Lincoln Noel

Lincoln " Delgado " Noel also known as the "Pan Doctor" was born in La Brea, San Fernando, Trinidad in 1936.

He began to play pan at the age of 13 and soon after joined Southern Symphony Steelband.  As the band's popularity soar, the hub was re-located to Laventille in the north of the island.  This move created the opportunity for Noel to progress from the frontline to background pans, and so his career took a different direction.

Southern Symphony was re-named Esso Trinidad Steelband after gaining sponsorship. This gave the band the opportunity to travel and perform in other Caribbean islands as well as worldwide between the mid 1950s and 1960s. Lincoln now proved to be an asset as he was fluent in many languages, and was both a player and an interpreter for the band.

Rudolph Charles paved the way for Noel to join the Desperadoes as a tuner. He soon began to improve his skills so as to perfect his trade under the watchful eye of the late Alan Gervais, who passed away in 1977. Noel's keen ear for listening and tuning enabled him to be recognised as a master in blending pans and tuning harmonics in the notes. Desperadoes Steelband also benefitted from his linguistic skills, and took him on many of their tours as a tuner and interpreter.

Like many of his predecessors, Noel organised and arranged his own steelband Gay Caballeros in Laventille, but his main interest was his first love, tuning. Many panmen have acquired knowledge and skill from his competency, and it was said he can re-tune any steelpan regardless of who made it.

Lincoln could have been considered an all-rounder because he had the ability to play, arrange, tune and manage steelbands.

An example of taking pan to another level was in the founding of Lincoln Enterprises Limited, a new commercial entity created in Trinidad, and incorporated as a brand in order to produce steepan instruments to the mass market.

Lincoln Noel was also an accomplished saxophonist and double bassist. He was a modest man and did not care too much for adulation. His pursuit was to focus on improving pan and share his wisdom with the up and coming tuners.

Unfortunately, in 2006 due to poor health Noel spent the early part of the year in and out of the General Hospital in Port of Spain. After undergoing several operations he spent his last days at the home of a fellow pan tuner and apprentice, Clifford "Rope" Alfred, where he passed away on 24 September 2006.