Monday, February 8, 2016

Calypso Monarch Results 2016 - Youth Take Over

Young Calypsonians Delivered a Major Upset at the Calypso Monarch 2016


The 2016 Calypso Monarch is stamped with the footprints of youth.  This year should be recorded in the calypso history books. The  year that the young generation took the calypso reigns.

Not one of the old calysonians placed in the finals.

During the show a friend commented that it is about time that old calypsonians like Chalkdust (Dr Hollis Liverpool) and Gypsy, (the former ex Minister, Winston Peters) should hang up their spurs and give way to the young blood.

According to him, they have made their mark, given their contribution and now should leave it to the youth to carry on.

As is was the younger generation represent the majority of finalists, and the performed admirably.  The winner is a new comer tho the scene, Devon Seale, and his two renditions were superbe.

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Here is one of his songs that had the crowd raving,

He told the truth which will always hurt a target few.  The fact is that it could not have been put in a better way.  Cro Cro, another old calypsonian tried, and he did a great job, but at the finals the crowd totally loved Seale's rendition.Respect God's Voice. .



Second place winner was Helon Francis a Young King

Dethroned - The 2015 Calypso Monarch King Chucky, Roderick Gordon, placed third.


The following is the full results of Calypso Monarch 2016 competition.

1. Devon Seale – “Respect God's Voice”/”Spirit Of Carnival
2. Helon Francis – “Paradise”/”Real Bandits”
3. Roderick “Chucky” Gordon – “Fixing Time”/”It Eh Go Wuk”
4. Karene Asche – “Bring Back The Love”/”The Politics Of Spite”
5. Selvon “Mistah Shak” Noel – “Generation Next”/”#HYSM”
6. Dr Hollis “Chalkdust” Liverpool – “The Bad Road”/”When Trini Get Vex”
7. Heather Mc Intosh – “By Other Men's Fault”/”The Headquarters”
8. Victoria “Queen Victoria” Cooper-Rahim – “More Hope”/”The Aftershock”
9. Winston “Gypsy” Peters – “Too Many”/”Ship Of State”
10. Weston “Cro Cro” Rawlins – “Advice To The Boss”/”Ah Feel It For Gayle”
11. Carlos “Skatie” James – “Jus Come Chinee”/”Back On Track”
12. Marsha Davis “Lady Adanna” Clifton – “Murder A Day”/”My Music”

What do you think?  Is it time for the youths to take over or should the old time calypsoians stay in the competition?

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Will H1N1 Stop Trinidad & Tobago Carnival 2016?


Carnival 2016 Is Only One Month Away


There are reports that there have been 5 deaths due to H1N1 in Trinidad and Tobago.

My brother, who lives in Mayaro, called me a couple days ago and told me that it has been reported that his neighbor died last Friday. 

How did he get it? I asked. What was going through my mind is how a lone man in Mayaro would contact such a deadly virus.  He had to pick it up somewhere.

My brother responded in a voice thick with sarcasm; “Boi if I knew that answer I would not be talking to you. I would be talking to the Health Minister.”

I looked for that. “Well the virus had to get into Mayaro some way.  I responded sheepishly.

Of course I had to Google it.  This is what I found about how it spreads.

This is according to the United States Center for Disease, CDC

How does the 2009 H1N1 virus spread?
Spread of the 2009 H1N1 virus is thought to occur in the same way that seasonal flu spreads. Flu viruses are spread mainly from person to person through coughing, sneezing or talking by people with influenza. Sometimes people may become infected by touching something – such as a surface or object – with flu viruses on it and then touching their mouth or nose.  
After reading that page my question changed entirely. 

Why is there nobody talking about Carnival 2016 and the H1N1virus?

The conversation about this deadly disease and upcoming Carnival is being avoided. 

Is it that we are so concerned about the biggest show in the world that we are ignoring it like the “Hurricane” party at Smokey and Bunty?

No question, millions of dollars have already been invested in the upcoming Carnival 2016.  Trinbagonian are not ready to accept that there are serious consequences for ignoring this virus.

But you know what?  Here's my predictions. 

  1. Knowing my people there will be Old Mas renditions with H1N1 themes, 
  2. We may also have an entire band of H1N1 masquaraders
  3. Medical face masks will be a big seller for Carnival 2016, 
  4. Hawkers in the major cities will sell medical face masks at exorbitant prices. 
  5. The main stream media will ignore this question until the last minute.  


H1N1 will NOT stop the party.

