By Janelle De Souza Friday, February 21 2014
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Michael “Sugar Aloes” Osuna made the right decision by not entering the Trinbago Unified Calypsonians’ Organisation (TUCO) National Calypso Monarch competition as he would have lost anyway.
That was the sentiment of Weston “Cro Cro” Rawlins who yesterday said, “After what he went through last year, he kind of compounded it this year with Bodyguard and his songs are weak so the best thing to do is to tell people ‘I ain’t going, I ain’t going, I ain’t going.’”
Cro Cro, a former monarch, was referring to Aloes, also a former monarch, being thrown with toilet paper and food stuff during his performance last year at the Calypso Monarch semi-finals at Skinner Park, San Fernando as well as his refusal to allow Roger “Bodyguard” Mohammed to sing at his Kalypso Revue tent because he found Bodyguard’s song, “False Papers”, offensive.
He made the statement after the draw for positions for the Calypso Monarch semi-finals at Kaiso House calypso tent at Queen’s Park Savannah, Port-of-Spain. When asked about the young calypsonians who had made it thus far in the competition he said, “If they (the judges) treat me decent, they (the youngsters) can’t beat me. I difficult to beat. The mistake they made is to put me there. When they don’t want me inside, they leave me out early. But when they put me in there.... thunder thunder thunder!!! T-H-U-N-D-E-R in big, block, capital letters!”
Cro Cro also expressed his delight with Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar’s announcement that Slinger Francisco, aka The Mighty Sparrow, would be awarded the Order of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, the country’s highest honour, for his contribution to music and culture.
However, he compared the award to burning down a building and, on realising Sparrow lived there, helped Sparrow alone. He said while Government did well for Sparrow, they “burn down his house,” by not funding the Icons Calypso tent which he runs and where Sparrow performed for eight years. He further emphasised Government should not focus on one man, but “fix the artform,” pointing out that the Chutney Soca Monarch won $2 million, while the Calypso Monarch would receive $1 million.
Also commenting on Sparrow’s award, TUCO president, Lutalo “Brother Resistance” Masimba said it was a great moment for the organisation as it had been lobbying for Sparrow to receive the very same award for the past ten years. “We say congratulations to the Government that the State of Trinidad and Tobago has finally seen the light and the importance of making such an award,” he said. Regarding the new aspects of Calypso Fiesta at Skinner Park, for the semi-finals tomorrow, including a Pool Deck Premium Zone, and a Misting/Cool Zone, and a Soca Party afterward, he said TUCO was re-branding the event.
Tammico “Spicey” More found the Cool Zone and other installations to be good ideas, and a bit of a celebration after the event. Spicey, who will sing in position 40, also stated she loved her performance spot because, by that time, the crowd would be “hyped” for her political song.
Rosemary Mitchell, aka Young Rose, singing at position 25, also supported the initiative. She said, “It’s a good relaxation. Everybody will be in the mood after being tired and anxious after performing and waiting to find out if they made it in the top 12. To me it would be a nice cool down.”
Unlike Spicey and More, Heaven “Snakey” Charles was not too happy with his pick of the number one position. He noted “Trinis always move late” and so there may not be many people to perform for at that time. He had a positive attitude however saying, “Number one is a very special number and I will set the bar for the rest of the contestants.”
Snakey has been busy this Carnival season as he made it to the finals of the Young Kings, Power Soca Monarch, and Chutney Soca Monarch competitions. He was also a semi-finalist in the Extempo competition.