GRENADA'S ONE MAN BAND
one man band: From The Greetings magazine volume 13 2001
If you're in Grenada for any period of time, you're bound to run into Lincoln "Bosco" Samuel singing and performing on the steel drum, or steelpan as it is known. While you'll be enthralled by his music and infectious smile, its just a glimpse of extensive talents. In addition to working at the Ministry of Culture since 1981, He's found the time to become an accomplished musician, songwriter and arranger, teacher, and theatrical producer. He also creates and produces CDs where he performs on every instrument.
Born in Belmont, Bosco got his start in music in a community band in the early 70s. He learned pan music first, and joined the South Stars Steel Orchestra, helping that group to win its first panorama competition in 1971. The band traveled to Guyana in 1972 to compete in Carifesta, and in 1974, the band won the National Steel Band Festival, which featured Grenada's top steel bands.
In the mid-70s, Bosco moved into other areas of music, teaching himself to play guitar, bass and drums. He joined a combo named "Resurrection" and performed with them on guitar and vocals for about two years, before leaving Grenada to attend school in Jamaica. In Jamaica, Bosco studied theatre, but kept in touch with music by creating background music for plays.
In 1981, Bosco began work for the Ministry of Culture in Grenada, but continued his career in music as well. In 1989 he competed in the Calypso competition, and was part of the Clarkes Court Pan Lovers Steel Band, handling all the arrangements as well as composing original music that the band performed in the Panorama competition. In 1990 they came in fourth in the Panorama competition, while Bosco was awarded the grand prize in the Festival of the Arts competition, as well. In 1991 and 1992, the Clarkes Court Band won the Junior Panorama.
In 1993, Bosco formed a duo with another Grenadian called 'Both of Us'. He played bass. Later, he began performing on his own, playing lead pan and singing, with backgrounds which he has arranged and played all of the parts for- percussion, drums, keyboard and bass.
Seeing Bosco perform is exhilarating. Backed by recorded music which he has arranged and performed on a variety of instruments, he puts on a virtuoso performance adding the mellow tones of the pan and his own distinctive vocal style to the music. Bosco performs at a number of hotels on a regular basis, and its definitely worth seeing. If you enjoy the sound, be sure to take home one of his CDs. Sun Pan, with all of the music arranged and performed by Bosco, was released in 1998, and another CD of original work is due out soon. When you see Bosco perform, be sure to spend some time talking with him. You'll find an individual, talented on many levels- from music to the theatre, performing to arranging, composing to teaching.