Any predictions? 

Keep in touch and get updates when you like 



Sunday, December 13, 2015

FREE Proven Small Business Pricing Strategies

What Is The Right Price?

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When you have done everything else and the issue of price comes up. How do you arrive at a fair price? 

What is the best price?.

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Do something that I want, and I will do something you want, if you are a business owner or interested in pricing products or services.

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Saturday, December 5, 2015

4 Trending Issues in Trinidad and Tobago


Just the Facts with Opinions

Trinidad and Tobago is full of good and bad news.  Occasionally, when the feeling comes or the occasion demands, trending issues, topics that are important to the country will be shared here.  The recent stats on this blog indicates that the Diaspora outnumber the local by at least 5 times more than local IP addresses. 

I have decided to campaign for more interaction on this blog, before it was not a concern, people followed because either knew who I was or they found it interesting. 

The Caribbean Blogger is a source of spontaneous, opinionated imperfectly expressed commentary on real news in the Caribbean and especially Trinidad and Tobago.

As far as the news is concerned, the Caribbean Blogger is like the main stream news, I choose what is shared. If you are interested in some other topics. Make a request, it will be mentioned here.  The following are the issues that concern the people I know now.

Trinidad and Tobago is in Recession!

The other shoe has just dropped.  The Central Bank Governor announced yesterday, December 3rd 2015 that we are officially economically strapped. The primary reason given was the depressed oil market. 

This was announced just as the newly installed government is about to make a motion in parliament to raise the nation’s debt ceiling to $50 Billion dollars.  

According to the new government, this is a direct result of the last government borrowing up to 98 percent of the previous debt ceiling. The present Opposition is intent on not supporting this measure.

The last major recession was in 1986, the first signs that we were in trouble was the rationing of foreign exchange which we know is happening now.  The next sign is large national and private companies start retrenching workers, offering early retirement and putting a freeze on hiring.  From there, we will see how fast things trickle down. Read article here

There Are No Assets to Seize

It was shocking to read the headline story that the present Attorney General was delighted to have obtained a verdict from the high court to seize the asset of the only citizen convicted by the US government on “terrorism” charges.  

Although many locals feel that he was railroaded, he is now serving a life sentence in a US jail. 

Unless the government is trying to put things in place to address the treat of the number of locals joining ISIS, it was a waste tax payer’s resources.  A cursory asset search would have determined what assets existed before doing the legal pappy show.  

The man is serving a life sentence, there are no assets so why all the interests?  

People think that resources would have been better spent going after low hanging fruits.  People who live here, people who have committed crimes in public office.  Are we looking at another Calder Hart scenario?

Piarco Airport Authorities Capitulate on Wintery Christmas

Scrolling on Facebook last week I saw a post by my real friend, Errol Fabien, he took strong objection to the Christmas display at Piarco Airport.  

The pictures he shared were of a wintery scene, snowflake with a cabin all covered in snow.  Exactly what the diaspora and any foreign visitor is trying to escape.  That post definitely had to be shared.

It was such a pleasure to read in the daily newspaper that the authorities decided to remove it.  It is unfortunate that so much was spent on creating the display but some in charge made a big mistake. Rack up one victory for the citizens of Trinidad and Tobago and social media. Big up and thanks to Errol for initiating this protest and bringing it to our attention.

Jack Warner Loses more Credibility

Jack is at it again.  He published a front page article saying that a US senator had written a letter demanding that the former PM be extradited to face money laundering charges.  

The article showed a picture of the letter and went on to say that she was in cahoots with a Mr. Webb,
the recent FIFA executive who pleaded guilty in the US to accepting bribes.

The next day, the dailies published an article saying that the senator was contacted and he denied ever writing the letter.  He did not yet decide what he will do with it but what can be sure is that it is another feather in Jack’s cap. In a post interview on television, Jack intimated that the letter may be still credible. 

My question is why do something like this, what was to be gained from it?  The only man who knows is not talking.





That’s it folks

Thinking about a post on the two tier medical care system that exist in T&T.  The existing system guarantees that poor citizens will die waiting for medical attention.  Coming soon.  Choose one or more of the options on the sidebar and join this blog to be notified of new posts.  

Thanks for reading.


Friday, November 27, 2015

Why T&T Loves Japanese Soca Artist - Minmi

Her Performance Was Spellbinding

Is it because she's Japanese?

Exactly, it is a long journey from Japan to Trinidad and Tobago. Crossing the seas, crossing cultures and language barriers, it is indeed a long journey.

