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PANFest 2018


24th St. Pavilion
Virginia Beach Oceanfront

Friday Evening, May 11:

Nature’s Child: 6PM-7:30PM
Jeff Narell & Five Ten: 8PM-10PM


Saturday, May 12:

PANFest Competition: 10AM-6:30PM
Jonathan Scales: 7PM-8PM
Awards Ceremony: 8PM
Jeff Narell & Five Ten: 8:30PM – 10PM

Events are free and open to the public.

Jeff Narell

Jeff Narell is an internationally known steel panist, Afro-Caribbean percussionist, educator-clinician, and recording artist who has dedicated his life to promoting the artform and expanding the musical range of the steel pan.

Jeff was initiated into the world of steel pan at the age of eleven by the very first West Indians to arrive in New York City with authentic knowledge. Pan became his passion and a gift that he has passed down to new generations. In schools from elementary through university, and through music programs under the auspices of the San Francisco Symphony Education Department, Jeff has introduced tens of thousands of students to steel pans.

Equally at home with the traditional steel band or as a soloist in contemporary musical settings, he has played on four big box office Hollywood movies, worked with Olatungi, Bobby McFerrin, George Benson, The Grateful Dead and appeared as guest artist-composer on the Grammy nominated Patato, Changuito, Vilato: Rhythm at the Crossroads CD in the Latin Jazz category. Narell received the Hollywood Dramalogue award for best theatrical score for The Tempest commissioned by the California Shakespeare Co.

Jeff’s original composition “Ellie Man” was a top tune played by steel orchestras island wide for Trinidad Carnival 2003. A tribute to his mentor, Ellie Mannette, the father of the modern steel pan, it was sung and recorded in collaboration with Trini calypso star Crazy and performed by Ellie’s original steel orchestra, Invaders, at Panorama. The tune of choice by steel orchestras in five countries, Ellie Man captured the crown in Toronto’s Caribana Festival.

Performing live and producing his original CDs, Jeff continues to forge a unique musical vision with pan.

Five Ten

When you see and hear the numbers 510 you think of the East Bay area code and home of the west coast jazz, blues, funk, Caribbean and Latin music scene ladened with generations of multi-cultural artists, activist, poets and musicians. 510 has been the center and progressive ground for some of the nation’s most exciting performances from the Oakland Coliseum and Greek Theater to the Paramount and Fox Theaters. The 510 area code is synonymous with great entertainment.

The musical group FIVE TEN represent the future of those great performances with extreme musicianship, well crafted tunes and an exciting array of instrumentation…including the mysterious sound of the steel pan from Trinidad played by pan virtuoso Jeff Narell, along side multi-keyboard master Steve Carter and a world class rhythm section consisting of the excellent bass playing of Dennis Smith and stellar drumming of Joel Smith plus the colorful sounds of nature by Brazilian percussion master Marquinho Brasil.

Five Ten is the sound of modern jazz with world rhythms presented with class and sophistication. Songs such as the clever rearrangement of Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana illustrate the band’s innovative application of the East Bay sound. The members of FIVE TEN have graced the world’s stages and are set to satisfy and entertain.

Jonathan Scales

Multi-instrumentalist and composer Jonathan Scales is likely the most innovative steel drummer on the planet. His stunning, virtuosic technique is obvious and apparent to any who have seen him perform, but it is his mesmerizing compositions and tasteful, avant-garde improvisation that set him apart from the pack. Scales’ unmistakably unique approach to an instrument often associated with cruise ships and tropicalia establishes him as something of an outlier. Whereas his talent and creativity could have been focused on other instruments he plays, such as saxophone, he fell in love with the sound of the steel pans. He may also have unconsciously seen it as a challenge… to transform the instrument in much the same way that his musical inspiration Bela Fleck did with the banjo. In fact, Driftwood Magazine made a similar observation, when it wrote that “Scales is to steel pans what Béla Fleck is to the banjo—an über innovator.” Pan On The Net, a blog dedicated to the global steel drum community, echoes the sentiment in its description of the modest Asheville, NC based composer as having “a Thelonius Monk-like attitude with a Mozart creativity.”

Jonathan Scales Fourchestra has a fluid line-up, allowing Jonathan to work with a wide range of artists, and in the past few years he has earned the respect of some of the most impressive players across multiple genres. The Fourchestra’s November 2016 tour of the Southeast is a prime example of this, showcasing bass wizardMonoNeon (Prince), drummer Robert “Sput” Searight (Snarky Puppy) and percussionist Weedie Braimah (The Nth Power). As with the tours, Scales’ recordings have also featured special guest performances from the likes of Victor Wooten, Howard Levy, Jeff Coffin and Kofi Burbridge. The Fourchestra’s self-titled 2013 debut album on Ropeadope Records, fully orchestrated with horns and strings, was a follow-up to the trio’s three independent releases, and the follow-up— Mixtape Symphony (Ropeadope), a dense, half-hour, long-form album inspired by and dedicated to Roy “Futureman” Wooten— peaked at #6 on the iTunes Jazz charts. Bringing the relationship full circle, Jonathan had the opportunity to perform with Bela Fleck and The Flecktones in Richmond, VA in June of 2016— a dream come true for the kid who used to wait outside venues for a chance to talk to his muse. Bela Fleck himself, in considering Scales’ cover of his composition “The Imposter”, remarked “To say I am impressed would be a gross understatement…”.

With an ear for myriad global sounds, it only makes sense for Jonathan Scales Fourchestra to expand beyond North America. They toured Central America, the Caribbean, Japan and Europe in the Fall of 2015, and a performance in The Netherlands landed them a spot on the prestigious North Sea Jazz Festival in the Summer of 2016, which anchored another tour of Europe. The Fourchestra has now been chosen by the US Department of State— from 300 finalists— to serve as musical ambassadors in a 6 week concert tour of China, Taiwan, Hong Kong & Indonesia in early 2017. Jonathan Scales has his eyes on the world, for sure… world, meet Jonathan!

“…joyously inventive… Jonathan Scales brings new vitality to the traditional Caribbean instrument, picking up where Othello Molineaux left off 20 years ago with Jaco Pastorius.” – Jazz Times

“…Scales is going to be a major player in rewriting the books on steel pan music outside the box.” – When Steel Talks

Nature's Child Reggae Ambassadors

Nature's Child is the hottest reggae sensation on the east coast, based in Virginia Beach, Virginia. This band is multi-cultural, multi-talented with roots in rock, jazz, latin, blues, funk and of course reggae.

Their CD "THE FIRST SUPPER" has gotten rave reviews from all who have heard it. The energy that they bring to the stage is contagious and highly explosive. We recommend you check this group out. The band has been up and down the east coast opening for the likes of Steel Pulse, Burning Spear, Third World and many of reggae's top artists (EG DAMIEN MARLEY)

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