Sunday, September 3, 2023 at 3:39 am
Crown Heights Brooklyn (WABC) — The steelpan drum is a simple instrument that inspires the soul – percussion that lifts you to another level.
On Saturday night, the Brooklyn Museum came alive with sounds from Trinidad and Tobago.
About a dozen bands, mostly local, competed in Brooklyn Panorama, including Steel Sensation from Queens.
“My dad came from a family of steelpan musicians that were very well known in Trinidad, so he brought that culture here and we just carried on,” says band member Tristian Jassy.
It’s a constant sound that forces you to keep to the beat of the Caribbean tradition.
Betty Louise’s parents are from Haiti.
“It’s always been a way for our family to come together and enjoy each other’s company, it feels like home,” Lewis said.
To emphasize Steelpan’s importance to New York City’s Caribbean community, members of the state legislature have actually introduced a bill to include it as part of the academic curriculum for local students.
“It means young people can decide to take violin lessons or take steelpan lessons. I can imagine communities like Flatbush, Crown Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens where young people would want to play steelpan lessons and be culturally capacity,” said Assemblyman Brian Cunningham.
The party will continue on Labor Day with the New York Caribbean Mardi Gras.
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