Tag Archive for 'Calypso'

Funding culture vultures

By Raffique Shah
January 11, 2018

Raffique ShahThe Government missed a good opportunity to impress upon the population the gravity of the country’s economic circumstances, and consequently the dire need for all segments of society to make sacrifices on the expenditure side of the equation, when it capitulated by doling out millions of taxpayers’ dollars to fund private promoters whose sole interest in Carnival is to profit off it.
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Interlude with Rudder and Tanker

By Raffique Shah
January 02, 2018

Raffique ShahSerendipity often steals upon you in strange ways. I was about to shut down my computer last Wednesday night when, in my e-mail inbox, I saw a post by Lasana Liburd alerting me to a video interview he had conducted with David Rudder. I respect Liburd for maintaining high standards on his Wired868 blog, and for me, Rudder is a peerless trailblazer who attempted to usher in a new era in calypso music in 1986.
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Carnival in transition

By Raffique Shah
February 09, 2016

Raffique ShahI don’t think Trinidad’s Carnival is dying, as many people say it is.

For the traditionalists, it’s a case of wishful thinking. They want to see the jarring noise that passes for music, songs that have no melody, only hook lines and tempo, consigned to the dustbin of Carnival history.
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Taking calypso to the next level

By Dr. Kwame Nantambu
October 26, 2015

Dr. Kwame NantambuAs the Trinidad/Tobago United Calypsonians Association (TUCO) is currently celebrating “Calypso History Month”, it became supremely imperative for this writer, albeit lover of the calypso art form, to pen a few thoughts about the need to take the art form of calypso to the next ultimate international level.

Now, for the past umpteen decades and counting, the calypso genre has been posited within the local myopic confines of the Ministry of Arts and Culture.
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Kaiso, boy!

By Raffique Shah
February 15, 2015

Raffique ShahI waited patiently for Calypso Fiesta, the Mother of all Calypso shows, which featured 41 of the top calypsonians for this year. I did not trust the 20-plus radio stations in the country since those that feature local music kill us with pumping, jarring noises accompanied by voices that all sound hoarse as if the artistes are stricken with sore throats, that they tell me is soca.
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Bunji Garlin and Fay Ann Lyons on 106 & Park


Bunji rocks ‘106 and Park’

By Leiselle Maraj
May 02 2014 – newsday.co.tt

Host of BET’s 106 and Park, Bow Wow (Shad Moss), did his research before interviewing local artiste, Bunji Garlin, and his wife, Fay-Ann, on the show’s episode that aired yesterday, questioning the two about their boycott of the recently concluded Tobago Jazz Experience.
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Feast of the flesh

By Raffique Shah
March 09, 2014

Raffique ShahThat Trinidad Carnival is today mostly a feast of the flesh in its most carnal manifestation should surprise no one. We have worked very hard, over decades, to get here. Now that we have reached the pinnacle—a sea of near-naked bodies gyrating and simulating sex acts that put the Kama Sutra to pale—we should rejoice.
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Sparrow alive, calypso dead

By Raffique Shah
February 23, 2014

Raffique ShahThe Mighty Sparrow’s resurrection from a coma seems to have awakened many a dead, although the miracle I hoped for most, breathing new life into calypso, appears to be beyond the Birdie’s prowess.

Ever since calypso’s most iconic practitioner fell gravely ill, no pun intended, I assumed that the Government had quietly funded his medical expenses. After all, here’s the world’s greatest calypsonian in his winter years encountering not-unexpected health challenges, and his country, the land of calypso that he helped brand, enjoying a healthy economy, so much so that the authorities award millions of dollars every year to artistes of relative Lilliputian stature, you would think….
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Mistah Shak vs Chalkdust

Mistah Shak – D Blueprint – Calypso Fiesta Skinner Park 2012

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Marketing our music

By Raffique Shah
February 25, 2012

Raffique ShahON Ash Wednesday, two articles in the Express perked me up. In the first, Planning and Development Minister Dr Bhoe Tewarie, interviewed in the Grand Stand, told reporter Anna Ramdass that soca star Machel Montano “should be leading the charge in selling Trinidad and Tobago internationally”. Vowing to pursue this quest at Cabinet level, Dr Tewarie added, “…I think Machel is in a class by himself… we should try to support an external thrust led by Machel in the world outside…”
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