MASSY Trinidad All Stars views the snub of pan on the Island Beats concert as “a slap in the face,” especially in Pan Month.
The concert lowers the curtain on Carifesta XIV on August 24 and is intended to be a major highlight of the regional arts festival.
In a release issued on Tuesday, after Newsday’s story that day, Pan Trinbago Vex with Culture Minister, All Stars – one of the country’s top steelbands – said August is a month for patriotism in TT, and this August is even more auspicious.
“In addition to celebrating Independence, TT will welcome the nations of the Caribbean Festival of Arts – all the arts.
“While we are entertained by music, dance, art, the written word and film, we must ask where, in the midst of the celebration, is pan?”
The band said the steelband was born in TT out of strife and struggle, is now the internationally-recognised instrument of TT and has been adopted across the Caribbean and the world at large.
For each of the 85 years of Trinidad All Stars’ existence, it said, the band has aimed for excellence.
“For those in the fraternity who have played to sold out shows across Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia, the Americas and the Caribbean, for those who play our instrument in the bands of international armies, to the thousands of schoolchildren across the world that learn to play our instrument – this is a slap in the face.”
All Stars said pan continues to be treated as an “add on” – perhaps nice to have, but to be discarded if required.
The release ended with a vow that All Stars members, as accomplished musicians, will remain proud and patriotic.
“Whether on your stage or not, we will continue to make our presence felt, and we will continue to make music for the masses.”
Pan Trinbago has since started advertising a signal event, Pan Sweet Pan…The Solidarity Concert, to be held on the same night as the Island Beats concert.
Pan Sweet Pan will feature top bands, among them All Stars themselves, Renegades, Desperadoes, Supernovas, Couva Joylanders, Skiffle, Starlift, Invaders, Silver Stars and a Tobago band.
The event will be be held on August 24, at Starlift House of Music, Christopher Samuel Drive, Mucurapo.