It is an honor, maybe not in the traditional Japanese sense but then again maybe, to be chosen by anyone in any foreign speaking country to take the journey to come to Trinidad and present themself in a was that everything resonates with the people.

The audience reaction to her soca musical presentation expressed that honor in the only way we know how, we get on bad, wine and misbehave. .

It is amazing that a foreign singer, and one that speak a language that only about 10 people in the entire population of T&T can speak could get such a reaction from a crowd of soca lovers. .

My conclusion is that people like anything that's different,  There are literally hundreds of soca artists in T&T, many have not commanded such excitement.  It validates that when you are different you stand out of the crowd.

Minmi, comes with a difference a big difference. She has captured the rythem of soca and expresses it in Japanese and English,

Listen to her rock the local Trinidad crowd, she will did not win a title but she deserve big ups for her performance here

Check the Japanese Soca video.






Who is Minmi?



According to an excerpt of an article posted on wikipedia..

Japanese singer in Soca Monarch.

By Joan Rampersad (Newsday).

Minmi, a 29-year-old Osaka-born Japanese hip-hop, reggae and soca singer, is among the 107 entrants for the Groovy Soca Monarch competition, and also one of the 110 artistes registered for the International Soca Monarch competition.


Locals will remember Minmi when she mesmerised the crowd while performing her 2006 soca hit “Summertime” at Machel Montano’s Alternative Concept 4 concert last year.


Patrons didn’t know what the exact lyrics were whether it was jump, wave, wine, in Japanese but the performance was one of high energy and when shouted to the crowd to “Put your hands in the air”, patrons went wild.


She started her career back in 1996 at clubs in Osaka performing both hip hop and reggae. She then released her first album in August 2003 and has since released four albums and eight singles. 


She has a big following in Japan as well as in Jamaica and here in Trinidad Tobago.

For 2007, she has recorded “Shanananana Japanese Wine” featuring Machel Montano, and on her own, “Step By Step”. The latter song is currently enjoying heavy rotation on local cable stations.


So what do you think?  

Did the fusion work for her?

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Gender Abuse is the Culture of the Caribbean Man


You Don't Have To Be Female To Hate Gender Abuse


Shame.  Ashamed is what I felt when I wrote that headline.  Ashamed that I belong to a culture that implicitly condones a primitive behavior which is always in the open especially when it ends in death. Yet nothing is being done about it.  

No self-respecting Caribbean man would hide the fact that in a fit of rage he can and will disrespect the rights of a woman. Not every woman but “his woman” “his wife”.  In a flash, an instant he can take away the rights of another human being. .

Abuse of Caribbean women is a topic that is not talked, written about or discussed in schools and churches.  It is not talked about because we have grown into it, it is accepted behavior.  The truth is that the abuse of Caribbean women did not start this month, last year or 10 years ago, it is a remnant of our ancestry, our inheritance from slavery. 

The rationale is simple enough to understand.  Slaves were owned, the system of slavery compelled them to accept all manners of physical and mental abuse while still performing their normal duties. 

Now, today, the Caribbean man’s mental construct, mirrors the slave masters to which he once belonged.  No, not him, his fore fathers, in some unknown way, the genes or conditioning was imprinted.  It becomes obvious when you realize that...

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The Caribbean man “owns” his woman, every hair and cell of her body. As her man, he has the right to instruct and discipline her if she should get out of line.  He makes the rules. He has the expectation that after the abuse things will settle and he will be back in her good graces.  If that’s not a slavery mentality then what is?

This mentality was embedded in our forefathers so deep and complete it is part of our cultural DNA. Social media just gives us glimpses of what is really prevalent in our society in 2015. The recent video is just one example, there are others. Even our children "enjoyed" watching the short clip. 

When I saw it, a few words came to my mind; disgusting, disgraceful, and shameful. It was infuriating to watch but we all wanted to see it, it was also on headline news on TV.  Real examples of who we can become.

But did you ever notice that, unlike child abusers, men who abuse women are not in any danger in our prisons.  Most prisoners are themselves are women beaters, it's macho; even if it ends in the death of the woman.   
We must all admit to this insidious characteristic that runs through the cultural veins of the Caribbean man.  There are numerous examples of public figures openly disrespecting women.  The statistics tell their own story. 

The hypothesis, that the problem has its origins in slavery, is not based on any large study but rather my personal experience, and empirical evidence.  Here are the results of one study that supports that hypothesis. 



