Woman in Pan

Music and Lyrics by Mark E. Loquan
Arranged by Jason Dasent, Mark Loquan
Pan by Len 'Boogsie' Sharpe
Sung by Mark Loquan
© September 10, 1999 All Rights Reserved
Published by MLQ Music Ltd., email: mlqpan(at)hotmail.com
Released 2000 on the Passion for Pan Album


"Dedicated to all those women who have shaped or continue to develop in some way the evolution of our pan culture."

While there have been classic songs dedicated to women such as Woman on the Bass or Woman is Boss, I thought about the increasing trend of women playing in steelbands, not only players, but also soloists and arrangers. It was a song that I would have to research and talk to various people such as Dr. Pat Bishop, who had already taken Desperadoes to Carnegie Hall, Ray Steele, and others.

Another angle that interested me was their involvement from the perspective of literacy and standards, as women had been quietly involved teaching music, judging and conducting. It is also quite evident that female players have occupied the steelbands from schools and the rest of the community. Tribute to Girl Pat Steel Orchestra with Hazel Henley starting from the early 1950’s, and many others in this song. The danger in doing such a song, is omitting those not mentioned, which I apologize for, but I hope it is a small step towards recognizing the valuablecontribution of women to the pan movement.

This was another song completed while Jason Dasent was in England, with files going back and forth electronically to Trinidad. Eventually it was recorded, with Len "Boogsie" Sharpe playing the background pan in the vocal version. It was quite appropriate for Natasha Joseph of Panazz to play the pan version of this song.

Some years later, the song would be arranged by Dr. Jit Samaroo for Skiffle Bunch, and scored by Kareem Brown for the Pan in Education CD.
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One could say women contribute literacy
To the whole evolution in pan
Like the case of our women conductors
And adjudicators, dey continue to set our standards
Pan arrangers, music teachers... woman in pan

One could trace back from Girl Pat Steel Orchestra
Henley teach dem de “Tennessee Waltz”
Playing soft in a house down in Newtown
With pan mauvais langue, dey still earned a good reputation
Tour Guyana, then Jamaica.... woman in Pan

Long Chorus
Ah want to say, play woman play
Ya help us to reach here today
And we all recognize, there’s so much we all need to strive for
Yeh woman we want more
Yeh woman, show we more
Come woman, play some more

Gradually pan gain respectability
Women working with pan quietly
In de east, McIntosh have a school
Doh even try to fool, Pierre or Merle Albino de Coteau
Creative woman, Doctor Osborne... woman in Pan

Pat Bishop, she has earned greatest reverence
Well for you there is no fair tribute
With repute and musicology
‘Radoes make history, so did Dawn Batson and Pamberi
Oh what a grand contribution... woman in pan

Short Chorus
Ah want to say, play woman play
Ya help us to reach here today
And we all recognize, there’s so much we all need to strive for
Come woman play some more

Well Nowadays is no big deal to see woman in pan
In Ramajay or even playing in dem big band
So Leh we break away from all of dis inhibition, woman
A New generation, a small revolution, in pan


Some a dem could make men feel a little shame
Ray Steele have an appropriate name
Desperadoes with Ursula Tudor
Bring back Huggins for sure, call Natasha Joseph for encore
De Layne twins, both soloing... woman in pan

Now ah bounce up dis tourist from Germany
She say she want to play pan desperately
Like she hook on dis sweet guitar pan
With a beer in she hand, and till two a.m. every morning
Make way for she, ‘cause now we see........woman in pan

Long Chorus & Ad Lib with Interlude music