Double Seconds Steel Drums Gary Trotman instrument of choice
The Double Seconds and Double Tenors are the most versatile of all the steel drum voices. The two and one half octave range provides plenty of register to play chords, counter melodies and melodies.
Double Seconds are laid out in a “whole-tone” arrangement. Essentially this means that a chromatic scale on the instrument is played by alternately playing notes from the left and right drums. A feature of this arrangement is that a diatonic major scale almost always requires three consecutive notes from one drum, four notes from the other, and then one last note from the first drum (or some small variation on this pattern).
The advantage to this layout is that the notes can be “synchronised”.
Notes on the left drum are a semi-tone higher
than notes in the same position on the right drum.
On the other hand, Double Tenors are laid out using an arrangement whereby diatonic major scales are played by alternately playing notes from the left and right drums, but chromatic scales require two notes from the left drum followed by two notes from the right drum followed by two notes from the left drum and so on.
This steel pan was invented by Sonny Roach and uses two drums, each of which carries the notes of a whole-tone scale, making it a very symmetrical steel pan. Its notes range from F# below middle C (F#3) up to C#6, which is two octaves above middle C. Because of the symmetry of this pan, the successive notes of the Chromatic Scale alternate between the left and right hand pans. For example, F# is on the left, G is on the right, G# is on the left, and so on…
The versatility of the double second steel drums makes them capable of playing lead, harmonic voices, chords (harmony) or counter melody and they are very popular among soloists. They have a very unique (floaty) tonal quality which may be due to the “whole tone” arrangement of the notes of each pan. The sound of the double second steel pan is slightly deeper than that of the double tenor because it has a longer skirt.
The double second pan consists of two drums with 15 notes in each. The tonal range is almost two and a half octaves in the same range as the double tenor pan. The sound of the double second is, though, a little deeper than the double tenor due to its longer side.
The note layout of the double second seems to be more consistent than for the double tenor. On a chromatic scale, the notes are positioned in drums left-right-left-etc., which means that the most dissonant intervals – the small seconds – are distributed over two drums. The smallest intervals residing in the same drum – the large seconds – are spaced as far apart as possible. For instance, C and D are almost at opposite sides of the left drum.
The SKB-D1122 Double Second/Double Tenor Steel Drum Case
Designed for steel drum players who are looking for the best protection for their “pans,” the SKB Steel Drum Cases are rotationally molded from Linear Low Density Polyethylene (LLDPE), offering high durability and strength. An extra ring of padding in the lid keeps the steel drum in place and helps prevent against the “pan” lifting up and impacting the lid during transport.
The SKB-D1122 Double Second/Double Tenor Steel Drum Case is a roto-molded D-shaped case designed with molded in feet for upright positioning and stability. The cases includes a patented Roto-X pattern for added strength, durability and reliable stacking. Sure grip handles with a 90° stop are designed for easy lifting and transporting. With padded interiors for added protection, SKB Steel Drum Cases have revolutionized affordable steel drum protection.
Features & Benefits
- High durability and strength
- Extra ring of padding in the lid
- Roto-molded D-shaped design
- Roto-X pattern for added strength and reliable stacking
- Sure grip handles with a 90° stop
- Padded interiors for added protection