The purpose is to tickle the sensitivity of the Caribbean man, to have him look inside himself and confront the beast that lurks within. 



This culture of abuse is not peculiar to the Caribbean, it exists wherever there was an institution of slavery.  The entire Caribbean was at one time was a collection of slave institutions supported by the super powers of the time, England, France and Spain. Today, it is not hard to identify what was left of these institutions not physically but mentally.  

One of my earliest childhood memories is as a child, 8 years old. I was backed up against a large white refrigerator, looking at my father physically abuse my mother. Slaps, kicks and closed fists
cuffs.  I remember clear as it was yesterday, my father pulling my mother’s hand against the door jab, she pulling back, screaming, crying, and fighting back as much as she could. I stood like a deer in a head light, helplessly transfixed.  No one, my sister, my brother, the neighbor never even tried to help or call for help.  Calling the police was out of the question; my father was a police officer.  That was the day that we became a single parent family. 

But it did not end there, as a young man, sixteen to seventeen I started hitting my girlfriend. It came as a natural reaction to getting angry for something so insignificant that it is now impossible to remember but I do remember the behavior.  I was abusive.

I also remember my younger brother telling me that I should stop doing that and respect my girlfriend, it was not normal.  I did not realize it at the time but just those few words from him, maybe because he was younger, impacted me.  Unfortunately, it was not enough to cure me, that growth took many more years.

I share that brief story with you as evidence that the Caribbean man has an inherent mental problem that needs to be addressed.  

My father, me, we are products of Trinidad, we are Caribbean men. My behavior was not taught at school, it happened at home. I learned it from him and maybe he learned it from his father.  Like I started out saying, I am ashamed of this aspect of my culture.  Fortunately, I recognized the problem, it took years of reprogramming.  

Living in a society where there are real laws to address gender abuse helped but it was also intentional.  I was fortunate enough to recognize the problem and deal with it.

This is a mental construct, a belief that we hold for some reason. It needs to be brought out in the open, confronted and dealt with.  Let us first recognize that even if we were repatriated with huge sums of cash, we must get rid of our inheritance, it is a cancer in our modern society.    

This is a call to all Caribbean men, young, middle aged and old who have harbored this belief, the inherent desire to “own” another human being.  Please be advised; it is not possible to own anyone.  We are all endowed with the God given Right to choose our lives.  
You cannot, and let me add, should have no desire to, be totally responsible for anyone.  You cannot control what they think, say or do. 

The only responsibility, and it is a big one, is the responsibility for yourself.  First responsibility with respect to a woman is to recognize her as a human being, in fact, this works for everyone else you know man or woman.

Live by the Golden Rule “Do onto others, as you will have them do unto you”




We are not all created perfect but we can all change, but first we must recognize what needs to change.  We must recognize and accept this as a problem in our society.  We must change this particular remnant of slavery and know that sharing a life with a woman is just that; sharing your life, not owning a life. If you question your humanity, take a look at this new video release entitled simply







The Caribbean man need to appreciate the overarching hierarchy of existence. We do when it comes to everything else. The hierarchy of existence is that we are all humans a species of animals, different races, male and female, all should exist equally.  The time has come for us to step mentally above the lowest level of existence when we relate to our women.  The prehistoric cave man, slavery mentality needs reprogramming; this is the technological age, we are going into 2016.

The Caribbean woman must continue to stand up for gender equality. There is a high chance that you are abused or will be abused in the future.  When that happens, you are on the front line, what you do will determine how you live your life.  Do not forgive physical and mental abuse.  Be always aware, the mental abuse usually comes long before the physical abuse begins.  Look out for the warning signs and make conscious decisions. 

The conversation about domestic violence has started.  What we need are laws that enforce what we want to see as the ideal.  Laws that can prevent physical harm that results from domestic abuse.  When you know that you will go to jail if you hit your woman, regardless of who was right or wrong, that is a deterrent that works. 

Not all women can do like my my mother, pack up take the three children and leave.  That takes a special kind of determination, will power.  Not all women have what it takes to do that.  That is why in every Caribbean country domestic abuse laws should be passed to protect women.
   


It is hard, no doubt about that, but it is not as hard as living a life of abuse.  Do something fast, do not submit to abuse.  Understand it is a mentality not a passing phase, you cannot repair it. As soon as you recognize the symptoms take action.  Talk about it, bring it out in the open and have them recognize the illness.

Leave a comment, if you agree or disagree with anything that was said.