Monday, August 06, 2007

Pic o' de Crop Finals review

Happy Kadooment Day, peoples! It's raining but that isn't dampening the spirits of the thousands who're wining and wukking their way down to Spring Garden. Actually, it's a blessing in disguise 'cause if today was as hot as yesterday revellers would be dropping like flies. I hope to have some pics up for you tomorrow.

Well, the Pic o' de Crop Finals have come and gone and it was quite an interesting show. My Top 5 was almost correct, with the final result being:
1. Red Plastic Bag
2. Blood
3. Kid Site
4. De Announcer
5. Smokey Burke

Adrian Clarke placed sixth; Sheldon Hope seventh; eighth was Enobong; TC placed ninth and in tenth place was Rommel.

Here's my review of the 10 competitors:

Rommel - Although he talked rather than sang his way through the Finals, you got the impression Rommel still invested a lot of effort in his two performances. His portrayal of West Indies cricket as an Animal Farm was effective, although his lyrics were a tad rudimentary. At least Rommel can say he made it to the Finals.

TC - TC replaced Calypso Music with What's Wrong?, and that was the question I asked myself all night. I have never seen a calypsonian fight so hard to come last. She should be lucky Rommel's songs weren't the strongest or she would have succeeded too!

First of all, she opted to perform in a nightgown rather than the finery we've come to expect on Finals night. (Her opening skit explained why she chose to do that, but still!) Then, she pulled a Malik and sang behind a stationary microphone, instead of working the stage. The fact that the lyrics of What's Wrong? consisted of her begging the judges for the crown didn't help either.

TC girl, make up your mind what you want. You're a talented entertainer, but you and competitions ain't working out. Forget judging and just come and sing for the masses.

Enobong - Enobong was the pleasant surprise of the night for me, since before Finals night I hadn't heard her material. She had a powerful voice, she held your attention and her lyrics were strong. How she came eighth I don't know, but she shouldn't be disheartened at all. Good job, Enobong!

Sheldon Hope - I had high hopes for Sheldon because I knew he was a powerful vocalist and a dynamic perfomer. He delivered on both counts, but his material was difficult to follow. Not a bad effort, though.

Adrian Clarke - AC will always be one of my favourite calypsonians, but he was missing something this year. I hope he finds it soon.

Smokey Burke - I'm happy, though surprised, that Smokey placed so well in the competition. He's always the underdog in the Finals, and I swear every year something goes wrong for him. (Remember last year his props didn't show up?)

This year, CBC did not broadcast his performance of All Politicians Is Friends (the truth sometimes hurts, eh?) on the advice of their lawyers, and his other song Catastrophe was, in my opinion, aptly named.
Smokey is so resilient I expect he'll be back in the competititon next year. You have to respect that kind of perseverance.

De Announcer - Another performer whose voice isn't the sweetest, De Announcer was still dynamic enough to capture a top spot. He didn't look too pleased when he heard he came fourth, though...

Kid Site - The defending Monarch also fell victim to CBC's fear of litigation, so his song Ah Frighten was not broadcast. Both that song and the other entitled My Barbados had familiar sounding melodies, but were entertaining nonetheless. Kid Site could perform the phonebook if required, so I knew he would place well.

Blood - His performing pedigree is so high that it was no surprise that Blood was the one standing next to RPB in the end. I missed For the Children (sleep claimed fault of his), but Calypso Owes You Nothing had such a stirring melody and powerful lyrics I knew he could make it on that song alone. That's the song that stayed with me the next day, and I feel it will have a longer shelf life than many of the others in the competition.

Red Plastic Bag - As expected, RPB created history and captured the Calypso Monarch crown for the eighth time, and deservedly so. The NCF must be thanking its lucky stars that he came back to the competition, because all his St. Philip fans turned out in their numbers. Congrats, Bag!

Photos: top - 2007 Calypso Monarch Stedson 'RPB' Wiltshire greets fans
bottom: RPB fans turn the National Stadium into a sea of red

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