Best subway steel drummer (2008)

Jeffrey "Sighting" Antoine

You needn't be a Christian, a soldier, or even religious to get a little kick in your step when Jeffrey "Sighting" Antoine starts rolling out "Onward Christian Soldiers" on his steel drum as you exit the A or C trains at the Broadway-Nassau station downtown. Nor is there any better way to gird your loins for the daily travail than to hear his "Glory Glory Aleluah" (as he spells it on the CDs he sells). Antoine has been playing what's called "gospelypso" in his native Trinidad for 40 years. He's been working this platform, or the Franklin Avenue station in Brooklyn, for almost a decade. Trim and proper with a graying brush mustache, neatly attired in his white-and-black drummer's uniform, Antoine nods encouragement to the endless stream of commuters. For those in need of further inspiration, there's his "Blessed Assurance," the trilling gospel melody that aims to remind you that you're not in this alone.


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