The Rounds: Trini carnival highs and lows...

>> Monday, February 22, 2010

Originally aired on Flow 93.5 FM's Soca Therapy with Dr Jay de Soca Prince, Sunday, 21st February at 6:45 pm.

Good evening soca lovers, I’m Nurse Karen and these are Dr. Jay’s Rounds. We’re baaa-aack! I know Dr. Jay told you that I wouldn’t be in Trinidad for Carnival. But what can I say? Things change. The carnival bug ketch me and I found myself front and centre in the middle of the action.

If you’ve never been to carnival in the Caribbean, it’s definitely something you should try to make happen. If you want to see the artistry, camaraderie, ingenuity and style of our culture come alive, Carnival is one of the best ways to experience it. While in Trinidad, I hit a couple of fetes, checked out the Soca Monarch Finals...and naturally...I just had to hit the beach too. One of the first parties I got to take in was the PNM fete. The People’s National Movement is one of Trinidad’s major political parties...no pun intended! Each year, they sponsor a big soca show that is actually attended by T&T Prime Minister, Patrick Manning. Hear me...That would be kinda like, Steven Harper inviting the public wine and get on to the top bands at 24 Sussex Drive. Only in the West Indies, I tell yuh.

That night, it became pretty clear that two song written and produced by Machel’s musical director, Kernal Roberts were about to rule the Carnival. I’m talking about Palance by JW and Blaze, and Police in de Session by Shal Marshall and Screws.

Shal Marshall performing at Soca Monarch

 The next night I went to Eyes Wide Shut. If you haven’t heard already...Jamaican dancehall phenomenon Serani was booked as a guest act. I’m sure the promoters thought it was a great idea, but when all of the soca acts had left the stage for the night, the crowd was far from impressed that a dancehall act would be scheduled to close out a major carnival week fete, especially one who had publicly criticized the soca genre in the media early last year. The result? A resounding...BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Poor Serani only asked the ladies to Make Some Noise.... but both men and ladies joined forces to shame the man off stage. Score one for soca. Score zero for international relations. Heh!

As for Soca Monarch! What a night. Personally, that’s my favourite event on the T&T Carnival Calendar...and just so happens to be the most important night of the year for soca. I was so close to the stage. I could literally feel the fireworks burning my nose hairs. Sad to say, Fay Ann Lyons lost her titles in both categories and had to settle for second place behind Shurwayne Winchester in Groovy and ahead of Rikki Jai and Patrice Roberts.

In the Power Category poor Fay-Fay took a silver medal there too. In fourth was Tallpree with Wicked Jab. Shal and Screw placed 3rd....and in first were none of other than JW and Blaze with Palance.


Utter Madness you should have seen the crowd get on for those fellas. Honorable mention goes to Toronto’s own Kerwin Du Bois whose Groovy performance of “Pavement” with Farmer Nappy was the first to send the crowd into a frenzy. It was like a rock concert in there.
Farmer Nappy getting as close as possible to the crowd

So much to tell, but precious time in short....the winning streak continued to till carnival Tuesday for Palance. That’s the new T&T Roadmarch, beating out “True Lies” and “No Behaviour” with more than 400 plays at judging points. So we are talking about a roadmarch win by the widest margin in Trinidad Carnival History.

Before I go, I have to tell you one more thing. I’m sure you rememeber me telling you that Machel would not be performing anywhere during the carnival season. And of course Destra just had a baby...so she was missing in action too. Well, great news...the hiatus is over. On Thursday, Machel Montano gave a live performance in Port of Spain alongside visiting R&B star, Beyonce Knowles. During his set, he surprised the crowd by performing 2003 hit, “It’s Carnival” with Destra Garcia in her first post pregnancy appearance. And when Beyonce hit the stage, imagine the shock when she burst into her own rendition of the 2010 Roadmarch, “Palance”. By all accounts the concert was money well spent...and it makes me feel happy to see that Miss B, paid a lil respect to the local scene.

I’m Nurse Karen and those were Dr. Jay’s Rounds for more detail on everything mentioned today, Check me out online on the Nurse Karen Etc blog at Nurse dash Karen dot com....or follow me on Twitter. Now...back to de docta!

1 x 2 cents (comment, nuh!):

Carnival Network March 3, 2010 at 11:18 AM  

To be honest, I don't think Carnival Missed Machel at all. Kind of harsh, but at the end of the day, there was carnival before him...Destra on the other hand would have been nice to see more of.

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