Pan Rebels with Len 'Boogsie' Sharpe - WST Steelband Music





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Published on Mar 20, 2007

Go to http://www.panonthenet.com/classics/p... for the full performance of this selection - "In My House" - as arranged by Len 'Boogsie' Sharpe.

In the late 80's a group of young, innovative, progressive, talented and rebellious steelpan musicians known as Pan Rebels left their mark on New York pan as no other has. In many respects Pan Rebels' birth signalled the dawning of the new and current age in the New York pan music continuum. Pan In New York was going to become primarily a youth movement. New ideas, interest and people would become critical components of the New York pan scene. And Pan Rebels was always at the forefront - trying new things although they are not always the ones who received the credit when it became popular. It is not surprising that Pan Rebels started the now-famous New York J'Ouvert celebrations.

Simultaneously, a young group of New York electrical and broadcasting engineers known as Basement Recordings were also experimenting and working closely with Yamaha Corporation of America - who recognized their brilliance immediately - to fine tune its digital recording technology. Yamaha provided Basement Recordings with one of it's then-unreleased 24-bit digital recorders to test and make recommendations. The unit was then known as the DMR8 which would become the corner stone on which all future Yamaha digital recordings technology would be based. As faith or luck would have it, many of the engineers at Basement Recordings were also pan musicians. Even before the introduction of the DMR8, Basement Recordings was light years ahead of any other group or production team in terms of producing quality steelband recordings. Since the mid-80's they had already developed a technique they label as the 'box and one' specifically for the steel orchestra. It received rave reviews and write ups in many of the broadcasting and professional audio journals.

Now armed with this digital recording goliath - that was in many ways way ahead of its time - Basement now had the tools to capture the full dynamic range of the steel orchestra without compromise. Moreover they were committed to producing outstanding recordings that could stand next to any great music productions regardless of genre - and showcase the greatness of the 'Boogsies' and 'Bradleys,' with any of their contemporaries.

In Pan Rebels - Basement Recordings found kindred sprits - young musicians who were not tied to conventionality - furthermore they were not afraid of the presence of technology. Add the great Len "Boogsie" Sharpe, the ultimate unconventional arranger and what you got was magic. Basement Recordings always looked forward to recording Pan Rebels steel orchestra. They were young people; they understood the power and importance of recording and immortalizing their music works/material. As a matter of fact the band's management viewed Basement's recording them as a critical part of their panorama season. World-renowned arranger Len 'Boogsie' Sharpe was perfect as he supported, encouraged and understood what Basement and Pan Rebels were undertaking. Interestingly enough Basement's and Len 'Boogsie' Sharpe's paths would cross many times in other professional arenas in the future - of particular note would be their coming together with legendary master drummer Max Roach on future recording projects.

The Pan Rebels - Basement Recordings collaborations produced many recording gems that featured prominent arrangers like Garvin Blake and Pelham Goddard in addition to Len 'Boogsie' Sharpe. Even though the orchestra has been inactive since 2002 - with their musical works and contributions to the New York Steelband music scene, while spearheaded by the dynamic trio of Anthony 'Pra' Trebuse, Gary Rogers and Michelle Williams - Pan Rebels remains a New York steelband fixture.

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