“Songshine was a kind of miracle. I was lucky enough to be part of making it happen.” — Gillian Moor
Even as the Lenten season draws to an end the calypso cauldron continues to bubble with live weekly entertainment.
Last Saturday Trinbago Unified Calypsonians Organisation (Tuco) staged a successful final of the 2014 Humorous Calypso Monarch competition at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain; next week past monarchs will be showcased at De Nu Pub in Woodbrook; and, next month, a former national monarch and Soca Monarch will stage his first major full-length concert at the same venue and Little Carib Theatre.
With a large audience in attendance, the Incredible Myron B (Myron Bruce) defeated eight rivals to retain the humorous calypso title.
Competition was keen to decide the eight runner-up placings as Myron B was a clear winner from the first of two rounds of competition. The judges, led by Errol Fabien, decided Myron B’s runners-up to be Lady Aeisha (Elizabeth George) and Julien Hunte (Kid Kalaloo), respectively.
When it comes to calypso, the art form is serious business for Myron B. Already a five-time winner of the title, he said this week he intends to keep on winning.
Myron B won the Humorous category in 2002 and 2004 and achieved a hat-trick of wins in 2012, 2013 and 2014. A finalist in this year’s National Calypso Monarch competition, he sang First Black Prime Minister and One More Sip in the Dimanche Gras final.
He has also been a finalist in the Extempore Monarch competition on three occasions. This very talented and versatile composer/calypsonian has his sights set on much loftier achievements.
“To say I am elated with this victory is an understatement. What I want to achieve in music and calypso is being one of the best of all time.
“Each win had its own joys but this year’s was the most satisfying. Because of the nature of the competition I think I was able to put together the kind performance that would be a benchmark to be a champion for years to come,” he said.
Suggesting that calypsonians should try to compose their own songs, Myron B said: “Calypso is about music and lyrics, regardless of what type of calypso genre it is.
“Once you succeed in marrying both elements you are well on the way for rewards.”
Looking ahead Myron B said: “For the future I am planning a concert in the north and south during the summer period.
“This would showcase only performances of the calibre of a final night production, with complete use of props, costume and set design. This show would be the total package of calypso theatre, assuring patrons of their money’s worth.”
Come Wednesday the Mas Camp stage will be graced by performances from Black Stalin, Singing Sandra, Relator, Bro Valentino, Brian London and Cardinal.
The production is special as its the birthday celebration of Kelly Green, musical director of Harmony, one of the country’s foremost calypso/soca aggregations. Making a guest appearance will be acclaimed pan musician Ken “Professor” Philmore. Of course musical accompaniment will be Kelly Green & Harmony.
On May 7, there will be even more live calypso action at The Mas Camp when The Last Badjohn of Calypso (Kurt Allen) premieres his concert there at 8.30 pm.
Allen is expected to perform his extensive repertoire of two decades to perform a series of concerts entitled D Badjohn in Town.
After his Mas Camp premiere Allen will take his show to the Little Carib Theatre, located on White Street, Woodbrook on May 17-18. There are also plans to take the performance to other communities.
The show’s format is not the typical mic-in-hand presentation. The Last Badjohn has gone all out to create a performance that has a storyline that compliments the selections he has chosen to sing, particularly with the backdrop of a barrack yard, which is the birthplace of calypso.
Special guests for the show are all monarchs in Myron B; Rikki Jai (Chutney Soca Monarch); and, five-time National Calypso Monarch Black Stalin.
“I wanted to give back to the people through this production which we call the Long Live Calypso experience. Calypso deserves to be displayed all year through.
“I am carrying the tradition of the bards of yore to ensure the art form lives beyond Dimanche Gras since calypso is about recording life in song,” Allen said.
The Last Badjohn has earned a reputation of being one of the top calypsonians in the country, apart from his successes in his junior years, he won the National Calypso Monarch crown in 2010 and some of his songs have been awarded political and social commentary titles.
He was also a former Soca Monarch winner in 1999. At this year’s Dimanche Gras competition, he was first runner-up.
He also earned the title of Best Social Commentary with S.S.S—Sweet Sizzling Summer.
Visit The Badjohn’s Facebook page for further updates.