Tuning A Cello Pan (1960s)

"Muff Man"


DATE OF BIRTH: June 24, 1931
PLACE OF BIRTH: St. James, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad
EDUCATION: Tranquillity Government School, Port of Spain, Triknidad
  • Nob Hill (1940s)
  • Sun Valley (1940s)
  • North Stars (1950 - 1970s)
  • TASPO (1951)
  • Tuner
  • Player
  • Arranger
  • CAREER:                                       Williams began his career in the 1940s with Nob Hill and later moved to Sun Valley. After a brief stay, he moved over to North Stars where he eventually took over the leadership of the band. He was one of twelve panmen selected to join TASPO as the Trinidad & Tobago representatives at the 1951 Music Festival in England. He was a great innovator and was credited with being the first man to put the multi-drum bass on wheels for ease in moving them on the streets during Carnival. He worked tirelessly at developing the "spider-web" pan design and, by 1962, achieved great success when his North Stars won the Steelband Music Festival. After the Panorama competition was initiated in 1963, North Stars won the championship the first two years in 1963 and 1964. The following is a summary of Williams' record in significant steelband competition:
    • Steelband Music Festival
    • 1962 - "Voices of Spring" (Johann Strauss), 1st
    • 1966 - "Poets and Peasants" (Franz Von Suppe), 1st
    • Panorama
    • 1963 - "Dan Is the Man in the Van" (Mighty Sparrow), 1st
    • 1964 - "Mama Dis Is Mas" (Lord Kitchener), 1st
    • 1965 - "Hold on to Your Man" (Lord Kitchener), 2nd
    • 1969 - Trinidad & Tobago Humming Bird Medal Bronze (for Steelband Development)
    • 1991 - Trinidad & Tobago Humming Bird Medal Silver (for Culture)
    • 2012 - Trinidad & Tobago Order of the Republic
    • 2016 - Honorary Doctor of Letters (D Litt), University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad
    DIED: December 21, 2021, in Trinidad.
    Compiled by Ronald C. Emrit