Alan Bates has played drums and vibraphone professionally in New York City for over 40 years. In 1989/90 Alan spent a year in St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands and added steel drums to his musical palette. His studio work includes; Live It Up (with Brother Jack McDuff,) The City Never Sleeps, (with the Bill Warfield Big Band,) The Answer is Inside, (with Steve Adelson,) jingles for Revlon, Blimpies, Mastercard, Chase Manhattan and Morgan's Rum. He arranged and produced his debut CD, 'Pan Fried' which was released in 2001. Bates has performed with many jazz artists including Brother Jack McDuff, Groove Homes, Ron Carter, Marion McPartland, Warren Vache Jr., Doc Cheatam and Ellington alumni Harold Ashby and Norris Turney. He also backed up show biz giants Sammy Davis Jr. and Bob Hope.

In 1984 Alan toured Japan with the Glenn Miller Band and returned in 1986 to play for a year with Japan's #1 Big Band, Nobuo Hara & the Sharps and Flats. Based in Tokyo, they played for TV shows, live radio, and made numerous recordings. They also toured Japan, Hong Kong and South Korea. New York City gigs have included; a year at the St. Regis Hotel (Cabaret show featuring Broadway Stars), two years at the Pierre Hotel (jazz trio,) and a year and a half at the Stanhope Hotel (jazz trio). He led the 6 piece original Brazilian-jazz fusion group, 'Rhythmotion' and his quartet recorded his compositions for the soundtrack of the Vidsynth II art video. Other engagements include, Holland America Cruise Lines, Catskills and Hamptons resorts, and a National Tour with the Broadway Show 'Grease'.

Bates attended Berklee College of Music in Boston where he studied drums with Alan Dawson and Joe Hunt and vibraphone with Dave Samuels. Drumming from age 12, by age 15 Alan was playing gigs in college bars and Fraternity & Sorority Parties on the Univ. of Illinois Campus in his hometown of Urbana. His High School rock band, 'Unclemeat' played locally and in Wisconsin, Indiana and Oklahoma, opened for 'Three Dog Night' on a 5 day tour and performed for an audience of 35,000 at the Kickapoo Rock Festival. Early experiences also include stints with the University of Illinois Jazz Band, the Medicare Dixieland Band, several R & B groups including a six week tour of British Columbia with funk group, 'Sun.' Alan also recorded a double album of African Music with Oscar Sulley, master drummer from Ghana.

Currently Alan is playing steel drums and leading 'Island Breeze' a Caribbean Music Ensemble that performs for private parties, corporate events, and community & school concerts. He continues to play vibraphone and drums with the Alan Bates Trio and Quartet and free-lances in the New York City area. Educational endeavors include: - 2009 - Present, Director of Steelband Program at the Horace Mann School in Riverdale, NY - 20 years Musical Director of Island Breeze. school concert series for Project Impact - Bates has been the Musical Director for Steel Passion, the Steelband of Christ Episcopal Church in Tarrytown since 2006. .He was also Artist-In-Residence for 3 years, 2006 - 2009 (30 piece Steelband)  at IAB High School in Brooklyn, NY


ISLAND BREEZE (click "music" to listen)

CAN'T GET TO THE CARIBBEAN? LET I S L A N D B R E E Z E TRANSPORT YOU. THEY'LL BLOW YOUR TROUBLES AWAY! ISLAND BREEZE features the beautiful sounds of Steelpans, (Steel drums) along with bass, drums, percussion, guitar and vocals. If you would like to create the relaxing atmosphere of your favorite island, then this is the band for you! VERSATILITY is one of the keys to the success of ISLAND BREEZE. The band can; - play lively background music at a low volume. - charge up a party with high-energy dance music. - play instrumentally or feature vocals. - perform in various sizes, from a Duo, up to 8 piece band. - Solo Steel Drummer also available PROFESSIONALISM is the goal of ISLAND BREEZE. We arrive at least 1 hour before the event to set-up. We bring our own P.A. System and all necessary equipment. The usual attire is matching pants and tropical shirts (unless there is another preference.) EXPERIENCE : ISLAND BREEZE has been very active in the New York City area since 1995, playing for Corporate Events, Private Parties, Weddings, Country Clubs, Yacht Clubs and School & Community Concerts. The band's leader, Alan Bates, is a full-time professional musician who has been living and working in New York City since 1977. In 1989/90 he spent a year in St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands playing in the house band at the Hyatt Regency/Virgin Grande Hotel. Alan has played the Steelpans on TV and Radio jingles for Chase Manhattan ,Morgan's Rum and Mastercard. His first solo CD, 'Pan Fried,' (panvibe CD2047) was released in 2001.

