Steel Pan

Gordon Maliphant [##47073]

As some of you know, I was brought up in Trinidad, West Indies.
This brought about a total endearment to the world of calypso music (rather obviously!), but also in steelpan music in general.

However, the family’s involvement with the steelpan went further than that …

Jit Samaroo was one of the world’s foremost musicians in the steelpan, be it as calypsonian or serious classical composer.
In the mid 1960’s my father Gordon (known affectionately as GK) guided Jit through the learning curves of reading, writing and arranging music which led to Jit’s success. Initially this was with his family band and later with international success in many genres, including being a part of Jean-Michel Jarre’s 1990 Bastille Day concert in Paris in front of an estimated 2.5 million people.
If you wish to see a more complete summary of Jit’s life, please go and read it here.

Jit was always extremely gratefully for the support and guidance given by GK and travelled to the UK for a 3-day visit as a birthday surprise for him on GK’s 75th birthday.

Here’s a calypso style song written about Jit that also mentions our Maliphant name – the full lyrics are available on this link.
Many thanks to Mark Loquan for this copy of his music.

Dr Samaroo (sung by Anslem Douglas, composed by Mark Loquan)


Now, this part is not specifically to do with our family …. but Classical music played by a steelpan orchestra is a fabulous sound!

This recording of The Poet and Peasant Overture (Franz von Suppé) played by the City Syncopators Steel Orchestra is still rated as one of the best ever and is definitely one of my favourites.
It was recorded live in the 1966 finals of the Trinidad & Tobago Steelband Music Festival, hence the rather crackly sounds from the old LP, especially at the start! Hope you enjoy it 🙂