A newly formed agreement between local distribution company, HADCO and the multiple Panorama winner will aid in construction and development of the band’s physical space, said Skerritt in an interview with Newsday. The band and HADCO held a press conference yesterday to formally announce its sponsorship of the band, ending a 16-year-relationship with State-owned energy company, Petrotrin.
“One of the things that hurt us a lot is that we have been unable to develop our facility as we would like. One of things that resulted in that was the fact that up to now as we speak we do not have a deed. Therefore, when you talk development it has to be limited because you have to take into account, Town and Country and the other enabling agencies to approve.
We are hoping over the next few months to have a deed in our hands because our situation was approved since last year,” Skerritt said.
In 2010, the band was asked to vacate its Hamilton Street, Woodbrook address to make way for One Woodbrook Place. But the band remained there.
HADCO’s co-CEO, John Hadad also said that part of its sponsorship of the band will include the improving the band’s physical infrastructure. He said, “To start with we want to make sure whatever we do, we do not interfere with the vibe of the panyard. So we want to help them upgrade their physical facilities. So when you come there and park your car you are going to be safe; you should not have your car towed...” “Enter the panyard and know that this is a panyard with history.
Whether we achieve that in 2016 or 2017 remains to be seen,” he added. Hadad also added that youth and the growth of youth interest in pan is also very important to Phase II Pan Groove and HADCO.
Both Skerritt and Hadad were at pains to explain to members of the audience that the band would not be called HADCO Phase II but rather Phase II Pan Groove in partnership with HADCO. Skerritt said this was one of the main reasons the band decided, HADCO would be its sponsor. He added that among other reasons was the fact that the co-CEOs of HADCO; Robert, John and Joseph, “knew more about the organisation than most players.” The band also launched its 2016 song called Madd Music by Len “Boogsie” Sharpe and sung by new perfomer, Keith Lucas. Skerritt said the “soca song” was written to attract youth and also because pan songs were often shelved after Carnival. The track was produced by 26-year-old Dante Pantin and the lyrics to the song, penned by Nigel Rojas. Skerritt and Hadad said that year-long youth involvement in pan would also be a major part of its sponsorship. Skerritt added that music literacy among the youth would also be a central focus.