Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Malika queen of the Gladiators


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FORMER JUNIOR MONARCH Malika Hart is the 2010 queen of calypso in the Kingdom Of The Super Gladiators’ annual in-house competition. Her song Bajan Dream amassed a total of 167 points to beat the experienced Musikal in a close race with 165 points. Two points back was Juel with her song My Dream My Vision with 163. In her song Bajan Dream, Malika spoke to the idea of every Bajan having a dream of owning a home, nice car, swimming pool, a big bank account and so on; but it is only a dream!  In order to dream, she said, you must be asleep. Musikal offered up several solutions to the island’s problems, including those of the calypsonians and bandleaders in his song Solution. In one verse he pleads with the Minister of Culture for relief. “Mr Blackett, please, calypsonians need a financial ease.” Musikal also received a prize for Best Lyrics for his song Solution. He later tied with Juel for Best Melody, while Malika and Juel tied for Best Rendition.The myth that good calypso can only be heard in the “big tents” was exposed by the performances of the 13 competitors at the Village Gate on Monday night, whose judging was done on their first half song only. Apollo who sang the cleverly written Going To Paris, in which he suggested that the “next time anybody get you vex, like the Minister of Finance, tell them to go to Paris instead of France”. Ken Clarke was easily one of the top acts of the night. His rendition of More Time and I Can See are both lyrically and musically strong and were deserving of the encores they received.Dre has the artillery to make the judges take note, but he has to be in sync with the band right from the start. He also has to pay attention to his diction. His two songs Entrepreneur, a hard hitting commentary, and Time were easily two of the strongest songs in the tent. They received encores from an appreciative audience.  Fayshal’s song I Love My Calypso is sweet on melody – one of the sweetest overall. Iteebah’s Tell Them and Ah Mean It, Francois’ Aids and Issues, Sage’s Bumper and Social Lies, and Gallon’s Mah Bumbalay – which many think ought to have been on the chosen list for the Sweet Soca semifinals – added to the sweetness. Veteran calypsonian Jah Stone did not make it to the show because of a sore throat. Manager of the tent, Roy Byer, took the opportunity to honour a number of calypsonians who celebrated 30 or more years in the art form. Emile Straker, Romeo, Serenader and Madame Yvette posthumously were awarded plaques for their sterling contributions to entertainment in Barbados. Retired Chief Justice Sir David Simmons presented the awards. Also on hand to lend support to the initiative by Byer were Lady Simmons, actress Cecily Spencer-Cross and calypsonians Bumba, PJ, Colin Spencer and Sir Don, to name a few.by Clifton HENRY

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