NLCB’s Buccooneers excites with Rudder’s ‘Madness’
By Sasha Harrinanan Monday, February 17 2014
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The famous notes of David Rudder’s 1986 Calypso hit, “Madness”, rang out across the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain yesterday afternoon as the NLCB Buccooneers delivered an energetic performance at the National Panorama Semi-Finals 2014.
The band obviously came out to win, as they are the defending champs in the Medium Band category of Panorama.
Anyone over a certain age knows the chorus of Rudder’s song - “This is not a fete in here this is madness/ This is not the kinda jam where yuh stand up like a moo moo and the ‘riddim’ go jam you.”
Evidence of this was readily available in the North Stand, where Newsday observed several men and women singing along as they swayed in time to Buccooneers’ rendition of “Madness” shortly before 2.30 pm yesterday.
The weather was what many would consider perfect for pan — at times hot and sunny, then cool and slightly overcast.
Courts Sound Specialists of Laventille (CSSL) and Pan Elders from Carib Street, San Fernando, were the first and second bands on stage yesterday. There was a sense of joy and energy coming from both bands’ members as they played their respective tunes, much to the audience’s delight.
CSSL played Second Imij’s 1991 tune “Poison” while Pan Elders chose “All ah we is One Family,” performed in 1981 by Calypsonian “Lord Nelson” (Robert Nelson).
Tradition states that the North Stand is for “party people” while the Grand Stand is for serious pan aficionados. Yesterday was no exception, as a large crowd, many of them consuming alcoholic beverages, filled the seats of the North Stand by 3 pm while persons in the Grand Stand sat quietly listening to the bands perform, with lots of empty seats around them. However many persons who attend Panorama like to be there when the large bands “hit the stage”, which was from 5 pm yesterday, so there was an expectation that most seats in the Grand Stand would have been occupied by early evening.
“Feters” weren’t the only ones across the way in the North Stand though. Reporters caught up with one Government minister, a State official, a former mayor of PoS and even a fashion designer of international fame.
Arts and Multiculturalism Minister, Dr Lincoln Douglas, said he was “rooting for his home town band, Arima Angel Harps” and expected everyone would have a good time because “everything was in place, from infrastructure to security.”
Asked if the millions spent on Carnival was worth it, he told reporters “The money we spend on Carnival is a small investment by the State in an industry that has huge potential. I think the nation receives a significant boost, both socially and economically from the State’s investment in Carnival.” As of 3 pm yesterday Douglas had not yet visited the controversial all-inclusive pool section of “The Greens” but said he intended to check it out later in the day. Chairman of the National Carnival Commission (NCC), Allison Demas, said although “everything has been going good so far, there’s room for improvement and further development.”
She added the NCC has already begun planning for Carnival 2015 and expressed hope that by this time next year, “we would have a settled route” for the Parade of the Bands. Louis Lee Sing, whose term as PoS Mayor ended with the election of a new mayor in October 2013, shared his happiness about the respect shown in ‘The Greens’ when bands were on-stage.
“I am happy that when the bands are playing, there’s really no music going on and there are big screens and speakers that are in fact (broadcasting) the performances in this year’s Panorama competition.”
Designer and winner of Season 9 of the US reality show, Project Runway, Anya Ayoung-Chee, recalled being taken to Panorama competitions as a child.
“I used to go on ‘The Drag’ with my mother, so this is a tradition for me and it’s probably one of my favourite things about Carnival. I like hearing the big bands, so I’m here to take that in. I don’t have a favourite band this year because I really didn’t get a chance to go to the panyards, so I’m very neutral, which is kind of nice.”
Newsday also spoke with CEO of the TT Chamber of Industry and Commerce, Catherine Kumar, who shared her joy at the sense of camaraderie during the Panorama semi-finals.
“It’s a beautiful day. Panorama brings together everyone. Rich and poor alike have a shared love for pan. I wish that sense of camaraderie could exist throughout the rest of the year.”