The Sound of Steel
Mike Riggert-Harris presents all the various styles of Caribbean music as a masterful performer on the lead steel pan. Also called the tenor pan, Mike uses the unique instrument to entertain his audiences with the HAPPIEST MUSIC ON EARTH. These musical styles include Calypso, Soca, Reggae, and Tropical Jazz. Mike's repertoire includes traditional Caribbean favorites, popular music from Trinidad, jazz set in tropical styles, and popular American tunes arranged in Caribbean musical styles, just like one would hear them in the islands.
Based in metro Phoenix, Arizona, Mike has over 30 years experience in the field of Caribbean music. He currently performs as a pan soloist with backing tracks to provide a full-band sound with minimum staging requirements. Mike is available for any size event, party, or social gathering, and is small enough to fit those intimate settings where a full-size band might be inappropriate or too costly. Whether it's just drinks by the pool, a gathering of friends, a reception, corporate event, or a full-scale no-holds-barred celebration, Mike Riggert-Harris has the musical entertainment for you!
Mike has been playing steel pan and studying Caribbean music for over 30 years. He is a classically trained musician, having earned Bachelor and Masters degrees in Music Performance, with extensive studies in the music and culture of Trinidad and Tobago. Mike began playing steel pan in Wichita, Kansas as a leader of one of the first U.S. university steel band programs. He has associated with many of the top names in the steel pan industry, having studied briefly with Andy Narell, corresponded with Ellie Mannette (who is one of the inventors of the steel drum), and Dr. Charles Countee, the president of the West Coast region for Pan Trinbago, the leading authority for the development and protection of the steel pan culture. He has provided the steeldrum for the Phoenix-based calypso group, The Caribbean Cruisers for over 30 has perfromed at many local cultural events including the Mill Avenvue Music Festival, Fountain Hills Festival, and appears regularly for the Scottsdale Art Walks with the Caribbean Cruisers Duo.
Available in 2 formats: Solo steel pan with backing tracks (no vocals0, and Duo with Guitar (includes vocals)
The Solo act is great for ambiant music situations, and the the Duo is best for parties and other more audience-inclusive events. See the included videos for comparative examples.