Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Forty-one fave Bajan personalities Pt. 3

Marvo Manning - A former beauty queen and broadcaster, Marvo Manning is also an accomplished actress, appearing in such productions as Pampalam and Dumplings in de Stew. This timeless beauty is the epitome of grace and poise (incidentally she teaches a course in Corporate Etiquette), and I can definitely see scope for her opening a Charm School in Barbados.

Father Massiah - If it's true that the truth will set you free, then rector of the St. Joseph Parish Church Father Errington Massiah (second in procession) is as free as the wind. Known for his candid nature, Father Massiah is a straight-talking priest who's not afraid to tackle what he perceives as the ills of society. God bless him.

The Merry Men - Their hit Beautiful Barbados is our unofficial anthem, and for over 40 years the Merry Men have been spreading the culture of Barbados to the world. Play on, guys.

The Mighty Gabby - There's perhaps no one more qualified to serve as Barbados' Cultural Amnbassador than Anthony "Mighty Gabby" Carter. This master melody-maker has written over 700 songs, and has been crowned Calypso King won the Pic o' de Crop Finals seven times. His calypso compositions do more than entertain; they chart the political and history of post-Independence Barbados.

Obadele Thompson - What a year Obadele Thompson has had. The Olympic bronze medallist married Olympic star Marion Jones in February, and in July the couple's son was born. He's had to weather the storm of Marion's fall from grace, but I'm sure he's handling it the way he usually does, with prayer.

Professor Oliver Headley - The late UWI professor once warned: “The sun will still shine when the oil runs out.” He emphasised the need for alternative energy sources in light of diminishing supplies of our sole non-renewable energy source – petroleum. In the early 1960s, Professor Oliver Headley became a pioneer for harnessing solar energy for both heating purposes and crop drying applications and this international visionary and pioneer explored the full potential and applications of solar energy until the time of his death in 2002. All those who have ears to hear, let them hear.

Dame Olga Lopes-Seale - Although "Auntie Olga" wasn't born in Barbados, her humanitarian initiatives here have endeared her to the entire population. I grew up listening to "Auntie Olga's Pageant of Youth" on Rediffusion, and the former broadcaster has made a sterling contribution to the developemnt of young children and the elderly in Barbados. Her National Honour was long overdue.

Red Plastic Bag - Stedson Wiltshire aka "Red Plastic Bag" aka "RPB" aka "De Bag" almost has as many calypso crowns as nicknames. His hits such as Sugar Made Us Free and Mister Harding are lgendary, and this year, the lyrical master won his eighth Pic o' de Crop title. Long live the King!

Richard Hoad - Richard Hoad's Friday column "The Lowdown" is a must-read, and it always leaves you with food for thought. He's our social conscience, and we should heed to his advice more often.

Richard Stoute - Could someone please give Richard Stoute the long overdue National Honour he deserves? Through his longstanding Teen Talent Contest, the veteran entertainer has provided an outlet for local talent, and has introduced Allison Hinds, Edwin Yearwood, Rupee and more to the world. Ignoring this man is a "hurtin' thing".

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