Caribbean Christmas Carnival
Alfred St. John’s Trinidad & Tobago Steelband is pleased to
offer their first recording of Christmas music. “Caribbean
Christmas Carnival” has both instrumental and vocal renditions
of favorite Christmas Carols. Merry Christmas From The Islands!
“Caribbean Christmas Carnival” is a collection of traditional
Christmas songs performed on Trindad Steel Pans with unique
twists seldom heard. The musical arrangements, though stemmed
in the melodic rhythms of the Caribbean, offer the listener a variety
of genres from calypao, soca, samba, reggae, jazz, to African rock
and the appropriate angelic voices as heard on the selection of
“O Holy Night”. A rendition of “My Favorite Things” is a tribute
to the late jazz great John coltrane and features Jimmie Highsmith Jr.
Also featured on several tracks is the late pannist Richard Smith.
The 12 selections traverse various moods. It is hoped that one will
appreciate this recording on any occasion, or as the Calypsonian
“Sparrow” once wrote “Every Day is Christmas”.
And the performers are:
Alfred St. John is the Leader of the Trinidad & Tobago Steelband
and plays Lead (soprano), Double Second (alto) & Cello (tenor)
Steel Pans on all tracks. In 1966, Alfred came to Rochester, NY, from
Point Fortin, Trinidad, and formed the Trinidad & Tobago Steelband
to share the musical culture of the Islands with Upstate New Yorkers!
He’s done a great job, and the T&T Steelband, under his leadership,
performs at festivals, concerts, weddings, anniversaries, bat and bar
mitzvahs, corporate events, golf tournaments, the annual Caribbean
Mass, and a host of other events and venues throughout New York
State and beyond.
Anthony “Tony” Cato - Cello (tenor) Steel Pans on track 10. Tony hails from
Diego Martin, Trinidad, and currently resides in Buffalo, NY. Besides
performing with several steelpan bands in Trinidad, Tony has also toured
and recorded with “The Caribbean Extravaganza” as well as the Trinidad
and Tobago Steelband.
Stanley “Mike” Diaz - trap Drums on tracks 3, 7, 10. Mike is from
Port-Of-Spain, Trinidad, and now resides in Buffalo, NY. He is the
principal drummer for The Caribbean Extravaganza, touring the US,
Canada, and Japan.
Petal Blossom Fagan - Lead vocals on tracks 2 & 7.
Petal, who was born on the island of Jamaica, has been with
the group for two years and is the principal vocalist. She has
performed at several night clubs on the island’s north coast.
Paul “Pablo” Ferrette - Double second (alto) Steel Pans on track 10. Paul
came to Buffalo, NY, from Trinidad. As the leader of the world famous “The
Caribbean Extravaganza” Paul has toured in the US, Canada, and Japan. In
live performances, Paul will often be performing vocals, and he is credited
with arrangements of several of the bands most popular selections.
John Joseph - Double Second (alto) Steel Pans & Cello (tenor) Steel Pans
on tracks 3, 7 & 10. John was born in Trinidad and now resides in Saratoga, NY.
John has toured extensively, is credited with several of the band’s
arrangements, and teaches the pan to the next generations of steel drum
Paul Mastriani - Drummer.
Paul was born in Schenectady, NY, and has been the principal drummer
for the past 4 years. His ability to stretch boundaries by familiarizing himself
with world beat rhythms is evident on tracks 1,4,5,8,11 & 12.
Eric”Mitty” Moore - Bass on all tracks except 11, Lead vocal on track 8
Back-up vocal on tracks 2 & 7. Mitty is from Rochester, NY. A versatile
musician, Mitty has performed and recorded with The Dukes, The Coupe
de Villes, and The Convertibles, as well as on all the Trinidad & Tobago
Steelband recordings, for which he also arranged several tracks.
Richard Smith - Double Second (alto) Steel Pans on tracks 3, 7 & 10. Our
friend Richard came to Rochester, NY, from San Fernando, Trinidad, and
was a vital member of the band for several years prior to his passing.
Caribbean Romance Volume II is dedicated to our good friend Richard’s memory.
Krystle Williams - Back-up vocal on track 7, Double Second (alto)
steel pans on track 6. Krystle is currently a student at the University of
Rochester and has been with the group for one year. She was born in
Trinidad and has performed in several Panorama (steel pan music festival)
competitions with the “Our Boys Steel Band” of Tobago.
Thank you Guest Artists:
Jimmie Highsmith Jr. - Alto Saxophone on track 5. Jimmie Highsmith, Jr.
is well known in the upstate NY area for his smooth jazz performances. Not
only has he recorded three full albums at Dynamic, but he has guest
performed on countless other recordings. He has shared the stage with
grammy winners and toured extensively. Read more about Jimmie at
Lester Robinson - trap Drums on tracks 2 & 6.
Tony Padilla - Latin Percussion (bongos/conga/maracas/cow
bell/samba bell/timbales/guiro) on all tracks except 11.
Steel Pans were crafted by : Dr. Ellie Mannette, Henroy Harper,
and Desmond Richardson.
Pictures by Alloysia Haynes.
A special thanks to all our families, friends, and fans who have
supported us throughout the years and have waited patiently
for this recording. We always have a great time seeing familiar
faces as well as meeting new friends at our performances and we
hope to see you soon!