Carnival fiasco – necks must be chopped off

The crowning of Rootsman Kelly has got to be the biggest, most blatant, most plain faced act of robbery that has ever happened in the history of calypso in Grenada.

There is nothing that anybody can use to explain the results. When Inspector beat Wizard in 1989 with Two Bull Cow, he flattened the old Queen’s Park and so anybody could have understood that and said ok. When Ajamu made a set of mistakes and he won in 2014, he was forceful in the second round and rukungkutungtung mash up the place. All the years when he beat Wizard and persons felt that Wizard was robbed, Ajamu out-performed him and brought the house down so anybody could say ok.

When Keturah George won in 2013 her delivery was flawless and she sang like a bird that night. So again anybody could say ok. For Rootsman Kelly’s victory this year there is just nothing to say ok about.

Rootsman Kelly was timid, tired and pathetic. He is by nature a weak performer. All he does is walk the stage from side to side and stand every now and then and bounce around on the spot. He does not sing with any conviction and most times looks detached from what he is singing.

Dimanche Gras night Rootsman Kelly brought his Z game. To make things worse, not only was he laid back and dead, he made several mistakes. He left out a line in the second verse of the first song and then sang over a piece of his first verse in his third verse. When he realised that he was not singing the correct thing, confusion came over his face and he stopped then fumbled a line before he caught himself.

His second round performance was equally as unconvincing as the first round and his body language spoke loudly of defeat. Anyone can watch the you tube videos of the finals online and see that what I am writing is the gospel truth. The question then is – how the hell did the judges arrive at Rootsman Kelly?

Sour Serpent, my favourite contemporary calypsonian, was easily a cut above Rootsman Kelly and I will grudgingly admit that the reigning King was a class above everybody else. Serpent and the King had the best songs on the night easily. What is more Serpent delivered well on the night.

As for the King, the A class performer brought his A game. Poor Big J and Campus, two of the brighter spots on the night were tied for last. Big J who tied for second in the semifinals and had no major hiccup came last? This year will go down in history as the greatest judging atrocity that has ever been committed in calypso.




It is clear that the deal this year was to make sure the King did not retain his crown and to give the title to Rootsman Kelly. This was well planned and orchestrated. However, Rootsman Kelly caused the plan to backfire because he performed so poorly.

Instead of aborting the plan or giving the crown to Sour Serpent who would have caused fewer eyebrows to raise, they went right through with it and has succeeded in embarrassing themselves.

For this, Roger Williams, Elvis Morain, Abiola Francis, Shabora Maxwell, Peter Regis, Fenton Frederick and the Francis fella should never ever be used to judge calypso again ever. They should be banned for life. Even if three year olds are singing in a Pre-School competition, they should not be used.

The judges’ decision might be final but it is high time that sanctions be placed on them when they show a lack of judgement or bold-faced manipulation of the results to declare a particular winner as appears to have happened in this case.

Spicemas Corporation must also take some stick for this and it’s already embattled CEO, Kirk Seetahal must be removed forthwith. At a time when there is so much competition rivalry between St. Patrick’s and St. David’s you cannot have judging panels with five out of six judges from St. David’s as was done in the semis, five out of seven from St. David’s as was done in the finals and all of the other lopsided ratios which favoured the St. David’s Artistes, that they used this year.

What is worse, Judge Roger Williams is the brother of Mr. West and the Uncle of Mr. Wackie. Yet he was used to judge his brother and nephew at various stages of the competitions including at the Groovy and Soca Finals. What can be more unethical?

Roger Williams has not only shown that he is a poor judge but someone with a big question mark in the minds of many when it comes to sound principles.

The bad thing is that the CEO of Spicemas knew all of this and he did nothing to address it. Now that the carnival is over let the inquest begin. Heads must roll and necks must be chopped starting with those of the sick pathetic judges, the CEO of Spicemas and ultimately to the one who must shoulder all of the blame for all of this nonsense; the pitiful\Senator Brenda Hood.

Denise “Kaiso” Andrew

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