One of Grenada’s best known steel band enthusiasts, Cecil Noel wants to see a revamp of the local steel band movement.
Noel who is associated with FLOW Commancheros as its Director told members of the media last week Monday that if the steel band movement has to grow in Grenada it has to first start with the Grenada Steel Band Association (GSBA).
“I am saying this as an individual… it the association) really needs to be revamped,” he said.
Noel who has been involved with the steel band movement for a number of years suggested that GSBA should play a leading role in terms of planning and the execution of its activities.
He said too often he has seen individual steel bands wanting to do what they want by forgetting the bigger picture of working as one unit under the guidance of the association.
The ace pan player and arranger pointed out that rather than seeing just about three steel bands consistently excelling on the local scene, he will be more satisfied in seeing the development of other bands on the island.
“I will be satisfied to see the introduction of steel bands in schools. I will be more satisfied to see that in every or most villages around the area that we have steel bands, and then I will really and truly (be) satisfied and say that the association is moving forward and achieving the way I would like to see it achieve,” he said.
Noel also spoke of the re-occurring problem of Carnival organisers failing to pay prize monies to the competition winners.
Although the senior section of FLOW Commancheros has received its prize money of $48,000 for winning the 2016 National Panorama championship, the band is yet to receive its third-place prize money for the Bomb Tune Competition along with the junior band, which is still awaiting its $12,000 payment for winning the 2016 junior title.
According to Noel, a series of meetings have been held between Commancheros and Spicemas Corporation to have the matter resolved.
“I don’t think it is a situation where we can say much more on it, except to say that a number of the bands are still being owed. When is that going to be settled – (I am) not sure, but the genesis and the history has shown us that these things get settled like in late June, July, just before Spicemas gets going in August again,” he said.
Commancheros is this year staging a series of activities to mark its 50th anniversary as a steel orchestra.