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Veteran tops humorous calypso semifinal
A smutty calypso does not a good humorous song make.
Exponents of this genre of calypso were taught a lesson in composing and performing an authentic humorous calypso by a 63-year-old bard last Saturday night, when Trinbago Unified Calypsonians Organisation (Tuco) staged the semifinal of its annual National Calypso Tent Humour Monarch competition.
Many of the 25 qualifiers opted to sing smutty songs, some of them not being humorous, while a few others mistakenly offered songs that can only be deemed social commentary ditties.
At the end of the entertaining four-hour contest, Julien Hunte, singing as Kid Kalaloo, was unanimously chosen as the winner by the seven-member judges’ panel, headed by yours truly.
Hunte, the Sangre Grande bard, who campaigned this C2K13 at Kaiso Karavan, sang the hilarious She Tell Meh. He and eight other finalists will face off against defending monarch Myron B (Myron Bruce) on April 6, at the Queen’s Park Savannah, for the $25,000 first prize.
The judges’ panel also included Norvan Fullerton, Shirley “Beulah” King, David Bereaux, Camille Noreiga, Helen Forbes-Huggins and Phillip Allard.
Brother Ebony (Fitzroy Joseph) earned a well-deserved second place, singing Not Mine.
As funny as Kalaloo’s She Tell Meh, Ebony told the story of the baby his wife bore who didn’t resemble him but had features and characteristics of many of his calypso colleagues.
Another good calypso was Country Driver, sung by second runner-up Combie (Jeremiah Combie), representing D’ Masters calypso tent.
Other qualifiers and their songs, in descending order, were Mr Mack (Side Effect); Black Sage (Veteran Advice); Brother Alpha (Modern Society); Dr Rhythm (Unisex); and, Brown Boy (Airport Horrors). The reserve finalist is Tobago Chalkie (Alex Gift) who sang A Stranger’s Story.
Saturday’s semifinal, held at SWWTU Hall in Port-of-Spain, was attended by a full house, which included Community Development Minister Winston Peters, Justice Malcolm Holdip, and a host of calypsonians, including Duane O’Connor, Singing Francine, Bro Mudada, Baron, Explainer, All Rounder, Lady Wonder and Shirlaine Hendrickson.
With Kelly Green & Harmony providing musical accompaniment, an excellent job at emcee chores was done by Damion Melville and Godfrey Pierre.
Making guest appearances were veteran calypsonians Surpriser and Typher.
In all, 11 calypso tents were represented in the 2013 edition, their entrants joined by unattached calypsonians, for the preliminary which was held a fortnight ago at De Nu Pub (The Mas Camp) in Woodbrook.
For the final, contestants are required to sing two calypsoes; the one performed at the semifinal and the other, of a humorous nature, chosen by the contestant and not limited to the repertoire of the finalist.
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