Steel Drum Maven & Percussionist
Joseph Peck aka “Panhead” has been playing steel drums for nearly 30 years. Starting out as a rock drummer in local South Florida metal bands, he discovered the pans when he started at Wichita State U, where he graduated in 1995. During that time he met and was mentored by Dr. Ellie Mannette, who created the instrument and is considered the father of the steel drum. Later at WSU Peck went on to direct their 17-strong Steel Pan Orchestra.
Since then, Joseph‘s love affair with the steel drums has led him on an odyssey which included time as an in-demand studio session player in LA. He’s featured on recordings with Scott Weiland, Cyndi Lauper and loads more.
This year Joseph relocated back to Wichita where he will continue to book live performances and recording sessions, he will also focus on educating and interactive engagement; the latter via his Caribbean Drum Circle Interactive Class and the former in groups or on an individual basis.
Recently Joseph added a V13 gen2 to his formidable arsenal of mics and studio gear, having just finished building his new facility in Wichita:
“I tested it against three other mics, which included one other tube mic…and (the V13) definitely held its own against that mic and easily out shined the other two non-tube mics. I noticed a wonderful presence with the Vanguard V13. The single word that came to mind on playback is ‘alive’. The mic tests consisted of spoken word and tenor steelpan voicing which is more of a soprano register. I personally liked the Vanguard on the spoken word the most.”
As if he wasn’t already busy enough, Joseph is committed to working with music as therapy and participating with organizations like CPRF, a nationally recognized leader in the development of rehabilitation engineering, specialized services, advocacy, employment training, and job placement for people with all types of disabilities. Peck believes that engaging with music can be therapeutic both emotionally and physically, through movement, helping to center and ground folks who might find those particular activities challenging. It’s cool work, and he’ll no doubt bring some healing along that journey.
Welcome to the Family, Joseph!