Steelpan: Hammer meets drum

TT – David Rudder sings about the man with the hammer in his song about steelpan tuner, the late Rudolph Charles.

But how does a man with a hammer turn a used oil drum into a percussion instrument capable of making our feet tap and our bodies sway?

Newsday photographer Ayanna Kinsale went to Scherzando panyard in Curepe where Anthony Duncan showed her the pan-making process. She also visited pan maker Wayne Guppy in Curepe.

The steelpan, reportedly invented in the 1930s, is the national instrument of TT.

It is also one of our major cultural exports, played in countries across the world.

The steelpan itself is manufactured in panyards and by manufacturers across the country.

This year, Bon Air High School students made their own pans for the junior Panorama competition, assisted by a tuner.

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