“People could categorise me how they want, I am not perfect, but I have never done anything violent in my life. You see this thing called my mouth?
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Lady Africa retains extempo crown
Defending Extempo Monarch Lady Africa (Leslie-Ann Bristow) inflicted another whipping on her male counterparts to retain her title in the final of the 2013 competition staged at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain, on Monday night. The contest formed part of Kaisorama—Extempo and Categories finals, presented by Trinbago Unified Calypsonians Organisation (Tuco).
In the final six-verse, no-topic, face-off with experienced two-time former monarch Lingo (Joseph Vautor-La Placeliere), Lady Africa, the only female to win the title in the history of the contest, made a great comeback in the last two verses to overtake Lingo, who had sped to the front with some clever extemporising in the “no-holds-barred” linguistic war, and win the judges’ favour to take home the $150,000 prize. For his second place effort, Lingo earned $105,000.
The seven contestants challenging the Monarch in the first round were:
• Hezekiah Joseph
• Myron B (Myron Bruce)
• Black Sage (Phillip Murray)
• Brian London
• Dion Diaz
• Contender (Mark John)
Each had to sing four verses on randomly selected topics which included Gypsy Missing In Extempo, The San Fernando Mayor In Trouble, The Return of SuperBlue, Who Will Judge The Judges, The Mighty Shadow, Learn To Be A Good Loser, Carnival Village, and Sheldon John. Advancing to the second round, and paired, were: Brian London and Black Sage, and Lingo and Lady Africa.
London and Black Sage pulled the long-winded topic Ashworth Jack Planting Pumpkin and Cucumber, and struggled to come up with meaningful verses, while Lingo and Lady Africa, on the other hand, had to contend with the less-challenging topic, Tobago Elections, and eventually were chosen to contest the final round. London and Black Sage won $30,000 each, while the other finalists earned $15,000 each for their efforts.
Political commentary winners
In the Political Commentary category The Last Badjohn of Calypso (Kurt Allen) triumphed over his opponents with a brilliant presentation of the composition Political Sin-Phony to win the $25,000 prize. Second place and $15,000 went to Devon Seales, doing an equally good presentation of Game Show Politics. Eunice Peters placed third and won $10,000 for her sober offering titled None Of The Above.
Mr Chucky (Roderick Gordon) was adjudged winner of the Social Commentary category for Bear With Me, the composition that won him last year's 50th Anniversary Independence Calypso Monarch title. Helon Francis placed second doing Tainted Legacy, and Sheldon Nugget (Sheldon Bullen) took third spot with One Race. A 15-member panel judged contestants in the areas of lyrics, music, and presentation. Prizes were the same as the Political Commentary category.
The programme was staged in tribute to former national calypso monarch and road march winner the Mighty Shadow (Winston Bailey), who made a guest appearance to sing Feeling The Feeling and Bassman. Also making guest appearances were Baron (Timothy Watkins), Relator (Willard Harris), David Rudder, Brigo (Samuel Abrahan), Lord Laro (Kenneth Lara), legendary panman Earl Rodney, and the North West Laventille Cultural Movement.
Musical accompaniment was provided by Kelly Green and Harmony, and show host duties were shared by Wendell Etienne and Mark Nottingham.