CCM's Steel Drum Band Returns to the Stage for 'A Trip to Trinidad and Back'

The University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM)’s Steel Drum Band will present an evening of the traditional music of Trinidad, along with pop, folk and reggae compositions at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 31 in Corbett Auditorium. The Steel Drum Band will be directed by Professor of Percussion Russell Burge.

Audiences will recognize some of the Trinidad standards, which include “Bee’s Melody” by Lord Kitchener, an internationally famous calypsonian from Arima, Trinidad, and “Rant and Rave” by solo artist Christopher “Tambu” Herbert. Herbert was a founding member of the well-known Trinidad and Tobago brass band, Charlie’s Roots.

In addition, the Steel Drum Band will perform several powerful contemporary pieces with a jazz influence, arranged by recent CCM alumnus Doug Sutton (BM Percussion Performance, 2014).

Sutton’s arrangement of “Opus Pocus,” a song by influential American jazz musician and electric bass player Jaco Pastorius, is a track on Pastorius’ self-titled album, which many consider the finest bass album ever recorded. Sutton says, “’Opus Pocus’ will be a challenging piece as it is written in a 13/8 time signature, or as people refer to it more often, an odd meter.” This is perfect for a talented group of percussionists who are masters of rhythmic changes and interesting meters. Sutton also touts that “the piece incorporates a lot of interesting harmonies,” which will be great fun for audiences.

The band will also perform Sutton’s arrangement of “High Noon” from Chris Potter’s album


, released in 2001. Potter is a critically acclaimed saxophonist who has been called “one of the most studied (and copied) saxophonists on the planet” by



Sutton describes his inspiration for choosing “High Noon” as follows: “The original piece incorporated a steel drum solo, giving me the idea to arrange the whole tune for the steel drum band. It has very difficult moving melody lines and lots of syncopation. It’s a very groovy tune, and Professor Burge will be playing drum set for the performance.” It will be a treat for the audience and performers alike to see the talented professor in action.

CCM’s Steel Drum Band is composed mainly of students from CCM’s percussion department, but also includes a few additional players who have had relevant experience and are interested in participating in the ensemble.

Audiences who enjoyed last year’s

Trip to Trinidad

concert will love this year’s

A Trip to Trinidad and Back

, which is sure to be a classic Steel Drum Band performance.

Performance Time

8 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 31


Corbett Auditorium, CCM Village

University of Cincinnati

Purchasing Tickets

Tickets to “A Trip to Trinidad and Back” are $12 general, $6 for non-UC students and UC students FREE with a valid ID.

Parking and Directions

Parking is available in the CCM Garage (located at the base of Corry Boulevard off Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus. Please visit

for more information on parking rates.

For detailed maps and directions, please visit

. Additional parking is available off-campus at the new U Square complex on Calhoun Street and other neighboring lots.

For directions to CCM Village, visit



CCM Season Presenting Sponsor and Musical Theatre Program Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Community Partner: ArtsWave

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