The REPETOIRE: ISLAND BREEZE plays many of the well-known Calypso and Reggae "hits" from the islands, by artists such as Harry Belafonte, Bob Marley, and Jimmy Cliff. They can also play other styles such as; latin jazz, mambo, meringue, rhumba, cha cha, bossa nova, and samba. Other styles may be possible if requested in advance.








Bacchanal Lady 

Bahia Girl 

Big Bamboo 

Brown Skin Girl 

Coconut Woman 

Dollar Wine 

Don't Stop The Carnival 

El Limbo 

Feels So Good 

Funji Mama 

Hold Em' Joe 

Hot Hot Hot 

Limbo Rock 

Linstead Market 

Mama Look-a-Boo Boo 

Mary Anne 


Me Too 

Move It to The Left 

Nanny Wine 

Orange Express 

Pan In Harmony 

Pan Night & Day 

Shake Sonora 

Signal For Lara 

Sly Mongoose 

St. Thomas 

Sugar Bum Bum 

The Hammer 



Tribute To Winston Spree 

Under The Sea 

Woman Is Smarter 








Buffalo Soldier  

Don't Worry Be Happy

Every Breath You Take  

Get Up Stand Up  

Give A Little Love  

I Shot The Sheriff  

I Can See Clearly  

I Can’t Help Falling  

Is This Love?  


Lively Up Yourself  

No Woman No Cry  

One Love  

Red Red Wine  

Roots Rock Reggae  

Stir it Up  

The Tide Is High  

The Harder They Come  

Three Little Birds  

Waiting In Vain  

You Can Get It  

Walking On The Moon  

Wild, Wild World  


Beautiful Barbados  

Day-o (Banana Boat Song)  

Island In The Sun  

Jamaica Farewell  

Land Of The Sea & Sun  

My African Friend  

On And On  

Sloop John B.  

Yellow Bird  


Spanish Harlem  




Down On The Corner  

Just The Two of Us  




 Sittin’ On The Dock 

Under The Boardwalk


Blue Bossa  


Girl From Ipanema  


Recado Bossa  



Menina Flor  



Samba De Orpheous  

Tico Tico  

Summer Samba  

One Note Samba  

Mas Que Nada  


Besame Mucho  



Canya Brava (Merengue)

Cherry P. Apple Blossom  

Green Eyes  


I Love Lucy Theme  

La Bomba  

El Cumbachero  

Little Suede Shoes  

Mambo Inn  

Compadre Juan - Meringue  

Meringue Universal  

Never On Sunday  

Oye Como Va  

Spanish Eyes  


The Mambo Kings Theme  

The Peanut Vendor  

The Breeze And I 


Alan Bates Trio & Quartet

THE ALAN BATES DUO, TRIO & QUARTET The Alan Bates Trio is similar to the traditional piano trio, with Vibraphone (Vibes) taking on the role of the piano. Alan plays the Vibes with 4 mallets (2 in each hand), a style of playing that allows for playing chords and a fuller sound. The rhythmic foundation is provided by Acoustic (upright) Bass and Drums. The group's repertoire consists great standards by composers such as Cole Porter, Jerome Kern, George Gershwin and others, played in a swinging jazz style. They can also play Modern Jazz, (Miles Davis etc.) Bossa Novas and Jazz with a Latin tinge. In the Quartet, the fourth piece can be a pianist, (as on the music samples) or a saxophonist, guitarist or female vocalist. The Duo of Vibraphone and Bass (no drums) plays the same music as the Trio but with a more subdued sound. *Note: The vibraphone is an instrument that was made famous by Lionel Hampton, Milt Jackson and Gary Burton. It is a modern version of the xylophone with a sustain pedal similar to those found on pianos.