It has been almost 2 decades of me either playing pan or "going down the road" with Afropan Steelband -Imagine that! I remember the Caribana of '92, in my new LA Gears, chipping down the road for first time with a steelband, holding on to the steelpan rack jamming to Second Imij's "On The Count of Four" - remember that chune?! After an entire summer of hanging out at Afropan's panyard, listening in at rehearsals, attending BLOCKOS, socializing and holding a pair of sticks & "knockin" on a pan for the first time, I knew I had join this group and play pan.
20 years later, as I watch the next generation of players I see the strange hairstyles, funky clothes and fresh shoes but realize the music maintains. There is still that happy vibe one feels when those notes hit your soul and you are taken to another realm to just be one with the music.
At the end of the day, all the energy, hard work and huge build up for a moment to share the music, the vibes and the culture with the world are totally worth it.