.C. Pan Jazz Festival; 1992, 1993 St. Croix Jazz
Festival; 1993 Atlanta Jazz Festival; 1997 Barbados Jazz
Festival, among others.
The “Professor” is now a musical giant in his
homeland, the US and Europe. Young pannists and arrangers try to
imitate his style. His impact on the pan arena has been nothing
short of phenomenal and there are audiences yet to be exposed to
his unique combination of dexterity and soothing runs on his
“steel piano”, as he calls it. The genius continues to blossom.
Excerpts from the Program
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