Solid Steel – Steel Band Hire UK

We’re Solid Steel

and we’re a modern professional UK-based steel band founded in 1986.

Our Vision

Solid Steel was born out of a love for the steel pan- an instrument that seems to evoke only sunshine and happiness for so many listeners- and a wanderlust to travel far and wide playing to audiences all manner of musical genres from pop to jazz alongside the Caribbean musical styles conventionally associated with steel bands.

More about our vision

Our Story

At the core of the band is the Cherrie family who originate from Trinidad- the home of the steel band- and who have been involved in playing steel pans professionally in Britain since the early 1950s.

More about our story

Our Music

We play the most beautifully tuned steel band instruments and we play them to the professional level required of full-time musicians on any other instrument. More often we’re required to play just instrumentally as an entirely ‘unplugged’ acoustic steel trio- a unique steel band format that the Cherrie family helped forge in London in those post-war years-  so we mostly play ‘cover’ tunes that are very strong melodically whether they’ve originated from the Caribbean or not and irrespective of how ‘traditional’ or ‘modern’ they are.  Our band has the history to play the traditional Caribbean songs well and the progressive approach that embraces all genres of popular music where great melodies can be found.

Much of what distinguishes us from other steel bands musically is that most of our musicians also have a second instrument we play at a professional level. This enables us to better serve more bespoke demands to play in other sized formats offering vocals and other instrumentation. Evidence of this can be found on our videos, our latest CD which you can buy here and our playlists should you read…

More about our music

Our Gallery

We are a small extended family- not all of which are Cherries- which spans 3 generations. Unsurprisingly we do look a lot like a cross-section of the very racially-mixed Trinidadian society- some older, some younger, some darker skinned, some lighter skinned. Disproportionately male we would have to admit- but Tania Cherrie’s working on that!
What we wear can be clearly witnessed on our photos and videos should you read…

More in our Gallery

Wedding Music

About a third of our band’s bookings are for weddings. Steel bands have been playing live as wedding bands in the UK since the Fifties when Trinidadians like Max and Ralph Cherrie played in steel trios featuring these novel new instruments that had only been ‘invented’ less than 20 years earlier in Trinidad.

There was no such thing as an all-acoustic 3-piece steel band even in Trinidad back then (with each band member exclusively playing a steel drum) and it hasn’t emerged anywhere else other than in London since either.

So, steel bands playing live wedding music all-acoustically and ‘unplugged’ is a uniquely British phenomenon and, due to their Caribbean identity, have always been considered a ‘cool’ alternative to the more predictable wedding music of other live acoustic wedding bands such as string quartets and trad jazz bands. We take playing for weddings very seriously indeed as you will discover should you read…

More about wedding music

Other Events

We also travel all over the country and abroad, playing fully live to audiences at other private and public events with (but mostly without!) a tropical theme like Caribbean nights, birthday parties, weddings, corporate events, product launches, and- because of the greater mobility we offer than most steel bands- big sporting events and carnival parades. We perform in prestigious and not-so-prestigious venues as diverse as hotels, festivals, schools, tv and radio studios, village halls, shopping centres, pubs and restaurants. In so doing, we make it our business for our steel band to transport our audience’s imagination to the most idyllic sun and rum-soaked Caribbean holiday ever. No passport is required for you to read…

More about other events

Workshops

In recent years demand has grown for our steel pan musicians to teach our instrument to individuals or facilitate the learning of basic steel band skills to groups of both children and adults. As a fully qualified secondary school teacher myself, I’m fully committed to ensuring the highest teaching standards are maintained- whether we’re being hired to run our popular steel band workshops in schools, contracted to manage steel band teambuilding activities for our corporate clients, or asked to run a fun workshop for a Hen Night.

We offer a great opportunity for learning, communicating, understanding…and having fun as you will clearly see should you read…

More about workshops

Paul CherrieYou may decide to decline our invitation to read more and prefer to stay on this page where you can watch our videos, listen to us on Soundcloud or follow our social media feeds.

The Solid Steel name came about- somewhat unromanticaIly- to further promote the band’s reputation for good time-keeping not always associated with Caribbean people in that era, but if ‘the reliable sound of sunshine’ already seems like something you just might want to guarantee for your event please go ahead and enquire now!

