ST. VINCENT: – Three artistes left the launch of Vincy Mass 2010 on Saturday in winners’ row having bagged prizes in the Best Calypso and Soca New Song and Extempore Competitions respectively.
Calypso bards gave a taste of what they consider to be the major topic up for social commentary this year, singing about the country’s failed Constitution Referendum last year, the Haiti Earthquake and the global economic crisis.
Meanwhile, the soca category of the competition was more of the jump and wave, wine and misbehave that has characterised the artform in recent years.
Fitzroy “Brother Ebony” Joseph, singing “Haiti, Better Days Are Coming”, defeated five other bards to win the calypso segment of the competition.
Among those was former Natioanl Calypso Monarch and former Nest New Song winner Glenroy “Sulle” Ceasar who was third with his rendition, “Congrats Are In Order”.
The losers also included veteran calyposonian Granville “The Mighty Sunblaze” Findlay who returned to the competition after an extended hiatus to sing about “Duties of a Monarch”.
North Windward educator, community leader and cultural icon Maxwell “Tajo” Francis was second with “World Crisis”.
George “Jah Burke” Nedd, the other competitor, sang, “Sankie No Sing So” while Ron B sang “Ah Feel It Haiti”.
Brother Ebony’s song was in solidarity with Caribbean sister nation Haiti, which was ravaged by a magnitude 7.0 earthquake on January 12 killing some 250, 000.
“You’re gonna rise up again/Amidst your sorrow and pain/like the phoenix you’ll rise above the rubble,” the artiste sang in reference to “the dreadful day … Port au Prince crumble[d]”. (Follow I Witness-News on Facebook)
Brother Ebony sang of Haiti’s “strong and resilient people”, saying that “some calamities are like blessings in disguise”.
“So as long as Jah is on your side/yo’ could be sure of one thing/a better day, O Haiti, a better day is coming,” Brother Ebony sang.
Meanwhile, Tajo sang about the need to persevere in the face of the fallout from the global financial meltdown, noting “the crisis is everywhere”.
Sulle’s song was a sarcastic criticism of the opposition New Democratic Party and its success in galvanising the population to vote no in the Constitution Referendum.
“You make your mark empathically/on the dark side, the back side, the wrong side of history,” he sang.
Meanwhile, Skarpyan won the Best Soca New Song title with his smooth and groovy, raga soca-like “Ragga Muffin”, beating last year’s champion Icon and his “no Behaviour” into second.
Third place went to Maddzart XO who also sang a groovy compilation dubbed “Wine Pon Me”.
In the extempore competition, Blakey, who has already released his 2010 album, walked away with $500, having schooled Landlord during an extended final after a preliminary round.
The crowd judged both rounds of the competition and in preliminary round artiste attempted topics such as “World Financial Crisis”, “Elections in SVG”, “Child Abuse in SVG” and “The Health System in SVG”.
The next event on the Vincy Mas calendar is MS SVG on May 29 with the other event taking place from June 18 to July 6.