MICHAEL BOOTHMAN: It took a while for the steel band movement to accept a composition from a fellow pan player. So guys like Ray Holman, who was one of the pioneering arrangers, who composed music for pan to be played on Panorama, had to do it for about three or four years before he was able to make an impact.
PAT BISHOP: Ray Holman is, has, his popularity has to do with the fact that he innovated, that he started diversing the bands from his music, from the music of the streets. But so far he hasn’t, in this mode, won a Panorama. And that must tell you something about the extent to which innovation can carry the popular opinion.
KNOLLY MOSES: All bright and optimistic, his compositions reveal thoughtful design. Structures are understated but precise, moods are carefully defined and style is studiously lyrical. His logic from note to note is exquisite.
Ray’s playing is as easy as his personality and as restrained as the silence he so artfully slips into critical places. Caressing an instrument particularly percussive in its response, his performance here shows flawless technique. His solos have the pacing of American jazz great Lester Young and the purpose of Rupert Clemendore, an accomplished Trinidadian jazz musician of the 1950s.
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