Album Remarks & Appraisals:
Rudy "Twoleft" Smith is a legendary figure in the world of steel pan and steelband. This album, What Pan Did For Me, offers samples of his many musical faces: the pan man, the jazz musician, the arranger, the pan tuner, the tune smith... Rudy's life covers most of the development of steel pan as a tuned musical instrument. The first pans were made from biscuit tins and other metal containers and had but few notes. These were the first steel pans Rudy made and played as a very young boy. During the period 1945-55 the steel pan was gradually transformed into a set of instruments from treble to bass made from 55 gallon oil drums. The orchestra made up of steel pans became known as steelband. The original function of steelbands was to provide music for the masqueraders in the famous Trinidad carnival. The bands played the Trinidad calypso music, but very soon began playing other kinds of music. The U.S. had both a naval and air base in Trinidad. The G.I. audience was a different one than the local audience. And they could pay. With the "Yankees" departure in the late 1950s the steelbands had to look for new markets. As a teenager Rudy started to travel with the band Merrymakers, taking steelband to Europe in the wake of the 1950s calypso craze.
Liner Note Author: Krister Malm.
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