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Chucky dethrones Panther
Roderick “Chucky” Gordon was crowned 2014 National Calypso Monarch at the Dimanche Gras show presented by Trinbago Unified Calypsonians’ Organisation (Tuco) at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain on Sunday night. Singing in position number eight among the 11 finalists, the reigning Independence Calypso Monarch offered Wey Yuh Think and Wedding Of De Century to dethrone defending champion Eric “Pink Panther” Taylor and take home the $1 million prize.
In the last seven years, Chucky has appeared in the final of the Monarch competition on four occasions. In 2008, he was nominated in the Best New Male Artiste category in the International Soca Awards in New York. In that year, as well, his selection Thunder Coming was voted Pan Song of the Year. During his performance of Wedding of De Century, a tale about the marriage of soca and chutney, Chucky made an attempt to solidify the claim by bringing on stage representatives of the various art forms in the persons of Drupatee Ramgoonai (chutney), Ray Holman (pan) and Austin “SuperBlue” Lyons (soca).
Placing second for the $500,000 prize was The Last Badjohn of Calypso, Kurt Allen, singing Sweet Sizzling Summer and The Lost Psalm Of King David. For the former monarch, it was the third consecutive year he had to settle for the first runner-up position. Third place and $250,000 went to Mistah Shak (Selvon Noel) singing Bois and Crime Round De Clock. The wily veteran and eighth-time winner of the contest, Chalkdust (Dr Hollis Liverpool) placed fourth with his compositions Ah Miss De Bards and De Guest List. Extempo Monarch 2014, Brian London took the fifth spot with The Heart Of A Warrior and Call Dem Out.
The event, celebrating 100 years of vocal calypso recordings, was formatted in three movements. The first, titled The Opening, featured a medley of calypsoes from various eras performed by The Lydian Singers and other vocalists. The second, Water & Fire, was a “shoot-out between two DJs, featuring popular calypsos spanning 100 years. The final movement consisted of road marches through the years, and established the connection between calypso, steelband and the masquerade. Making guest appearances were the Mighty Sparrow (Dr Slinger Francisco), Natasha Wilson, Aaron Duncan and 2014 Junior Calypso Monarch Ronaldo London. Celebrity masters of ceremony were Janelle Commissiong-Chow and Ato Boldon. Show host was Errol Fabien and musical accompaniment was provided by Errol Ince Music Makers.
1. Roderick “Chucky” Gordon – Wey Yuh Think/Wedding Of De Century
2. Kurt Allen – Sweet Sizzling Summer/The Lost Psalm Of King David
3. Selvon “Mistah Shak” Noel – Bois/Crime Round De Clock
4. Hollis “Chalkdust” Liverpool – Ah Miss De Bards/De Guest List
5. Brian London – The Heart Of A Warrior/Call Dem Out
6. Victoria “Queen Victoria” Cooper – Political Love Affair/Congo Warrior
7. Alana Sinnette – Sea Lots/And Calling It Rain
8. Weston “Cro Cro” Rawlins – Pious, Poor But Proud/Goodness Delayed
9. Carlos “Skatie” James – Calypso Woman/Jack And Jill
10. Myron “The Incredible Myron B” Bruce – One More Sip/First Black Prime Minister
11. Eric “Pink Panther” Taylor – De Richest Man/Not Tonight
12. Roger “Bodyguard” Mohammed – Aloes Vendor/False Papers