Thank you,

Paul Cherrie

Enquire here

Testimonials

  • Somerset Bridge Primary School

    Hi Paul,

    We had your two musicians at school today…Dave and Mark?  I just wanted to let you know that they were absolutely amazing!  I have spoken to all the teachers who attended each of their workshops and every single one said that the workshop was brilliant.  Others said ‘those two guys got it just right, they were fantastic with the children.’

    Please thank them again from all the staff and children at Somerset Bridge Primary School.  We will definitely recommend you to others.  Please use my comments on your website.

    Kind regards,

    Anne Moseley 4/11/15

  • Great Expectations Events Ltd

    Hi Paul,

    Thank you so much for yesterday, your guys were great and the feedback so far is that everyone loved the music.
    It really added to the atmosphere with us pumping the sound around the cricket pitch.

    They usually sit around in silence watching the cricket so we certainly put a twist on the way they enjoyed the day.

    Look forward to working with you again soon.

    Best wishes,
    Jason Noah 27/6/16

  • Ashley and Terry

    Dear Paul,

    I wanted to say a belated but sincere thank you for the music at our wedding at the Devonshire Terrace. All the guests and ourselves so enjoyed the atmosphere the team created, so chilled and happy.

    We were delighted and just wanted to say how happy we were with your professionalism and talent.

    Best wishes,

    Ashley and Terry. 13/7/16

  • Pocklington Trust Housing Assoc.

    Dear Paul,

    We would like to thank you and your team for a wonderful performance yesterday at the Court.

    Everyone- staff and tenants, had a great time and enjoyed the band. We have received a very positive feedback from our guests.

    We will definitely be booking you for any future events.
    Thanks again.

    Kind Regards,
    Leena Ghule 29/7/16

  • Ellie and Pete

    Dear Paul,

    Thank you so much for playing at our wedding in July. You guys were absolutely fantastic. It brought such a lovely Caribbean vibe to the reception. We will be recommending you guys to everyone we know!

    Please see attached a lovely pic that our photographer took of you guys.

    Best wishes!

    Ellie and Pete. 15/9/16

  • St Bernard’s Prep School

    Dear Paul,

    It was lovely to meet you and Mark yesterday, what a fantastic way to spend the morning!

    Thank you so much for making it such a good experience for our children – they loved it.

    Best Wishes,

    Sarah Whittaker 16/11/16

  • Formium Development Team Coaching

    Hi Paul,

    Just wanted to say thank you very much for an excellent workshop session today.

    The team really enjoyed it, got a lot from it and sounded fantastic.

    Many thanks,

    Eszter Mills 14/12/16

  • Arup

    Hi Paul,

    I just wanted to say thanks to you and the guys for your performance last week, It was a really good night and the music played a huge part in making it such a success! The limbo was a particular highlight for me. 

    All the best, 

    Harry Popplewell  14/8/17

  • Kathy Jay

    Dear Paul,
    thank you so much for entertaining us at the party on Saturday. You were fantastic and everyone commented on how good you were.
    Regards
    Kathy Jay 14/8/17

  • Royal Artillery Barracks

    Hi Paul,

    Please could you pass on my thanks to the whole band who were absolutely superb on Saturday.  For many it was the highlight of the evening and brought back memories of their service in the Caribbean.My only regret is that I couldn't spend more time listening and dancing but I'm sure there will be plenty of other opportunities. I hope you enjoyed yourselves too and that you'll come back next time to entertain us.

    Once again, thank you for making the evening one to remember for all our guests.

    Regards,
    Peter Gwizdala 25/8/17

  • Susan Maynard

    Hi Paul

    We have just arrived home again and I wanted to thank you and the guys for providing a great day for Nigel's 60th. He was overwhelmed.

    We were also lucky to have great weather on the day which gave us all the feeling that we were actually in the Caribbean!!

    Thanks again

    Kind regards
    Susan Maynard 12/09/17

  • Holly & Neil

    Hi Elliot, Paul and team,

    We just wanted to say a massive thank you for helping to make our wedding day so special. The music was such a fantastic addition to our day, it brought so much fun and joy. We had the best day ever!

    Thank you.

    Holly & Neil 8/12/17